Question about valuing Ethiopian Opal

Hello all,
I have recently completed a pendant in 18 and 22K using an 8.7 carat Ethiopian opal and have been going to some nice jewelry stores to try and get them to sell the piece. I know I make quality work, but I am new to the jewelry industry. One store was owned and run by a very talented jewelry who’s been making high quality jewelry for more than 40 years. He really liked the piece and was willing to sell it on commission, but he wasn’t sure about the Ethiopian Opal market. He had no idea how to price the opal as he is more used to the Australian opal, and he’s one of those people who has some concerns about the stability of the Ethiopian opals. He’s pretty old-school. All he said he could go on is what I paid for the opal. But I believe I got a very good price for it and that the opal should be valued for more than what I paid for it. It truly is a gorgeous stone. Could anyone here give me any information on the valuing of Ethiopian opals, and this opal in particular? I would appreciate any help I can get.

Thank you,
Eleanor Phillips

By the way, I am attaching a picture of the pendant with the opal. The setting is 18K and the snake is 22K. The accent stones are a Tsavortie and a Mandarin garnet. This is all hand fabricated by myself and the snake is hand-carved from gold PMC.

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Very pretty item, you are very talented! I can understand the retailers concern. In general i find with retail it really doesn’t matter what you think it is worth or what the retailer thinks it is worth it depends on what the consumer is willing to pay. My best advice is to first have your item evaluated by a qualified, known appraiser who KNOWS opals of this sort. They can provide a document with the picture, the exact qualities of the gold, gemstones etc and also take into account that this is a handcrafted item. (It doesn’t look like one of the items from stuller) Also provide a document which states how to correctly care for these stones so the consumer will have confidence wearing the item. If your retailer doesn’t have confidence in the item how can he/she ask high dollar? By providing appropriate documentation you have provided your seller with the tools he needs to sell your item. Once he has sold it and is happy with the results he may buy more and there you have it…a business!
Look at the top of this page, there is a link to “Appraisals” A wonderful resource for everyone!

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el., i looked at JTV opal prices, they sell @ wholesale, a little more, their prices r in the $100 to $150.00/ct range for a similar stone-this is a rough guess/comparison on my part, but ur stone should b checked by a prof. for a better guess-ethiopean opal does have its issues, is not as stable as australian opal, is a little more sensitive to handling & im told can dry out at times, needing a water refresh to keep color up.-m76steve…

The piece looks very nice and the quality of the stone also looks high. Really beautiful pendant. There are many online stores available from there you can get a better idea about the Ethiopian opal stone prices. You can visit over here :

Ethiopian Opals are mostly Hydrophane and do have a waxy different feel compared to other Opals.Volcanic opal is called “hydrophane opal." The term hydrophane comes from the Greek words meaning “water-loving” and describes their ability to absorb water and change from opaque or semi-translucent to translucent or transparent.That’s how I know,i hope helps.hallo