I just had an idea and today I went to check. Since I’ve started knitting with gemstones I thought why not buy second-hand jewelry and recycle the beads? I wasn’t sure I would actually find any, but I had to try.
You can usually tell if it’s real gemstones by the weight and that they’re really cold when you first touch them. If you separate the bead string and look between the beads you can see if the holes are hand drilled. Hand drilled holes are a bit uneven and vary in size. Gemstones quite often have hand drilled holes. I’m not an expert though, but these tricks come in handy!
I came home with a whole bunch of 4 mm Amethyst beads for about € 2.5 and a turquoise 4-5 mm something for € 1 that I’m not sure what it is yet. I’d say it was a successfull bead hunt!1