Fordite sounds like it could be a gem or a rock, but it’s actually an unintentional by-product of American motor history. Each piece is unique and can be made into pendants, earrings, bracelets, rings or even cuff links. Fordite pieces are a welcome addition to anyone’s collection of accessories, with its many bright colors matching (or power-clashing) with any outfit. Not only does every piece look fabulous, but the unique history behind it makes for a great story.
What is Fordite?
Fordite may sound like it’d be a naturally occurring substance, but it’s far from that. During the auto industry’s heydays in 1970′s Detroit, cars were hand spray painted in bays with an enamel paint. Understandably, these bays would get covered in layers upon layers of brightly colored paints, which would need to be scraped off when they started building up.
American ingenuity grabbed the hearts of some of the workers as they realized that the extra paint they were scraping off was incredibly unique and beautiful. Workers took the pieces home, cut and polished them, and started turning the brightly colored “rocks” into jewelry. Eventually, Fordite became so popular that “collectors” were rumored to go to any factories they could, offering to clean the paint bays for free if they could keep the scrapings.
Fordite (equally cleverly called Motor Agate) is also becoming increasingly rare. Assembly line production evolved, and cars are now painted by machines using an electrostatic method. As result there is almost no “wasted” paint to scrape off, and thus no new Fordite being created. Get it while you can!
Where Can You Get Fordite?
Like most unique things, the easiest place to find jewelry made from Fordite, or pieces of Fordite (called cabochons) is the internet. Site such as Fordite.com and Thunder Road Creations are devoted to informing people about Fordite and selling these beautiful pieces. Thunder Road Creations even lets buyers custom order pieces.
How Should You Wear Fordite?
Due to the unique nature of every piece of Fordite, there is no set way that works best. Some smaller pieces are made into cuff links, others into striking cocktail rings or bold earrings. Sometimes the Fordite is even matched with other stones to bring out specific colors. However, a fail-safe way to wear this “stone” is with a more casual piece, such as denim. Paired with a eye catching Fordite pendant, the simple jeans and shirt look is easily dressed up in a way that is both colorful and chic. Fordite pieces are a fantastic representation of American ingenuity and creativity. They make for wonderful conversation starters, brighten up even the most simple of outfits or are fabulous gifts.