Shopify Final 40% Off Sale February 07, 2018 02:00

Thanks to everyone that responded to  my last email promotion as it was the most successful one that I have ever sent out. In fact, it did so well I am extending the promotion for one more month, after which I will retire the URL and gradually phase out the Shopify store. Use GOODBYE40 at checkout on Shopify for 40% off all orders and use GOODBYE50 at checkout on Shopify for 50% off all orders over $100. Thanks again!

Also, please remember that The Lapis Connection still sells on eBay at: and also I have wholesale lots available at bargain basement prices at my Afghan Tribal Connection store, also on eBay, at:

Sincerely and eternally grateful,


Shopify Store Closing 50% Sale January 12, 2018 17:27

Dear Friends,

I would just like to take a moment to thank you for your support of The Lapis Connection on Shopify over the past two years. I have had a very trying time since eBay discontinued my account on February 2, 2015, but with your help I was able to survive until eBay finally restored my account in July 2016. As you may or may not know I have been on kidney dialysis due to inherited End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) since September 1991 and received my second kidney transplant on March 1, 2013 which continues to function well today, but without your help I might not have been able to remain in my apartment and enjoy life as much as I have so from the bottom of my heart I wish you all a very sincere "Thank You!" 

I will be deactivating the Shopify account by the end of this week and as one special final thank you I have set up a special 50% off discount (VIP50) for as many or as few items as you like for my most special VIP customers. If you are no longer interested I apologize, but for those that do place orders this week I will be including a few special freebies from my personal collection of Afghan Alpaca Silver Kuchi anklets, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pendants and rings. Just use VIP50 at check out.

Also, please remember that The Lapis Connection still sells on eBay at: and also I have wholesale lots available at bargain basement prices at my Afghan Tribal Connection store, also on eBay, at:

Sincerely and eternally grateful,


Final Shopify 40% Off Sale!!! January 05, 2018 04:12

It's with regret that I have decided to close The Lapis Connection store on Shopify to focus completely on eBay. Combined shipping and shipping is FREE (US Only) for purchases of $50 or more

On Shopify ONLY:

Use GOODBYE40 at checkout on Shopify for 40% off all orders
Use GOODBYE50 at checkout on Shopify for 50% off all orders over $100

All prices are before discount. After January 6, 2018 look for The Lapis Connection on eBay!!!


30% Off Everything Until December 31!!! November 30, 2017 02:28

I just wanted to let everyone know that we are selling everything in the The Lapis Connection store for 30% off from now until December 31. Anklets, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pendants and rings are all 30% off. Enter FALL at checkout. Enter FALLVIP at checkout for 35% off all purchases over $100. Shipping is free for orders over $50!

Also check out my listings on eBay for auctions starting at low bids!!!

30% Off Everything Until April 30!!! April 08, 2016 04:32

I just wanted to let everyone know that we are selling everything in the The Lapis Connection store for 30% off from now until April 30. Anklets, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pendants and rings are all 30% off. Enter SPRING30 at checkout. Shipping is free for orders over $50! Free items throughout the store. Just pay shipping. Limit one per customer.

Also check out my listings on eBay for auctions starting at low, low bids!!!

30% Off Everything Until January 31 January 13, 2016 18:59

I just wanted to let everyone know that we are selling everything in the The Lapis Connection store for 30% off from now until January 31. Anklets, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, pendants and rings are all 30% off. Enter VDK39UE2WYFI at checkout. Shipping is free for orders over $50! Free items throughout the store. Just pay shipping. Limit one per customer.

Also check out my listings on eBay for auctions starting at low, low bids!!!


How To Clean Alpaca Silver May 05, 2015 02:40

Alpaca silver is a combination of metals formed to create a faux silver metal. This metal is also known as German silver or nickel silver and is made up of nickel, copper, tin and zinc. Due to the copper content (60%), the metal may develop a green tint, known as patina. Many times, if the Alpaca silver is used for jewelry, the manufacturer plates the piece in sterling silver, much like the process for gold electroplate. In time, the silver plating wears off.

1. Mild dish soap and water. This is the least abrasive method of cleaning your jewelry. In a small bowl mix soap and warm water. With a soft bristle tooth brush, scrub the jewelry with the soap/water mixture. Rinse briefly using the brush or under warm water. When you dry the jewelry use a polishing cloth or buff the new shiny jewels with a 100% cotton cloth. This works great with alpaca jewelry and your silver plated alloy jewelry.

2. Lemon juice and boiling water. Fill a large pot with water and lemon juice (about 1--2 tbsp) and bring to boil. Drop your jewelry into the pot (using tongs) and boil in the lemon water for about 2-3 minutes. Remove the jewelry using the tongs and let air dry. Using a 100% cotton cloth, buff your jewels to a shine. You may also use a tooth brush to clean the fine corners once removed from the lemon water. This method works excellent with silver or gold plated alloy bangles, earrings and necklaces. It also works well for your metal wire products (square wire earrings, long strand necklace, Eye of Shiva earrings, wire bracelet). Not recommended for brass (web earrings, multi hoop earring or brass statement ring). Added bonus: your pots will be gleaming!

3. Baking soda and water. Good ol' baking soda- the household cleaning remedy works wonders on jewelry! Line a large dish (deep enough that the jewelry can be covered) with aluminum foil. In a separate bowl, mix 1/2 cup of baking soda with approximately 2 liters of boiling water. Make sure you add the baking soda slowly, so you don't create a volcano in your home. Place your jewelry in the deep dish lined with foil and pour the water/baking soda mixture over top. The chemical reaction of the foil and baking soda cleans the tarnish off the jewelry within 5 minutes. Remove the jewelry from the mix and buff with a dry 100% cotton cloth. You may scrub hard and can reach corners with a soft bristle tooth brush with the baking soda/water mix. This works excellent on your plated jewelry and anything made from alpaca silver and is also safe for your wire jewelry.

4. Polishing Cloth. For any alpaca silver earrings or brass tri-metal web earrings that have begun to tarnish, simply use a polishing cloth to polish them up and they will look as good as new!

What Is Alpaca Silver? March 30, 2015 22:40

Nickel silver was first known and used in China. During the Qing Dynasty, it was smuggled into various parts of the East Indies, despite a government ban on the export of nickel silver. It became known in the west from imported wares called bai-tong or paktong (白銅, literally "white copper"), for which the silvery metal colour was used to imitate sterling silver. According to Berthold Laufer, it was identical with khar sini, one of the seven metals recognized by Jābir ibn Hayyān.
In Europe, consequently, it was at first called paktong, which is about the way pai t'ung is pronounced in the Cantonese dialect. The earliest European mention of paktong occurs in the year 1597. From then until the end of the eighteenth century there are references to it as having been exported from Canton to Europe. German imitations of paktong, however, began to appear from about 1750 onward. In 1770 the Suhl (Germany) metalworks were able to produce a similar alloy. In 1823 a German competition was held to perfect the production process: the goal was to develop an alloy that possessed the closest visual similarity to silver. The brothers Henniger in Berlin and Ernst August Geitner in Schneeberg independently achieved this goal. The manufacturer Berndorf named the trademark brand Alpacca, which became widely known in northern Europe for nickel silver. In 1830 the German process of manufacture was introduced into England, while exports of paktong from China gradually stopped.That is why today the alloy has lost its original name (paktong) and is generally known as German silver. In 1832, a form of German silver was also developed in Birmingham, England.
Antique Silver Spoon Silver Plated Alpaca Mark S. M. F. Ws 1892 - 1895.

After 1840, the development of electroplating caused nickel silver to become widely used. It formed an ideal strong and bright substrate for the plating process. It was also used unplated in applications such as cheaper grades of cutlery.

Counterfeit Morgan Silver dollar (right) compared to a genuine American Silver Eagle (left)

Nickel silver first became popular as a base metal for silver-plated cutlery and other silverware, notably the electroplated wares called EPNS (electro-plated nickel silver). It is used in zippers, better-quality keys, costume jewelry, for making musical instruments (e.g., flutes, clarinets), and is preferred for the track in electrically powered model railway layouts, as its oxide is conductive. It is widely used in the production of coins (e.g. Portuguese escudo and the former GDR marks). Its industrial and technical uses include marine fittings and plumbing fixtures for its corrosion resistance, and heating coils for its high electrical resistance.


"German silver" hair comb by Bruce Caesar (Pawnee), Oklahoma, 1984

In the 19th century, particularly after 1868, Plains Indian jewelers were able to easily acquire sheets of German silver. They used them to cut, stamp, and cold hammer a wide range of accessories and horse gear. Continuing into the present, Plains metalsmiths have used German silver for pendants, pectorals, bracelets, armbands, hair plates, conchas (oval decorative plates for belts), earrings, belt buckles, necktie slides, stickpins, dush-tuhs, and tiaras. Nickel silver is the metal of choice among contemporary Kiowa and Pawnee metalsmiths in Oklahoma. Many of the metal fittings on modern higher end equine harness and tack are of nickel silver. Early in the twentieth century, German silver was used by automobile manufacturers before the advent of steel sheet metal; for example, the famous Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost of 1907. After about 1920, its use became widespread for pocketknife bolsters, due to its machinability and corrosion resistance. Prior to this point, the most common metal was iron.


Musical instruments, including the flute, saxophone, trumpet, and french horn, can be made of nickel silver. Many professional-level french horns are entirely made of nickel silver. Some saxophone manufacturers, such as Keilwerth, offer saxophones made of nickel silver (Shadow model); these are far rarer than traditional lacquered brass saxophones. Student-level flute and piccolo are also made of silver-plated nickel silver, although upper-level models are likely to use sterling silver. It is said to produce a bright and powerful sound quality; an additional benefit is that nickel silver is harder and has more corrosion resistance than brass. Because of its harder property, it is the most commonly used material for woodwind keys. Most clarinets, flutes, oboes and similar wind instruments have nickel silver keys, normally silver plated. It is used to produce the tubes (called staples) onto which oboe reeds are tied. Many parts of brass instruments are made of nickel silver, such as tubes, braces or valve mechanism. Trombone slide of many manufacturers offer lightweight nickel silver (LT slide) option for faster slide action and weight balance. It was used in the construction of the National tricone resophonic guitar. The frets of guitar, mandolin, banjo, bass, and related string instruments are typically made of nickel silver. Nickel silver is sometimes used as ornamentation on the great highland bagpipe.

Welcome to The Lapis Connection! February 05, 2015 20:06

My name is Lee Edward New and I live in my hometown of Lynchburg, VA. Lapis Lazuli is my birthstone and I have always loved it. I receive all of my jewelry directly from Afghanistan from the son of a UN military translator who was kidnapped and killed by the Taliban after the family was unable to pay the ransom. I sell Afghan tribal belly-dancing jewelry like anklets, belts, bracelets, bras, earrings, necklaces, pendants, rings tassels and other miscellaneous items.

I have collected gems and minerals with my father since the age of ten from the local mines in and around Virginia and I still have a small but impressive private collection. I began my jewelry business on June 14, 2004 with the very first shipment from Santiago, Chile. Now all of my items come from Afghanistan because I am so impressed by the higher quality and lower prices compared to the lighter and more expensive Chilean lapis. I knew I had to start my own company and, thus, The Lapis Connection was born.

I want to stick with this business and make it a success no matter how much effort is required. This is very important to me as I have been on kidney dialysis due to hereditary Renal disease since 1991. I finally received a living-related donor kidney transplant on March 1, 2005 and was doing great until the kidney failed in July 2011. Fortunately, I received my second and still currently-working kidney transplant on February 1, 2013.

I combine shipping on all items that fit into a 6 X 9 inch padded envelope and shipping is FREE for everyone that purchases at least $50 to the US ONLY. Please pay by PayPal within seven days and I will ship your items immediately. Thanks for your patronage and I will do whatever is necessary to satisfy you so please always contact me before filing a dispute with PayPal because I WILL make it right.

My address is: Lee E. New, 3300 Weeping Willow Dr. Apt. A, Lynchburg, VA 24501 and phone: 1-434-509-2665 and I will ship as soon as you confirm that you have sent your payment. For more information about The Lapis Connection send an email to: