Dream it

It all begins with an idea. Maybe you want to launch a collection. Maybe you want to let the soul of the gem guide your design. Or maybe you have a new jewelry design to share with the world. Whatever it is, the way you decide to cut your gem can make all the difference.

Shape it

Whether your gem becomes a traditional cabochon, facet, designer cut or is transformed into it’s own hybrid cut, you will shape your gem to fit your vision. A Virtu Gem cutting partner can consult what cut best fits your material, and there is always excitement and risk when you cut a rough gem. But the rewards of being the visionary of the gems future are addictive.

Grow it

When designing can begin with your rough gem, your concept of what jewelry creation can be has just progressed . We are happy to facilitate a new era to jewelry, responsible jewelry, with design opportunities that were previously beyond the grasp of most jewelers. You can begin your journey with Virtu Gem.

MALAWI

Wilson

We are pleased to introduce you to our featured Malawi Gem cutter, Wilson. Wilson looks forward to working with you on your custom cut gems and will consult with you to help achieve the most beautiful cut for your gemstone and jewelry.

Here’s what Wilson has to say about his journey in gemstone industry as a gem cutter:

“First and foremost, I want to thank God for the gift he gave me and everyone else who has been there for me in this journey of polishing gemstones. I am Wilson, a professional gem cutter, born on 2nd July, 1989. My journey in the industry of gem cutting goes way back where I worked in a dairy factory as general worker at Nice n Creamy Company. We were manufacturing milk products. At this company there was a Greek gentleman called Erick, he had a small office where there was a machine, and every day when I go about my job cleaning the office would see him on a machine and obviously this had nothing to do with milk products we were producing at the company. One day I got courage and asked my boss what exactly he was always doing on the machine – this was the day I first heard the word lapidary. I did not understand anything nor the meaning, all I wanted was to just one day sit on the machine like my boss. Good luck for me Eric responded favorably and started explaining what the machine does and other information about stones. I developed interest because I could see stones from rough to finish. I got passionate about this and I would imagine myself cutting beautiful stones even in my sleep, as time goes by, he asked me to be visiting him at his house during off days from work without knowing that he had another machines at his place. He trained me on faceting and helped me enroll at the college for Gemology and Faceting to advance my skill and I obtained a certificate.

GEMOLOGY AND LAPIDARY TRAINING AND WORK EXPRIENCE 2007 went to Gemstone Processing and Lapidary Training Center for gemology, cutting and polishing to acquire a certificate under Examination Council of Zambia in Copper belt for 3years.

2011 worked as a full time qualified cutter at Brilliant Gems of Africa in Lusaka for 2years

2015 worked as a full time qualified cutter at Passion Gemstone for 1 and half year

2017 – 2018 worked as an entrepreneur cutting and polishing stones

2019 – 2020 (Currently) working with Maleta Gems and Jewels as Gem Cutter, now happily joining on as a Virtu Gem cutter “

Joseph

“My name is Joseph. I am Malawian by birth. I have been a gem cutter my whole life. I learnt this trade in Zambia which is a neighboring country with Malawi with an international company which is called International Diamonds General Corporation from Germany. I’ve done this job for quite a long time now. I should say this is my 40th year as a cutter.

I’ve worked for other people which are very much renowned. I worked in Zambia for some years, before I went to work with Mario in Lilongwe, Malawi.

Then I should say, with much experience, I am very much acquainted in the gemstone industry, both in cutting fancy and normal standard cuts. At the moment trying to train a few youngsters who are interested in cutting and polishing precious and semi-precious stones. My experience is so vast that I cannot manage cannot say much about it but my experience has been 40 years now cutting stones.” -Joseph.

Austin

PERSONAL PROFILE STATEMENT

Motivated, adapted and responsible hard working professional Gemstone cutter, and will utilize the profession and technical skills through past working experience in this field. I have a methodical customer care approach and expertise in quality cuts and shape to perfection. In my current job I am self-employed and I also train others in Gemstone field.

ACHIEVEMENT

Bought my own cutting equipment

Best cutter in Malawi

Train Cutters with Ministry of Mines

Buy my own house and car

EDUCATION

1975-1980 Diploma in Gemogeologist in Lubambashi, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

Secondary School at Chililabombwe, Zambia.

RELATED MODULES

Mining in Lundazi, Zambia (Personal)

Mining in Ntcheu and Nsanje (Demos) Engineering RSA ( work)

EMPLOYMENT

Working with Milk Crop Limited in Lusaka, Zambia

Demos Engineering RSA

Self employed

ZAMBIA

Mukosha & Tazilinda

We are happy to have Mukosha as our featured gem cutter in Zambia.

Mukosha believes in cutting a gem to bring out its unique beauty and to honor gemstones best characteristics. He brings extensive knowledge of transforming rough to cut gems to optimize beauty.

Mukosha is a GIA graduate. He consults on our inventory of rough gemstones to help our buyers make their best purchases. Mukosha will personally discuss with our buyers once they purchase their gems to help them achieve their dream gemstone cuts. And we love that his goals for a better ASM future are in line with those of Virtu Gem. The mission of Mukosha and Tazilinda’s foundation it to impact positively the lives of women and children through improved small scale mining practices, for sustainable development.

Here is what he has to say about himself:

Who is Mukosha Mulenga? Mukosha Mulenga is a Zambian entrepreneur born in the small town of Luanshya but raised in the capital city of Lusaka.

What is different about MM? At the tender age of 7, M.M. fell in love with the dazzle of coloured stones, particularly tourmalines which an aunt of his was mining in the Eastern Province of Zambia. From then on his passion for gemstones grew and he spent as much time as possible learning of the various gemstones Zambia had to offer. As his knowledge grew, he felt he needed to deepen it and enrolled with the GIA under whose auspices he has now obtained a Coloured Gemstones Diploma. M.M. has also set up a gemstone jewellery business, Eleora Gems, which aims to make gemstone jewellery reachable for the ordinary Zambian.

KENYA

Marvin Wambua

Marvin Wambua

My journey into gemstones started by seeing my dad with small shiny stones, some he used to call corundum, Tourmaline, Tsavorite, and Tanzanite just to mention a few. He would travel together with his partners, to Voi, Kenya or Arusha, Tanzania for the stones. They would then sell to international Gem dealers who frequented Nairobi. At times l would accompany him to Nairobi where he would meet his clients at the international hotels. l used to be intrigued by the ambiance of the hotel lobbies.

Years later I got a chance to study in America and hotel management was the obvious choice as a major-I wanted more of the “lobbies”. While visiting New York l got to see what the gems (stones) my dad was selling look like in finished settings. Years later, as an employee working at Pooks Hill Marriott hotel in Maryland, l enrolled with GIA for gemology classes. At the same time l had friends, who were gem cutters, whom l would sell rough stones to. In one of my friend’s house, I saw a Portuguese-cut glass which mesmerized me.

Within a few months, I was enrolled at Gem Cutters Guild of Baltimore, Inc. for faceting classes. Now, I am based in Nairobi Kenya, and the founder of Amor Gems Ltd. where I continue to facet gemstones and export to clients all over the world