Raffi Stepanian is a freelance jewelry designer who has discovered a lucrative sideline - prospecting for gold and gemstones from the sidewalks and gutters of New York City streets.

Not just any street, but those in Manhattan's Diamond District. That's because the jewelers in the area inadvertently drop small chips of diamonds, rubies and other gemstones and gold dust from their clothes when they walk out of their stores.

It's certainly worth his effort working down in the dirt. He made over $800....in one week!  The New York Post video shows how he does it including his panning method to seek out very minute particles of gold which actually floats.

This urban gold and gem miner might be unique in North America but the practice already exists in India. In the famed jewelry city of Ahmadabad, dust washers or dhul dhoyas bend down and sweep the streets for tiny flecks of gold outside thousands of jewelry stores. 

These members of India's untouchable caste have been eking out their living the hard way for generations. It's back breaking work having to go through disgusting debris which includes food scraps and spittle. There are few alternatives for them.

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips