About us

Isle of Skye Cuillin Marbles was started in 2003 with the aim of making quality gifts and jewellery using local material.

We chose Skye marble because although it is used extensively as gravel or for building walls and rockeries it was not being shown in its true colours as a very beautiful piece of stone.

All our marble is gathered by hand from the foot of the Black Cuillin. We started tumbling small pieces of the marble and through a lengthy process of trial and error discovered how to polish it to a soft shine.

The marble being a mix of soft and hard stone did not make this process very easy. As any lapidary will tell you, you should always tumble stone of the same grade of hardness together. (Mohs' scale of hardness).Still, we persevered and through a stroke of pure luck (or genius) discovered the secret of the polish. (No I am not telling you). We were happy with the result so we then made the stones into key rings and pendants and starting making enquiries to see if anyone would be interested in buying them. The response was extremely positive and so Cuillin Marbles was born.

If I make all this sound very easy let me assure you it isn't, Gus and I make regular trips to the quarry where we hand pick every piece of stone (back breaking work). Gus then has the unenviable task of breaking up the larger pieces to the size we need. It then goes through five stages of tumbling with different sized grits, all of which produce huge quantities of slurry that has to be washed off at each stage and disposed of in a responsible manner. Each stone has to be checked at every stage for cracks or chips and if flawed has to go through the whole process again, or if too badly damaged, completely rejected. After all the tumbling stages the stone then has to be polished, invariably it is at this final stage that we notice most small flaws.

Despite the frustrations of seeing a beautiful piece of stone damaged and rejected after so much work, each new lot of marble going through the process continues to delight and amaze us. It is hard to believe that such a variety of design and colours all come from the same small area at the foot of the Black Cuillin.

A unique and beautiful stone from a unique and beautiful island, we hope you will visit us some day and see for yourself, meanwhile enjoy our site.

Update June 2007
Things have moved on a lot in the last couple of years and we are now cutting the marble as well as tumbling it. Our new range of silver jewellery is set with Skye marble cabochons and we will be adding more to the range as and when we can.

Update July 2008
We opened our shop on Friday 27th June and we have now been trading for nearly one month.

Update November 2008
We have changed the name of the shop to Cuillin Crafts and we now sell the work of many local crafters as well as our own Skye Marble range

Update August 2014
We have now been trading in the shop for six years and have a wide variety of jewellery and gifts including local crafts, pewter ware, Heathergems, Sheila Fleet, a large range of freshwater pearls and of course our own range of hand made soaps (Fairyglen Soaps)

Over ninety years ago Skye marble was an attractive prospect for industrial developers and they opened a quarry near Kilbride and brought in state of the art machinery to work the stone. They even built a railway to take their valuable product out via the pier at Broadford Sadly in 1912,only four years after the railway was built the Skye Marble Company went into liquidation.

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