Amethyst: Birthstone for February
Color: violet, purple-violet
Refractive index: 1.54 – 1.55
Density: 2.65 – 2.
Chemical composition: SiO2
Crystal structure: hexagonal
Origins: Widespread; main sources are Brazil, Uruguay, Bolivia, Argentina, USA, East Africa, Zambia, Namibia, Madagascar, India, Sri Lanka, Russia, Australia.
Amethyst is a transparent purple-violet variety of quartz. Best amethysts have medium dark violet color and uniform coloring. Rarely heated to lighten dark colors or to improve transparency. Change color to yellow or greenish yellow in heat treatment. Long time exposing in direct sunlight may fade color. Prasiolite is a greened amethyst. It turns green at a temperature of 932 degrees F. It gets its name from the leek-green colors it achieves, and comes mostly from the Montezuma Mine in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Then there is also the "praseolite", an equally leek green stone of the cordiorite family.
Agate : Birthstone for October.
No gemstone is more creatively striped by nature than agate, chalcedony quartz that forms in concentric layers in a wide variety of colors and textures. Each individual agate forms by filling a cavity in host rock. As a result, agate often is found as a round nodule, with concentric bands like the rings of a tree trunk. The bands sometimes look like eyes, sometimes fanciful scallops, or even a landscape with dendrite trees.
Agate was highly valued as a talisman or amulet in ancient times. It was said to quench thirst and protect from fevers. Persian magicians used agate to divert storms. A famous collection of two to four thousand agate bowls which was accumulated by Mithradates, king of Pontus, shows the enthusiasm with which agate was regarded. Agate bowls were also popular in the Byzantine Empire. Collecting agate bowls became common among European royalty during the Renaissance and many museums in Europe, including the Louvre, have spectacular examples.
The mining of agate in the Nahe River valley in Germany which was already documented in 1497 gave rise to the cutting center of Idar-Oberstein, Germany. Originally, the river was used to power the grinding wheels. When the Nahe agate deposit was exhausted in the nineteenth century, Idar cutters started to develop the agate deposits of Brazil, which also sparked exploration and discovery of Brazil's rich deposits of amethyst, citrine, tourmaline, topaz, and other gemstones
Although the small town of Idar-Oberstein is still known for the finest agate carving in the world, today Idar imports a huge range of other gem materials from around the world for cutting and carving in Germany and Asia. Cameo master carvers and modern lapidary artists flourish along with rough dealers who scour the world for the latest gem discoveries for export. And the entire industry sprung from the taste for agate bowls and ornaments during the Renaissance! Maybe agate is also a powerful talisman for success in international trade!
A Mexican agate, showing only a single eye, has received the name of "cyclops agate." Included matter of a green, golden, red, black or other color or combinations embedded in the chalcedony and disposed in filaments and other forms suggestive of vegetable growth, gives rise to dendritic or moss agate (named varieties include Maury Mountain, Richardson Ranch, Sheep Creek and others). Dendritic agates have beautiful fern like patterns on them formed due to the presence of manganese and iron ions. Other types of included matter deposited during agate-building include sagenitic growths (radial mineral crystals) and chunks of entrapped detritus (such as sand, ash, or mud). Occasionally agate fills a void left by decomposed vegetative material such as a tree limb or root and is called limb cast agate due to its appearance.
Turritella agate is formed from fossil Turritella shells silicified in a chalcedony base. Turritella are spiral marine gastropods having elongated, spiral shells composed of many whorls. Similarly, coral, petrified wood and other organic remains or porous rocks can also become agatized. Agatized coral is often referred to as Petoskey agate or stone.
Certain stones, when examined in thin sections by transmitted light, show a diffraction spectrum due to the extreme delicacy of the successive bands, whence they are termed rainbow agates. Often agate coexists with layers or masses of opal, jasper or crystalline quartz due to ambient variations during the formation process. Other forms of agate include carnelian agate (usually exhibiting reddish hues, as seen in the opening picture of a pendent), Botswana agate, blue lace agate, plume agate (such as Carey, Graveyard Point, Sage, St. Johns, Teeter Ranch and others), tube agate (with visible flow channels), fortification agate (which exhibit little or no layered structure), fire agate (which seems to radiate light from inside out, Mexican crazy-lace agate (which exhibits an often brightly colored, complex banded pattern).
Color: blue to greenish blue
Refractive index: 1.57 – 1.59
Density: 2.67 – 2.75
Chemical composition: Be3Al2(SiO3)6
Crystal structure: hexagonal
Brazil, Madagascar, Mozambique,Russia, Sri Lanka, China.
Aquamarine is a light blue or light greenish blue variety of beryl. Darker stones are more expensive. Heat enhancement is often applied to enforce blue color of aquamarines but only clean pieces can be heated.
The very name aquamarine brings to mind the clear blue tint of the sea. Legend says that it is the treasure of mermaids, with the power to keep sailors safe at sea. Aquamarine was long thought to have a soothing influence on married couples, making it a good anniversary gift. Many aquamarines are greenish when mined and cut. For those who prefer a purer blue, these stones are heated to enhance their blue color permanently. Some aquamarine fanciers prefer the greenish hues, saying the greener tones remind them more of the sea. The color tones of aquamarine are subtle and varied. Their soft luster is a wonderful addition to any natural colored gemstone jewelry collection.
The very name aquamarine brings to mind the clear blue tint of the sea. Legend says that it is the treasure of mermaids, with the power to keep sailors safe at sea. Aquamarine was long thought to have a soothing influence on married couples, making it a good anniversary gift.
Many aquamarines are greenish when mined and cut. For those who prefer a purer blue, these stones are heated to enhance their blue color permanently. Some aquamarine fanciers prefer the greenish hues, saying the greener tones remind them more of the sea. The color tones of aquamarine are subtle and varied. Their soft luster is a wonderful addition to any natural colored gemstone jewelry collection
Often has tiny particles of mica, hematite, or goethite. Green aventurine quartz is said to relieve anxiety and calm one's emotions, to bring opportunity, to give good luck in gambling, and to enhance one's creativity and leadership qualities. Green aventurine quartz is also said to have been used successfully in psychotherapy, treating disorders of the lungs and heart, and to help increase muscle flexibility. It soothes, heals, and balances. It opens and soothes a wounded heart. Enhances intelligence. Increases opportunities and motivation. Brings luck and adventures in love and games. A Prosperity stone. Green Aventurine is like the good luck shamrock of the mineral kingdom. It's a great stone for good adventures while traveling. It helps bring in good fortune, money, abundance and overall happiness.
According to most Mineralogy guides, chalcedony is a group of cryptocrystalline quartz, encompassing both transparent and translucent crystals. Their color may vary from white to blue, light -or dark brown, and even black. Some have mixed color patterns. The term "chalcedony" used to describe carnelian agate, sard, chrysoprase, bloodstone, agate, onyx, sardonyx, jasper, flint, hornstone, and agate-jasper, just to mention the more common ones. Gem dealers apply the definition of chalcedony more strictly than mineralogists. Jewelers use the term chalcedony describe all semi-transparent to translucent white, blue, pale gray, purple, pink, yellow, orange, red, and solid-colored materials except carnelian agate, sard, or chrysoprase. The perhaps most commonly used chalcedony is the bluish hue.
Chrysoprase or chrysophrase is a gemstone variety of chalcedony (fibrous form of quartz) that contains small quantities of nickel. Its color is normally apple-green, but varies to deep green. It is cryptocrystalline, meaning that it is composed of crystals so fine that they are not visible as distinct particles under normal magnification. This sets it apart from rock crystal, amethyst, citrine, and the other varieties of crystalline quartz which are basically transparent and formed from easily recognized six-sided crystals.
Other members of the cryptocrystalline quartz family include agate, carnelian, and onyx. Unlike many non-transparent members of the quartz family, it is the color of chrysoprase, rather than any pattern of markings, that makes it desirable. The word chrysoprase is derived from the Greek chrysos meaning gold and prason, meaning leek.
Due to its comparative scarcity and pleasing green color, chrysoprase is one of the most expensive varieties of quartz. Higher quality specimens often rival in appearance with fine jade, for which it is sometimes mistaken. Cut into cabochons (smooth domed gems with flat backs for use in jewelry), it is similarly popular and as desired as fine amethyst.
Unlike emerald, which owes its beautiful green color to the presence of chromium, the color of chrysoprase is due to trace amounts of nickel in the structure. The nickel reportedly occurs as platelets of the talc-like mineral willemseite. Chrysoprase results from the deep weathering or lateritization of nickeliferous serpentinites or other ultramafic ophiolite rocks. In the Australian deposits, chrysoprase occurs as veins and nodules with brown goethite and other iron oxides in the magnesite-rich saprolite below an iron and silica cap.
Chrysoprase has a hardness of 6 - 7 on the Mohs hardness scale and a conchoidal fracture.
Sources of Chrysoprase are Queensland, Western Australia; Germany, Poland, Russia, Arizona, California, and Brazil.
[here with red garnets]
Birthstone for November
Color: Light lemon yellow to deep sunset yellowish orange
Refractive index: 1.54 – 1.55
Density: 2.65 – 2.66
Chemical composition: SiO2
Crystal structure: hexagonal
Origins: Widespread; best specimens come from Brazil.
Citrine is one of the most inexpensive gemstones. Even very big pieces, 50 carats and more, can be easily found on the market. Greenish yellow and orange-yellow stones are more valuable.
Heat treatment is applied to enforce yellow color.
Amethyst and citrine are gemstone varieties of quartz. Named from the French word for lemon, many citrines have a deep yellow color. Sunny and affordable, citrine can brighten almost any jewelry style, blending especially well with the yellow gleam of polished gold. In ancient times, citrine was carried as a protection against snake venom and evil thoughts
Emerald : Birthstone for May.
Hardness: 7.5 – 8
Refractive index: 1.57 – 1.59
Density: 2.67 – 2.5
Chemical composition: Be3Al2(SiO3)6
Crystal structure: hexagonal Lustre: vitreous
Origins: Colombia, Zambia, Brazil, Madagascar, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Russia, India, Pakistan, Australia, USA, Pakistan
Unlike other beryl varieties clean pieces of emerald are extremely rare end expensive. Emeralds are usually treated by polymers or colorless oil in order to hide microfissures and to improve the stone appearance. Emerald prices highly depend on gem color and clarity; for this reason it is rather difficult to carry out the online valuating for emeralds. Because the rich green color of emerald is the color of spring, the ancients prized it as the gemstone symbolizing love and rebirth. Treasured for at least 4,000 years by different cultures all around the world, emerald is said to quicken the intelligence as well as the heart. Legend gives its owner the gift of eloquence.
Cleopatra prized her emeralds more than any other gem. She may have dropped her pearls in her wine for Mark Anthony but she kept her emeralds for herself! The ancient emerald mines of Cleopatra, long a mystery, were discovered again a hundred years ago near the Red Sea. Some tools found in the mine were dated at 1650 B.C. but no quality emeralds were found: the mines were exhausted thousands of years ago. Mummies in ancient Egypt were often buried with an emerald on their necks carved with the symbol for verdure, flourishing greenness, to symbolize eternal youth
The Romans also loved emeralds because, as ancient scholar Pliny said, "nothing greens greener." Pliny said that emerald was the only gem which delighted the eye without fatiguing it. He said his eyes were restored when gazing at emerald. Emperor Nero wore emerald sunglasses to watch the gladiatorsOne legend says that Satan lost the emerald from his crown when he fell. The emerald was shaped into a bowl which the Queen of Sheba sent to Nicodemus. Christ used the bowl at the last supper and Joseph of Arimathea used the bowl to catch blood from the cross, founding the order of the Holy Grail.
The Moguls of India, including Shah Jahan, the builder of the Taj Mahal, loved emeralds so much they inscribed them with sacred text and wore them as talismans. Some of these sacred stones, called Mogul emeralds, can still be seen in museums and collections today.
Emerald is the birthstone for May, the month of springtime romance, and the anniversary gemstone for the twentieth year of marriage, the perfect emblem of an enduring love.
Red Garnet is the birthstone for January.
The name garnet probably comes from pomegranate. Many ancient pieces of garnet jewelry are studded with tiny red stones that do look a lot like a cluster of pomegranate seeds! Jewelry set with garnets from Czechoslovakia was extremely popular in the nineteenth century and Bohemian garnet jewelry is still popular today, although today the garnets are mined elsewhere. When you say garnet, most people think automatically of small dark red gemstones, even though this is only one corner of the world of garnets.Garnets are any of a group of semi-precious silicate stones that range n color from red to green (garnets occur in all colors but blue). Some garnets used as gemstones include pyrope (the deep red, or Mozambique garnet); almandine (or Rhodonite, a pinkish hue); the orange spessartine (or spessartite).
Hardness: 7 – 7.5
Density: 2.53 – 2.78
Chemical composition: Mg2Al3(AlSi5O18)
Crystal structure: orthorhombic
Origins: Brazil, USA, Canada, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, India, Burma Color: Bleu to violet blue
Refractive index: 1.52 - 1.56
Stones are generally not treated
Jasper is an ornamental rock composed mostly of chalcedony, microcrystalline quartz, in association with other minerals, which give it colorful bands and patterns. Jasper was a favorite gem in the ancient world, and the name jasper can be traced back in Hebrew, Assyrian, Persian, Greek, and Latin. Jasper is often named according to its pattern: landscape jaspers, the most popular, offer a small world scape in stone. Red jasper is particularly bright. Jasper is found in many countries. It is sometimes used to create bowls and other and to adorn buildings, such as the Saint Wenceslas Chapel in Prague, in the Czech Republic.
Kunzite has only been known to gem collectors and jewelry makers for a barely more 100 years. It has again become very popular since the late 1990s, a phenomenon that can only be described as a second Renaissance.
Kunzite was introduced by a New York jeweler and gemstone specialist George Frederick Kunz (1856 – 1932) who first provided a comprehensive description of this unique gemstone after its discovery in California. Hence, the name o this gem became Kunzite.
Its hardness is fairly good, between 6.5 and 7 on the Mohs scale. There are various aspects to look at when determining the value of a Kunzite gemstone. Its delicate pink color comes first. The more intense the color, the more valuable the Kunzite gem.
To ensure that the fine color is reflected to its full extent, the cutter must align the raw crystal very precisely during his work. Additionally, the angle from which you look at a Kunzite gemstone decides whether it looks violet, pink or may be, colorless. Kunzites found in Afghanistan may appear to have a color of strong violet, a light violet and a light green; based on the angle of observation. In Gemmology, the science of gemstones, this phenomenon is named pleochroism, meaning “being multi-colored.” Generally, Kunzites have a light color, and the darker the hue the more rare and valuable the gemstone.
The second aspect is clarity. Kunzite belongs in the family of gemstones known as spodumen, to which the green or yellowish-green Hiddenite, discoverered by W. E. Hidden. As well as diopside, jadeite and three other kinds of minerals also belong. These stones together make up the group of pyroxenes, which is a word derived from two Greek words, pyr (fire) and xenos (stranger).
Kunzite is mined in the following World regions: Afghanistan, Madagascar, Brazil and the USA.
To protect the color from fading, you should avoid wearing Kunzite jewelry in direct sunlight the color can fade in direct sunlight.
This gemstone with its delicate pink is said to enhance a person's devotion and understanding, and to bestow inner peace and joie de vivre on the person wearing it. Kunzite is also believed to activate the mind and liberate us from worry and anxiety, it is an excellent gemstone for those suffering from stress. Whether or not one actually believes in these positive effects, is of course, based on personal choices and beliefs.
Larimar or Pectolite
Pectolite (trade name Larimar) is a mineral species. It belongs to the triclinic crystal system and offers a chemical composition of NaCa20si3O8(OH). The refractive index is 1.599-1.628 with a specific gravity of 2.81. It is a fairly soft stone being a 4.5-5. It is mainly found in the Dominican Republic, however reports have been made from Canada and the US.
Opens creativity in the throat area, helps soul mates to find one another while healing negative karma between soul mates and lovers. Allows for open communication between soul mates. This is an healing stone that not only aids communication in relationships, but it also radiates a strong sense of peace. It is very calming. Note: The stones are very rarely evenly blue. Most stones have a unique, interesting pattern of light and darker hues of blue spots, reminiscent of the clear blue lagoons of the Caribbean, just the right water for snorkeling!
The most important outcrop of Larimar, also known as blue pectolite, is located at Los Chupaderos, about 10 kilometers southwest of the city of Barahona, in the Dominican Republic. In 1974, Norman Rilling, a member of the Peace Corps of the United States, and Miguel Méndez, a Dominican, found these beautiful, bright blue stones on the seashore. Their expedition took them upstream the Bahoruco river, and they reached Los Checheses, the town Los Chupaderos about 10 kilometers into the mountains from the city of Barahona, the place at which at present the most abundant outcropping of Larimar is found.
The name LARIMAR is due to this discovery. Miguel Méndez' daughter's name is "LARIssa", and the sea (Spanish: "MAR") by which it was found, combined led to the name LARIMAR.
Moderately permanent pigment of varying colour. Malachite is perhaps the oldest known green pigment. It is chemically similar to the blue pigment azurite. It is sensitive to acids and to heat. ma • luh • kite
Chemical name>basic copper (II) carbonate
Malachite occurs when carbonated water interacts with copper minerals, or when a solution of copper interacts with limestone. It is a secondary mineral of copper, which means it's formed when copper minerals are altered by other chemicals. Crystals sometimes form as needles that fan out from the rock in which they are embedded. More often, malachite forms as a mass with concentric bands of light and dark green. Malachite is usually found with azurite, a blue secondary mineral of copper. A mineral sample can have alternating bands of green malachite and blue azurite.
Malachite is used as a decorative stone, since it is easily cut and polished. While its softness limits its use as a gemstone, its beauty is hard to resist. It was a popular decorative stone in Czarist Russia, and was used to make the columns of St. Isaac's Cathedral in Leningrad.
Malachite can be found in Russia, Zaire, Australia, and Namibia. In the United States, specimens have been found in the copper mines of Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee.
Malachite is opaque and always green. In ancient Egypt, malachite was used to protect children against evil spirits. Malachite represented joyfulness and was closely associated with the goddess Hathor. Ground malachite was used as a pigment in painting and statuary and malachite jewelry was highly prized. Eye make up made from ground-up malachite was believed to defend against certain eye complaints. Wearing this mae-up was also seen as invoking the protective power of the goddess Hathor. During the Middle Ages, malachite was a popular talisman against the Evil Eye, all forms of sorcery and black magic.
Onyx: Birthstone for January
Onyx was very popular with the ancient Greeks and Romans. The name comes from the Greek word “onux”, which means fingernail. The story is that one day frisky Cupid cut the divine fingernails of Venus with an arrowhead while she was sleeping. He left the clippings scattered on the sand and the fates turned them into stone so that no part of the heavenly body would ever perish. True, black isn't normally the color one associates with fingernails. (Did Venus wear Vamp?) But in Greek times, almost all colors of chalcedony from fingernail white to dark brown and black were called onyx (on the picture above, with pink rose quartz cabochon). Later, the Romans narrowed the term to refer to black and dark brown colors only. Black onyx especially shines when used a backdrop for color play. Its fine texture also makes it ideal for carving, making it a favored material for today's lapidary artists.
Reddish brown with white pattern onyx is known as sardonyx. Sardonyx was highly valued in Rome, especially for seals, because it was said to never stick to the wax. Roman General Publius Cornelius Scipio was known for wearing lots of sardonyx.
Pearl : Birthstone for June
The word pearl originates in the Latin word perla, meaning the proud son of the ocean.
The first pearls were discovered over six thousands years ago in China, and over five thousands years ago in India, by our ancestors foraging for food in the water. When they discovered clam meat as a food source, they also found the first pearls.
In India and other Ganges cultures pearl has been regarded ever since as a precious jewelry, due to its entirely natural origin, variety of colors and shapes, high luster, and pleasant touch on the human skin. Pearls have quickly ascended to indicate status of wealth. Even today, pearls are among the five most prestigious materials for fine jewelry, in the company of diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, and opals. Buddhists cherish pearls among the seven treasures of Buddhism.
Pearl is a great gift especially for those with a birthday in June, along with Alexandrite and moonstone.
In China and Japan, the most perfect Akoya ocean pearls were worn by members of the ruling dynasties and their household. It is China that started cultured pearl operations first; and today about eighty percent of all freshwater pearls in the world are provided by the pearl farms of that country.
According to ancient Chinese legend, the moon holds the power to create pearls, instilling them with its celestial glow and mystery. Pearls have been treasured for their lustrous, creamy texture and subtle iridescent reflections since the dawn of humankind. Because natural pearls are so rare and difficult to recover from the ocean's depths, man invented the technique of culturing salt and freshwater pearls from oysters and other mollusks carefully seeded with irritants similar to those produced by nature. The painstaking effort of culturing is one of the most dramatic examples of man's quest to coax beauty from nature.
Due to demand for perfectly matched white pearl strands, cultured, fresh and saltwater pearls are often bleached to achieve a uniform color. They may also be polished in tumblers to clean and improve their luster. Pearls are most commonly thought of as white, but they are actually produced in many colors, including gold, yellow, champagne, mauve, pink, peach, lavender, gray, black and peacock, which has either dominantly blue or green hues, with some pink shine to it. Produced by a living organism, pearls require special care because they contain calcareous crystals that are sensitive to chemicals and acids. To care for your cultured pearls, avoid using perfume, hairspray, abrasives, solvents, and nail polish removers while wearing them. Like your skin, cultured pearls contain water and may dehydrate and crack if exposed continuously to arid conditions.
Peridot: Birthstone for August
Color: yellowish green, brownish green
Hardness: 6.5 – 7
Refractive index: 1.64 – 1.69
Density: 3.20 – 3.50
Crystal structure: orthorhombic
Lustre: vitreous, greasy
Origins: China, Burma, Pakistan, USA, East Africa, South Africa, Brazil, Norway, Egypt
Prices of peridot (olivine) highly depend on the stone’s clarity. Best stones have vivid yellowish green color. Peridots are generally not treated. Peridot has been adored since ancient times; its history traces back more than 3,500 years when it was prized by the ancient Egyptians. Found in various shades of green, peridot is most desired in lime hues. Peridot has been credited with a host of magical powers and healing properties, such as protection against nightmares and possessing the power to ward off evil. It is the recommended gift for couples celebrating their 16th wedding anniversary. Peridot is relatively soft and should be spared rugged, regular wear if worn in a ring. As a general rule, peridot is not enhanced.
Ruby: Birthstone for July
Color: red, purple red
Refractive index: 1.76 – 1.78
Density: 3.99 – 4.06
Chemical composition: Al2O3 Crystal structure: hexagonal
Origins: Burma, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Madagascar, Tanzania, Kenya.
Ruby, the red variety of corundum, is the most expensive gemstone after diamonds. The distinctive rubies of “pigeons blood” color from Mogok (Burma) have the highest value. Specimens over 5 ct. as well as eye clean stones are very rare. Heat treatment is usually applied to improve color and reduce small inclusions.
Gem of passion, of smoldering desire, ruby has been treasured for thousands of years. Because the ancients thought its glowing red color was due to an inextinguishable inner fire, ruby was also associated with courage and power. Throughout most of recorded history, ruby has been the most valuable of gems. It was believed wearing a fine red ruby bestowed good fortune on its owner - although the owner must have already had good fortune enough to possess such a rare and beautiful gem! Despite all the best efforts of gem merchants to use technology to enrich color, fine ruby is still exceptionally rare. After being extracted from the earth, rubies today are commonly heated to high temperatures to maximize the purity and intensity of their red hue. Impurities may also dissolve or become less noticeable after heating. However, heating will only improve the color if the gem already contains the chemistry required. Occasionally rubies with small imperfections are permeated with a silicate byproduct of the heating process, which helps to make small fissures less visible. This enhancement, like heating, is permanent. Another enhancement in rubies is diffusion with beryllium, or a similar element, which artificially adds color to the stone. Whether enhanced or not, rubies remain among the most durable of gems.
Sugilite (also known as luvulite) is a relatively rare pink to purple cyclosilicate. Sugilite crystallizes in the hexagonal system with prismatic crystals. The crystals are rarely found and the form is usually massive. It has a Mohs hardness of 5.5 to 6.5 and a specific gravity of 2.75 - 2.80.
Sugilite was first described in 1944 by the Japanese petrologist Ken-ichi Sugi (1901-1948) for an occurrence on Iwagi Islet, Japan where it is found in an aegirine syenite intrusive stock. It is found in a similar environment at Mont Saint-Hilaire, Quebec, Canada. In the Wessels mine in northern Cape Province of South Africa sugilite is mined from a strata-bound manganese deposit. It is also reported from Liguria and Tuscany, Italy, as well as New South Wales, Australia and Madhya Pradesh, India.
Tanzanite: Birthstone for December
Tanzanite exhibits a remarkable range of hues between lilac and blue. Blue violet coloration is the most prevalent. Tanzanite values increase with the saturation of the color, and the deep blue and deep violet blue stones are the most treasured. Tanzanite is somewhat more delicate than many gemstones and jewelry settings exposing the stone to frequent impact should be avoided. Tanzanite is strongly trichroic, and may present different colorations when viewed from differing angles. All Tanzanite is heated to transform this grayish or brownish variety of the mineral Zoisite to the remarkable lavender and blue colors of gemstone Tanzanite. This treatment is stable and permanent. Our supply of Tanzanite is obtained exclusively from Tanzania, Africa.
Color: blue, yellow, pink, red, brown, green, colorless
Refractive index: 1.60 – 1.64
Density: 3.50 – 3.58
Chemical composition: Al2[SiO4](F,OH)2
Crystal structure: orthorhombic
Origin: Brazil, Madagascar, Russia, USA, Mexico, Pakistan.
The ost valued color for topazes is the orange-pink (imperial topaz from Brazil). Heat treatment is used for yellowish stones; a color of light blue or colorless stones can be enforced by x-ray treatment and heating. Very big clean crystals are common. Prices are subject to noticeable variation due to fashion trends on local markets.
Topaz sometimes has the amber gold of fine cognac or the blush of a peach, and all the beautiful warm browns and oranges in between. Some rare and exceptional examples are pale pink to a sherry red. Sometimes peach-colored topaz can be "pinked" by gentle heating. This color change is permanent. Blue, once the most rare color of topaz, is today the most common, thanks to a stable enhancement process that turns colorless topaz blue. After the raw topaz is extracted from the earth and cut, it is irradiated to brown and then heated to sky blue. This enhancement process is permanent. Due to the popularity of blue topaz, a new enhancement called vapor deposition has been developed to create additional colors of topaz. A thin colored film is bonded on the surface of the stone to create dark blue, red, pink, and green colors or rainbow iridescence. It is our policy not to carry any topaz that has been treated with vapor deposition, as this process is not permanent. Topaz is a very hard gemstone, but it can be split with a single sharp blow, a trait it shares with diamond. As a result it should be protected from hard knocks. Clean with mild dish soap; use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect.
Tourmaline: Birthstone for October along with Opal.
Color: wide color range, green, blue, yellow, pink, red, brown, colorless. Bi-color is common.
Hardness: 7 – 7.5
Refractive index: 1.61 – 1.66
Density: 3.01 – 3.25
Chemical composition: (NaLiCa)(Fe11MgMnAl)3Al6((OH)4(BO3)3Si6O18)
Crystal structure: trigonal
Origins: Brazil, Madagascar, Namibia, Zambia, Sri Lanka, Burma, Russia, USA, Afghanistan.
Tourmalines exist in different colors and are known for their bi-color or even tri-color varieties. Most expensive color varieties are intense green, blue and red. Yellow stones could be irradiated to improve color or clarity. Tourmaline's name comes from the Sinhalese word “turmali”, which means "mixed." Occurring in more colors or combinations of colors than any other gemstone variety found in nature, this gem lives up to its name. Perhaps this is why ancient mystics believed tourmaline could encourage artistic intuition: it has the palette to express every mood.
Below you can see some of our gemstone bracelets. To explore our entire inventory, please browse our various categories on the left side of the screen. just scroll all the way up to see all item categories. Best of luck locating that precious gift you are looking for!
Dark blue, blue-green, and green tourmalines are occasionally heated to lighten their color.
Red tourmalines, also known as rubellites, and pink varieties are sometimes heated or irradiated to improve their colors. Heat and irradiation color enhancement of tourmalines are permanent.
Avoid exposing them to harsh abrasives and strong chemical solvents.
While turquoise is usually associated today with Native American culture, the ancient Egyptians were mining turquoise in 3200 BC. Many ancient cultures regarded turquoise as a source of metaphysical power. The Egyptian Goddess Hathor was associated with Turquoise, known as "mefkAt". The Turquoise and gold bracelet found on the wrist of Queen Zer is the oldest piece of stone jewelry so far discovered, dating from approximately 5500 BC. Turquoise was mined in Sinai, and its blue color symbolized fertility, good luck, and protection against the evil eye as well as helpful in maintaining virtue.
Turquoise is an opaque, light to dark blue or blue-green gem. The finest color is an intense blue known as Robin's Egg blue. Turquoise may contain narrow veins of other materials either isolated or as a network. They are usually black, brown, or yellowish-brown in color. Known as the matrix, these veins of color are sometimes in the form of an intricate pattern, called a spider web. To improve its color and durability, turquoise is commonly permeated with plastic, a permanent enhancement. It is also sometimes permeated with colorless oil or wax, which is not a permanent enhancement. Some turquoise is dyed to improve its color, but rarely, as this is not a permanent enhancement. Special care is required for turquoise regardless of whether or not it is enhanced. A porous gem, turquoise can absorb anything it touches. Avoid contact with cosmetics, perfumes, skin oil, acids, and other chemicals. Avoid dehydrating it or exposing it to heat.