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Is purple a Valentine’s Day color? Maybe not, but it is the color of romance and passion and this year we can’t get enough of all shades of purple. The gemstone of the February is Amethyst, - variety of quartz which is transparent and light to dark purple in color. And although amethyst is found on almost every continent the dark transparent and clean stones are relatively rare and always in demand. Fine amethysts are featured in the British Crown Jewels and were also a favorite of Catherine the Great and Egyptian royalty. Leonardo Da Vinci wrote that amethyst was able to dissipate evil thoughts and quicken the intelligence.
African natural alexandrite, 5.49 cts
Clean, green and gorgeous Tsavorite garnet octagon weighing 3.28 cts from Tsavo, Kenya
Part 1: Best of pearl jewellery
Colombian emeralds are enjoying an all-time high, and this trend to continue in 2014.
The emerald world as we know it today is primarily dependent on the production of gemstones from three sources: Brazil, Colombia and Zambia. Until very recently each country played a fairly static role in terms of market preference. Colombian emeralds dominated the high end, Zambian gems occupied the middle, and Brazilian stones were considered to be more commercial. While this positioning is still pretty much intact, there are always exceptions and some Zambian and Brazilian stones may rival even the best stones from Colombia.
Most emeralds are already included and fractured throughout and dealers and cutters select the best and cleanest stones for faceting. There are of course differences between individual stones, but there is no important mining area that produces emeralds more stable or less included than stones from other deposits. This means that visible inclusions in emeralds are common and expected and emeralds are judged with a greater emphasis on color and transparency and included stones are accepted. While emeralds without eye-visible inclusions do exist, these stones are extraordinarily rare. Some inclusions in emerald are referred to as jardin, (meaning garden in both French and Spanish) and may consist of networks of tiny liquid filled inclusions and minute fissures that permeate the gem evoking the appearance of a lush garden. These inclusions also impart the emerald with a distinctive sometimes hazy appearance because they diffuse and spread light through the gemstone.
It’s a last Emerald #ColoroftheYear Monday
Colombian emeralds will typically be the most expensive followed by Brazilian and Zambian stones. The reasoning is related to the color. Colombian emeralds get their color primarily from the trace amounts of the element chromium which is responsible for some of the purest greens in gemstones. Brazilian emeralds get their color primarily from trace amounts of the element vanadium and Zambian emeralds get their color from iron. Brazilian emeralds typically have a slight brown or gray cast and only sometimes match the pure green hue that many Colombian emeralds offer and Zambian emeralds often appear too blue due to their iron content. In reality though, emeralds from all three sources may be colored by more than one element.
The range of colours shown by fluorite is equaled by few other gemstones. It may occur in beautiful cubic crystals or as a massive crystalline variety displaying banded or radiating patterns. Although the stone is somewhat soft for use as a normal gemstone, it makes a beautiful and very sought after collectors stone that will enhance any connoisseurs collection of gems.
is known for its distinctive beauty and occurrence in abroad range of colors. It can be blue, green, colorless, brown, red, orange or yellow. The name Zircon is said to have been derived from the word "zargoon" which in Arabic means vermilion and in Persian gold-colored.
Sri Lankan zircon gemstones are mostly yellow or green. The green stones are mostly of the low or intermediate type and upon heating to a dull red heat for about 1 hour they become much paler. However, the most important and dramatic heat treatment of zircons is carried out on the reddish brown crystals from Vietnam and Cambodia. The stones can be heated to an electric sky blue and the color is normally permanent. Some of these stones are also heated to white and used as substitutes for diamonds in some kinds of jewelry.
Dark red-purple Umba sapphire cushion weighing 4.87 cts, from Umba Valley, Tanzania. Umba sapphire is a unique type of sapphire discovered at 1962 in the Gerevi Hills, north of the Umba River in the Umba Valley of Tanzania. Umba sapphires are found in every color and shade and are especially prized for bright pure colors and distinctive color change qualities.
Dear Santa, David Wein has a little something we’d like in our stocking.
Tanzanite doesn’t have to be blue and it is surprising how popular these fancy color unheated Tanzanites are with the purists, collectors and gem enthusiasts .
Tanzanite occurs in colors of brown, violet, blue, reddish-purple, purple, yellow, pink and green and is generally enhanced by heat, unless otherwise specified. When heated between 350°C to 620°C, the brown and dark brown stones alter to light blue, violet-blue or deep blue sapphire-like colors.
Some of the other naturally occurring colors especially pink and green are not heated as they are worth much more as they are. Pink tanzanites are the most expensive and will cost approximately 5 to 7 times more than similar sized blue stones.
Current prices of tanzanite are low because of slackened demand but at these prices, mining is unprofitable and will continue to slow. In fact there is little current production at all, and prices should begin rising as soon as wholesaler’s stocks begin to decline.
Good looking Ceylon Blue Sapphire 3,65 cts
Like a crystal ball, a large Brazilian star quartz is encircled with an assortment of African rhodolites to create an amazing parade of color. The hinged clasp makes the piece easy to use as a pendant or an enhancer. Looks stunning in any kind of light! Composed by David Wein
Ready or not - December is here. And for those who were born in the month of December, are lucky enough to choose from four birthstones: Tanzanite, Blue Zircon, Blue topaz or Turquoise. Of course, Tiffany & Co will try to convince you that their brand colour is your birthstone, but we know better. Although we do like their entrepreneurial poem published in 1870:
"If cold December gave you birth,
The month of snow and ice and mirth,
Place on your hand a turquoise blue;
Success will bless whate’er you do…”
Actually, there is no standard birthstone list, since the choice of birthstones depend on culture and based on traditions from the fifteenth to the twentieth century and many of the birthstones were changed to correspond with gems that became more commercially available. So, here is the breakdown: