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Gemstones

Slice Jewelry's Spectacular Colors

Jewelry designers are doing something really interesting with semiprecious stones. They're slicing them lengthwise to show off the natural color variations and cool swirling patterns within. Agate is a popular slice to hit the scene, in large sizes and lots of great colors. It's the perfect centerpiece for a statement necklace or a really big cuff bracelet.Between the unique free-form shapes and hypnotic swirls, slice jewelry is absolutely one of a kind. No two stones are ever exactly alike,

Spinel Jewelry

The name spinel may have come from the Latin word for thorn, inspired by the sharp edges found on some crystals, or from the Greek word for spark, referring to the gemstone's blazing red shade.For hundreds of years, transparent red spinel has been mistaken for a ruby, as they both have a brilliant crimson glow. In fact, many celebrated rubies in crown jewels are actually spinels. Some of the most famous examples are part of England's crown jewels the "Black Prince's Ruby", a 170-carat red spine

Aquamarine: The Gorgeous March Birthstone

You probably know that always-chic and colorful aquamarinesare designated as the official March birthstone.What's In a Name?The name "aquamarine" originates from the Italian word for seawater. Aquamarines embody the magnificence of the oceans and the grandeur of the skies. Legends refer to aquamarine as the treasure of Atlantis, with the power to keep sailors safe at seaFun Fact:In the medieval times, aquamarines were thought to reawaken the love of married couples.Where do Aquamarines Come F

Onyx Jewelry

Onyx: the magic of blackWith a deep black color and rich shimmer, onyx gemstones add a dramatic touch to jewelry designs. The name onyx comes from the Greek word for fingernail or claw. Legend has it that Cupid cut the fingernails of Venus while she was sleeping. He let the clippings fall and the gods turned them into onyx so that no part of her heavenly body would ever perish.Onyx is a type of chalcedony quartz and in ancient Greece, all chalcedony colors, from white to black, were refered to

Chalcedony Jewelry

Chalcedony: Gems for Protection, Sustenance and Beauty Named after an ancient town on the banks of the Bosporus, chalcedony is porous silica with intergrowths of quartz and morganite minerals. The earliest recorded use of chalcedony was for projectile points, knives, tools, and containers such as cups and bowls. Early man-made weapons and tools from many varieties of chalcedony are highlights of stone-age museum exhibits. Today chalcedony is a popular gemstone as the material is beautiful, abund

Hematite Jewelry

Hematite: a glamorous gunmetal glow Hematite is the mineral form of iron

Peridot Jewelry

What is Peridot? Peridot is a gemstone cut from the mineral olivine. It is used in many styles of jewelry and has been adopted as the birthstone for August. The most common peridot pronunciation is per-i-doh, coming from the French word peritot, meaning "unclear," because of the numerous ambiguities found within the gemstone. Chrysolite, an older German word, was also used to describe the gem before the word peridot was applied to all gem-quality peridot stones.Peridot MeaningOften called th

Jade Jewelry

Jade: a stone with ancient mystique Jade is one of the few gemstones that can be traced back to prehistoric times. Some 8,000 years ago, jade was valued for its hardness and strength. Ancient civilizations used jade to create weapons and tools, especially ones with sharp cutting edges, like knives and axes. Jade was highly valued in ancient China and played a significant role in the nation's culture and history. The famous Chinese philosopher Confucius referred to jade as "the precious stone o

Amber Jewelry

Amber: haute & historicalThe warm, honey tones of amber have been attracting attention for centuries. Amber is an organic gemstone formed from fossilized tree resin that has been preserved in the earth's crust for millions of years. Gem quality amber ranges in age from 5 million to 50 million years old. Not only is amber beautiful, it also gives a glimpse of the past by preserving fossils in its liquid gold. The movie Jurassic Park was based on the idea that dinosaur DNA was preserved i

Prehnite Jewelry

Prehnite: a unique green glow Prehnite is named for Colonel Hendrik von Prehn, a Dutch mineralogist and early governor of the Cape of Good Hope settlement in South Africa, who first discovered the stone in the early 18th century. Prehnite has the distinction of being the first mineral to be named after a person. The gemstone prehnite also goes by several nicknames. Early traders called prehnite "cape emerald", referring to the location where the stone was first discovered and its visual resemb

Hessonite Jewelry

Hessonite: cinnamon and spice Hessonite, part of the hessonite family, glows in the warm shades of honey, brown and golden orange. Hessonite gems sometimes contain swirled or bubbled inclusions that give the stone a unique wavy appearance. Hessonite is nicknamed the "cinnamon stone of Ceylon" (now Sri Lanka), possibly referring to the abundance of hessonite found there and Sri Lanka's connection to spices. Hessonite and hessonite jewelry have been popular in India for hundreds of years. Hesson

Amazonite Jewelry

Mazonite: a blue-green beauty Some believe that the gemstone name amazonite was inspired by the Amazon River. However, amazonite has never been discovered in that region and the stone was used all across the globe long before the Amazon River's discovery. In Greek mythology, the Amazons were a nation of women warriors and this may be the true source for the gemstone's name. Many ancient cultures prized amazonite for its beauty. Early Egyptians used the stone for jewelry and other decorative ob

Diopside Jewelry

Diopside: a new green on the sceneA relatively new addition to the jewelry world, diopside dazzles with a bright green hue. Diopside is colored by chromium, the same element that gives emerald its color, but diopside is a much more affordable gemstone. Rare in nature, diopside acts as an indicator of diamonds and can even appear as an inclusion within a diamond. In ancient times, some believed that diopside fell from the tree of life and should be buried with the dead to ensure the renewa

Tsavorite Jewelry

Tsavorite Gemstones: deep greens from East Africa The story of tsavorite jewelry is new and quite interesting. When Campbell Bridges, a gem prospector from England, was surveying the mountains of North East Tanzania, he came across a deposit of unusual stones. On further exploration, he found a similar deposit of stones in the Tsavo National Park in Kenya. New to the market, Tsavorite was all the rage in the early 1970's as luxury jewelers heralded the magnificent new gem for its depth of color

Quartz Jewelry

Quartz is one of the most abundant minerals in Earth's crust and makes up a variety of beautiful gemstones such as rose quartz, smoky quartz, lemon quartz, lime quartz and rock crystal quartz, just to name a few. Amethyst, citrine andtiger's eye are also all types of quartz gemstones.Some believe the name quartz may have come from the Greek word "krystallos", meaning ice. Ancient Greeks believed quartz crystal was fossilized ice. Quartz's high thermal conductivity, which makes the gemstone

Ametrine Jewelry

Ametrine: two gorgeous gems in oneA rare bi-colored gemstone, ametrine is a type of quartz created from a mixture of amethyst and citrine. Ametrine is formed when variations in temperature have different effects on the crystallizing process of quartz.A natural treasure found mostly in Bolivia, ametrine also goes by the trade name bolivianite. Ametrine didn't become available to the general public until 1980 when the Anahi Mine in Bolivia was opened.A romantic legend surrounds the gemstone ametr

Diamond Quality Assurance

Diamonds in the upper ranges of quality spectrum are often accompanied by a Diamond Grading Report from theGemological Institute of America(GIA), a laboratory considered to be a leading international authority on diamond grading. Some diamonds are certified by other well-known laboratories, such as theEuropean Gemological Laboratory(EGL), theInternational Gemological Institute(IGI), or theAmerican Gem Society(AGS), which each have their own separate set

Spinel Jewelry

Spinel: beautiful in its own rightThe name spinel may have come from the Latin word for thorn, inspired by the sharp edges found on some crystals, or from the Greek word for spark, referring to the gemstone's blazing red shade.For hundreds of years, transparent red spinel has been mistaken for a ruby, as they both have a brilliant crimson glow. In fact, many celebrated rubies in crown jewels are actually spinels. Some of the most famous examples are part of England's crown jewels  the "Black Pr

Moonstone Jewelry

Moonstones: Seductive color and multi-dimensional intrigueWhen Rene Lalique created his beautiful jewelry for the legendary actress Sarah Bernhardt at the turn of the century, moonstone was his gem of choice. And for good reason, the pale blues and underlying white tones have a magical quality hinting at unknown depths. Moonstones and fine moonstone jewelry can even appear two-dimensional as light is refracted inside and scattered throughout the gem.Prized as a gemstone for centuries, moonstone

Diamond Jewelry

Diamond: a brilliance millions of years in the makingA diamond's fire, beauty and strength are unrivaled by any other gemstone. In fact, diamonds are the hardest natural substance known to man. The word diamond comes from the Greek word "adamas" meaning indestructible. A diamond is made of pure carbon that has been turned into clear crystals by tremendous heat and pressure deep within the earth's crust. It takes millions of years for a diamond to be formed and carried upward towards the earth's
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