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Gemstones

Aventurine Jewelry

Aventurine is a form of quartz that can have a glimmering, almost metallic shimmer. The word aventurine comes from the Italian "a ventura" which means by chance. This name was inspired by aventurine's resemblance to a type of Italian glass that was discovered by accident in the 18th century. According to ancient Tibetan legend, aventurine was used to improve nearsightedness and increase creativity.Today, many believe aventurine is a stone of luck or chance. It is also said the gemstone can help

Jewel Tones That are Fabulous

We are enamored with jewel tones!Emeraldis just one shade of green that is always an envious item to possess. While the more transparent emeralds are the most stunning to look at, we are also intrigued by milkier versions. What they lack in shine, they make up for in richness. Another amorous accessory isamethyst. Wearing this pretty purple will give you a regal look to rule any room you are in. Framing this gem in diamonds ups the elegance even more! Blue gemstones includ

Rhodolite Jewelry

Rhodolite: everything's rosyRhodolite, a form of garnet that ranges in color from pink to purple red, got its name from the Greek word "rhodon", meaning rose. Rhodolite is usually lighter in color than other types of red garnet and is sometimes mistaken for a ruby. Travelers in ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome wore rhodolites to protect themselves from evil. They also believed it would light their way in the darkness. Rhodolites are ideal gemstones for necklaces, rings, earrings and more. Th

Common Treatments of Colored Gemstones

Almost all colored gemstones sold by jewelers today are enhanced. Many of the processes have been used for hundreds of years and are accepted by the American Gem Trade Association. Colored gemstones without treatment are rare and incredibly expensive.When it comes to treated gemstones, Ross-Simons only accepts the treatments that we feel give our customers a high-quality gemstone at the very best value. Our gemologists thoroughly inspect our gemstones to ens

Colored Gemstones

Colored gemstonesliketranquil blue tanzanitesandfiery red rubiesembark on long, incredible journeys before they make their homes in beautiful jewelry: It is only through a chance combination of tremendous heat, pressure, and a great deal of time that some of the world's most vibrant treasures are initially formed. Magma from deep within the earth rises towards the earth's crust, cooling in the process. Sometimes, this magma crystallizes an

Blue Diamond Jewelry

Natural blue diamonds are so rare that the only place most of us will ever see one is in the Smithsonian Museum, which houses the amazing Hope Diamond, a 45 carat natural blue diamond.The treatment intensifies the beauty of a genuine diamond and mimics the vivid colors found in nature. The process is difficult, and even with the best technology, blue diamonds remain rare and are in high demand.

How to Judge the Value of Pearls

Few things can make a woman feel more elegant than wearing astrand of pearlsaround her neck. In ancient Rome, pearls were considered more exquisite than diamonds. Julius Caesar supposedly barred women of certain social statuses from wearingpearl necklacesand accessories.Today, men and women from all walks of life appreciate pearls for their beauty and luster. Pearl strands make a jewelry collection complete, andpearl earringsare

Chrysoprase

Chrysoprase is one of the Star Signs for Gemini.The gemstone Chrysoprase is an opalescent apple green colored variety of chalcedony (quartz). Most green stones owe their color to chromium or vanadium, but chrysoprase derives its color from the nickel content. It is found in Australia, Brazil, the Ural Mountains, and the U.S. and is the rarest of the chalcedony group.Chrysoprase was used by the Greeks, Romans, and the Egyptians in jewelry and other ornamental objects and because of its semi-opaqu

Tiffany Stone

A purple, lavender, white stone sometimes with patches of mauve, yellowish-brown and black is found in beryllium ore (Bertrandite) . This stone is known as opalite, ice cream opal, opalized fluorite and opal fluorite. The name Tiffany Stone presumably comes from the jewelry company of the same name that used it in some of their designs.Mined in the state of Utah, USA, this is a form of opalized stone that forms in mineralized nodules. It is composed predominantly of dolomite, opalized fluorite

Petrified Palm Wood

Petrified palm wood is the state stone of Texas and the state fossil of Louisiana. It comes from palm trees in the Oligocene Epoch, between 20 - 40 million years ago, give or take a few years.The characteristic spotted look of palmwood is from the rod like structures within the grain of the wood. Depending upon the angle the lapidary uses to cut the stone, these structures show up as spots, tapering rods, or lines.Petrified palm wood is a variety of chalcedony and is very hard, aroun

Peruvian Blue Opal

Peruvian blue opal is relatively rare and is only found in the Andes mountains near San Patricio, Peru. It is a very translucent stone with color similar to the Caribbean Sea. Depending on how the stone is cut it can be clear, scenic (showing varying degrees of color) or dendritic which has black fern like inclusions.This is the national stone of Peru and, unfortunately, in recent years dyed stones have been mass marketed by unreputable dealers as Peruvian Blue Opal. If the blue color is uneve

Petoskey Stone

Petoskey stone is a fossilized coral, the state stone of Michigan and is commonly found along the shores of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron in the United States. It was formed by the fossilization of ancient coral, hexagonaria. These corals lived in warm shallow seas that covered Michigan during Devonian time, some 350 million years ago.During Devonian time, Michigan was quite different. Geographically, what is now Michigan was near the equator. The area covered by a warm shallow sea which was an

Montana Agate

The Montana agate is usually a creamy light yellow to almost clear color with embedded moss structures in varying shades of brownish red to black. Most of these Montana agates are found in gravel deposits from the Pleistocene age (10,000 - 1,6000,000) in the area of the Yellowstone River and its tributaries.Agates are hard stones between 6.5-8 on the Mohs scale. They take an exceptional polish and are used extensively in jewelry and carvings.Agate is the Mystical birthsto

Morgan Hill Poppy Jasper

Morgan Hill Poppy Jasper is a famous, but increasingly rare orbicular jasper with red and yellow dots of "poppy flowers". It is a brecciated jasper, meaning it probably came from sun-dried and oxidized iron-rich clay. The cracks were filled in by other substances.Jasper is from the chalcedony/quartz group. It is a microcrystalline variety of quartz that contains up to 20% foreign material. These materials are what determine the color and appearance of the stone. Also because of the foreign mater

Rhodochrosite

The pink color of rhodochrosite is caused by the element manganese and it is formed when manganese is dissolved by ground water and combines with a carbonate material and then drips off the ceiling of caves and crevices deep underground. It is found in Argentina, Peru, Colorado and Montana, U.S, and Quebec, Canada.It is commonly found in the form of stalactites and stalagmites in the caves of Argentina.Rhodochrosite (whose name means rose-colored) often forms pink and white

Ruby in Zoisite

An ornamental material consisting of crystalline aggregates of green zoisite with non transparent ruby inclusions it is found in Tanzania and the general appearance is unmistakable. There isn't another stone like it in the mineral world. The green zoisite is relatively soft, between 5.5 - 6.5 while the ruby inclusions are usually quite hard, 9 on the Mohs scale. This can make the stone difficult to cut because of the differences in hardness and usually diamond tools will be used.Zo

Rutilated Quartz

Quartz is the most common mineral on Earth. It is found in nearly every geological environment and is a component of almost every rock type. It makes up about 12% of the earth's crust, occurring in a wide variety of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks. It is also the most varied in terms of variety and color. Quartz is a 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness.Rutilated quartz is found in Australia, Brazil, Kazakhstan, Madagascar, Norway, Pakistan and the United States.Rutile is a maj

Stone Canyon Jaspe

Jasper is from the chalcedony/quartz group. It is an opaque microcrystalline variety of quartz that contains up to 20% foreign material. These materials are what determine the color and appearance of the stone. Because of these foreign materials, jasper is rarely uniform in color, it is usually multicolored, striped, mottled and/or spotted.Stone canyon jasper originates in the California central coastal region in an area half way between Los Angeles and San Francisco.Jasper runs bet

Sugilite

Sugilite, a fairly recent discovery (1944) is found in Japan, Canada and India. The most important occurrence was found in 1975 in the Kalahari Desert, Northern South Africa. In 1979 a large deposit of gem grade sugilite was found 3200 feet below the original discovery.Sugilite is named for the Japanese geologist who discovered the first specimens, Ken-ichi Sugi. It is opaque with a waxy luster and ranges from a pale grayish lavender to a deep dark purple.Sugilite is also known

Variscite

Variscite is a relatively rare phosphate mineral that is sometimes confused with chrysocolla or the greener forms of turquoise. Colors are light bluish green, medium and dark greens. It has a waxy luster and takes a fine polish.Variscite is found in the United States (Utah, Nevada), Australia (Queensland), Germany and Brazil. It is also known as Utahlite, Barrandite, Bolivarite and Lucinite. A search on the web shows a wide range in hardness for this stone spanning 3.5 to 5 on the Mohs scale o
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