Natural pearls have been coveted as symbols of wealth and status for thousands of years. The first written mention of pearls was by a Chinese writer in about 2206 BC.
Nature couldn't keep up with the demand for pearls, so man devised a way to culture pearls by placing an irritant, often a piece of rounded shell from a freshwater mussel, into a mollusk. The majority of pearls on the market have been cultured and many of the shells used as an irritant are from freshwater river mussels harvested in the midwestern states. The few natural pearls available command high prices.
Pearls are a natural substance and are porous. They can absorb cologne, hair spray and lotions. So, make your pearls the last thing you put on and the first think you take off. Keep them looking their best by gently wiping them with a damp cloth.
Pearls are always in style; wear yours today.
Jasper is colored by oxides of iron and known for its deep earthy tones of red, yellow, brown and green. It also sometimes appears in shades of blue or purple. Jasper may also display bands of color, pictures, or small circular patterns. The colors and patterns are the result of the minerals present in the stone. Jaspers are often named after their patterns or for the places in which they're mined. Here a few of my favorites.
The diamond is April's gemstone and perhaps the most recognized gem in the world. Diamonds were first mined in India over 3,000 years ago. And while the diamond mines in India have mostly played out, India cuts and polishes over 90% of all diamonds. Today, South Africa, Canada, Australia, Brazil and Russia are the leading diamond producers.
The popularity of diamonds escalated in the 19th century as a result of an increase in supply, improvements in cutting and polishing techniques, growth in world economy, and innovative advertising campaigns. The most successful and well-known of the advertising campaigns is DeBeers' A Diamond Is Forever, first launched in 1947. This campaign popularized the use of diamonds in engagement rings and fostered a demand for diamonds.
Say "March" and immediately most people think St. Patrick's Day, spring or green. I think of these stunning green and spring-like gemstones.
Add a little spring to your wardrobe with these and other beautiful green gemstones.
The Pantone Color Institute, most commonly referred to as simply Pantone, is the global color authority and provider of professional color standards for the design industries. These standards allow the exact same color to be used across a variety of products as diverse as home furnishings, paint, cosmetics, clothing, and linens.
Here are just a few of the many purple gemstones that will be featured in jewelry this year.
Regardless of your budget, you'll be able to find just the right piece of jewelry in the 2018 Color of the Year - Ultra Violet.
Sapphire is one of the four precious gems (diamond, emerald and ruby are the other three). It is the birthstone for September and for the Zodiac signs Pisces, Taurus, Virgo and Sagittarius.
Sapphire is a variety of the mineral corundum. Trace amounts of other elements such as iron, titanium, chromium, copper or magnesium color the corundum blue, yellow, purple, orange, green or pink. When chromium impurities in corundum yield a red stone, it is called ruby. Pure corundum has no traces of other elements and is called white sapphire. When the trace elements produce an orangey pink corundum, it is called padparadscha which means lotus flower in Sinhalese, the language spoken in Sri Lanka where stones of this color were originally found.
Star sapphires contain intersecting needle-like inclusions that cause the appearance of a six-rayed star. The inclusion is often the mineral rutile. Star sapphires can be any color from shades of blue to pink, orange, yellow, green, lavender, gray or black. The most desirable color is a vivid intense blue.
Color-change sapphire is a rare variety which exhibits different colors in different types of light. The stones are blue in outdoor light and purple under incandescent indoor light.
Tradition holds that Moses was given the Ten Commandments on tablets of sapphire, making it a sacred gemstone. Ancient Persians believed sapphire gave heaven its blue color. In ancient Greece and Rome, kings and queens were convinced sapphires protected them from envy and harm. Because sapphires represent divine favor, they were the gemstone of choice for kings and high priests. Ordinary people thought sapphires attracted heavenly blessings.
Sapphires symbolize truth, compatibility, commitment and mutual understanding which make them the perfect gem for engagement rings. They are also said to contribute to mental clarity and perception. Sapphires are also believed to promote financial rewards.
More about sapphires and other gemstones can be found in Jewelry Facets.
Say March and immediately most people think St. Patrick’s Day, Spring and green. So, in celebration of all things green, I’m talking about fabulous green gemstones.
Emerald is at the top of the list of green gems. It has been treasured for its lush green hue since antiquity. The first known emerald mines were in Egypt and date from 330 B.C. It is believed that emeralds reveal the truth and protect against evil spirits. It is also the stone of fertility and rebirth.
Green Garnet comes in two different mineral types: grossular and andradite. Tsavorite is a highly sought after gem-quality green grossular garnet that rivals Emerald in color. Demantoid is a rare green andradite garnet that has the sparkle of a diamond. Green garnet is a stone of confidence and service.
Peridot ranges in color from yellow/green to deep chartreuse. It has been mined as early as 1500 B.C. and is the national gem of Egypt. In artificial light, it glows a brilliant green and thus has been named “Evening Emerald.” It is thought to promote wealth and power, and to ward against nightmares and jealous thoughts.
Prehnite, a beautiful apple-green stone, was first described in 1788 in South Africa. It is named after Colonel Hendrik von Prehn (1733-1785), a mineralogist and early governor of the Dutch colony at the Cape of Good Hope. Prehnite is thought to enhance inner knowledge and is called the stone of unconditional love.
Serpentine, a green mineral sometimes mottled like the skin of a snake, is not one mineral but a group of minerals with the same chemical formula but different structures or crystal lattices. Serpentine has been used for jewelry, ornamental carvings and in architecture for centuries. Because it can be similar in appearance to Jade, it is sometimes called “New Jade.” Serpentine is said to help you find inner peace and balance mood swings.
Greenery, the color of 2017, is my inspiration for jewelry using many of these green gemstones. Select one to add a touch of green to your wardrobe.
Pantone's color of the year is Greenery - a refreshing and revitalizing shade of yellow green.
Greenery reminds me of Granny Smith apples, a beautiful Peridot gemstone or spring foliage. It pairs well with neutrals, brights, pastels and metallics. Greenery can be considered "nature's neutral."
According to Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we yearn for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing need to rejuvenate and revitalize, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose.
Regardless of your budget, you'll be able to find just the right piece of jewelry in the 2017 Color of the Year - Greenery.
The Pantone Color Institute, most commonly referred to as simplty Pantone, is the global color authority and provider of profesional color standards for the design industries. These standards allow the exact same color to be used across a variety of products as diverse as home furnishings, paint, cosmetics, clothing, jewelry and linens. Pantone also studies how colors influence people and helps designers utilize colors more effectively.
Lynn's musings about all facets of jewelry.