Peridot: August Birthstone and Gemstone of the Month

Peridot Gemstone of the MonthAlthough peridot is not a rare gemstone, it is the August birthstone and the gemstone of the month and one of the oldest known gemstones, with ancient written records documenting the mining of this stone as early as 1500 B.C. This is a gem that is especially connected with ancient Egypt, and some historians believe that the famous emeralds of Cleopatra were actually peridots.

In natural terms, peridot’s history is different from that of almost all other gems because most gems are formed in the earth’s crust, but peridot forms in magma in the upper mantle, about 20 to 55 miles deep.  It is brought to the surface by tectonic or volcanic activity.

The main source of peridot in the ancient world was Topazos Island, now known as Zabargad or St. John’s Island, in the Egyptian Red Sea, but today the most commercially important producer in the world is the San Carlos Indian Reservation in Arizona.  [Read more...]

Aquamarine – Gemstone of July

AquamarineImagine the cool blue waters of the Mediterranean with the sun shining and the white sugar sand beach.  This is what I think about when I see a beautiful Aquamarine.  This month’s gemstone of the month is Aquamarine, which literally means “sea water.”

Aquamarine is part of the beryl family and is the birthstone for March and it comes from Australia, Brazil, China, Kenya, Madagascar and Mozambique.  What is unique about Aquamarine is that the crystals can grow to huge sizes, so you will find very large gemstones for jewelry.  Also, the clarity is excellent, which makes it ideal to be used as a center gem for jewelry and larger cuts. [Read more...]

Star Sapphire – Why It’s a Shining Star

Star SapphireIt’s so hard for me to pick gemstones that are my favorite, because truth be told, I love them all.  I have been lucky enough to get some stunning star sapphires set in gorgeous rings lately, and I have always been a bit obsessed by the star sapphire and how it is formed and the phenomena of it.

The formation of all gemstones are truly amazing, but to think that the chatoyant bands from the sapphire cross in the center in several different directions to create rays and suddenly a star is born, well, that is truly Mother Nature at her best, or if you want to be technical, asterism. [Read more...]

Alexandrite – June Gemstone of the Month

Alexandrite Cushion, 26.75 cts. Bluish green i...

Alexandrite Cushion, 26.75 cts. Bluish green in daylight and purple red under incandescent light, alexandrites this large are extremely rare. Labels First row: Alexandrite, Chrysoberyl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This month for the gemstone of the month, I picked one of the most rare stones and one of the most stunning stones. Alexandrite has a color change that takes affect and displays different colors according to changes in lighting. Color change gems change color due to changing light conditions or when viewed from different angles, but Alexandrite is from the light, while some color change sapphires are from viewing at different angles.  [Read more...]

Agate – Gemstone Of The Month

AgateOne thing I love about Agate is that it can be found in Texas and I can’t help but be partial to anything that can be found in the Lone Star State.  After all, I live in Katy, Texas…work in the Galleria area in Houston, Texas and grew up in Sugarland, Texas.  These are my peeps.  This is where I do business and buy and sell the most jewelry and diamonds, so I love that Agate can be found all over this state.

I don’t know if you have ever seen Agate, but it such a pretty stone, and the perfect start to the gemstone guide. It has these bands of colors and truly it looks like you are looking at the sunset or a landscape painting.  Stunning and common and relatively inexpensive! It has everything going for it that makes it a winner! [Read more...]