A   List  of  Gemstones

1. Tanzanite

ORIGIN
Tanzania. 

This stone was first discovered in 1967 near the foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro in northern Tanzania, on the border with Kenya. This is still the only small strip of land in the world where the stone can be found.

COLORS
Tanzanites are found in hues ranging from blue to bluish purple to bluish violet. Its most rare and sought-after shade is a powerful indigo. In fact, the closer it comes to a deep, blue sapphire-type of blue, the more valuable the stone will be.

WHY YOU’LL LOVE TANZANITE
Hints of purple in most tanzanite stones strongly appeal to buyers and allows it to stand out among the rest. Its color saturation and stability are well worth the buy. And it can be a great substitute for the more expensive blue sapphire!

Tanzanite Information

HOW TO WEAR TANZANITE

While tanzanite is a beautiful stone, it's a 6-7 on the Mohs Hardness Scale which means you'll want to take some extra care of it. Generally, when you intend to wear a gemstone ring daily, you'd better go for colored gemstones of hardness 7 and higher. For that reason, tanzanite is best suited for a pair of lovely earrings, a pendant or any other jewelry piece where it is less likely to be damaged. It can still be used in a ring, but then make sure to choose a setting and design that will protect the stone. So better wear it as a cocktail ring (life's hard!). 

By season: 

  • For summer, try a lighter hue in a pendant that will sparkle while you wade through pool or ocean waters. Often, untreated tanzanites come in a lovely light blue or blue-green color, perfect for a day on the beach.
  • For winter, go deep with the most valuable indigos, a shade most sought-after for its powerful healing properties (besides you being one of the few people wearing this intense, deep color 😉).  

A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF TANZANITE

One of the newer gemstones, tanzanite has only been known for a little more than half a century. It was discovered after a bush fire, when the Masai people found that these once brownish stones had become a vibrant blue after this involuntary heat treatment. The name 'tanzanite' was first used by Tiffany and Co. about a year later when they brought the stone to market (in 1968) and was chosen as a nod to the area where it is exclusively found. The original name of the species, "zoisite", was not considered helpful for marketing purposes because it could remind people of the word suicide... (clever marketing!). The largest tanzanite ever sold at auction brought in $300,000 and was a 423.56 carat tanzanite. All proceeds were donated to build a school in Nepal. 

DID YOU KNOW?

  • The largest tanzanite, mined in 2005, was a 16,389 carat-rough weighing more than 3.2kg. 
  • Most natural tanzanite is found in muddy yellows and greens and is heat treated to reveal the more vibrant hues underneath - though it's good to be aware of this when buying loose tanzanite gems and jewelry pieces, know it's a totally acceptable treatment for gemstones and almost standard for tanzanites.
  • While approximately 80% of tanzanite undergoes heat treatment, the rarest and most valuable of the tanzanite colors are found with natural deep blues and violet-blue which occurred as a result of natural heating within the Earth - but this distinction is hard to test for a lab. 
  • Tanzanite is a trichroic gemstone which means it shows three different colors when viewed from various angles.

2. Paraiba Tourmaline

ORIGIN
Exclusive to the Brazilian state of Paraiba originally. That mine is virtually exhausted now but similar gemstone material can be found today in Mozambique and Nigeria.

COLORS
Neon-bright, electric blue or green (almost like an extraordinary turquoise, swimming pool-blue).

WHY YOU’LL LOVE PARAIBA TOURMALINE
The vivid glow that appears to light up the stone from within makes it one of the most sought-after gemstones in the world. 

Paraiba Tourmaline Information

HOW TO WEAR PARAIBA TOURMALINE
This incredibly rare, stunning stone deserves the spotlight so why not feature it in a jaw-dropping necklace or a set of sparkling earrings? This is another stone that is best suited for a jewelry piece that doesn't encounter a lot of wear-and-tear. Also here, if you do like to wear it in a ring - who am I to say no;) - do choose a protective ring setting, either with a bezel setting or by setting other stones around the Paraiba gemstone. 

By Season:

  • For summer, pair it with your brightest beach attire or glam evening looks.
  • For winter, glow up any little black dress with this dazzling stone. Warning: to be worn with caution as it will cause some envious glances your way. 

EXTRA NOTE OF CARE FOR PARAIBA TOURMALINE
Due to their pyro- and piezoelectric properties, tourmaline gemstones need to be wiped down frequently as they tend to attract more dust particles than other gemstones. You can also use warm soapy water and a soft cloth to clean.

A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF PARAIBA TOURMALINE
Even newer to the scene than the tanzanite, Paraiba tourmaline was first discovered in the late 1980s based off the hunch of Hector Dimas Barbosa. He spent years digging, with just a feeling he would discover something new and special. It wasn't until 8 years later that a group of his friends came upon the stone while he was at home recovering from an illness... The original source of Paraiba tourmaline was exclusive to the state of Paraiba in Brazil but the mine was exhausted quite soon after. Luckily, about 5 years later miners moved to the adjacent state, Rio Grande de Norte. And today, the stone is being found mostly in eastern Africa, in Mozambique and Nigeria.

DID YOU KNOW?

  • One gem-quality Paraiba is mined for every 10,000 diamonds - talking about rare!
  • A high quality Paraiba tourmaline weighing over 3 carats is almost unheard of and can easily be found with a 5-figure price tag. Per carat. 
  • In 2003, a similar new dazzling blue-green stone was found in Mozambique and Nigeria. Interestingly enough, there has been evidence that at one time, Africa and South America belonged to one continent. While they are Paraiba-like, there are a few minor chemical differences that set them apart. Purists believe that only those found in Brazil can be considered Paraiba tourmalines while the mainstream of gemological labs do consider them as Paraibas provided the stone fulfills 2 conditions:
  • 1) The labs’ gemologists regard the color of the stone as ‘electric' or 'vivid blue or green’, AND
    2) The stone contains the chemical elements of both copper and manganese which cause its color.

3. Blue Sapphire

ORIGIN
Sri Lanka (today's Ceylon), Burma (today's Myanmar), Madagascar, Tanzania, Australia and Thailand

COLORS
Sapphires come in every color but red → a “red sapphire” would be called a ruby. Rubies and sapphires belong to the corundum family. In other words, when a corundum is red, we call it a ruby. When it comes in any other color, it's called a sapphire with the color prefix attached, so a 'pink sapphire, green sapphire, blue sapphire', etc.

You’ve got to love the varied colors blue sapphires come in… from pale blue to a famous, rich royal blue. The most mythical one being the ‘Kashmir blue sapphires’, which were found in the remote Great Himalayan mountains of northwestern India in the 1800s. The stones from this historic origin were mostly of a fine quality with a superb, velvety ‘cornflower blue’ color. This mine has been exhausted since 1888 though... but rare pieces do sometimes show up at auctions.

WHY YOU’LL LOVE BLUE SAPPHIRE
Sapphire is an extremely durable stone with very good hardness and high brilliance, which makes it one of the world’s top gemstones - on par with rubies, diamonds and spinels.

Sapphire Information

HOW TO WEAR BLUE SAPPHIRE
Getting engaged? Try a stunning blue sapphire surrounded by a halo of diamonds (you've seen something similar in a certain famous royal engagement ring that now decorates Kate Middleton's finger 😉) or try a large, natural blue sapphire in a beautifully decorated setting as seen in the image of one of my custom pieces above.

By Season:

  • For summer, try a pair of stunning earrings in a cool, deep blue hue.
  • For winter, opt for a dazzling statement ring paired with your favorite cold-weather attire. 

A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF BLUE SAPPHIRE
The stone has been associated with royalty and romance for centuries. In fact, royalty give blue sapphires over diamonds as engagement rings because they’re known to be far rarer than diamonds. Ancient Greeks and Romans were convinced that these stones protected their owners from envy and harm, while in the Middle Ages, the clergy wore sapphires to symbolize Heaven and the common people believed them to attract heavenly blessings. If you've never seen a high quality blue sapphire in your life, expect to be blown away by its intense, blue hue!

DID YOU KNOW?

  • This stone is known as a symbol of nobility, sincerity, truth and faithfulness. 
  • Sapphire's striking blue coloring is the standard against which all other blue gemstones (such as blue topaz or tanzanite) are measured against.
  • It can take months to find a high-quality, untreated blue sapphire of more than 2 carats in the market! And as to the historical velvety Kashmir blue sapphire which has been tapped for over 100 years: very, very occasionally, one can be found on the market or at auction.

4. Aquamarine

ORIGIN
Brazil, Angola, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Nigeria, Mozambique, Parkistan, the Ural Mountains of Russia, Tanzania, Colorado (USA), and Zambia

COLORS
Light blue, blue and bluish-green

WHY YOU’LL LOVE AQUAMARINE
Instant glamour comes with this cool, ocean-hued stone. It is also considered a "love" stone that helps rejuvenate relationships and attract new friends helping the owner sustain a fulfilled life.

Aquarmine Information

HOW TO WEAR AQUAMARINE
Up your glamour factor while adding instant polish to your outfit with this beautiful pastel blue gemstone. 

By Season:

  • For summer, a sparkling bracelet adorned with green and blue aquamarines makes for a beautiful summer accessory to dazzle from poolside to rooftop.
  • For winter, add a touch of brilliance to your cozy winter wardrobe with a must-have pair of earrings like the Unbearable Lightness from my ready-to-wear collection.

A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF AQUAMARINE
The aquamarine gemstone is rich in history dating back long before its first documented discovery in 1723 which was in the Adun-Chalon mountains of Siberia. The early Christians associated the aquamarine with the Apostle St. Thomas because of its sea-like coloring and the Saint made long journeys by sea till India and other countries to preach salvation. It was also widely known as the antidote to poison in the late 1300s as mentioned in William Langland's "The Vision Concerning Piers and the Plowman". This made aquamarine in popular demand at the time as poisonings amongst royalty were fairly common🙄.

DID YOU KNOW?

  • The name aquamarine originated in the early 1700s during the Georgian era of jewelry and comes from the phrase "water of the sea".
  • Brazil is the aquamarine capital of the world. In fact, the world's most beautiful aquamarine is considered to be the Santa Maria aquamarine, from the Itabira mine in the Brazilian province of Minas Gerais.
  • Necklaces, earrings, rings or bracelets are all excellent jewelry choices featuring this gem.
  • Aquamarine was once known as the "Sailor's Stone" because it was thought to protect sailors from the dangers of the open water.

To arrange a one-on-one consultation with Eva and explore these and other stones up close and in person, please book an appointment here

Visit Gems & Jewels for more information on other colored stones.

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