Orange and yellow gemstones radiate warmth and energy, channeling the sun to inspire enthusiasm and happiness wherever you go. From soothing yellow to fiery orange gems, there's an orange or yellow stone out there for every lover of these bright and beautiful colours.
1. Spessartite Garnet
Namibia, Burma (today's Myanmar), Brazil, Madagascar, Tanzania, Kenya, USA
Orange, yellow-orange, red-orange to red-brown. Before the discovery of Fanta orange mandarin garnets in the 1990s, bright, orangish reds were the most valuable spessartite colours.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE SPESSARTITE GARNET
The brilliance and hardness of spessartite make it a great choice for jewellery, especially as its one of the few high-quality orange gemstones out there - it really outshines the more common (yellow or orange) citrine stone!
HOW TO WEAR SPESSARTITE GARNET
With reasonable care, this stone can last for decades in an unbeatable jewellery piece. Always store this stone separately from other hard stones or make sure it's properly wrapped in cloth and protected from rubbing up against other stones to prevent scratches (but this applies to all gemstones!).
⭐️ For summer, find a piece featuring a spessartite garnet in a yellow gold setting - the perfect way to highlight the warmth of this stone.
⭐️ For winter, choose a white gold setting and some diamonds scattered around it to add a stunning contrast and a cool winter look.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF SPESSARTITE GARNET
Spessartite deposits were first found in the Spessart Mountains in Germany in the 1880s, where the stone got its name from.
In ancient times, spessartite garnets were used to represent authority and power among the Egyptians, Greek and Romans. In the Middle Ages, the stone was used as a symbol of truth and faith.
Today, the bright hues of spessartite are believed to help battle depression and stimulate creativity, communication and analytical thinking.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Although spessartite is a fairly common garnet, gem quality spessartite is actually very rare!
⭐️ The most expensive spessartites are the rich mandarin oranges and the deep burnt orange-red gems.
⭐️ Spessartites are typically included with small bubbles or crystals and can give the stone a slight glow that's hard to capture on camera.
2. Malaya Garnet
Kenya, Tanzania, Madagascar
Pink-orange ranging from salmon-y pastel to deeply saturated hues.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE MALAYA GARNET
Malaya garnets have remarkable brilliance, and the finest quality can display scintillating red flashes. Its pink-orange hue also makes for a great substitute for the even rarer (and highly priced!) padparadscha sapphire. Fine quality malaya garnets are so rare and special that you’ll be one of the few on the planet wearing one…
HOW TO WEAR MALAYA GARNET
Malaya garnet's great hardness and brilliance makes it one of the world's highest quality rare gemstones. It can be worn in a variety of jewellery pieces. Why not use it to build your dream custom ring for any and every occasion?
⭐️ For summer, try a lighter pastel malaya like in the photo above - a perfect colour to match any sun-kissed skin-tone.
⭐️ For winter, the deeper malaya garnet with a reddish-orange tone would add brilliant sparkle to your winter attire.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF MALAYA GARNET
Malaya (malaia) garnet was first discovered in the 1960s. It was found in the Umba River Valley bordering Tanzania and Kenya, which remains the primary source for malaya garnet today. In the 1990s, a second commercial source was discovered in Bekily, Madagascar.
The term "malaya" was derived from a Swahili word meaning 'outcast'. Miners gave it this name because when it was first discovered, local dealers wouldn't buy it, simply because it didn't fall into any of the standard dark red garnet categories; and so, it was cast aside! If only they’d known.
Malaya garnet is one of the rarer and more interesting 'hybrid' varieties of garnet. In fact, garnet comes in 6 main mineral groups / species -- almandine, andradite, grossular, pyrope, spessartine and uvarovite -- and often they form chemical mixtures between 2 or 3 garnet species, as is the case here with Malaya garnet.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Malaya garnet is primarily a mix of the species pyrope and spessartine garnet, but some stones can even contain parts of the other 4 garnet groups. This is a typical garnet characteristic and makes garnet one of the hardest stones to identify and always forms a nice challenge for gemologists…
⭐️ Garnets are one of the few gemstones that typically do not receive treatments (i.e. they are not ‘enhanced’) in any way, and so their colours are fully natural! And so far, this variety also hasn’t been recreated as a synthetic (man-made) gemstone either.
⭐️ Since its discovery, the production and mining of malaya garnet has been very irregular, and because of its rarity, it is highly prized by gem collectors.
3. Padparadscha Sapphire
Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Tanzania
A mixture of pink and orange. The perfect padparadscha should be 50% pink and 50% orange. Where and how to draw that line is always open to debate...
WHY YOU’LL LOVE PADPARADSCHA SAPPHIRE
The delicate and utterly unique colour of this stone makes for a rare, show-stopping sparkle. Paired with the unbeatable quality characteristics of sapphire, it makes the perfect alternative engagement ring stone or statement ring for daily wear.
HOW TO WEAR PADPARADSCHA SAPPHIRE
Getting engaged? Nothing compares to the elegance and rare colour of a padparadscha sapphire for an unbelievably stunning alternative engagement ring.
⭐️ For summer, with colour that mimics a summer sunset, the padparadscha sapphire will fit any summer style from day to night.
⭐️ For winter, use this stone to warm your usual darker cold weather wardrobe in a statement ring with some diamonds.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF PADPARADSCHA SAPPHIRE
For over a hundred years, reference has been made to an extremely rare sapphire which was first discovered in Sri Lanka, in the mesmerising colour of a lotus flower which most people in the West have never seen before. The term padparadscha actually comes from a Sinhalese word used to describe the colour of an aquatic lotus flower.
The stone’s colour is caused by a combination of iron and chromium trace elements. Traders often push gemology labs to state the name ‘padparadscha’ on a gem certificate for a stone that doesn’t actually fall within the true padparadscha range as they know the jump in price that title will bring to a stone...
What matters most is for the colour grading to be carried out by gemologists from an international lab who have knowledge, expertise and also an eye for beauty - rather than being driven by commercial intentions. That way, we can at least trust the certificate when it states ‘padparadscha sapphire’.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Due to the rarity of rough padparadscha, the stone will often be seen with an asymmetrical shape because they're cut to preserve as much of the stone's weight as possible.
⭐️ Clarity is an important aspect of the padparadscha sapphire. This is because their light colour can easily reveal inclusions and imperfections.
⭐️ Padparadschas over 2 carats in weight are considered extremely rare.
⭐️ Madagascar padparadschas are known to be a bit pinker in colour and usually sell for about 20% less than those from Sri Lanka - where the highest quality padparadscha sapphires are normally found. These stones from Madagascar can be heat-treated to intensify their pink colour. Absolutely nothing wrong with that but you should be aware of that at the time of purchase and pay accordingly.
⭐️ Princess Eugenie of the UK got engaged with a stunning padparadscha sapphire engagement ring.
4. Mali Garnet
Mali in Africa
Yellow, green-yellow, golden-yellow and brownish.
WHY YOU’LL LOVE MALI GARNET
Mali garnet is one of the rarest of the garnet group with a spectacular brilliance and dispersion that will turn heads wherever you go.
HOW TO WEAR MALI GARNET
This rare beauty is suited for all kinds of wear - the sky is the limit...
⭐️ For summer, this glowing yellow stone is a perfect match for all of your summer adventures. Try it set in matte gold with two smaller diamonds on either side for an extra sparkly look.
⭐️ For winter, a deeper golden hue pairs well with an earth-tone winter wardrobe (think forest greens and warm browns).
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF MALI GARNET
Mali garnet was named after Africa's Republic of Mali where the gem was first discovered in 1994. Mali continues to be the only known source of this stone to this day.
Mali garnets first appeared on the market around the 2000s when parcels were offered by African dealers in Bangkok. The lack of water and the high temperatures in Mali makes the mining of these stones problematic and production has been declining, making this jewel more of a collectors item - in other words, a rare and valuable stone.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ The rarest chrome-green colour is mali garnet's most valued hue, yet its yellows are also scarce and can be equally fab and otherwordly.
⭐️ Mali garnet is perfect for faceting because of its remarkable fire and dispersion, aka it has incredibly sparkle!
⭐️ Stones over 5 carats are quite uncommon and the price per carat increases dramatically with size.
5. Golden Beryl
Namibia, Brazil, Madagascar, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Sri Lanka
Lemon-yellow and golden-yellow
WHY YOU’LL LOVE GOLDEN BERYL
Golden beryl is another gemstone with great durability - suitable for daily wear in rings, bracelets, earrings, necklace and any other dream jewellery piece. If you've dreamed of a rare yellow stone that's different from the rest, this one is a beautiful alternative.
HOW TO WEAR GOLDEN BERYL
With its great hardness and durability, golden beryl would make a beautiful solitaire engagement ring but if you're looking for a different daily-wear piece, this stone is also for you!
⭐️ For summer, try a pair of stunning golden beryl stud earrings to show off with your hair pulled back in the summer heat.
⭐️ For winter, a golden beryl ring with some diamonds adds brilliance to any winter look.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF GOLDEN BERYL
Golden beryl was discovered in Namibia in the early 1900s in a deposit where aquamarine was normally found. (Aquamarine is the light blue variety of the same gem species "beryl"). It had been found in other places such as Brazil and Madagascar at an earlier time but the discovery in Namibia was the first to make it known worldwide.
Golden beryl can sometimes be confused with heliodor, a similar light yellow variety. However, as there is no clear distinction possible in the yellow and yellow-green tones compared to golden beryl, heliodors are generally rejected as an independent precious beryl variety and are rather seen as weak-coloured golden beryls. Real golden beryls are usually found at a higher price point.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Golden beryl is believed to have many spiritual attributes including protecting its wearer as well as bringing positive energy, assertiveness, strength, confidence and control.
⭐️ Some rare golden or yellow beryl exhibits a "cat's eye" - a thin white line that runs down the center of the stone. Yellow beryl with perfect colouring and the "eye" clearly contrasting against the yellow are considered most valuable.
⭐️ The largest golden beryl to be successfully faceted is over 2,000 carats and is displayed in the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. (USA).
6. Lemon Quartz
Brazil, Madagascar, USA
WHY YOU’LL LOVE LEMON QUARTZ
Its brilliant tangy yellow colour reminds you of a refreshing glass of sparkling lemonade... what's not to love?
HOW TO WEAR LEMON QUARTZ
Quartz has good hardness and can be worn in a stunning ring, set of earrings or necklace.
⭐️ For summer, stun at your evening events with bright yellow sparkles in a ring set with diamonds around it.
⭐️ For winter, stun in a pair of lemon quartz earrings to add a golden glow throughout your daily adventures.
A PEEK INTO THE HISTORY OF QUARTZ
The known history of quartz dates all the way to the 1800s, possibly sooner, and has been valued for a variety of uses since then, including use as oscillators in watches, radios and pressure gauges. Of course, the many colourful varieties of quartz are also valued for fine jewellery design.
DID YOU KNOW?
⭐️ Lemon quartz (along with other colourful quartz varieties) can also exhibit a cat's eye or star phenomenon within the stone due to fine asbestos or rutile fibers.
⭐️ Quartz can be found in many varieties of colour - each colour is due to trace elements added to the silicon dioxide base.
⭐️ Natural yellow quartz - also called citrine but that can include the orange quartz variety as well - is rare. Most commercial citrines are heat-treated amethysts these days (a fully acceptable treatment in the gem market).
Hopefully you now have a better idea of which orange or yellow jewel is right for you!