Jewelry Styles for a Virtual World

In 2020 we embraced video meetings; that practice continues into 2021. Though it may not have the same connection of in-person meetings, there is a silver lining: the evolving role of jewelry and the resulting trends.

Bold, colorful necklaces and earrings show well on camera, adding color and cheerfulness. Dressing for the camera means selective use of color and re-thinking the scale of jewelry; what we easily see in person is often lost on screen. Vivid colors and statement jewelry certainly help. So, as long as we are all under the eye of the omnipresent camera lens, remember the words of Harry Winston: “People will stare. Make it worth their while.”

For color, Krainz Creations is known for their dazzling pieces. Be it a business Zoom call or a happy hour hangout, gems from Krainz Creations are guaranteed to lift everyone’s spirits. 

After color, size matters. Bold jewelry shows better on camera, and, in real life, statement pieces impress like nothing else. The rise in popularity of larger pieces attests to the prevalence of digital communication—and audacious jewels are always fun. AGS member ÉVOCATEUR presents hefty, crazy-beautiful treasures.

And on the subject that bigger is better for waist-up, videoconferencing dressing, big links are trending. Chunky chains, oversized, and designed in new ways, add a little edginess to the statement piece category. Lika Behar likes her links in mixed metals and diamonds. 

In a return to classics, the pearl is having a moment. Beyond the stud and the time-honored three-strand, pearls are worked into unique pieces by ASBA USA, Inc. From whimsical to modern, ASBA offers pearls in an array of beautiful settings. 

Are you looking for styles that will look amazing on and off camera? Visit an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

Tips from Jewelers Mutual: How to Lower Your Jewelry Insurance Cost

A sure sign that you’re “adulting” is looking for ways to save money by cutting your costs. As you plan for your future, a little extra savings—even with jewelry insurance—can certainly give you peace of mind.

If you currently insure your fine jewelry, did you know there are ways to lower your costs? Just like your home, car, or health insurance, jewelry insurance has ways to help you save some cash.

Jewelers Mutual Group offers a variety of discounts. Read their blog, “How to Lower Your Jewelry Insurance Cost,” to learn more!

Pantone Picks Two Colors for 2021

By Isabelle Corvin, CG, Staff Gemologist at Panowicz Jewelers

Pantone colors for 2021: Ultimate Gray (17-5104) and Illuminating (13-0647)
Image courtesy of

Last year wasn’t quite what anyone was expecting. Most likely, everyone is looking forward to 2021 and the start of a new year. With that in mind, let’s talk color. Specifically, Pantone’s color of the year.

Pantone has chosen two colors this year: Ultimate Gray (17-5104) and Illuminating (13-0647). These two unexpected colors may seem like unusual choices, but Pantone picked them because they are “practical and rock solid but at the same time warming and optimistic.”

Stability, optimism, warmth, and energy is what most need now, so they are fitting colors for a brand new year.

Ultimate Gray is a surprising choice. However, gray is a complementing color, able to enhance other colors alongside it, match every other shade, and be either warm or cool-toned when needed.

It’s also a color that everyone is familiar with; the word “gray” (or “grey” in the United Kingdom) first came into use as far back as 700 AD and has been associated with industry and business for many decades.

Ultimate Gray is a surprising choice. However, gray is a complementing color, able to enhance other colors alongside it, match every other shade, and be either warm or cool-toned when needed.

Many artists during the Renaissance used gray lines as the base for oil paintings, and since it went well with all skin tones, it was often used as a background color.

Neutral, familiar, and modest, gray is a sharp contrast to the other color of 2021—Illuminating.

Yellow is a well-known color too, and this particular shade of Illuminating is bright and cheery, reminiscent of daffodils, ducklings, and bananas.

Yellow in fashion isn’t as common as other colors, given that it clashes with other hues. That’s why Ultimate Gray is the perfect companion!

An ancient color, the first use of yellow in art is from the Cave of Lascaux, in France. There you will find a yellow horse drawing, painted with yellow ochre, dating back some 17,300 years.

Ochre in yellows was common for artwork and a favorite of the Egyptians. They often painted gods with golden skin, and female mortal figures with lighter, paler shades of yellow. Gold was an important color to them, symbolizing eternity and strength.

It is said that Vincent van Gogh loved the color yellow and was quoted as saying it was the color of sunshine.

While the last year was perhaps not the grand start to a new decade, Illuminating reminds us to look to the things that are beautiful, bright, and colorful.

While many fashion and decorating trends will utilize these two colors, as always, natural gemstones are already a step ahead. Plenty of jewels offer a complementing hue, and some downright embody the two colors.

Diamond comes to mind, and not just for the perfect coloring. Diamonds are strong, resilient, and last forever. They remind us to shine under pressure.

With an abundance of natural inclusions, some diamonds can appear grayish, but maintain a strong surface luster. These are marketed under many names, and no two are alike.

Other diamonds, colored by nitrogen, will be yellow. These range from light and pale, to intense and vivid. Treatments can enhance these colors, and since they are still diamonds, they remain bright and fiery!

Some pearls can also be gray, and as a familiar and classic gemstone, it’s the perfect choice for Ultimate Gray.

Sunny gems like citrine and lemon quartz are great for that Illuminating vibe. Citrine is said by many to be a positive gemstone when worn. It’s considered a warm gem and is said to invite the imagination. It is also known as the merchant’s stone. Old legends speak of increased wealth to merchants that held the stone during transactions and increased protection when traveling.  

More yellow-hued gemstones to consider are yellow beryl (Heliodor) and yellow sapphire.

Heliodor is the yellow member of the beryl family and is named after the Greek god of the sun, Helios. As such, this gemstone is another that is closely related to warmth, energy, and life. Some also claim it increases confidence and the desire to learn.

Yellow sapphire, although it can range in color tones, can reach the same vibrant shade as Illuminating. Since sapphires are durable as well as colorful, this gem is a great combination for everyday wear.

The new year is upon us with great anticipation. Pantone’s colors reflect the need for familiarity and happiness, which are hoped for now more than ever.

Jewelry images by American Gem Society (AGS) members. Visit to find an AGS jeweler near you.

Isabelle Corvin

Isabelle Corvin is an AGS Certified Gemologist (CG) who is the Staff Gemologist at Panowicz Jewelers. Since she was 14-years-old, she knew she wanted to be a gemologist. Ms. Corvin also writes for Panowicz Jewelers’ blog.

The Folklore of Topaz

Traditional legends claimed that topaz could harness the power of the sun. This gemstone is commonly found in warm yellow hues, but can be treated to produce other colors, such as blue. Pink topaz was linked to spring and summer, while other topaz colors were linked to fall.

ring with big topaz gem on black coal background

Topaz symbolized the Egyptian Sun god, Ra. Ancient Egyptians felt it was an incredibly powerful stone. Hindus believed in the gemstone’s protective abilities. They felt it could protect homes from burning down, while also protecting their health and beauty. African shamans also treated the gemstone as sacred, using it in their healing rituals. They felt that whoever held the gemstone would become wealthy.

Ancient Greeks and Romans used topaz for strength and to prevent injuries. Around that time, Europeans linked the sunny stone to Apollo, the god of the Sun. Later during the Renaissance in Europe, people believed that topaz could break spells and quell anger.

In ancient times, people believed that topaz would prevent sleepwalking, reduce inflammation, and improve eyesight. It was also believed that the stone changed color when near food or drink that had been poisoned. Healers and physicians used it in all sorts of medical treatments.

Topaz has also been tied to the moon. It was believed that it’s healing power and color intensity waxed and waned with lunar phases.

Modern lore suggests topaz will bring about love and good fortune while uncovering lies and deceit. Some feel that the gemstone will reduce feelings of tiredness and promote good moods.

If you’re looking for topaz jewelry to celebrate a November birthday or 4th, 19th, or 23rd wedding anniversary, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of topaz and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.

The Folklore of Citrine

Citrine has been loved for thousands of years. The word was first used in 1385 to refer to yellow gemstones. This November birthstone has become a symbol of manifestation, wealth, and imagination. Its yellow hues evoke the warmth of the sun and life-giving energy.

Group of Citrine Gemstones

In ancient times, people believed that citrine gemstones could calm tempers, soothe anger, and manifest desires. To leverage these powers, Egyptians used citrine gemstones as talismans, the ancient Greeks carved iconic images into them, and Roman priests fashioned them into rings.

Legends say that the gemstone made men more handsome and intelligent. It was also believed that it could help women bear more children and increase happiness. Citrine is often called “The Merchant’s Stone.” People believed that it would help accumulate wealth and success.

According to lore, carrying citrine would attract love and prevent heartbreak. It was believed that it could instill confidence and healing wisdom as well. People felt that it was one of the only stones that did not hold negative energy. Instead, it repelled it.

Today, citrine is one of the most affordable and abundant gemstones on the market. Its colors range from yellow, orange, and reddish hues, to smoky or amber brown.

If you’re looking for citrine jewelry to celebrate a November birthday or 13th wedding anniversary, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of citrine and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.

The Folklore of Tourmaline

Tourmaline gemstones are found in an incredible range of colors. An Egyptian legend explains this variety by saying the gemstone traveled along a rainbow, gathering the diverse array of colors as it went.

red and pink tourmaline gemstones

One legend relates tourmaline to the world’s ancient knowledge. Magicians living in the Andes mountains used tourmaline to create magical staffs to access this resource.

Ancient Indian ceremonies used tourmaline for enlightenment and help in seeking good. Inversely, they felt it could also bring insight as to what was causing trouble.

In the 18th Century, a Dutch scientist believed that wrapping a tourmaline gemstone in silk and placing it on the cheek of a child with a fever would help them fall asleep.

Many people have believed folklore around tourmaline gemstones having the ability to cure depression, strengthen the body and spirit, improve relationships, and increase intuition and creativity. In fact, it’s association with creativity meant it was often used by writers, artists, and actors.

Folklore also suggests that tourmaline could help improve self-awareness, self-confidence, psychic energies, communication, and the ability to relax. It is also believed that the gemstone can counteract fear, grief, and negative energies.

If you’re looking for tourmaline jewelry to celebrate an October birthday or an eighth wedding anniversary, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of tourmaline and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.

Trend Alert: Big Links, Long Chains

Whether its a paper clip or a Figuro link, big links are one of this season’s must-haves. It’s on trend to wear them long or short, stack them or wear them single. Chains are both sexy and utilitarian. Wear them with knits, slip dresses or dress up your go-to athleisure outfit.

Gold chains are a classic and make a statement. We see them as a staple going forward, so invest in a piece that you are sure to love years from now.

Of course, American Gem Society designers have created some of this year’s favorite trendy trains. Here are four we love:

Stun every day you wear this Everyday Oval Link Necklace from NEI Group.

Everyday Oval link necklace from NEI Group
Everyday Oval Link Necklace from

You’ve got the Midas Touch with this beautiful long chain necklace from Midas Chain.

Midas Chain gold chain
Go for the gold at

Gold is great, but sometimes you need a touch of (oxidized) silver to stand out. This exceptional chain from Lika Behar is unforgettable.

Lika Behar Collection oxidized silver chain
Want to see more from Lika Behar? Visit

Feeling a little regal? You’ll look drop dead gorgeous with this long chain necklace from Erica Courtney.

Pendant from Erica Courtney
Find more drop dead gorgeous pieces at

To see any of these beautiful pieces in person, or better yet, to purchase them for your jewelry arsenal, visit to find an American Gem Society jeweler.

The Folklore of Opal

The folklore around opal gemstones has changed over the centuries. It has long been associated with hope, happiness, innocence, and luck.

Silver ring with opal mineral gemstone on pearl background

According to Arabic legend, opals fell from the sky in bolts of lightning. Greek mythology stated that opals originated from Zeus’ joyful tears after winning the battle against the Titans. Meanwhile, Australian aborigines believed that the Creator came to Earth on a rainbow, leaving these colorful stones where his feet touched the ground.

Aztecs named fire opal after Quetzalcoatl, their feathered-serpent diety. They believed the “Stone of the Bird of Paradise” could foster creativity and beginnings. They felt it could also bring about necessary destruction.

People in the Middle Ages work opal gemstones to bring them luck. They believed that the color-changing opal possessed the powers of each gemstone whose color appeared in its sheen.

However, that perception changed with the 1829 publication of Sir Walter Scott’s book, “Anne of Geierstein.” The story featured an enchanted princess who wore an opal that changed colors with her moods. But when a few drops of holy water extinguished the stone’s magic fire, the woman soon died. People began associating opals with bad luck. Within a year after publication of Scott’s book, opal sales in Europe fell by 50 percent.

Other stories of bad luck were told through the years. For example, Spain’s King Alfonso XII was gifted an opal ring for his wedding. After giving it to his wife, she died. The ring was then given to his grandmother, siter, and sister-in-law, each of them also dying when in possession of the ring. King Alfonso was the last to wear the opal, dying shortly after. These deaths could have been attributed to the cholera epidemic at the time, but the legend of the cursed opal persists.

When opal deposits were discovered in Australia after 1850, the gemstone’s perception changed yet again. The country started to produce 95 percent of the world’s opal supply and many of the most beautiful specimens. People once again clamored to wear opal jewelry.

If you’re looking for opal jewelry to celebrate an October birthday or 14th wedding anniversary, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of opal and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.

The Folklore of Sapphire

Sapphires are associated with focusing the mind, maintaining self-discipline, and channeling higher powers. Throughout time, the September birthstone has been referenced in almost all religions.

Greeks wore sapphire for guidance when seeking answers from the oracle. Buddhists believed that it brought spiritual enlightenment, and Hindus used it during worship. Early Christian kings cherished sapphire’s powers of protection by using it in ecclesiastical rings.

Ancient Hebrews believed that the Ten Commandments were engraved on tablets of sapphire, though historians now believe the blue gemstone referenced in the Bible may have been lapis lazuli.

It was believed that this “holy” stone would prevent impure thoughts. Believers even went so far as to say it wouldn’t shine if worn by someone who wasn’t chaste. For royalty, it was assumed that sapphire gemstones would protect them from fraud, poverty, and bad decisions.

There are legends of the power of sapphire to heal physical wounds and disease. The simple method of placing a sapphire on the forehead was supposed to stop nosebleeds. Mixing the gemstone with milk was supposed to help sores and boils. People also made elixirs with sapphire to help calm the stomach and digestive tract and to heal internal ulcers.

Over time, sapphire began to symbolize love and commitment. For example, Britain’s Prince Charles gave Lady Diana a 12-carat blue sapphire engagement ring in 1981. This gemstone is now given as a gift for fifth and forty-fifth wedding anniversaries.

If you’re looking for sapphire jewelry to celebrate a September birthday or 5th or 45th wedding anniversary, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of sapphire and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.

The Folklore of Spinel

Spinel is a gemstone that has often been confused with ruby. One of August’s birthstones, spinel can come in a variety of colors, including red, black, blue, green, and purple. It can also appear colorless.

Uncut and rough natural red spinel crystal.

Spinel can be found in deposits around the world. However, in ancient times, Southeast Asia produced very large formations of the gemstone. Red spinel is often called “flame spinel.” Two of these large, red gems are in the English crown jewels. Known as the “Black Prince’s Ruby” and the “Timur Ruby,” it was later discovered that they were spinels.

According to legend, spinel can help revitalize and bring energy to the owner. It is said to lower anxiety and stress. Along these lines, it’s also believed to encourage new ways of thinking and promote the fortitude to get through challenges in life.

In the mystic realm, some have felt that spinel helps communicate with higher powers. They say it improves intuition and clarity and balances emotions.

Magnetite is a type of spinel that has magnetic properties. As early as the 11th century, mariners used this form of spinel—known as lodestone—to magnetize their compasses.

Those who believe in crystal healing feel that magnetite helps align currents in the body. They also believe it can balance mood swings and polarities, such as physical and spiritual, and the two brain hemispheres.

If you’re looking for spinel jewelry for yourself or for someone with an August birthday, find an American Gem Society jeweler near you.

NOTE: The above is intended to educate on the myth, legend, and historical lore of spinel and is not meant to be interpreted as fact.