Sleighbells ring, are you listening? December’s birthstone, pretty and glistening A beautiful sight Blue tanzanite Sparkling in a winter wonderland
Tanzanite is the primary birthstone for December, along with zircon and turquoise. Found only in Tanzania, it is also the gemstone for a 24th wedding anniversary. If you’ve made it to 24 years of marriage, you definitely deserve the gift of tanzanite!
If it’s not your birthstone or an anniversary gift, tanzanite still makes a perfect present for the holidays. Being blue never looked so good.
“Empress” bi-color tanzanite bracelet, by Coffin & Trout Fine Jewellers
Tanzanite and diamond “Burst” ring, by NEI Group.
Tanzanite and diamond earrings, by Yael Designs.
“Fireball” tanzanite, freshwater pearl, and diamond necklace, by Mastoloni.
“Interlace” bi-color tanzanite ring, by Coffin & Trout Fine Jewellers.
As we change our calendars to September, our sights are set on cooler weather, and on sapphires!
Sapphires are known for their beautiful blue hue, but they can also be found in a variety of pinks, yellows, and oranges, even peach, green, and violet colors. These colors are referred to as fancy sapphire.
One of the most sought-after fancy sapphires is the padparadscha. Its pink-orange coloration can be compared to that of a tropical sunset. Princess Eugenie, a cousin to Princes William and Harry, received an oval cut padparadscha sapphire ring for her engagement, bringing this rare gemstone into the limelight.
Padparadscha sapphire and diamond ring by Omi Privé. This ring is the AGTA 2018 Spectrum Award Winner.
Sapphires can also display the celestial-like optical phenomena, asterism, adding the name “star” to this type of sapphire.
Pink star sapphire cut en cabochon, by Suna Bros.
September babies are lucky to have a birthstone that comes in a variety of colors! Below are a few images from American Gem Society (AGS) members that showcase the chromatically-gifted sapphire. To find an AGS-credentialed jeweler near you, click here!
Blue sapphire and diamond ring, by Joshua J. Fine Jewelry.
Multi-colored sapphire and diamond necklace, by Kaufmann de Suisse.
Classique violet sapphire and diamond ring, by Coffin and Trout.
Pear shape orange sapphire and diamond ring, by Supreme Jewelry.
Oval pink sapphire and diamond ring, by Jeffery Daniels Unique Designs.
Round, blue sapphire bracelet, by Uneek Fine Jewelry.
Emerald cut green sapphire and diamond ring, by JB Star.
The American Gem Society Blog enjoys sharing the latest news, styles, and trends that are happening within the jewelry industry.
We also have the pleasure of introducing you to our members, in which many of them have great blogs of their own. We’ve come across eight jewelry blogs that we’d like to share. They all feature terrific info on jewelry trends, heartwarming (and some funny) stories about proposals, and of course, photos of beautiful jewelry!
If you love jewelry as much as we do, be sure to check these out!
It’s been a year since spinel was added to August’s birthstone line up. Those celebrating a birthday during the eighth calendar month now have three gemstone choices: peridot, sardonyx, and spinel.
Blue spinel by Gem 2000.
For those who are still unfamiliar with spinel, it is often assumed to be other gemstones, like ruby or sapphire. Cobalt blue, like the one above, is one of the most desired colors. But it can be found in a variety of colors, such as the much coveted red, as well as black, violet blue, greenish blue, grayish, pale pink, mauve, yellow or brown. Spinel can also be found in various cuts, like octagons, trillions, squares, rounds and fancy shapes, like ovals, pears, and cushions.
No matter what the shape, spinel is spectacular! Take a look at these designs by our AGS members. Click on the images for a closer view.
The Kalmia bracelet by Yael Designs features opal cabochons accented with pink spinel.
Affinity bracelet by Coffin & Trout Fine Jewellers, featuring multi-colored spinel and round brilliant cut diamonds.
Emerald cut purple spinel, pink and white diamond ring by Omi Prive.
Peridot by Gem 2000.
The verdant peridot is the gemstone most commonly associated with August. Peridot’s recognizable green hue could sometimes vary from yellowish-green to olive to brownish green, contingent on how much iron is present. Yet the finest peridot is a brilliant green without any hints of brown or yellow.
Our AGS members will help you find the perfect peridot for you! Click on the images for a closer view.
Hand-hammered Fiddlehead earrings by Ed Levin Jewelry featuring peridot in the center.
Peridot and sterling sliver ring by Michael Schofield & Co.
Oval checkerboard peridot and diamond neck piece by Parle.
Since as far back as Roman times, sardonyx has been highly valued as a stone representing strength, courage, happiness, and clear communication.
The unique reddish, zebra-striped banding of sardonyx stands out beautifully when the stone is smoothed, so it is often cut in cabochon and worn as beads or featured in an eye-catching pendant or ring.
Sardonyx makes a great gift for those born in August who want something a little different than the traditional birthstone. Readily available and relatively inexpensive, sardonyx makes an affordable addition to anyone’s collection.
Rhodolite garnet and emerald sunbeam earrings by Ricardo Basta Fine Jewelry.
If you’re celebrating a birthday or any special occasion this month, then the garnet is a worthy addition to your fine jewelry wardrobe. Here are four fun facts about the colorific January gem:
1. Not all garnets are red.
Garnet is actually the name of a group of minerals that comes in a rainbow of colors, from the deep red of the Pyrope garnet to the vibrant green of Tsavorites. Some rare garnets are even blue, colorless, or—most rare of all—change colors in different lights. But the most common color is a beautiful range of reds, from rust colored to deep violet-red.
2. It’s more than just a gemstone.
For thousands of years, the garnet has lived a glamorous life as a gemstone. But in the past 150 years, it has also been put to the test as an effective industrial mineral. In the United States, garnet has been utilized for waterjet cutting, abrasive blasting, and filtration.
3. Their inclusions make them unique.
Some garnets have inclusions that are part of the beauty of the overall stone (like “horsetails” in Demantoid garnets, or Hessonite garnets which sometimes have a “turbulent” look). So you may discover that you like the distinctive look these inclusions bring to the piece.
4. Garnets have been around for a very long time.
The garnet is so durable, remnants of garnet jewelry can be found as far back as the Bronze Age. Other references go back to 3100 BC when the Egyptians used garnet as inlays in their jewelry and carvings. The Egyptians even said it was the symbol of life. The garnet was very popular with the Romans in the 3rd and 4th Century.
Today, the garnet can be found in a range of jewelry pieces and styles, from beautiful rings to stunning tiaras. Since the garnet can come in a range of colors, rare garnets in green or blue make breathtaking pieces, especially in pendants or drop earrings.
Here are a few designs from AGS members featuring the many colors of the garnet. Click on the images for a larger view.
Two-tone garnet and ideal cut diamond ring by Yael Designs.
Silver and 14k gold Cleo bracelet by Ed Levin Jewelry featuring a Rhodolite garnet.
Mint Tsavorite garnet ring by Coffin & Trout Fine Jewelers.
Garnet and diamond pendant by Supreme Jewelry.
Mandarin garnet and diamond ring by Erica Courtney.
Oval faceted garnet ring by Lika Behar.
Tsavorite garnet, Spessarite garnet, and diamond earrings by AG Gems.
Tsavorite garnet and diamond ring by Omi Privé.
Brazilian garnet and diamond flower pendant by Stuller.
Lotus garnet and diamond ring by Parlé Jewelry Designs.
To learn more about the wide range of garnet color options and to pick the perfect piece, search for an AGS jeweler near you!
The month of November is represented by two richly colored gemstones: topaz and citrine. The gemstones look similar, in fact, that they’ve often been mistaken for one another throughout history. But they are actually unrelated minerals, and topaz occurs in a wide variety of colors far beyond yellow.
The good news is that both of these November birthstones are fairly abundant and affordably priced, which means anyone can find a topaz or citrine that will fit their budget.
Once upon a time, all gems that were yellow were once considered topaz, and all topaz were presumed to be yellow. Alas, it’s been discovered that topaz is available in a wide variety of colors, with Imperial topaz—a vibrant orange hue with pink undertones— being the most prized. Blue topaz, although abundant in the market, rarely occurs naturally and is often caused by irradiation treatment.
Pure topaz is colorless, but it can become tinted by impurities to take on any color of the rainbow. Precious topaz, ranging in color from brownish orange to yellow, is often mistaken for “smoky quartz” or “citrine quartz,” respectively—although quartz and topaz are unrelated minerals.
Topaz is a traditional gift for those with November birthdays. It’s also given to celebrate 19th wedding anniversaries, and certain types (blue and Imperial, respectively) acknowledge 4th and 23rd wedding anniversaries, as well.
When buying topaz, realize that this gem is most often treated with irradiation to produce desirable colors—particularly blue. Because these processes so closely resemble how topaz forms in nature, there is practically no way to determine whether a stone has been treated.
Here are a few designs from AGS members featuring the terrific topaz. Click on the images for a larger view.
The Nero pendant is 18k black gold featuring Imperial topaz, accented with rubies and champagne diamonds.
The second birthstone for November, citrine, is the variety of quartz that ranges from pale yellow to brownish orange in color. It takes its name from the citron fruit because of these lemon-inspired shades.
The name “citrine” was commonly used to refer to yellow gems as early as 1385 when the word was first recorded in English. However, since the gem’s color closely resembled topaz, the two November birthstones shared a history of mistaken identities.
Once citrine was distinguished from topaz, it quickly became popular in women’s jewelry as well as men’s cufflinks and rings. Today, it remains one of the most affordable and frequently purchased yellow gemstones.
Whether shopping for a November birthday, a 13th wedding anniversary, or just an affordable piece of jewelry to complement any style, citrine makes a perfect gift. These beautiful design from AGS members ought to spark some gift ideas. Be sure to click on the images to get a larger view.
The Citrine Swirl Brooch features round citrine surrounded by diamonds and rubies, set in platinum and 18k yellow gold.
When buying topaz or citrine, be sure to shop with a trusted jeweler who will inform you whether or not the stones have been treated. To find an AGS jeweler near you, visit our Find a Jeweler search. The American Gem Society wishes you a very happy birthday, and if you’re celebrating an anniversary, may your love continue to flourish for years to come!