The American Independence Day—or the Fourth of July—is when we celebrate our country’s freedom and the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. It’s also considered the height of summer!
It’s a time for family reunions, barbeques, picnics, parades, and the much-anticipated fireworks displays. On this day, we proudly display our nation’s colors: red, white, and blue.
Fun Fact: More than 14,000 firework displays are put on across the country on the Fourth of July!
But don’t let those fireworks grab all the attention. Create your own sparkle-fest with three gemstones that will beautify your patriotic style. We’re talking about rubies, white diamonds, and blue sapphires!
In honor of the holiday, we’ve picked a few designs by our American Gem Society members that feature one of the three, aforementioned gemstones. Click on each image below to get a closer look.
Ruby and diamond necklace, by Armadani.
Mozambique ruby with heart-shaped diamonds and micropavé, by Takat.
Ruby and diamond leaf earrings, by Fana.
North Star drop diamond earrings, by NEI Group.
Illa Comet Pendant, by Hearts On Fire.
Round diamond engagement ring, by Imagine Bridal.
Blue sapphire and diamond “Kara” bracelet, by Yael Designs.
Blue sapphire “Lecircque” ring, by Shah Luxury.
Cushion-cut blue sapphire and diamond dangle earrings, by Uneek Fine Jewelry.
May your Fourth of July celebration be sensational, safe, and full of sparkle! To find an AGS-credentialed jeweler near you, visit http://www.ags.org/findajeweler.
It has been some time since a green hue has been chosen as the color of the year, and this version—a bright shade with just a hint of yellow—is a refreshing color indeed!
Pantone says it was chosen as a symbolic color of new beginnings and renewal, a calming hue to soothe and relax, and a call to reconnect with the world around us. Indeed, Greenery reminds us of nature, and few things calm like plants and animals.
The color will be coming to the forefront of all things fashionable this year; clothes, interior décor and of course, jewelry.
Gems that embody this color are reviving peridot, versatile tourmaline, vibrant tsavorite garnet and of course, comforting emerald. In fact, emeralds have been a symbol of renewal and growth for ages, as well as wealth and status.
Alternately, peridot is considered the gem of the sun, while garnets and tourmalines have many meanings and supposed health benefits.
Certainly, all gems that match this sublime “Greenery” represent nature at its finest.
The color green, at its scientific core, is a color between blue and yellow, a mixture of those two opposing colors, if you will. The word, “green”, is thought to be derived from Middle English or possibly Germanic roots, most likely meaning, “grass” or “roots.”
Peridot and tsavorite ring by Erica Courtney.
Colombian emerald and diamond necklace by Takat.
Tsavorite and diamond band by Supreme Jewelry.
In many cultures and languages, green and blue often have similar names associated with the color, making it a great transition from last year’s Pantone color of the year, Serenity (a soft blue).
Science has proven that green is restful on the eyes, balancing to emotions and also helps combat fatigue.
Green is surprisingly hard to “copy” from nature’s mix to create pigments and dyes, including food coloring. Older methods included finely powdered malachite, another gemstone, to create stains.
Historically, green has an interesting history; in more arid locations, the color was one of hope for things to come and rebirth. The Egyptians used the color often, even going so far as to characterize some of their deities with green skin.
The Greeks weren’t overly fond of the color and rarely used it in artistic purists. The Romans, however, linked the color to their goddess, Venus, who was the goddess of love and nature, thus making the color more romantic.
During the Renaissance, where clothing colors denoted social status and occupation, green tones were worn primarily by merchants and bankers. It was a featured clothing color in many famous paintings of the era, including Mona Lisa, who wears a shade of darker, muted green.
Jade, ruby, and diamond earrings by Ricardo Basta Fine Jewelry.
Mint tourmaline and diamond pendant by Parle.
Green quartz and diamond earrings by NEI Group.
The Masonic orders use green to symbolize immortality of all that is divine and true. Since the natural aspect of the color is unchanging, it is considered an immutable color.
In terms of jewelry, green was a popular color in both the Art Nouveau and Art Deco eras. In the former, it was used for accents of sweeping, nature-inspired designs that dominated the movement.
In the latter it was often used as a striking aside to other colors, using the bolder, darker hues of the color rather than the light and airy versions.
Greenery may seem like an odd choice…until the plants bloom once more. As spring hits, sooner rather than later, green becomes the prominent color we see. It is a surprisingly balanced color, managing to be both soft and bold. It is a romantic color, when you think about it, and invokes emotions when seen.
We all need a connection to nature in some form, and Greenery gives us that connection with our most obvious sense, sight.
And when it is seen, it is felt.
To see green colors is to feel them, and to wear a gemstone that holds such a deep tie to the world around us grounds us, makes us feel.
Wearing green jewelry is sure to help you feel at peace throughout your day. Who doesn’t need to feel relaxed during hectic and overfull days?
Embrace a green gemstone, make it your own and begin to enjoy 2017’s color, Greenery!
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.
Directional colors and styles of jewelry shape up annually based on a trio of familiar factors—what’s trending in Hollywood, what the fashion designers are sending down the runways, and the gem material that Mother Nature provides. The following six jewelry trends were born from the intersection of these occasions, so keep them top of mind this year for gifts and self-rewards.
Oversize earrings. Calderesque versions in costume materials were evident on models at several spring couture shows though karat-gold numbers are an heirloom-quality choice. AGS members have plenty of options!
Chandelier earrings in 18k gold with rose-cut diamonds and rubies from Vivaan.
Hearts. Love takes a literal interpretation next season. Just look at the word itself on sweaters by Michael Kors! While hearts can elicit mixed reactions—are they kitsch or cool?—know the fashion gods have committed to them this year. Would you wear a heart? Diamond options (here and below) are hard to resist!
Ring in platinum with a heart-shaped yellow diamond, a heart-shaped emerald, and colorless diamonds from Setaré.
Choker necklaces. These continue to enjoy the spotlight. Both Céline and Versace sent choker-wearing models down the spring runways to create chic style messages. Chokers can feature traditional (think cameos) or contemporary elements ideal for wear dressed up for evening or down with denim during the day.
Choker necklace in 18k Strawberry Gold with Chocolate and Vanilla diamonds and a Neon Paraiba Tourmaline from Le Vian.
Mismatched earrings. These range from subtly mismatched styles—one stud and one drop—at Dior to completely different designs on each ear. And related to this trend of uneven mates are the large single earrings being worn solo. No matter how you wear the mismatched look, its novelty will attract attention and admirers.
Statement necklaces. Recent red carpet jewelry placements have fueled a growing appetite for attention-grabbing necklaces. Expect to keep seeing bibs, big pendants on long chains (think Givenchy’s über-cool agates), and multi-layer options that build a look by using many slimmer styles.
Collar necklace in 18k gold with blue chalcedony from Goshwara.
Pearls. From natural-color Chinese freshwaters to Japanese Akoya and South Sea varieties, pearls are making a comeback among jewelry designers for their iconic beauty. Even fashion brands like Gucci worked pearl accents into 2017 lines, further cementing the lustrous orb’s must-have status.
If you’re loving these jewelry trends, search for an AGS jeweler near you. They’ll help you find any of the above designs, match you with similar looks, or help you design your very own trend-setting style!
The holidays are only a few days away, so if you’re still looking for something super special for the season, the American Gem Society (AGS) suggests stackables, studs, or solitaires. These pieces are always on trend and are regular go-to items in any fine jewelry wardrobe.
Below are some dazzling designs by our AGS members that are sure to inspire. If you need more ideas, you can always count on an AGS jeweler to help. Every year, our AGS members are required to continue their gemological education, staying up-to-date on changes and trends in the jewelry industry. Search for an AGS jeweler near you by clicking here.
The beauty of a stackable bracelet or ring is that you can wear them individually, mix and match to change the look or wear them all together. So many options!
Le Vian Chocolate Diamond™ Stackable Wristwear
Honora’s ringed pearl and crystal stretch bracelets.
Erica Courtney’s Stackable Eternity Rings
Danhier Sapphire Stackable Rings
These days, when it comes to studs, the possibilities are endless! You could sport a solitaire diamond or gemstone by day, and then dress it up with an earring jacket by night.
Whiteflash 8-prong martini diamond studs.
KC Designs’ diamond stud and jacket.
Armadani ruby and diamond halo studs.
Baggins Pearls’ classic white south sea diamond studs.
Often a solitaire is presumed to be a round diamond, simply set as a ring or pendant. But today you’ll find these singular stones come in all shapes, sizes, and species—like corundum (ruby and sapphire) and quartz (amethyst and citrine).
Jade Trau’s six prong diamond solitaire.
Parle’s Lotus Garnet pendant.
Mark Schneider’s Silver Inspiration Pendant featuring amethyst.
Uneek’s round diamond engagement ring with peekaboo split shank.
Always keep in mind, when purchasing a diamond—whether it’s a loose stone or mounted—to ask your jeweler for an AGS Laboratories Diamond Grading Report. That way you can be confident that your diamond has been consistently and accurately graded by the only nonprofit diamond grading laboratory with the mission of consumer protection. Accept no substitutes. Happy shopping!
It’s election day in the USA! Months of election coverage culminates as America heads to the polls. We wanted to pay tribute to this important occasion in our own way: with red, white and blue jewelry designs from members of the American Gem Society (AGS). These beautiful pieces get our vote!
Let’s begin with some bright and cheery red gemstones. Rubies naturally come to mind, but when it comes to red hues—there are many varieties of gemstones to choose from.
For those born in July, the ruby—the king of precious stones—is your birthstone.
Ruby is the red variety of the mineral corundum, colored by the element chromium. All other colors of gem-quality corundum are called sapphire, which means color is key for this royal stone.
The chromium that gives ruby its red color also causes fluorescence, which makes rubies glow like a fire from within. Paradoxically, chromium is also what makes this gem scarce because it can cause cracks and fissures. Few rubies actually grow large enough to crystallize into fine quality gems, and these can bring even higher prices than diamonds.
Accordingly, the name “ruby” comes from rubeus, the Latin word for red. In ancient Sanskrit, ruby translated to ratnaraj, which meant “king of precious stones.” These fiery gems have been treasured throughout history for their vitality.
Tough and durable, ruby measures 9 on the Mohs scale. Diamond is the only natural gemstone harder than ruby. Ruby’s strength and red fluorescence make it valuable for applications beyond jewelry. Both natural and synthetic rubies are used in watchmaking, medical instruments and lasers.
Due to its deep red color, ruby has long been associated with the life force and vitality of blood. It is believed to amplify energy, heighten awareness, promote courage and bring success in wealth, love and battle. Many cultures regard the ruby as a symbol of love and passion, and have long been considered the perfect wedding gem.
Rubies make wonderful gifts for a July baby, or anyone marking an important milestone, like a 15th or 40th wedding anniversary. If you’re in search of rubies as a gift or to add to your jewelry wardrobe, visit our Find a Jeweler search for an AGS credentialed jeweler near you.
In the meantime, relish in these stunning designs featuring the ravishing ruby!
Father’s Day is this Sunday, June 19. If you haven’t thought about a gift for your dear Dad, we have a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing. Just like Mom, Dad appreciates a gift of quality that will last a lifetime. Styles and trends may come and go, so be sure to find something that fits your Dad’s personality and lifestyle.
The Fun & Funky Father
This is the Dad who always has a fun story to share, a silly joke to tell, and got a kick out of embarrassing you when you were a kid! The Triangle Puzzle Ring by Mark Schneider matches this fun personality. Its two-tone 14k white and yellow gold with 0.205ctw diamonds.
Looking for something different and slightly exotic? The Legends Naga Dragon Head bracelet by John Hardy is sterling silver and 18K bonded gold. The eyes are set with African rubies.
The Fan-atic Father
If your Dad is a sports fan, he’ll cheer for these two sporty styles by Lashbrook Designs. Die-hard baseball fan? Go with the cobalt chrome 8mm band with baseball “stitching.” Dedicated basketball fan? Pick the titanium 8mm domed band with the basketball pattern.
The Fit Father
For men who live a very active lifestyle, purchase titanium jewelry. It’s the hardest of the metals, therefore more scratch, dent and bend resistant. Hearts On Fire designed this durable yet lightweight gray titanium ring. It’s highlighted by a cable rope running through the center, and one small, single diamond.
The Factual Father
He likes to keep things simple. John Hardy designed a reversible, flat chain bracelet that’s sterling silver on one side and bronze on the other. Who doesn’t appreciate the versatility and convenience of reversible jewelry?
Two-toned designs are very popular because they work with any look. The Grand Signature Bracelet by Ed Levin Jewelry is sporty, comfortable, classic and bold. No fuss, no muss.
The Formal Father
The French cuff, whether worn with a business suit or a tux, always lends a formal feel to any look. Add a pair of stylish cufflinks, like these sterling silver and genuine onyx links by Stuller, for a finished touch!
Dad deserves some bling, too! This design by Unique Settings of New York is timeless and stylish, with just the right amount of sparkle.
The Futuristic Father
He’s all about technology. The car, the appliances, the gadgets—all must be wired into something…and each other! Whether you understand it or not, show your support for his love of innovation.
Royal Asscher carries a unique design collection called Stars of Africa. They have encased their exquisite diamonds and colored gems inside a dome, giving them freedom to move and sparkle. Dad ought to be fascinated with these sterling silver cufflinks housing blue sapphires.
Dad is going to think this is cool! Steven Kretchmer designed a tri-band ring using Polarium™, their magnetic platinum alloy. The three 7.5mm magnetic bands have a matte finish with rounded edges, with the middle component featuring a stripe of 24k crystallized gold inlay.
Need some more ideas? Use our online Find a Jeweler search to locate an AGS credentialed jeweler near you. Our highly trained and educated jewelers will help guide you through the buying process and answer any questions you may have. Enjoy celebrating this day dedicated to Dad!
There’s no better way to demonstrate your love than by giving a ruby in celebration of a July birthday.
Ruby earrings by Omi Privé
Rubies arouse the senses, stir the imagination, and are said to guarantee health, wisdom, wealth and success in love.
Ruby is a variety of the gems species corundum. It is harder than any natural gemstone except diamond, which means a ruby is durable enough for everyday wear.
Ruby earrings by AG Gems
Fine-quality ruby is extremely rare, and the color of the gem is most important to its value. The most prized color is a medium or medium dark vivid red or slightly purplish red. If the gem is too light or has too much purple or orange, it will be called a fancy-color sapphire.
3 Fun Facts About Rubies:
Rubies are historically known as the stone of love.
Followers of Hinduism believe that wearing a ruby protects them from their enemies.
In addition to being the birthstone for July, rubies are also a traditional gift for those celebrating 15th or 40th anniversaries.
Diamond and Rubies waiting to be set at Nanci Knott & Co.
The birthstone of July is the fiery Ruby. As someone who has walked up and down many aisles at jewelry trade shows, I can attest to the eye-drawing power of rubies. You see one out of the corner of your eye and you cannot help but stop immediately and take a look. If you happen to run across a cluster of rubies, you might be standing outside the display case, gawking for a long time. Refreshments might be needed.
There are many, many reasons to love rubies. Here are five:
1. Jewelry lovers love them. Elizabeth Taylor, the grand dame of Hollywood jewelry lovers, adored her rubies.
She wrote about receiving this stunning set (left) given to her by her third husband, Mike Todd, and she makes it sound like a magical moment, a la Hollywood style. Dame Elizabeth was taking a swim when he presented her with this gorgeous gift:
“I got out and put my arms around him, and he said, ‘Wait a minute, don’t joggle your tiara.’ Because I was wearing the tiara he had bought for me in the pool! He was holding a red leather box, and inside was a ruby-and-diamond bib necklace, which glittered in the warm light. It was like the sun, lit up and made of red fire. First Mike put it around my neck and smiled. Then he bent down and put matching earrings on me. Next came the bracelet. Since there was no mirror around, I had to look into the water. The jewelry was glorious, rippling red on blue like a painting. I shrieked with joy, put my arms around Mike’s neck, and pulled him into the pool after me. It was a perfect summer day and a day of perfect love.”
Wait—she wore a tiara in the pool? And then she dove in wearing that expensive ruby and diamond set? Time to brush up on jewelry care. Thankfully, this is a great lead-in to reason #2 to love rubies:
2. They are very durable. Ruby is a variety of the gems species corundum. As a result it is harder than any natural gemstone except diamond, which means a ruby is durable enough for everyday wear. In fact, it’s one of the more popular alternative choices in engagement rings.
3. It’s a rare gift from nature. Fine-quality ruby is extremely rare, and the color of the gem is most important to its value. The most prized color is a medium or medium dark vivid red or slightly purplish red. If the gem is too light or has too much purple or orange, it will be called a fancy-color sapphire.
4. It has healing powers. According to lore, ruby can aid in improving emotions. It is also known to increase integrity, devotion, and happiness. Dame Elizabeth seemed pretty happy when Mike Todd gave her those rubies, so that part we know is true!