GEMSTONES FACT FILE
Since time immemorial, gemstones - with their unique colors, properties and beauty - have captured the imaginations of craftsmen and artisans all over the world. They've featured on medieval crowns, weapons and items of clothing, they've encrusted the wonders of the world, and they've inspired mankind to achieve every higher levels of greatness.
Gemstones vary enormously from type to type, and each has its own set of qualities which makes it special and unique. In order to help our valued customers make the perfect choice, we have put together this brief but concise guide, taking you through the key characteristics of gemstone quality.
COLOR OF GEMSTONES
Color is perhaps the most important and obvious of all gemstone qualities, and the flawless rainbow of colors which mother nature provides never ceases to be a source of true wonder.
We all look for a deep, beautiful and pure color when we look for fine pieces of gemstone jewelry, and there is a truly remarkable palette of colors in their natural forms, which make these pieces of so special.
What many people don't realize is that the majority of commercially available gemstones have undergone some form of treatment, including some of our fine gemstones. Some precious stones such as citrine, aquamarine, sapphire, ruby, tanzanite and amethyst are treated using heat, which enhances their color and beauty.
Topaz is usually irradiated before being sold. If you have any questions about the way we treat some of our gemstones, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and ask. We open about the use of color enhancement techniques on some of our gemstones, and we are happy to discuss this with you should you have any questions.
We are committed as an online jewelry workshop to ensuring our pieces are as accessible to everyone as they can be, and affordable for all budgets, and gemstones which display the vivid colors and qualities without first being treated are often extremely expensive
CLARITY OF GEMSTONES
Just like with diamonds, completely flawless clarity in gemstones is both incredibly rare, and incredibly expensive. The finest examples have been snapped up by the world's royal houses, and often feature as part of national treasure collections, topping scepters and crowns, and acting as proud and beautiful museum pieces.
The vast majority of gemstones on the market, including those which are highly sought-after examples, are likely to feature some mild inclusions. If you’re looking for the best value for money, it’s sensible to seek out those which have some visible inclusions as these tend to be on the more affordable end of the scale.
Interestingly, gemstone inclusions are by no means always a negative - they often form the most fascinating aspects of a piece of jewelry, and bring flourishes of unique character and beauty to the piece.
CUT OF GEMSTONES
While there are several standard ways of cutting diamonds, gemstones are a little different. Gemstones are cut in whatever way the jeweler feels would best emphasize their color, or whichever way diminishes the number of visible inclusions.
They are also cut in a wide variety of ways according to how they might look best when set in a piece of jewelry. As a result, you can see gemstones cut into the most astonishing shapes imaginable, and polished to a stunning degree which really shows off their beauty.
SIZE OF GEMSTONES
Gemstones come in all shapes and sizes, and we list the diameter measurements of our gemstones (measured using the view from directly above) which is the part which will be visible when set in a piece of jewelry.
This is because the carat weight system is not necessarily the most accurate or helpful way of understanding gemstone size, and we believe in keeping things as simple and straightforward as possible for our clients.