Tourmaline is one of the most colorful gemstones. It got its name at the beginning of the 18th century when Dutch sailors brought gems that natives of Sri Lanka called turamali. Turmaline is a relatively hard material 7-7.5 on Mohs scale suitable for use in jewelry. Tourmalines include a whole group of minerals with a common crystalline … Read more


Chrysoberyl was discovered in 1789. Cat’s-eye chrysoberyl, along with its non-phenomenal counterparts, is one of the most revered gems. Chrysoberyl and beryl are two completely different gemstones, although both contain beryllium. Additional confusion was caused by calling yellow-green chrysoberyl and completely unrelated mineral peridot by the same name – chrysolite. Chrysoberyl is a relatively hard … Read more


A girdle is the widest part of a gemstone, separating the crown above from the pavilion below. The girdle’s circumference defines the stone face-up measurements.  What are the different types of girdles? A diamond girdle can be bruted or polished. Modern diamonds usually have girdles small facets giving them better transparency and stronger brilliance. Step-cut … Read more


The pearls are gems grown within the soft tissue of an oyster around a microscopic irritant such as a grain of sand that found its way inside the shell. There are two types of pearls identical in composition and appearance and different only in how they were conceived – natural and cultured. Natural pearls are … Read more


The beryl family encompasses a group of very popular and precious gems. The single beryl species gave us charming Santa-Maria aquamarines and Colombian emeralds and tender pink morganites, heliodor in festive shades of yellow,  ruby-red bixbites, and even colorless goshenites. Emerald is typically heavily included; its inclusions can even help identify where it was mined. … Read more

Fancy colored diamonds

To paraphrase George Orwell: “All diamonds are rare but some are more rare than others.” Fancy-colored diamonds are among the rarest and most valuable gemstones that fall outside of the standard D to Z  color scale. As the yellow tint becomes more obvious, the value of a diamond decreases. For fancy diamonds, the opposite happens – … Read more

Celebrity choice

Liv Tyler Liv Tyler’s five-stone ring with an emerald cut diamond and straight baguettes. Leon Mege r7426Emerald cut diamond and four straight diamond baguettes Serena Wiliams Serena Wiliams’s 12-carat oval diamond in a three-stone ring with two half-moons. Leon Mege r7445Three stone ring with an oval diamond and a matching pair of epaulets. Megan Markle … Read more

Celebrities by style

Emerald-cut diamond ring with tapered baguettes is very popular with celebrities. The notable pieces are Mariah Carey’s voluptuous ring with a 35-carat diamond, Grace Kelly’s 10.48-carat diamond ring, Jennifer Lopez’s ring rumored to be worth $5 million, Melania Trump’s 15-carat rock, and Amal Clooney’s 7-carat diamond. The desire for a ruby in an engagement ring … Read more

Cabochons – Finger Countertops

Labradorite Labradorite is plagioclase feldspar with pronounced metallic colored iridescence, a color play called labradorescence. Labradorite comes in a transparent form ( red, orange, yellow, or colorless) and smoke grey translucent to opaque varieties. Labradorite has three cleavage directions. Named after the Labrador Peninsula on Paul’s Island near the town of Nain in Labrador, Canada, … Read more

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