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GemSelect Newsletter - January 2010

In our newsletter this month:
The Year in Gems Back to Top

2009 was a tough year for many in the gem and jewelry business. Industry analysts report that in the USA alone, more than 750 retail jewelry stores closed their doors, and many others barely survived. Two leading industry magazines, Modern Jeweler and Colored Stone, announced they were ceasing publication. Both had been in business for years; in fact Modern Jeweler had been published for over 100 years. In another disappointing turn, AGTA, the American Gem Trade Association, shut down their well-known gemological testing center in New York. The members of the association could no longer afford to subsidize the lab. If things weren't bad enough, the price of gold reached $1,200 per troy ounce in early December.

It is not unusual for sales of luxury items to decline during difficult economic times. But the contraction in certain sectors of the gem and jewelry business is not just a result of the economic recession. Technological change and globalization are affecting the way that goods are bought and sold, and nearly every kind of business is affected.

Buyers in free markets have always been adept at finding the best value. In economic downturns, buyers become even more value-conscious. More shoppers use the the Internet to find products and product information, and to compare prices. More shoppers are making their purchases online when they find trustworthy sellers who can deliver what they need at the right price.

At its best, Internet commerce simplifies the distribution chain and creates economies within the global market, making it possible to deliver the widest selection of goods at the lowest possible prices. The companies that specialize in web-based commerce have tended to prosper during the recession, especially those that offer quality products and reliable service.

While 2009 was a tough year for many in our business, it was actually a record year for GemSelect. In response to customer demand, we doubled the number of items in our inventory, adding many new gem varieties, a larger selection of calibrated stones and more than 800 unheated sapphires. We continued to enhance our website, adding new navigation tools as well as video clips for most of our items. We also introduced gem certification from AIGS in Bangkok, a globally recognized leading gemological lab.

As one of our customers wrote recently, "keep offering good stones and your faithful customers will keep buying them!". We would like to thank all of our faithful customers, new and old, who gave us the opportunity to meet their needs, and who recommended us to their friends and family. You can expect many more new and interesting stones from us in the year ahead.

Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2010 from all of us at GemSelect!

Rare and Unusual Gems Back to Top

Each month we feature a rare and unusual gem from our inventory. This month we feature a very fine large aquamarine from Madagascar:

Madagascar Aquamarine from GemSelect
Madagascar Aquamarine from GemSelect

Aquamarine belongs to the beryl family, along with emerald and morganite. But where emeralds are typically heavily included and are routinely treated with oil to fill fissures, high quality aquamarine can display dazzling clarity. Very clean aquamarine gems that exhibit fine color are rare, especially in large sizes. This 10.58 carat aquamarine from Madagascar has very good color saturation, as well as superb clarity. It is also beautifully cut, without even a trace of a window. This stunning gem would make an impressive ring or pendant.

Customer Questions Back to Top

Every month we answer questions of general interest from our customers. Please feel free to send your questions or suggestions to our support team at!

Is there a way of doing a search for NATURAL, UNHEATED, sapphires? If so, could you please tell me how to do it? Thank you. GF, USA.
This page will show you all of our unheated sapphires (currently more than 840 items):

Unheated sapphires

Once on this page, you can use the buttons above the photos to sort the unheated sapphires by color, size, weight, cut, etc.
You can also browse all of our untreated gems (all varieties) on this page: Untreated gemstones.

My wife wants a princess-cut gemstone. Could you tell me what kind of cut this is and if you sell any gems cut in this style? PA, UK.
The princess cut is a faceting style designed for square or almost square gemstones. At one time square gems were mainly step-cut, with a large, flat table and long stair-like facets on the sides. The step cut emphasizes color and luster, but at the expense of brilliance, scintillation and fire. The princess cut is an adaptation of the brilliant cut for square gems. It is a fairly recent invention, dating from the 1960s, and has become popular for both diamonds and colored stones. We carry a good stock of princess-cut gems in more than a dozen varieties. Click the link to see all of our princess-cut gems.

Keep up with our new arrivals before they hit the newsletter by joining our thousands of fans and followers on our social networking pages. We love interacting with our customers - you can visit us on Tumblr, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest!

To ensure you can receive our emails, please be sure to add to your list of safe contacts, or you add us into your email address book! Please feel free to contact us with any questions, comments and queries! We respond to each and every email we receive.

Happy Gem Hunting!
Your friends at GemSelect

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Note: 1ct = 0.2g

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