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GemSelect Newsletter - July 2009

In our newsletter this month:
Finding Matching Gems Back to Top

We've been increasing our inventory this year, as we find more opportunities to buy new and interesting gems. We now have about 12,000 items in stock. But as we grow our stock, it can take more work to sort through our gems to find the ones you need. Browsing through all our 1,300 sapphires, for example, can take quite a while.

We've begun some improvements to simplify navigation of our website. For example, you'll notice a new menu bar across the top of each page that provides direct links to popular pages such as our new arrivals or calibrated gems. Therefore, no matter where you are on, you can go directly to many pages without returning to the home page.

Recently we've added a new function, which we think is both powerful and extremely easy to use. With a single click it enables you to find all the matching or very similar pieces for a particular gem. It can save a lot of time when you want to buy several similar pieces or just compare similar items.

Here's how it works. When you go to the detail page for a particular gem, you'll see a link right below the gem details that will tell you if matching items are available, and how many matching items were found. Clicking on the link will bring up a page that will show you all the matching items side by side, including the original item you were looking at.

You'll find that approximately 70% of our gems have at least 1 matching item. Occasionally you'll see large numbers of matching items in the cases where we buy large lots of calibrated sizes, as we did recently with pyrope garnet, citrine and ametrine. We display matching items based on gem type, color, shape and size, with a maximum size variance of 4%.

We'll even show you matching items for previously sold pieces. So if you purchased a gem from us in the past and want to find a similar piece, just enter the gem ID for your item in the search box on our home page. Then view the detail page for the item and we'll include a link if any matching items are available.

Our matching items link will really save you time when you are ready to select a stone and want to make sure you've reviewed all the similar items in our inventory. Our matching items list is constantly updated as new items are added and others are sold, so you can be sure you are seeing all the similar items we have in stock.

Rare and Unusual Gems Back to Top

Each month we feature a rare and unusual gem from our inventory. This month we would like to show you a stunning large aquamarine gem from Madagascar:

Top Grade Aquamarine
Top Grade Aquamarine

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 have wonderful clarity. Recently we acquired two large aquamarines from Madagascar that combine excellent color saturation with top clarity. We have a 15.86 carat square octagon as well as a similar 10.58 carat stone.

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!

In your June newsletter you wrote that prices for colored gemstones are stable even when we're in a recession. But I saw another article that said that diamond prices have fallen by more than a third. Is it true? WJ, USA.
Yes, it's true. If you've been shopping for diamonds in a retail shop, you would have no idea that diamond prices had taken such a nosedive, since the retail market does not adjust prices when commodity prices fall. The diamond market is still largely run by the De Beers cartel, and when prices are weak they respond by cutting production in the mines rather than lowering prices in the sales channel. It's really the worst of both world when this happens, because both the consumer and the miner suffer. But it's a reminder that diamonds are not rare. Over 1 million carats of gem-quality diamonds were produced in 2008.
What is the rarest gemstone you sell? I'm just interested to know even if I can't afford it! Thanks, KM, New Zealand.
Many colored gemstones are rare, including alexandrite, tsavorite garnet, chrysoberyl cat's eye and sphalerite. But recently we acquired some specimens of clinohumite, a gem so rare that until recently, only a few thousand carats were known to exist in private collections. A recent find in Mahenge, Tanzania, is making clinohumite more widely available but it still counts as very rare. It is not particularly expensive, however, so it's a very attractive gem for collectors.

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!

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Happy Gem Hunting!
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