GemSelect Newsletter - Purple Rocks Rule
Purple is an interesting color because it is halfway between warm (red) and cool (blue). Thus, it could be said that purple is very well-balanced. This is reflected in US politics where a "purple state" is one in which there is an equal distribution of Republicans and Democrats. Neolithic purple art in France used manganese and hematite, but the first purple dye was made from mollusks and worn by nobles in ancient Greece and Rome. This led to the association of purple with rulers and religious leaders; the only people who could afford or were permitted to wear the costly color. To further this trend, in Elizabethan England, there were clothing regulations which decreed that only royals could wear purple. An accidental discovery made by an 18-year-old English chemist in 1856 led to purple becoming available to all. William Henry Perkin was attempting to make quinine, a traditional malaria treatment, when he stumbled upon an affordable purple compound that made him a wealthy man. Throughout history, the color purple has been variously associated with royalty, religion, wealth, spirituality, psychedelia, passion, wisdom, confidence, creativity, magic, mystery, freedom of gender and the LGBT community.
Purple's complimentary color is yellow, so purple gemstones look great in yellow gold settings. Some consider purple to be a difficult color to wear, but there are many shades and saturations. For example, violet leans more toward blue, making it cool, while magenta has more red, making it perfect for warm complexions. Purple is a suitable color for all; if you don't like purple, maybe you have not found "your" purple yet, whether it is deep, bold or sedate. Read on, and you will find your passion for purple.
One of the most valuable purple gemstones is purple sapphire, which ranges from violet-blue sapphire to reddish-purple, and may be a delicate color or a highly saturated, vivid violet. Blue is the most sought-after color for sapphire, but purple sapphire is actually rarer, especially color change sapphire, which most often shifts from blue to reddish-purple when viewed under different lighting conditions. When it comes to engagement rings or jewelry that is built to stand the test of time, it is hard to beat the beauty and hardness of sapphire.
Without a doubt, one of the loudest purple gemstones is rare rubellite tourmaline, which can vary between ruby-red and reddish-purple. Rubellite tourmaline is for those who adore bold, unadulterated color that wows. Another hot purple gem that is more affordable than rubellite is rhodolite garnet, which is prized for its raspberry red color. Less often, rhodolite can be a beautiful grape color. If you consider rubellite tourmaline and rhodolite garnet a little too hot to handle, electric blue-violet tanzanite is a wonderful alternative. While tanzanite stones are a cool color, their intensity can be startling. The color of tanzanite is most vivid in large gemstones, which are incredibly enchanting. Purple spinel can also be extremely intense, which may be the result of its single refraction, making it a very pure color, whether reddish-purple or violet-purple.
A relatively new arrival to the world of gemstones and a lesser-known purple gemstone is charoite, which is so striking that it has been accused of being unreal; yet, charoite is a completely natural gemstone that is mined only in the Sakha Republic of Siberia. It has a characteristic streaked or swirled appearance, which along with its intense purple color, makes it a completely unique purple stone and a rarity to be treasured. Since charoite lacks hardness, it is best-suited for protective ring settings, pendants or earrings. Those who own charoite jewelry are few and far between.
Jade is best-known for being green, but there are many other colors, including lustrous lavender jadeite gemstones. These vary between lavender and pinkish, sometimes even showing several colors in one gemstone. Since they are so varied in color, they are suitable for both men's and ladies' jewelry. Jadeite is a wonderfully durable material that can be carved or used in cabochon jewelry. Another popular lavender cabochon that is affordable and effortlessly feminine is lavender chalcedony. It is a delicate bluish-lavender color and a translucent to opaque cabochon that is perfect for those who are partial to pastels.
While most purple gemstone enthusiasts seek highly-saturated amethyst stones, lilac amethyst is also popular. Sometimes sold as "Rose de France", this delicately-colored amethyst is pastel-colored, rather than deep purple. Like many other quartz gemstones, amethyst is incredibly versatile and can be used in almost every type of jewelry imaginable.
Sapphire and spinel can be very vivid violet or purple, but the beauty of nature allows for a wide variation in colors, so these precious jewels are also found in less-saturated pastel purples and violets. Pastel sapphire and spinel gems are typically faceted to show off their wonderful brilliance that is hard to beat and even in sedate hues, purple spinel and sapphire jewelry is a sight to behold.
If you would like to bring pizzazz to your jewelry, consider a pop of purple. "Galaxy hair" has been in fashion for the past couple of years, with space-inspired purple and violet locks. Also, one of the latest food trends is purple, with scientists recommending we eat purple food containing anthocyanin antioxidants to stay young and healthy in 2017. We at GemSelect are advocates for purple power, in the form of gemstone jewelry. When you find your purple stone of choice, whether it is faceted or cut en cabochon; highly saturated or pastel colored, your jewels will be a vision in violet, majestic in magenta or lovely in lavender and your purple will reign supreme.
Chrome diopside is rare, but popular. The reason for its popularity is that the color of chrome diopside rivals fine emerald, tsavorite garnet and chrome tourmaline, but the price is much more pocket-friendly. As its name suggests, this forest-green gem gets its beautiful color from chromium. Chrome diopside is a very recent discovery; it was found in 1988 in Eastern Siberia, which remains the source for our chrome diopside gems. However, it is also found in other regions, such as Pakistan. As with many colored gemstones, large chrome diopside stones tend to have a darker color than small stones.
Scintillating scissor-cut aquamarine stones have added brilliance due to their triangular facets shaped like opposing blades, hence the name, "scissor cut". Ordinary step cuts showcase the color of gems but do not reflect as much light as scissor-cuts. The scissor-cut facets and the stunning sea-blue color of aquamarine yields cool, crisp glittering jewels that hold us spellbound by their beauty.
One of the most popular pink gems is pink tourmaline, which can be found in an amazing array of cuts, shapes and colors, from pastel and baby pink to sizzling hot pink and magenta. Pink tourmaline has been loved by ladies since China's Dowager Empress, Tz'u Hsi bought large amounts of tourmaline from California. Nowadays, most tourmaline gemstones are sourced from Africa, particularly Mozambique, which also yields for fine ruby and garnet gems. Those who are tempted by pink tourmaline are spoilt for choice.
The amazing story of a Tanzanian woman who disguised herself as a man to work in a tanzanite mine has come to light. Pili Hussein did not enjoy taking care of the family livestock, and married life was even worse for her, so she ran away. Pili dressed and acted as a man to secure a job that women do not do in the mines of Mererani. A lucky find allowed her to greatly improve the lives of her family and even set up her own mining company which employs 70 people. Her female identity was revealed after she was accused of raping a local woman.
If you have a spare $4 to $6 million, you could be the proud owner of the Rockefeller Emerald this month. The 18-carat octagonal, step-cut Colombian emerald that is mounted in a ring by Raymond Yard will be up for auction at Christie's Magnificent Jewels, New York on June 20.
Miners in Sao Paulo, Brazil have uncovered a rough emerald that weighs over 600 pounds and measures 1.3 meters tall. It has been reported that a local mine owner purchased the rough with plans to exhibit it. The gigantic emerald is the largest find since the discovery of the 341 kg Bahia Emerald in 2001.
Graff Diamonds purchased a piece of rough diamond for $17.5 million last month. The newly-acquired 373.72-carat rough white diamond was once a part of the 1,109-carat Lesedi la Rona discovered in Botswana's Karowe Mine by Lucara Diamond Corporation in November 2015.
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- First Published: June-01-2017
- Last Updated: June-13-2017
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