Learn About Color
Colored gemstones will add personality to your jewelry wardrobe. There is a colored gem for every style and taste, and we work with them all. Visit us and explore our collection of colored gemstone jewelry up close and personal. Or, bring in a gemstone of your own and challenge us to create something unique just for you. We welcome the opportunity.
The tradition of birthstones is believed to date back to the breastplate of Aaron, as described in the Book of Exodus in the Bible. The breastplate displayed gemstones representing the twelve tribes of Israel. Over time, legends began to boast the healing powers of these gems. In any case, a birthstone gift does indeed have one special power: the power to make someone smile!
JANUARY – Garnet
The garnet group offers gems of every hue, including fiery red, vibrant orange and rare green varieties. Garnets were prized by ancient warriors.
FEBRUARY – Amethyst
The purple variety of the mineral quartz is called amethyst. It often forms in large six-sided crystals. Fine velvety-colored gems come from Africa and South America. It is one of the most popular colored gemstones.
MARCH – Aquamarine
A blue to slightly greenish-blue variety of the mineral beryl. Crystals are sometimes big enough to cut into gems of more than 100 carats.
APRIL – Diamond
Diamond is the hardest of all gems and is made of just one element: carbon. It is valued for its colorless nature and purity. Most diamonds are primeval—over a billion years old—and form deep within the earth.
MAY – Emerald
The most valuable variety of the mineral beryl is emerald. It was once cherished by Spanish conquistadors, Inca kings, and pharaohs. Today, fine gems come from Africa, South America, and Central Asia.
JUNE – Pearl
Pearls are produced in the bodies of marine and freshwater mollusks. They can occur naturally or may be cultured by man. Lustrous, smooth, subtle colored pearls are a staple in jewelry wardrobes. Most common in strands.
JUNE – Alexandrite
The color-change variety of the mineral chrysoberyl is alexandrite. Bluish-green in daylight, purplish-red under incandescent light. A durable gem. Fine quality gems are rare and very valuable.
JULY – Ruby
Traces of chromium give this red variety of the mineral corundum its deep rich color. Long valued by many cultures. Elizabeth Taylor’s 8.24ct ruby ring sold for 4.2 million at auction.
August – Peridot
Yellow-green gem variety of the mineral olivine. Found as nodules in volcanic rock, and as crystals lining veins in mountains of Myanmar and Pakistan. Occasionally found in meteorites.
August – Spinel
Just added as a new August birthstone.
SEPTEMBER – Sapphire
A variety of the mineral corundum. Depending on their trace element content, sapphire could be blue, yellow, pink, yellow, orange or purple. If cut as a cabochon, the gem may produce a six rayed star.
OCTOBER – Tourmaline
Comes in many colors, including the remarkable violet-to-blue gems particular to Paraíba, Brazil. Has one of the widest color ranges of any gem.
OCTOBER – Opal
Opal is a kaleidoscope of colors unlike any other gem. The play of color can be a tiny pinpoint pattern, a more angular harlequin pattern, or larger flashes of ribbons across the gem. Blue and green are popular colors, but red is more rare, and therefore, more valuable.
NOVEMBER – Topaz
Blue topaz is a very popular mass-market gem. Out of the ground the crystal is colorless, but it can be treated to a variety of blue hues. More rare are the colors of pink, red, purple, and orange. Top sources include Brazil, and Russia’s Ural Mountains.
NOVEMBER – Citrine
A yellow to golden member of the quartz mineral group. Deep golden varieties from Madeira, Spain can resemble costly imperial topaz. Thought by ancient cultures to increase psychic powers.
DECEMBER – Tanzanite
Named for the country of Tanzania, where it was discovered in 1967, Tanzanite is the purple or blue to violet variety of the mineral zoisite. It has become one of the most popular colored gemstones of all times.
DECEMBER – Zircon
Optical properties make zircon bright and lustrous. Best known for its brilliant teal blue hues. Colors also come in autumn shades of yellows and reddish browns, as well as red and green hues.
DECEMBER – Turquoise
Ancient peoples from Egypt to Mesoamerica and China treasured this vivid blue gem. It is a rare phosphate of copper and only forms in the earth’s most dry and barren regions.