From pinpricks of fabulous rainbow colours, to many hues and a gentle, floating palette of the spectrum, OPALS have mesmerised man for generations. Whatever your favourite member of the Opal family, owning an Opal is a very personal preference, and chosen because it appeals directly to you.
For many years, Australia was foremost in the Opal producing world, with Coober Pedy and Lightening Ridge amongst the most sought after. These are still highly collectable, and some of the best Opals on earth. However, the market exploded with excitement at the discovery of a unique and fine Opal in Ethiopia. In 2011 these Opals began to be mined in greater quantities which made them available to all.
Yes, location is important in pricing gemstones, but, far more important for the potential buyer is, 'does this Opal speak to you personally'. If you answer is 'yes' then no matter where it was formed and mined, this is the Opal for you!
It is worth doing a little research of your own as the subject is far too vast to do it justice here, but when you do find the Opal of your dreams, you will have a truly spectacular gift from mother nature.
Colour: Milky White, Red, Brown, Blue, Dark Grey.
Hardness: 5.5 - 6.5
Properties: Display Opalescence
Treatments: Occasionally Layered (Doublet)
Cleaning: Warm, soapy water.
Oh, lovely, lovely TOURMALINE. A favourite of mine, especially Paraiba Tourmaline! This gem comes in a wide variety of colours, depending on the chemicals present in its formation. From greens, blues, yellows, reds and gorgeous pinks, Tourmaline will enhance any piece of jewellery. The most sought after and collectable are 'Paraiba' and 'Bi-Coloured' as these are the rarest forms, and consequently command a higher price. But all Tourmaline, if clarity and intensity of colour are present, in my opinion, are some of the most beautiful gems in any collection.
Tourmaline displays Pleochroism, which means that you can see different colours when viewed from different angles. The crystals may also grow to be green at one end and pink at the other. These are known as 'Bi-Coloured'. When displaying green on the outside and pink inside, they are then known as 'Watermelon'.
Paraiba Tourmaline ranges from neon blue to an electric greenish blue and is one of the most sought after gems on the planet. Beautiful, beautiful Tourmaline.