Monday, October 4, 2010
Gemstone of the Month: Tourmaline and Opal
October is another month with two birthstone choices, Tourmaline and Opal.
Tourmaline has become a favorite among jewelry designers, and gem collectors around the world. Since it is available in a variety of colors, it is suited to almost anyone's taste. Tourmaline is also known for displaying several colors in the same gemstone. These bi-color and tri-color gems are formed in many; gemstones with clear color distinctions are highly prized.
The name Opal derives from the Greek Opallos, meaning "to see a change (of color)." Opals range in color from milky white to black with flashes of yellow, orange, green, red, and blue. An opal's beauty is the product of contrast between its color play and its background. Opal is a formation of non-crystalline silica gel that seeped into crevices in the sedimentary strata. Through time and nature's heating and molding processes, the gel hardened into the form of opals. The opal is composed of particles closely packed in spherical arrangements. When packed together in a regular pattern, a three-dimensional array of spaces are created that give opal its radiance.
Source: American Gem Society