Did you know that a new gemstone was recently added as the August birthstone? Scootch over peridot, spinels are adding their numerous hues and extraordinary brilliance to the mix!
In recent years, my father and I took a special interest in spinels. We fell in love with some of the colours and hues that set them apart from other stones. How does sky blue sound? Lilac or lavender? Hot pink? Cobalt? Each of these colours is unique to spinel–but the range doesn’t stop there. In visiting with a friend of mine from Bangkok who specializes in sourcing and cutting them, my father and I couldn’t get over the immense variety. From orange to red, vibrant pink, all kinds of shades of purple, blues and violets, greenish-blues, and even grey. They’re all so beautiful and the fire and brilliance spinel has is seriously out of this world!
Last month we spoke about rubies which are the birthstone for July. Did you know that spinels are often mistaken for rubies? Red spinels are the most valuable colour and it isn’t hard to see why! In fact, the famous red gem in the British Imperial State Crown once believed to be a ruby turned out to be a brilliant red spinel!
Spinels are primarily found in Africa and Asia. Some of these countries include Tanzania, Myanmar, Vietnam, and Sri Lanka. Some of these regions are similar or the same to where rubies are found, adding to the confusion.
August babies have had their horizons expanded. Instead of being stuck with the bright green of peridot, cobalt blues, bright rich reds, purples, greens, greys and pinks have all been added through the addition of spinels. Though spinel is less known among consumers, we love them and continue adding them to our collection every year. They are durable (8 on the Mohs scale), brilliant, colourful, and a versatile addition to the birthstone gems. Keep checking in to see how we use these gems in our custom designs and click here to see some of our spinel creations!