Gemstones are pieces of mineral which, in cut and polished form are prized for their beautiful colours and patterns, used to make jewellery or in other art. There are more than three thousands natural minerals, but less than a hundred are commonly used as gemstones.
To qualify as a gem, the mineral should be hard and tough to resist scratching, withstand constant use or handling and have beautiful clarity, colour or ‘fire’. Value is based on rarity and rare quality. The bright colours of gems give each a unique personality and personal tastes in colour often dictate preferences for particular stones.
Despite the incredible popularity of diamonds, sapphires, emeralds, rubies and all type of coloured stones were valued long before diamonds became popular. There was even a time almost all coloured gems were believed to have special powers or cure specific illnesses and bring happiness, prosperity and peace into a person’s life.
Most gems are cut or faceted, and polished to show their best beauty. A simple cut for a stone is cabochon, a highly polished domed-shaped top, and a flat or rounded base. Cabochon stones are often seen in antique jewelry. Today most gemstones are cut to give them a number of flat surfaces, called facets. Faceting bring out the brilliance and sparkle of gemstones. Faceted gemstones show flashes of color and play of light within them.
The more you explore, the more you will love the world of gems. Oro de Rey, would love to guide you through this colourful, exciting world.