The awesomeness of Saphhire

If you have taken a peek at our Gemalicious shop yet, you may have gathered that we L O V E Sapphires. No, really, I mean we looooooooooove us some Sapphires. All shapes, sizes, and colors-we don't care, they are all gorgeously amazing. And we have been lucky enough to get our Gem-luvin' hands on some seriously beautiful Sapphires-just see for yourself! Click on the pictures to go straight to Gemalicious and purchase the strands:) Again, we must warn you-these pictures may cause d.o.t.j.syndrome and uncontrollable droolage(see previous post for more info. on these serious conditions), so brace yourself....................

~Umba Sapphire~

~Pink, Yellow, Gold, Blue & Green Sapphire~

~Minty Green Sapphire~

As you can see and probably already know, Sapphire comes in a wide array of colors, and all yummy! Here is some nifty info. about Sapphires you may or may not know, enjoy!

~Sapphire refers to gem varieties of the mineral corundum, an aluminum oxide
(Al2O3). The presence of small amounts of other elements, especially iron and chrome, are responsible for the colouring, turning a crystal that was basically white into a blue, red, yellow, pink or greenish sapphire. However, this does not mean that every corundum is also a sapphire. For centuries there were differences of opinion among the specialists as to which stones deserved to be called sapphires. Finally, it was agreed that the ruby-red ones, coloured by chrome, should be called 'rubies' and all those which were not ruby-red be called 'sapphires'.

~Sapphire comes from the Greek word for blue, sappheiros , and this gem provides the most beautiful blues of the gem kingdom. The ancient Persians believed the earth rests on a giant sapphire. Its reflection, they said, made the sky blue.

~Sapphires are found in Kashmir, Burma, Sri Lanka, Madagascar, Thailand, Cambodia, Australia, Tanzania, Kenya, and the United StatesThe gemstones in the corundum group consist of pure aluminium oxide which crystallised into wonderful gemstones a long time ago as a result of pressure and heat at a great depth.

Sapphires are most commonly heat treated(thermal enhancement) to convert dull gray corundum into the type of Sapphire commonly sold today. Heating to enhance colors goes back centuries, and it's considered a natural type of treatment since the process is basically a continuation of the processes that occur in the ground. Stones are heated to a very high temperature, which causes the inclusions to reform themselves and improve the color by making it either darker or ligher, or more intense of a color. It's been properly stated that without heat treatment the world would be without many colored gemstones, because colored gems occuring in the colors we see are very rare.

Click HERE for a very helpful detailed link about heat treatment of stones

~Some of the many names of Sapphires~

Kashmir Sapphire - Sapphire with a distinct velvety-blue color
Cornflower Sapphire - Synonym of Kashmir sapphire
Cornflower Blue Sapphire - Synonym of Kashmir sapphire

Star Sapphire - Sapphire displaying asterism
Padparadschah - Orange-pink variety of sapphire
Color Changing Sapphire - Sapphire exhibiting a different color in natural and artificial light
Bi-colored Sapphire - Sapphire with more than one color
Cat's Eye Sapphire - Sapphire exhibiting cats eye effect
Fancy Sapphire - Any sapphire with a color other than blue

The most south-after color(and a personal fave!) of fancy sapphire is the rare and beautiful padparadscha sapphire: a pink-orange corundum with a distinctive salmon color reminiscent of a tropical sunset . Found mostly in Sri Lanka, these ultra-rare, ultra-expensive stones are among the most coveted gems in the world.

~Some of the many FALSE names of Sapphire~

Brazilian Sapphire - blue tourmaline or blue topaz
Gold Sapphire - lapis lazuli with shiny pyrite sprinkles

Hope Sapphire - synthetic blue spinel
Lux Sapphire - iolite
Lynx Sapphire - iolite
Sapphire Quartz - massive blue quartz or chalcedony
Sapphire Spinel - blue spinel

Water Sapphire - iolite
Uralian Sapphire - blue

What is Umba, Padparadscha, and Songea Sapphire???

Umba Sapphire is a unique type of fancy Sapphire discovered in 1962 in the Gerevi Hills, north of the Umba River in the Umba Valley of Tanzania. Twenty-two miles from the Indian Ocean, at a small bend in Tanzania’s Umba River near the Kenyan border, you’ll find a unique two-mile-radius corundum deposit that produces just about every color of sapphire imaginable. Since the pipe’s discovery in 1962, its distinctive stones have earned the name Umba sapphire.

Padparadscha sapphires are a special variety of the gem class termed corundrum. A natural padparadscha sapphire is a delicate color that is a combination of pink/red and orange and the best specimens are from Ceylon (Sri Lanka). Padparadscha is derived from the Sanskrit word padmaraga meaning lotus flower: The petals of the finest lotus blossoms are a blend of pink and orange.

Songea Sapphire is a fancy colored Sapphire from the Ruvuma Region of southern Tanzania. it is called Songea Sapphire because that is the closest town to the mining area, and most of the trading of this Sapphire is carried out in Songea. This material is very rich in magnesium, which is why it has such a large variety of colors. The colors range from green to purple to burgundy, and every combination in between. Also, most of this Sapphire exhibits some type of color change making this the most unique Sapphire ever found. As with all Sapphires, this material has a hardness of 9.

Had enough yet?! Sapphires are one of my most favorite stones to work with, in all of it's glorious scrumptious colors. You can always seem to find a place to slip in a few Sapphires to any jewelry design:) Here are a few more pictures of de-lish Sapphires in Gemalicious right now, enjoy!

~Songea Sapphire Rondelles~

~Deep Blue Sapphires~

~Pink Sapphires~

1 comment :

  1. Saphhire has always been my fav, too! Great info, thanks!


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