Gemstones: The expression of precious nature in its raw state
Formerly called semi-precious stone, in distinction with the 4 natural stones of the precious family, (ruby, sapphire, diamond, emerald) the fine stone was assigned this new name in 2002, giving it its letters of nobility. Today, the two terminologies remain widely used, despite the fact that one of them is obsolete.
Composed of mineral substances (as opposed to organic stones), fine stones are superior quality gems, naturally present in rocks and magmatic plateaus. Often transparent and mostly of crystalline origin, they come in all shapes, sizes and colors. An infinity of fine stones exists, among which we find turquoise, Chalcedony, red jasper, Lapis Lazuli, rose quartz, black onyx, and many other varieties.
Endowed with a rare brilliance and exceptional beauty, they are enjoying great success in jewelery and jewellery, where they are appreciated for the character they instill in jewellery. They are also found set on fancy jewelry (silver and gold plated).
Namely: Only about fifty fine stones are used in jewellery.
In recycled 18-carat gold RJC-Coc (Responsible Jewelry Council Label), the min&ral jewelry creations are all set with natural 100% stones. The stones that we use to make our jewelry have not undergone any artificial treatment, they have only been cut and polished by the hand of man.
You will find the preciousness of fine stones with the PI Lapis-Lazuli medal or the Eclipse Lapis-Lazuli necklace, or even with the Chalcedony pebble medal.
How to assess the value of a gemstone jewel?
Fine stones are distinguished by their rarity, their beauty, their perfection, their clarity and the richness of their hues. Generally, buyers opt for diamonds rather than colored gems, unaware of which ones are present in the market and how to measure their value. Overview of the characteristics and properties of these minerals, in order to better orient oneself towards a choice of fine stone of great value.
Thanks to diamonds, most buyers of natural stone jewelery have already heard of the "4Cs". » : the color, the size (Cut), the purity (Clarity) and the carat. (To be found in detail on the “Diamond” page)
Representing a simple value guide, the 4Cs are a great way to describe the splendor of a gemstone. Thus, they form a solid basis when buying gemstones.
Other factors must be taken into account to determine the value of a fine stone.
- The colour
The color of a natural stone accounts for approximately 50% of its final value. Carat weight, cut and clarity have a direct influence on the color of a gemstone.
- The purity
The majority of gemstones have a crystalline structure and are made up of crystals. The natural process of formation of these stones is frequently accompanied by small natural features called "inclusions". Rather than being likened to flaws, these inclusions are seen as natural features, giving the stone its uniqueness and authenticity. As a result, there may be color variations from one stone to another. Each geode thus tells its story.
Purity is determined by the quantity and arrangement of these inclusions, the smaller they are, the higher the quality of the stone. Degrees of purity make it possible to distinguish them.
These inclusions do not alter the brilliance, and the sparkle of a gem has no influence on its value. Note that inclusions deemed regular and interesting can increase its value.
Fine gems are rare stones in essence. The rarity of a stone is defined in 3 different ways: geological, commercial, or comparative. It is not because a stone is rare from a geological point of view that it will have a higher value on the market.
If handled with care, gemstone jewelry can last a very long time. It will depend on the combination of three properties; hardness, stability and resistance.
- carat weight
The cut has an impact on the final price of a stone. The larger a gem, the more valuable it gains. Generally, large fine stones would allow a better view of the hue, optical effects and variations in tone.
Semi-precious stones: gems with a thousand and one effects...
Coming from the mineral and natural world, some fine stones have special optical effects, which gemologists call "phenomena". Qualified as rare and aesthetic optical properties, these effects are part of the structure of a fine gem and are generally factors in increasing the value of a stone. They also allow them to be identified and their splendor to be assessed.
Mineralogical terms are used to qualify the different visual aspects of a fine stone when it interacts with light:
Here are a few:
– Flickering: a play of light by which a fine stone sparkles when its position relative to the light source or to the observer changes. It is this effect that is found on the Druzy stone.
– The luster, or the amount of light reflected by the surface of the stone.
– Adularescence or Opalescence: designates a sparkling light effect, silvery to bluish-white which slides on the surface of the Moonstone. This is what gives this gem a touch of bewitching romanticism, which you will find on the Céleste ring in gray Moonstone.
– Irridescence: “Iris” meaning rainbow in Greek – This term designates the effect produced when the structure of a fine stone divides the light into several spectral colours. As is the case with mother-of-pearl, this iridescent effect modifies the colors depending on the viewing angle.
– The brilliance: it is a question of the quantity of light which reflects inside the color of a fine stone.
– Aventurinescence: this phenomenon is caused by scintillating metallic inclusions, formed by tiny metallic flakes. This effect is found on the Sunset stone, set on our Bestouan cord bracelet.
– Chatoyance: also called “cat's eye effect”, chatoyance is characterized by a single clear line reflecting light, like a feline pupil.
The price of fine stone
The majority of collectors, jewelry lovers and lithotherapy enthusiasts think that a fine stone is less expensive than a precious stone. The price is, indeed, often more affordable, but many fine stones are rarer and can therefore have a higher price than Ruby, Emerald or Sapphire. The price of a fine stone varies according to its size and the way it has been polished.
Minerals sources of beneficial virtues
If jewelry and jewelery give pride of place to fine stones, lithotherapy has also been working to reveal all the brilliance of these gems for a few years. They are associated with virtues and symbolism both energetic and spiritual, and properties both physically and mentally.
Raw, polished or cut, the virtues of the stones would manifest themselves when they come into contact with the skin or by simply holding them close to the body. In order to benefit from the mineral properties on a daily basis, lithotherapists advise wearing them around the neck as a pendant, set in a ring or earrings, on the wrist as a bracelet or even in your pocket.
At min&ral joaillerie, the creations are thus a source of well-being and combine the pleasure of wearing a jewel with the energetic power of natural stones. You will find comforting stones such as Amazonite or even relaxing stones such as Chrysoprase which would act against everyday troubles.