The very word conjures images of dazzling diamond rings, elegant sapphire bracelets and royal ruby necklaces. This is the appeal of gemstones, their timeless beauty combined with a rarity which at one time was restricted to the richest people. Even today the names ruby, emerald, sapphire and diamond are considered the crème de la crème of gemstones, and for a fine 2-3ct example of any of these stones you will pay £10,000+.
So what happens to the regular working man, who perhaps brings in £15,000 a year. How can he give an eternal gift to a loved one? Clearly he wants to give the best he can and provide a unique piece for that special person in his life. For such a man let me introduce a 3 other gemstones which can be equally as beautiful.
One such gemstone is tourmaline. This stone comes in a variety of colours, and some stones have two, or even three different colours in the same stone. It is used in commercial jewellery though is not common in shops as such. I myself have seen it on a few occasions in a jewellery store. It has the benefit that, while it is more common than the likes of emerald or ruby, it has a large variety of colours and hues which can provide a truly unique piece of jewellery.
Another gemstone which is often disregarded due to confusion is spinel. There are many synthetic(man made) varieties of this stone available in all colours, hence many do not realize it is a natural stone.
Yet in fine quality this gemstone can and does match ruby in its colour. Indeed the famous Black Prince's ruby found in the British Crown Jewels is actually a very fine spinel. It is actually rarer to find a fine spinel than ruby, yet due to misinformation regarding its heritage, it is less expensive.
Other colours are also available, fine cobalt blues are the rarest, various hues of orange and vivid pinks also present opportunities to those who are looking for a unique treasure.
For those looking for a truly fine green stone, few can match the depth of Tsavorite garnet.
This selection of gemstones are but a few of the many available to those who wish to purchase a fine stone either for setting in jewellery, or for its own beauty. There are many others available to anyone who has the interest to seek them out and learn about them.