October Birthstones: Opal & Pink Tourmaline
September 29, 2011 by Jacki Christopher
The leaves are changing and the temperatures are starting to drop. The days are getting a little shorter and that means it’s time to celebrate those special October birthdays. Birthstone jewelry is the clear choice when you want to give a traditional, personalized gift. Like many of the months in the calendar year, October has not been confined to one birthstone. While opal was the stone traditionally associated with the tenth month, recent years have seen a rise in the popularity of pink tourmaline, October’s other birthstone. Let’s look at both of these interesting stones!
Opal is a highly unique gemstone. Unlike most gemstones, it is not actually a mineral, but rather a quartz-like material. It seems that no two are alike and the colors that an opal diffracts can vary along the entire spectrum of the rainbow, depending upon the environmental factors and conditions under which the opal was formed. This mystery and unpredictability is part of opal’s charm.
Opal’s characteristic dancing color is better explained by the scientists, but suffice it to say, the chemical makeup of the opal is what is causing it to refract light in this interesting way. Australia produces over 95% of the world’s opals.
Not to be outdone, pink tourmaline is also a fun gem, especially for feminine women who love the vibrant color. As these tourmaline stones are forming over time in granite, they are exposed to a natural radiation process that changes the composition of the Manganese in the stone. The result is a strong, natural pink color. Tourmaline is a Singhalese word meaning “stone with mixed colors.” The colors included within the tourmaline family are as extensive and varied as those you’ll see within the opal family.
Opal And Pink Tourmaline Make Great October Birthday Gifts:
The Sterling Silver and Tourmaline Ring (above left) is a funky piece that incorporates both pink and green tourmaline. Its oxidized finish gives it a rugged appearance. It’s a great way to show off that pink tourmaline in a less formal piece of jewelry. Great with jeans and casual wear, this is a ring you can wear everyday!
The Marquis Pink Tourmaline and Diamond Pendant in 14K White Gold (above right) is luxurious and feminine—a very special gift for a very special woman. The center pink tourmaline, marquis cut, measures 1.10 carats and is surrounded by a string of diamonds that encircle the stone and cover the bale as well. The twenty-seven diamonds measure 0.20 carats and are color graded G, or near colorless. The pendant comes with a matching 14K white gold Singapore chain.
The Opal and Diamond Heart Pendant in 14K White Gold (left) wraps a 0.48 carat white opal in a swirling heart of 14K gold, and accents it with three sparkly diamonds. The luster of the gold and the shine of the diamond accentuate the swirling colors characteristic of this gemstone.
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