Stones photo gallery

How do you know what kind of semi-precious stone it is?

Semi-precious stones are minerals and rocks that are not precious, but are valuable enough to be used in jewelry. They can have different colors, shapes and properties and are found in different parts of the world. The list of semi-precious stones includes minerals such as amethyst, topaz, garnet and many others. They are often used to create jewelry and also have medicinal and magical properties.

What stones are considered semi-precious

In Russia, semi-precious or ornamental stones include everything that is not listed as precious in Law N 41-FZ “On Precious Metals and Precious Stones” (Article 1). The article explains that precious stones include natural diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires and alexandrites, as well as natural pearls. The rest are considered ornamental. In our store you will find jewelry with the following names of ornamental stones popular in our country.

Topaz

Topaz is a particularly hard rock, with a hardness rating of 8 on the Mohs scale. They have a wide color palette. Topaz can be blue, blue, pink, wine yellow, orange. There are also polychrome crystals, that is, different colors of several sections of one crystal. But no matter what color topaz is, it is always transparent. Such characteristics determined its demand in jewelry.

Amethyst

Amethyst is a clear purple variety of quartz. This rock has been known since the times of Ancient Egypt, and in Ancient Rome this mineral was considered blessed. Nowadays, amethyst is not only used in jewelry, but is also highly valued as a collectible mineral. Sometimes amethyst is naturally formed when mixed with citrine; this mineral is called ametrine; it looks very impressive and unusual in jewelry.

Varieties of pomegranates

Dark red garnets come in two varieties: almandines and pyropes. Pyropes are blood red, purple, dark red, and almandines are cherry, crimson, and violet. When people talk about garnet stone, these are the rocks most often meant, but the group of these types of semi-precious stones is actually much broader.

Aquamarine

A beautiful and sophisticated transparent rock, with a color reminiscent of sea water, from blue to greenish. And translated from Latin it has the same meaning. Aquamarine is a type of beryl. The rock is quite hard, but at the same time fragile. The sailors of Ancient Rome and Greece considered this mineral a gift from Poseidon and always took it with them on long voyages. Today, jewelers use this mineral both in budget jewelry and in expensive exclusive collections.

Turquoise

This stone has also been known since ancient times. It has long been believed that the mineral brings happiness, especially in personal life, and is also protection against the evil eye. Natural turquoise has sky blue, bluish blue, green, and white shades.

Amber

This rock is classified as mineraloid. It is a fossilized resin with various inclusions. His classic palette is yellow-brown shades. There are other colors and types of mineral. Natural factors influence the color and structure of amber. The mineral is in demand in the production of beads, earrings, rings and other jewelry.

Agate

The mineral has been used for making jewelry for thousands of years. This is also a large group of rocks, like garnets. This includes varieties of chalcedony with different patterns on the surface: moss agate, star agate, landscape agate and others. The variety of patterns and colors of the breed is surprising. Mysterious designs of the gem have attracted people at all times.

Moonstone

Another name for the mineral is adularia. It is named moonstone due to its beautiful blue tints and has an optical effect of rainbow radiance. It comes with blue, pearl and silver iridescence. The mineral is very fragile and can easily break from compression or impact. It glows slightly in the dark because it is able to pre-absorb sunlight.

Citrine

A lemon-yellow variety of quartz that looks like a shard of the sun. Previously, the gem was used to decorate the attributes of nobles – crowns, tiaras, necklaces, rings and many others. In appearance, after cutting, it resembles topaz, but has one distinctive feature: when rotated at different angles, it changes shades.

Value of stones

Which semi-precious stones are most valued? Value is determined by beauty, durability and rarity. Beauty, in turn, is influenced by color, shine, play of tints and shades, polychrome and other optical effects. Durability refers to the ability of a mineral to withstand wear, heat and chemical attack. This is affected by strength, hardness, brittleness, cleavage and other properties. Hardness is determined using the Mohs scale. Stones with a hardness of less than 4 points are not used in jewelry. The rarity of a stone is nothing more than its prevalence in nature. The uniqueness of size and purity, which is not characteristic of the bulk of minerals of the same type, is taken into account. Some stones are highly prized due to the difficulty of obtaining them. For example, when a new deposit of an expensive and rare mineral is discovered, its price noticeably drops. Natural stone, which is refined in one way or another, has a lower price. All existing classifications are conditional, since many factors must be taken into account. The average buyer is guided precisely by external characteristics. However, beauty is a subjective concept, since the physical characteristics of a mineral play an important role in determining value. For some, magical properties play a primary role. This position also has its place, since natural stones truly have the power of nature. Quite often in everyday life you can hear such formulations as “precious” and “semi-precious stones”. Precious minerals are usually understood as minerals that were formed in the earth’s crust and have special, optimal characteristics and unique aesthetic properties (brilliance, transparency, color). According to the law, precious stones include natural diamonds (diamonds), sapphires, emeralds, rubies, alexandrites, unique amber formations and pearls of natural origin. All other stones are usually called semi-precious or ornamental stones. However, officially there is no such thing as “semi-precious stones”, and professionals never use it. The gradation into precious and semi-precious stones was invented in order to somehow distinguish the highest category of stones with the best characteristics from all other minerals, which are somehow inferior to them in these characteristics. Precious stones are distinguished by their high hardness, the highest degree of transparency, stable production in sufficient quantities and the fact that at the state level there are certain regulations for their sale. Many other stones that are considered semi-precious could well be worthy to join the ranks of their higher-ranking brethren. After all, the concept of “semi-precious” is very arbitrary and it means the same precious minerals, but simply of a lower caste, with slightly less perfect natural characteristics. Since the wording “precious” and “semi-precious” stones is not entirely correct, the designation “jewelry stones” is more common in the jewelry industry. However, not all so simple. In jewelry, not only processed precious stones of natural origin are used, but also some others: for example, synthetic, refined and composite. Synthetic stones are stones obtained artificially, but using the same components from which natural stones are made. Synthetic stones are cheaper analogues of noble natural stones (diamond, ruby, emerald, sapphire, alexandrite), which have the same physical characteristics and optical properties as their natural counterparts. Stones created synthetically are so similar to their natural counterparts that unless you are a specialist, you will never distinguish a synthetic mineral from a natural one. Synthetic stones should not be confused with imitation, which is also the result of human efforts, but unlike synthetic stones, which have the same composition as natural precious stones, they only look similar to their noble inspirers. An imitation of a diamond, for example, is the legendary cubic zirconia, which costs several times less, and an imitation of a ruby ​​can also be high-quality cut red glass. Treated stones are treated natural stones that have undergone various treatments to improve their appearance and overall physical characteristics. In order to improve the color and purity of stones, they are subjected to irradiation, heat treatments, impregnation with special oils and other manipulations. For example, by impregnating the stone with wax and oil and filling the voids with epoxy resin, microcracks and other external imperfections in the minerals become less noticeable. Heat treatment allows you to change the color of the stone – make it lighter or darker, and therefore more visually interesting and unique. Irradiation also helps change color. Composite stones (doublets, triplets) are jewelry stones made from several components glued together. A special technique allows you to create the appearance of a large monolithic stone, which will look more impressive in appearance than smaller specimens. Moreover, the composition of such stones can include both natural and synthetic elements. For example, the upper, most visible part of the jewelry may include a real gemstone (for example, a ruby), and its lower, side parts may include ruby ​​glass or a synthetic stone. As a rule, jewelry with composite stones turns out to be very beautiful, spectacular, bright and expressive. You can find out what stones the piece of jewelry you like is decorated with is from the store salesperson, who will always tell you the nature of the origin of the insert for each specific piece of jewelry.

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