The World's Most Useful
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Usable Gems... and a little opinion.
The November Birthstone Is
Topaz or Citrine
The November birthstone is topaz or citrine. Yes,
there are two November birthstones.
This month we continue our
series on birthstones that will provide answers to questions like...
if I don't like the color of my birthstone?"
"What if I can't afford my birthstone?"
Five hundred years (or so) ago, all yellow gem stones were
referred to as topaz. Now, of course, we know that nature produces several gems
in shades of yellow.
First is what I'll call Imperial Topaz. This gem has touches of
gold, orange, and pink. Imperial topaz is also known as precious topaz.
||Click on the box...
and have Google start putting money in your bank account!
Imperial topaz is a relatively rare gemstone. The world's only known
source is one small area in Brazil (a belt about 6 kilometers wide
and 44 kilometers long).
Natural pink imperial topaz is found primarily in Russia,
Pakistan, and Brazil.
I classify imperial topaz in the "Costly Gems" category.
The cost per carat can easily run into the hundreds of dollars at
Yellow topaz is much more affordable than imperial or natural
pink topaz. However, yellow topaz is hard to find in stores. Why
is that? Because most
yellow topaz can be heat treated to change the color to a reddish-pink...
and even treated pink topaz sells for more money than yellow.
Topaz is a bright
gem with a hardness of 8, however topaz can be cleaved by a single sharp
blow (much like diamond).
Topaz is a
fluorosilicate of aluminum. The chemical composition of topaz is
aluminum, silica, and fluorine, also written as Al2SiO4(F,OH)2.
I said above, the November birthstone is topaz or citrine...
that brings us to citrine. If you can't find yellow topaz and don't want to pay for imperial topaz,
the best alternative is a nice citrine.
Citrine can look very much like yellow topaz, or even imperial topaz.
Citrine is the yellow variety of quartz. Citrine has a hardness of 7 and
is bright and durable as a gemstone. Chemically citrine is silicon
dioxide, also written as SiO2.
Citrine is found many places around the world, and is therefore in
the $20 to $50 per carat range at retail.
Citrine is fun and affordable as a jewelry stone. It's affordable
because of the supply. It's fun because of the sizes (a few exceed 100
carats) and colors available,
including lemon yellow, reddish yellow, and golden.
Because the November birthstone is topaz or citrine, November babies
have some choices in color and price of their birthstone.
Can you tell which of the photos above are of imperial topaz and which
are of citrine? Answer at the bottom of Gem Industry News
I have several nice citrine gems in stock at the moment.
me an email to get details on several that are ready to ship. I also have a
few pieces of imperial topaz on their way to our cutter. They should be
in inventory before Christmas, and priced well below market price.
A Google search for the keyword phrase imperial topaz returns a number of listings and ads for vendors
that will show you market prices.
Gem Industry News...
Colored Gemstone Mining Report Due
Colored Stone Magazine should be publishing their 2006 Mining Report
on colored gem in the next issue... if they follow last year's schedule.
As they said at the beginning of the 2005
"Colored gemstone mining is a hard thing to pin down. The vast
majority of mining is still done by independent, small-scale miners,
working in remote locations and selling to buyers who pay cash and may
or may not declare their gems on export. For many producing countries,
particularly in Africa, the real production from the mines probably
outstrips the reported production by a factor of 10 -- or 20, or
possibly 100. No one really knows.
Answer to my question
The two ovals are imperial topaz.
The marquise and the trillion are citrine.
building inventory? Christmas is coming fast.
It's easier to sell a piece of jewelry than a loose stone and a
mounting from a catalog.
Shoppers are planning to spend
more for the holidays
The average American consumer plans to spend $791 this holiday
season, up from $738 last year, according to a recent National Retail
Federation survey. In addition, shoppers are expected to take advantage
of sales and discounts during the holiday season to spend an additional
$100 on themselves.
You can get a share of this spending!
Because you offer quality, service, and great prices, you have an
advantage over retail stores.
Reach out to your customers early... before Thanksgiving isn't too
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