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Cabochon Stones P-U

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Blue Paua Shell Blue Paua Shell Blue with pearlescent sheen Protective epoxy resin on top; dyed to enhance color
3.5
Cabochon
Paua Shell:
Paua shell comes from a marine animal that is prized for the beautiful, highly iridescent mother-of-pearl nacre it produces. Sometimes paua shell is used to create imitation opal doublets.
Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Never clean ultrasonically or steam clean.
Note: Shell products are organic and cannot be exported from the U.S.
Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Peridot Peridot Medium green None
6.5-7
Cabochon
Faceted

Peridot:
Sometimes called chrysolite, peridot is a gem from the mineral olivine. Its yellowish to vibrant green color is caused by iron.
Before the advent of modern chemistry, stones were classified by color only: all red stones were rubies and all green stones were emeralds. The “emeralds” which we now know to be peridot were mined on St. John's Island (also called Zebirget) in the Red Sea as long ago as 1300 B.C. At that time the island was known as Topazios and the green gems were called topaz.
Peridot is an August birthstone.

Lore:
In ancient Hebrew writings this stone is linked with the Tribe of Simeon.
Peridot was believed to cure liver disease and dropsy, to free the mind from envious thoughts, and to dispel terrors of the night. For full magical power it is said that peridot should be set in gold.

Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Never clean ultrasonically or steam clean either peridot shown here.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Pyrite Pyrite Brassy yellow & gun metal grey None
6
Cabochon

Pyrite:
Pyrite forms naturally in cubes or pyritohedra which have 12 five-sided faces and is found in igneous, sedimentary or metamorphic rock.
Pyrite is also known as “fools gold” and tricked many miners of old into thinking they had found their fortunes.

Lore:
Pyrite is a mix of both earth and fire energies. It is said to help one communicate more openly and honestly while providing both physical and emotional protection. It is considered a strong grounding stone that deflects and disperses negative energy which aids in clear thinking. It is also said to help transform intuitive and creative thought into logical and well-reasoned action.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Rhodochrosite Rhodochrosite Dark to medium rose-pink, usually with creme-white banding None
3.5-4.5
Cabochon
Rhodochrosite:
Rhodochrosite is a calcite mineral exhibiting variegated banding which comes from its stalagmitic formation.
This rose-colored gemstone was discovered in an old mine on a mountain in Argentina before World War II. It was believed that the Incas worked the mine in the 13th century, and thus rhodochrosite was referred to as “Inca rose.” Rhodochrosite gets its name from the Greek rhódon (pink).
Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Rose Quartz Rose Quartz Light to medium pink to nearly white Dyed to enhance color
7
Cabochon

Rose Quartz:
The creamy pink color of rose quarts comes from titanium and other inclusions.
Quartz is the most common of all minerals. Included in this family are amethyst, citrine, flint, onyx, aventurine, jasper, carnelian, rock crystal, agate, and chrysoprase.
The name quartz is derived from the Slavic word kwardy (hard).
The Assyrians and ancient Romans were among the first to use rose quartz.

Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Ultrasonic cleaning is usually safe. Never steam clean.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Ruby Ruby Plum red Usually heat-treated
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Synthetic Ruby Synthetic Ruby Ruby red Laboratory-grown
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Red Star Ruby (synthetic) Red Star Ruby (synthetic) Plum Red Laboratory grown
9
Cabochon

Ruby:
A corundum that occurs as a deep red transparent stone and as an opaque reddish-gray material. Ruby owes its red color to traces of chromium; the depth of color is determined by the amount of chromium.
When flawless, a ruby is more valuable than a diamond.
Synthetic Ruby is laboratory grown corundum that has the same optical, physical and chemical properties as their natural counterpart and are produced for jewelry, watch bearings and laser equipment.
Red Star Ruby is the opaque form of ruby and exhibits a beautiful 6 pointed star called an asterism when the stone is viewed under a single light. When the the opaque form of ruby exhibits a single line it is called a chatoyancy.
Historically, ruby is associated with royalty and the power of life and death.
Ruby is a July birthstone in the modern tradition, a July and December birthstone in the ancient tradition, and associated with the astrological signs Capricorn and Leo.

Lore:
It's been said that rubies ensure a peaceful, harmonious, healthy life as well as to control ones passions and thoughts.
To many ruby's color represents heat, life and power.
Rubies were attributed the power to prevent loss of blood and strengthen the heart.

Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Ultrasonic and steam cleaning are usually safe for natural and synthetic ruby.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Blue Sapphire Blue Sapphire Light to mid-blue; some color zoning Heat-treated
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Black Star Sapphire Black Star Sapphire, AA-Grade Black None
9
Cabochon
Blue Sapphire - Lab Grown Blue Sapphire (synthetic) Blue Laboratory-grown
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Pink Sapphire - Lab Grown Pink Sapphire (synthetic) Pink Laboratory-grown
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Yellow Sapphire - Lab Grown Yellow Sapphire (synthetic) Yellow Laboratory-grown
9
Cabochon
Faceted
Blue Star Sapphire Blue Star Sapphire (synthetic) Blue Laboratory-grown
9
Cabochon

Sapphire:
Sapphire is a member of the corundum family that can occur as blue, yellow, pink, brown, lilac, and green, both as transparent and opaque, the opaque sometimes shows a star (asterism) or cat's eye (chatoyancy).
Until the Middle Ages, sapphires were called hyacinths because of their pale blue color. It wasn't until other colors of sapphire were found that the name changed, the blue variety retained the name of sapphire while the other varieties gained a color description along with the name sapphire (pink sapphire, golden sapphire, etc.) with the exception of the red variety which is called ruby.
Black Star Sapphire is named for its distinctive six-ray star, visible under a single light source. This star effect is known as “asterism.” The value is based on the symmetry, orientation, definition, color and clarity of the star.
Blue Star Sapphire is the opaque variety exhibiting a star in the same manner as the black star sapphire.
Sapphire is a September birthstone in the modern tradition, an April and September birthstone in the ancient tradition, and associated with the astrological sign Taurus.

Lore:
Prized since ancient times, sapphire has been called the “gem of the heavens.” Persians believed the earth rested on an enormous sapphire and the sky reflected its beautiful color. In the 12th century, the Bishop of Rennes praised the sapphire and used it in ecclesiastical rings.
Blue Star Sapphire has been known as the “Stone of Destiny.” The star's three crossed lines are said to represent faith, hope and destiny.
Sapphires are traditionally connected with the eye and the sky, and therefore with vision and the ability to read the future.
Sapphires were believed to render black magic harmless and help the wearer discern falsehood and guile.

Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Usually safe to clean ultrasonically and steam clean.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Gold Tiger's Eye Gold Tiger's Eye Shades of brown and honey yellow None
7
Cabochon
Red Tiger's Eye Red Tiger's Eye Shades of brown and red None
7
Cabochon
Tiger's Eye:
Tiger's eye is a variety of quartz with fine, similarly oriented fibrous inclusions. When properly cut into a cabochon , a chatoyant (changeable luster) effect becomes clearly discernable, the result of asbestos fibers that have been partially replaced by quartz.
It can sometimes be cut to show a cat's eye with the variegation running down the middle of the stone.
When the fibers are coarse, the stone may be called a hawk's eye.
Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Blue Topaz Blue Topaz (london blue topaz) Intense dark blue; color saturation increases in larger sizes Irradiation, heat-treated
8
Cabochon
Faceted
Peacock Topaz Peacock Topaz Blue-purple with a rainbow play of color Coated
8
Cabochon
Faceted
Rainbow Topaz Rainbow Topaz Blue-green with a rainbow play of color Coated
8
Cabochon
Faceted

Topaz:
A transparent stone usually of golden yellow but also occurring as pink, red, blue, green and colorless specimens.
The effect of peacock topaz and rainbow topaz is produced by enhancing white topaz with a vapor deposition coating.
In ancient times, the word topaz referred to several other stones and today it is often mistakenly used for smoky quartz and citrine.
Rubbing or gentle heating of topaz electrifies it causing it to attract small particles like bits of paper or hair.
Topaz is a November birthstone in the modern system, a November and August birthstone in the ancient tradition, and associated with the astrological sign Scorpio.

Care: Some varieties can fade in sunlight. Avoid harsh detergents. Never clean ultrasonically or steam clean the varieties shown above.

Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Green Tourmaline Green Tourmaline Light blue-green to dark olive Usually heat-treated
7-7.5
Cabochon
Faceted
Pink Tourmaline Pink Tourmaline Light to medium pink Usually heat-treated
7-7.5
Cabochon
Faceted
Tourmaline:
A transparent stone of many colors, most notably green, blue-green and pink. Often several colors appear side by side in natural tourmaline. When the crystals are cut to reveal a pink semicircle with a green rim they are called watermelon tourmaline.
Green Tourmaline Clarity: Light to moderate inclusions
Pink Tourmaline Clarity: Veil-like inclusions
Tourmaline is dichromatic; it shows a bright color from one direction but will look almost black when seen from the side. Like topaz, this stone will hold static electricity if it is rubbed or gently heated. Together these two tests provide identification.
Tourmaline is an October birthstone.
Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Never clean ultrasonically or steam clean natural tourmaline.
Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Chinese Turquoise Chinese Turquoise Sky blue to blue-green to yellow-green Matrix may be darkened
5-6
Cabochon
Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Rich sky blue Enhanced; treated with electrical current to make the color permanent
5-6
Cabochon
Turquoise:
A soft blue or blue-green stone, usually opaque but occasionally translucent that gets its blue color from the presence of copper and its green tones from iron traces. When cut to contain some of the rock in which they were formed turquoise is referred to as matrix turquoise, the varieties showing fine dark lines running through the stone is called spiderweb turquoise. The matrix in Turquoise is often accompanied with varying shades of grey, brown or black veining due to inclusions or oxide stains.
Blue turquoise will turn green when it absorbs oil from the skin so after polishing, most turquoise is sealed with a plastic that soaks into the stone closing the pores.
Turquoise was one of the first gems to be used for jewelry. Turquoise jewelry was found with a 7500-year-old Egyptian mummy.
Reconstituted material (bits of turquoise compressed with adhesive) is sometimes used in cheap jewelry. To test a sample, lay a hot needle against the stone. If it contains adhesive, the resulting smell of plastic will give it away.
Turquoise is a birthstone of June, July, and December in the ancient tradition. It is associated with the astrological sign Sagittarius.
Lore:
Turquoise is thought to protect the wearer from poison, bites of reptiles, and disease of the eye.
Since the thirteenth century this stone was held to give surefootedness to a horse. The idea was later enlarged to protect against all falling.
Some people think these powers are in force only if the stone was received as a gift.
Giving a turquoise is also said to improve its color.
Care: Avoid harsh detergents. Never clean turquoise ultrasonically or with steam.
Note: the amount of matrix in Chinese turquoise will vary.
Stone Name Color Treatment Usually Cut As
Unikite Unakite Salmon pink and olive green N/A
6-7
Cabochon

Unakite:

Being an altered granite composed of salmon-pink feldspar, green epidote, and quartz, unakite is often referred to as epidotized granite. Good quality unakite is considered a semiprecious stone and is often made into beads, cabochons, paperweights, and carved into forms such as eggs, spheres, and animals.

Unakite has a very soothing energy that is believed to lend the power of self-awareness to other elements, allowing people to see past the physical symptoms of an illness and to understand the mental and emotional sources beneath. It is also believed that unakite helps people to live in the present without dwelling on the past and to help release conditions that have been inhibiting personal growth.

 

Sources for the above information:
Gem supply catalogue.
McCreight, Tim. The Complete Metalsmith: An Illustrated Handbook. Worcester, Massachusetts, U.S.A.: Davis Publications, INC, 1991.
Douglas Harper. “Online Etymology Dictionary.” November 2001. http://www.etymonline.com

Last updated 11/26/11