On a rainy day like today- it certainly doesn’t feel like summer is around the corner. I don’t know about you- but all I feel like doing is hibernating inside under a warm cozy blanket with a big bowl of hot soup.
Even though the weather may not show it-here at Chris & Alix we still have to prepare our summer jewelry collection. No matter what the “it” colour is for this summer season- the most popular trend colour in the world of jewelry and fashion remains to be Turquoise. However, looking through our selection of Turquoise gems it somehow feels an inappropriate day as the windows are rain splattered and the studio is damp and cold. I think I would feel more inspired if the weather outside matched the feeling emitted by this summer stone.
There is just something about its vibrant aqua color that screams summer heat and summer sun. It pairs so well with a simple white t-shirt or brings an amazing pop of colour to any outfit. This year, it pairs especially well with this summer’s Tangerine trend.
One of the oldest known gemstones (found in tombs dating as far back as 3000 B.C), Turquoise was often used in ancient cultures to ward off evil spirits and today is still said to be a bringer of good luck and good fortune. It is even believed by some that Turquoise can help people suffering from depression or a lack of self-confidence.
At a hardness of 6 on Moh’s scale, it is a very popular stone in jewelry and is often found as a cabochon or bead. Often set in silver, Turquoise ranges in colour from green to blue. It is a hydrated copper aluminum phosphate. The copper content is responsible for the blue hue and the green comes from bivalent iron and some traces of chrome. It can be found all over the world, most often in the U.S.A, Mexico, Israel, Iran, Afghanistan and China.
Most of the Turquoise beads or stones found on the market are reconstituted. What this means is that Turquoise powder or particles were bound together to form a larger mass. Turquoise is also often treated to accentuate or to increase the vibrancy of its colour. Any treatments used to add colour or increase its durability will decrease the stone’s value. High quality Turquoise can still be found on the market, but as with everything else, the price will reflect its quality. When purchasing a good quality stone, one should always go to a trusted source or ask for the aide of a certified gemologist who can detect when a stone has been treated or altered.
Even though it is a stone that is associated to the summer and the sun, Turquoise is relatively fragile and should be protected from cosmetics, heat and bright light. As recommended with other stones, one should give its Turquoise jewelry a delicate wipe down with a soft cloth after wearing it. Repeated exposure to ones own body oils, sweat, cosmetics or sunscreen can lead to damaging side effects- possibly changing the colour or the vibrancy of this beautiful gem. Always store your Turquoise jewelry in a pouch when putting it away, as it can easily be scratched by other jewelry in the jewelry box.
So perhaps a rainy day is a good day for Turquoise after all . Protected from too much sun exposure, and no need for sunscreen- it seems that a cold dreary day is the best time to enjoy the warmth of this triumphant gem! -Chris