Somewhere over the rainbow

I’ve probably used that title before, but it has real poignancy now, as this is the last lot of AAA rainbow moonstone I am going to have for a while, and I may as well look for more at the end of the rainbow, along with the crock of gold. It’s 3mm rose cut round, and when it’s gone, it’s gone, so if this is your thing, grab it now before it runs out. Lovely, clean material with bright blue, green and gold adularescence (flash). I’ve got it in both Hong Kong and US stores: the Hong Kong store has stones with the kite shaped-faceting and the US store has the triangle facets. Why is the AAA so hard to find now (and it is, and if you can find it, it is an arm and a leg jobby)? Well, as usual, it’s a supply and demand thing – people have become more aware of the fine grade moonstone in recent years, and more prepared to pay extra for it. But it’s scarce because of the way moonstone is formed, in many layers. This layered makeup is what gives the stone its classic blue or green flash, as light refracts off the layers and produces that unworldly sheen that appears sometimes suspended within the stone. A layered makeup is obviously going to most commonly produce a very fractured stone; which then interferes with the refraction of light and results in a poor flash. There is absolutely no shortage of this kind of material at all, but the clean material is obviously less common in nature. You can find it here in my Hong Kong store, and here in my US store, $3 per stone each in either store.


Perfect pears

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I’m so in love with these: beautiful rose-cut pears in a variety of exciting stones. A while ago I had some 3x4mm rose cut sapphire pears, and they were really popular, but I struggled to replace them, as it’s always a bit difficult finding nice quality sapphire at a price-point that doesn’t make you choke on your morning tea. Then I had a brainwave: tanzanite! The same colour and effect but much more plentiful and at a price that won’t stick in your gullet. I mentioned it to a customer and she said, ‘oh, how about opal? How about rainbow moonstone?’ So I said good plan and went to my supplier who said, ‘Pink tourmaline! Green tourmaline!’ So now we have all of those things. The tourmaline is not going to hang around. I don’t have a lot of it and it’s clean. I’ve already sold a fair amount of it. The tanzanite, moonstone and opal I have plenty of. The opal is very, very powerful. I mean, not in a mystical way; the play of colour is super-strong. It’s white Ethiopian material, so the play-of-colour appears suspended in the stone. The rainbow moonstone is AA grade, so a few wisps and veils but excellent clarity and strong adularescence. The tanzanite is light blue/violet depending on the angle of view, the pleochroic little so-and-so. I’ve got light pink and dark pink tourmaline and it is stunning, and green tourmaline as well which is unusual and which never hangs around long in its rose-cut form. Prices start at $6.10 for a light pink tourmaline stone rising to $10 for a dark pink. Everything else is in between!

You can find them on the Hong Kong site here, and on the US site here.

Rainbow moonstone 4mm rose cut AA

I’m so pleased to have this back in stock: 4mm rose cut rainbow moonstone. Now, previously I’ve stocked AAA grade, but I just can’t get it any more. We just can’t find the rough. Obviously gemstones are a finite resource, and once they’re gone, they’re gone, unless and until, of course, a new source is found. So this is AA quality. It’s still pretty good; not completely clean, as you would expect. You’ll find some veils and small internal fractures, but in appearance it’s fairly clean, and the adularescence (flash) is good. Bear in mind that the photographs are taken with an unforgiving macro lens and blown up many times beyond their actual size, so it’s like looking at the stones through a loupe. These stones are $4.40 each, and you can find them here. To shop all rainbow moonstone click here.

Somewhere over the (extremely tiny) rainbow

Well, it’s a bit of a gamble, this. I’ve had a few requests lately for very tiny stones; 2mm to be precise, for things like baby jewellery and other tiny things. I hummed and haa-ed a bit: will anyone really buy these? – and then I thought, ‘blow it, only one way to find out’. So here we are. I already have 2mm rose cut white diamond in stock, and now I am introducing 2mm rose cut rainbow moonstone. These are really very wee indeed but even so, they have the same beautifully precise cut with the intricate kite-shaped facets. Whew! Plus lovely, clean AAA material with the classic great flash that I always endeavour to deliver. What are you going to do with these? Please buy some and send me pictures!! These are the first of a line of stones in this size, cabochons and rose cuts. I’m going to have amethyst, turquoise, peridot, aquamarine, opal and more!

To shop 2mm rose cut rainbow moonstone, click here. These are $2.85 per stone, and I know what you’re going to say: whew, that’s a bit steep. A great deal of the cost is in the cutting; very small stones are precision work and finding someone who will agree to cut them, and cut them well is no easy matter.

I normally feature someone’s work on these posts, so you can see the stones I’m talking about ‘in action’ as it were. But I couldn’t find anything for these, so…watch this space!

Back…but not for long

Joopy Gems rainbow moonstone 4mm rose cut cabochon, AAA grade
Rainbow moonstone 4mm rose cut cabochon, AAA grade, $4.65 per stone
Back in stock, rainbow moonstone 4mm rose cut round, AAA grade. I can’t count the number of customers who have asked me for this and I have now just a few pieces of this. I’m not going to be able to supply this in any quantity in future – only AA grade – as the AAA grade is becoming increasingly scarce, and anyone who has been asking me about it knows that the time taken for me to re-stock has been increasingly long. There’s just not a lot of this clean, clear material left; all gemstones are a finite resource and there won’t be more of this until more is discovered. If that happens. So if this is your thing, grab it!

It’s the layered make-up of the feldspar that makes this such a generally fractured and included stone, but which also gives it its characteristic sheen, or adularescence, as the light refracts off the layers within the stone and returns to the eye as a bright blue, aqua, green or gold sheen. It is this make-up that also means that clean material is rather rare. These stones are on sale in my website for $4.65 per stone; to shop, click here.

A billowing blue light

Rainbow moonstone, 5mm rose cut round, AA grade. $11 per stone.

Back in stock I have AA grade 5mm rainbow moonstone. This is one of those products I can’t really get to order; I put in an order that goes ‘well this is how many I’d like, but just give me as many as you can.’ Because it’s becoming increasingly scarce, nice quality rainbow moonstone. This is a bit included, hence the AA but appears generally transparent with a wonderful billowing sheen that flashes from the stones. There’s blue, aqua, green and a few of the more gold tones. This material is from Madagascar and is just the antidote to all that cloudy, fractured sheen-barely-there material, of which there is, of course, no shortage whatsover! These stones are $11 each and you can find there here. To browse my entire range of rainbow moonstone you can click here for AA and AAA grade and click here for AB and A grade.

You can see this material perfectly realised below in Nicki Gluckman from NIXIN’s rainbow moonstone and diamond ring set in 14k gold, $225:

NIXIN rainbow moonstone, diamond and 14k gold ring
NIXIN rainbow moonstone, diamond and 14k gold ring, $225

Rainbow dreams

Joopy Gems 3mm rainbow moonstone cabochons

It’s so hard to keep this material in stock. 3mm rainbow moonstone cabochons, clean quality. I also try not to run out of it, and re-order before it’s completely gone, but then someone comes along and buys up the entire stock, and we can’t find the rough and before I know where we are, I’m out for months! Anyway, this is the first of the 3mm and 4mm restock – plain cabochons, now $1.55 per stone. There’s so much of the cloudy, fractured material about, that when you see a clear stone with bright adularescence (or flash) it can take your breath away. In fact, a customer said to me just yesterday, having received her stones ‘is this real?’ Because the extreme, billowing flash can have an almost unreal appearance. It’s truly astonishing. (Answer, by the way, is yes, it is real. As far as I am aware, this is not synthesised at all). Harder and harder – and very expensive – to find in larger sizes, I can still just about put my hands on it for smaller sizes. Now, I’m not a fan of AAA etc grading systems as it is so subjective, and not standardised, but I do use it for moonstone as I carry such a wide range of qualities. This is AAA material, and for that you can expect clean stones with great adularescence. As for what to do with it, below is a lesson in perfect, understated elegance from one of my lovely customers. This sterling silver and rainbow moonstone ring from Brightsmith features a 3mm moonstone on a narrow, hammered silver band, $28.

Brightsmith 3mm Tiny Rainbow Moonstone Stacking Ring in Sterling Silver - Super Thin Micro Stacker with Smooth or Hammered Band

To shop 3mm AAA cabochons, click here; to shop all my AA and AAA rainbow moonstone, click here. To shop my entire range, click here.