Ametrine; the panda of the gemstone world

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Ametrine is the trade name for bi-colour amethyst; part amethyst, part citrine – see what they did there! In many ways it’s the panda bear of the gemstone world; it only comes from one mine in Bolivia, and given that citrine is effectively amethyst that has been heated, what you are looking for are amethyst crystals which have been partly heated by processes in the earth and partly not. Then you want to find a nice clean crystal that will co-operate and give you an nice gem with a balance of both colours. In the past, the classic cut was a step-cut rectangle with an ideal proportion of 50/50 amethyst and citrine. These days, however, all kinds of arrangements are common. I’ve seen ones where the cut-off runs diagonally through the stone, and fancy cuts and concave cuts scatter the light and create all kinds of interesting colours and effects. I have for sale just a few of the classic rectangular step cuts, with good proportions and also a few concave cuts. Concave cutting is interesting as it involves cutting conical facets with 3 dimensions, so that each facet has depth as well as length and breadth. This means that more light is refracted and the stone appears more brilliant. In addition, the facets create a fascinating effect. To shop the range, click here.

Below, two perfectly simple, perfectly elegant rings, the settings a perfect foil for the beautiful stones. Left; Stone Fever Jewelry’s ametrine and sterling silver ring at $275 and EVGAD’s concave cut ametrine and sterling silver ring at £89

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What should you spend on an engagement ring?

Joopy Gems tourmaline mixed cut 2.315 carats
Apricot Pink Tourmaline Oval Mixed Cut 2.315 carats, 9.8×8.4×4.3mm, $125

JCK news report that something like 36% of Americans want to spend less than $1000 on their engagement rings, and that furthermore, older adults are likely to believe this more than those who are younger. Of course there is (as I know from my other life as a

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Pink Tourmaline Heart, 5.290 carats, $460

psychologist) that there is often a gap between what people say they believe and what people actually do: the average cost of an engagement ring in the US is between $3000 and $5000. But it made me think – is that necessary? When I got engaged, in the car on the way over to buy the ring, I remember saying to my husband-to-be, ‘Oh, let’s not spend too much, I don’t need anything fancy, it’s not what it’s about anyway’…

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Green Tourmaline Square, 5.415 carats, $565

And then they brought out the trays of bling, and I was ‘Uh…oh… I want that one’!!! And it was more than $1000. More than £1000 come to that. That was before I was in this line of work, and now I’d do it differently. Now I’d work from the stone out – that is, pick a stone that I loved and then have the ring designed around that.

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Yellow Tourmaline Oval, 5.165 carats, $450

I’ve got a sapphire in my ring and I love it, but I think if I were to have my time again, I’d maybe choose something different. Forget about diamond, ruby, emerald and sapphire, with the prices sky-high, and having to keep it small. How about the gorgeous apricot pink oval at the top of the page, with gorgeous pleochroic lighter and darker shades? Or what could be more perfect than a big, plump, pink heart to seal the deal? This one (above left) is is around 12x11mm –

Joopy Gems pink tourmaline pear, 1.46 carats
Pink Tourmaline Pear, 1.460 carats, $85

imagine that sitting proudly on your finger! Or for something more classic, the green square mixed cut (above right) would be beautiful surrounded by some baguette-cut diamonds.  What I love most about tourmaline is its extraordinary colour range, and more unusual is the gorgeous sunshine-yellow oval, left. Again, it’s a good size at around 11mm long. Also lovely is the luminous pink pear, right, also a great size at around 10mm, and an even more fantastic price.

But what about a ring for $1000 and under? Impossible?! Not at all; there is plenty on offer; so many I had trouble picking just a few. Here are some of my favourites; clockwise from top left: rhodolite garnet is a beautiful and under-rated stone, in my opinion. This garnet, palladium and rose gold ring by Nodeform Weddings is beautiful in its simplicity and the rhodolite and rose gold compliment each other perfectly and comes in well under budget at $785. Those who know me know that there is a special place in my heart for textured metal; Stone Fever Jewelry’s Moonscape ring features a green tourmaline on a hand-punched, cratered 14 carat rose gold band and sneaks under the bar at $999. They will can also make matching wedding bands.and this style can also be made in yellow gold. Doron Merav’s Leaves engagement ring of white gold set with diamonds showcases an unashamedly feminine yet contemporary aesthetic, and at only $370 represents fantastic value for money. I don’t think I’ve seen anything so pretty that I’ve like so much in a long time. Last but not least is Nangijala Jewelry’s rough teal, sapphire and rose gold ring; sleek, contemporary and original. This is priced at a very reasonable $825.

 

As for me – the ring we ended up buying, the one I absolutely had to have? I remember saying to the rather austere assistant (with the brutal dark red lipstick) ‘My only concern is that it’s quite like Princess Di’s.’ Without missing a beat she replied, ‘Princess Di’s was much bigger.’ Well, I could have walked out there and then. But then, I absolutely had to have that ring.

All tourmaline stones featured above are from my ‘Limited Edition’ range. For limited edition tourmaline mixed cuts, click here; for cabochons, click here.

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Tourmaline, Blue Zircon, Andalusite and Rainbow Moonstone

Joopy Gems November 2015 newsletter banner

My November newsletter is out with all of my latest gemstone additions, including some fantastic new tourmaline cabochons and mixed cuts, some really unusual andalusite and some fiery blue zircon. Plus the offer of the month is a free ship for the whole of November, to be used as many times as you wish. Why not check it out, to see what I have on offer, and to pick up the coupon code!

You can sign up for my newsletter at my website, to make sure you never miss out again, www.joopygems.com!