How to Choose Alexandrite

Alexandrite tends to contain few inclusions. Good color change and strong colors have a higher value. Green/purple hues are more desirable than yellow/brown. Look for a medium lightness that allow for maximum color vibrancy. Stones that are too light look washed out while stones that are too dark can appear black. When certain types of long, thin […]

Ural Mountains and the Discovery of Alexandrite

As the story goes, Alexandrite was initially discovered in the 1830s, in the emerald mines of the Ural Mountains of Russia. The bright green stone was at first mistaken for emerald, until the sun went down. In the light of candles, its greenish hue vanished and a bright purplish-red took its place. This was no […]

Is Alexandrite the Most Expensive Gemstone in The World?

Along with diamonds, rubies, and emeralds, top quality alexandrite’s are among the most expensive gemstones in the world. In larger sizes over 4.00 or 5.00cts., Burmese rubies are more rare and expensive than alexandrite’s but in sizes below 1.00cts., alexandrite’s are generally more expensive than both rubies and diamonds.   It is rare to find […]

The World’s Largest-Faceted Alexandrite

The Smithsonian Alexandrite was unearthed in Sri Lanka, and holds a cushion mixed cut. Typical of most alexandrite, the Smithsonian jewel is red and green in color, and weighs 65.08 carats. It is currently one of the rarest, and most valuable, jewels in the world. Its status as the world’s largest alexandrite, however, is very […]

How Does Alexandrite Change Color?

The color changing property of Alexandrite is known as ‘Alexandrite effect’ and is a result of chromium traces found in the gemstone. The chromium traces cause strong light absorption in the yellow and blue parts of the spectrum. The absorption band 580 nm allows the Alexandrite to change color from red to green when seen […]

Alexander II and Alexandrite

Abundant alexandrite deposits were first discovered in 1830 in Russia’s Ural Mountains. Those first alexandrites were of very fine quality and displayed vivid hues and dramatic color change. The gem was named after the young Alexander II, heir apparent to the throne. It caught the country’s attention because its red and green colors mirrored the […]

How to Care For and Clean Your Alexandrite

Alexandrite is a beautiful, rare, and durable gemstone. Hardness and toughness Gem and mineral hardness is measured on the Mohs scale. The numbers are based on the relative ease or difficulty with which one mineral can be scratched by another. But the Mohs scale is deceptive. The steps between the minerals are not evenly spaced. […]

A Little Bit About Alexandrite: June’s More Expensive Birthstone

Alexandrite, with its chameleon-like qualities, is a rare variety of the mineral chrysoberyl. Its color can be a lovely green in daylight or fluorescent light, changing to brownish or purplish red in the incandescent light from a lamp or candle flame. This is a result of the complex way the mineral absorbs light.Alexandrite’s dramatic color […]

Once Owned by Catherine the Great, ‘The Sleeping Lion’ Pearl Hits Auction Block and Falls Short

Once owned by Catherine the Great, the world’s largest known freshwater blister pearl was expected to fetch more than $600,000 when it hits the auction block in The Netherlands. However the pearl, did not reach it’s estimate and sols for $374,000. Dubbed “The Sleeping Lion” due to its unusual shape, the extraordinary quarter-pound natural pearl […]

Moonstone in Ancient Lore and Legend

An Asian myth declares the best Blue Moonstones are washed up by the tides once every 21 years. The Romans believed the much-treasured Moonstone enclosed the image of Diana, the Moon Goddess, who could endow love, wealth, victory and wisdom upon the possessor. Other legends declared it contained the gifts of prophecy and second sight, claiming […]