September birthstone jewelry is a treasure, not just for those born in September. The Sapphire, one of three precious gemstones (the others being ruby and emerald) are true treasures for anyone. The stone is second only in strength to the diamond so it is suitable for daily wear. Sapphire jewelry is a fantastic gift for anyone.
Tone, hue, saturation
1. Tone is the amount of color in the stone ranging from light to dark.
2. Hue refers to the actual color of the stone. Greenish-blue means the main color is blue but there is a hint of green in it. Violet-blue is also a blue stone but with a hint of violet.
3. Saturation refers to the purity and intensity of the color or the extent to which the color is masked with gray or brown.
Some interesting things about sapphires…
1. The word sapphire comes from the Latin word sapphirue or the Greek word sappheiros, both referring to the color blue.
2. Red sapphire is actually a ruby. Both are corundum. Blue is created when the corundum contains iron and titanium while trace elements of chromium color will be pink. More of the chromium in the corundum create red, in which case it is no longer considered a sapphire.
3. On the Mohs scale a diamond is a 10/10 and second to that is the sapphire which is a 9/10. This makes the sapphire durable and great to wear every day as it is resistant to scratching. It is much stronger than other stones of the same color. Sapphire is also popular paired with diamonds for wedding sets. Victorian rings often had a center stone of sapphire, surrounded by smaller diamonds to make a flower design.
5. The sapphire has much more clarity than the ruby even though they are essentially the same stone.
6. Besides being the September birth stone, the sapphire is also the traditional gift for those celebrating their 5th or 45th wedding anniversary.
7. Thousands of years ago, the ancient Romans treasured sapphires and often wore them as jewelry.
8. Sapphires are mentioned several times in the Old Testament of the Bible. The sapphire of the biblical days were not the same as the clear sapphire of today, but was Lapis Lazuli. It was on the breastplate of Aaron – and the second stone on the second row or all the high priests. It was considered extremely precious.
9. The largest sapphire ever cut weighs in at a whopping 61,500 carats! It is called the Millenium Sapphire.
10. Sapphire is one of three gemstones called precious gemstones. The other two are emerald and ruby.
11. Most genuine sapphires are heat treated to improve color and clarity.
12. It was in 1912 that the sapphire was named the birthstone for September.
13. Most sapphires in stores today are lab created
14. The most valuable sapphire is the Padparadscha sapphire. It is a version of the pink sapphire that is an orange/pink stone. The name is the Sanskrit word for lotus flower and can fetch a price of up to around $20,000.oo a carat!
15. Although blue is the most common color for sapphire, it can be found in almost every other color including: orange, yellow, green, purple, brown or white (not white but clear). Some, even though very rare are fairly inexpensive.
Cleaning your beautiful sapphire jewelry
Because it is such a hard and durable stone it can, most times, be cleaned with a steam cleaner or ultrasonic cleaner. Some, like dyed or those with excessive fractures should not be cleaned this way – but your jeweler should know. I take all my jewelry into my local jeweler for professional cleaning so I do not take any chances of ruining anything. If you prefer you can also buy your own ultrasonic cleaner but you need to know what stones can tolerate it and which ones cannot.
If cleaning at home is what you prefer you can use a purchased jewelry cleaner or one of the two following:
either a solution of lukewarm water and dish washing liquid or 1 part ammonia to 6 parts water. Use a soft brush (an old toothbrush would work fine) and brush the stone front and back where dirt collects. Dry with a soft towel.
I hope you enjoyed reading about sapphires
Sapphires, whether lab created or natural are beautiful! I hope you enjoyed reading the interesting facts about this gorgeous stone, I know I enjoyed learning about them and sharing that information with you. I welcome any comments or questions you may have.