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What are Gemstones?
“Gemstone” is the term given minerals that have been cut and polished. This can include ‘rocks’ or other organic matter such as pearls, coral, jet, or amber. Gemstones are also referred to as ‘precious stones’, ‘precious gems’, ‘semi-precious stones’, or ‘fine stones’.
The value of a gemstone is determined based on a number of factors including quality, size, and rarity of the stone. While many people think of diamonds, rubies, sapphires, and emeralds when discussing gemstones, there are actually a number of rarer stones.
Some of the rarest gemstones you can find include:
* Painite *Alexandrite *Tanzanite *Benitoite *Poudretteite *Grandidierite *Musgravite *Jeremejevite *Red Beryl
Within the world of gemstones, there are three avenues by which customers and jewellers can source these stones. Synthetic or Lab Grown gemstones, Natural or Mined gemstones, and Imitation stones. View a small sample of our stunning gemstone below or click here to view our full gemstone gallery.
Synthetic vs Mined Gemstones
Lab-grown diamonds, also known as ‘Synthetic Diamonds’, ‘HPHT Diamonds’ or ‘CVD Diamonds’, are exactly what the name suggests. These beautiful gems are physically grown in a laboratory, under strictly controlled conditions and using sustainably sourced materials.
We discuss the nuances of lab-grown diamonds in our blog, which you can see here.
As well as diamonds, jewellers can also source lab-grown gemstones.
Alternatively, you can source ‘Natural’ or ‘Mined’ gemstones. Natural or mined gemstones are stones that are found growing in the natural world with no human intervention. These are the gemstones that result from the stereotypical mines that customers often envision. Other natural substances can occur in water, such as pearls and coral.
The allure of natural or mined gemstones, pearls, and other minerals comes from the perceived rarity of the item.
It is important to remember that even though a stone may be marketed as ‘natural’ there is a strong possibility that it has been enhanced or undergone treatments to change the appearance. Tanzanite and Sapphires are often heated to deepen their colour intensity. Many treatments are industry standard and to be expected, but some are not.
The demand for mined gemstones has created an industry that can be difficult to manoeuvre, at best.
When it comes to synthetic or lab-grown gemstones, these stones have identical characteristics and physical makeup as mined stones. In fact, many lab-grown gemstones lack impurities that are common in other stones.
The term ‘Synthetic Gemstones’ is commonly associated with alternatives such as Cubic Zirconia, this is a common mis-association. Lab-grown gemstones are not look-a-likes, they are chemically and physically identical to mined stones. If you are unsure about whether the gemstones you are looking at are lab-grown, mined, or imitations, talk to the friendly team at Clayfield Jewellers. Our team have experience working with both lab-grown and mined gemstones.
Commonly found synthetic gems include:
- Pearls – Usually called Cultured Pearls, these pearls are formed by introducing a foreign substance into an oyster with the sole purpose of having the oyster form a pearl.
- Sapphires and Rubies
- Diamonds – Synthetic Diamonds are currently being manufactured, but the production cost is still very high, prohibiting them from being a viable less-expensive option to natural diamonds.
What sort of Gemstones does Clayfield Jewellery stock?
Trevor Sim has over 3 decades’ experience in the trade and has built up an impressive network of connections. Clayfield Jewellery will be importing some absolutely stunning stones, including Tanzanite, Morganite, Aquamarine, and Tsavorite. Tsavorite is a stunning green stone with looks similar to an emerald but is more brilliant and durable. These acquisitions will give clients a great new range to choose from with great value for money.
This exceptional range of stones available at Clayfield Jewellery includes both mined and lab-grown stones.
Contact our friendly team today if you are interested in learning more about the gemstones used by our team or you would like to enquire about specific gemstones.