Gemstones

September’s Birthstone is Sapphire

September’s Birthstone is Sapphire

Sapphire is a variety of the mineral corundum and it symbolizes sincerity, truth, faithfulness, and nobility. It has a long history with nobility and clergy, who wore sapphires because they also symbolized heaven. Some Sapphires are quite famous, such as the Rockefeller Sapphire, a 62.02ct rectangular step-cut stone from Myanmar, which is now set in a platinum ring with two…

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Hello! My name is Barbra Ann King and I’m a Rock Star… also known as a Gemmologist.

Hello! My name is Barbra Ann King and I’m a Rock Star… also known as a Gemmologist.

Gemmology is the science of analyzing natural and synthetic gemstone material, from coloured stones to diamonds to organic material like pearls, amber and opals. A gemmologist is a person that is academically trained and qualified to identify and evaluate gems using specialized scientific equipment such as microscopes, refractometers, dichroscopes, spectrometers and more.

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Amethyst, the Magical Stone

Amethyst, the Magical Stone

In the fifteenth century, the traditional virtue of the Amethyst stone was the cure of drunkenness: it had a sobering effect. The word “amethyst” derives from the Greek “amethystos”, meaning “a remedy against drunkenness”. This stone is known to support sobriety. It was also believed to protect soldiers from harm and help hunters capture wild animals. In our day and…

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Canada, What a Gem Part II

Canada, What a Gem Part II

As one of the largest mining countries in the world, Canada has more than 60 minerals and metal produced and processed. Our beautiful country is recognized worldwide as having the safest practices in the industry. Mont St-Hilaire, located in the province of Québec, has over 300 different species of minerals but because it is privately owned, digging for these specimens…

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Canada, What A Gem!

Canada, What A Gem!

The land we live on, the country we call Canada, took four (4) billion years to form. All this massive amount of rock formation, climate change, tectonic activity, volcanoes and continent movement contributed to the formation of gold, copper, zinc and iron, as well as a variety of gemstones such as Diamond, Labradorite, Amazonite, Jade, Ammolite and many more. Ammolite…

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Buying Gemstones as Investments

Buying Gemstones as Investments

Diamonds and some coloured stones are often offered as investments. These investments can be sold with promises of quick increases in value, with short turnovers. With very expensive stones, a purchase share within a group may even be offered. The difficult part for a layperson is determining the actual value of the purchase. Typically there will be one or more…

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Are Zircons Real Gemstones?

Are Zircons Real Gemstones?

For many people, the name “Zircon” means “imitation”, mostly because colourless Zircons were widely used as a diamond simulant in the early 1900’s. This is unfortunate because Zircon is a beautiful natural coloured stone with its own fair share of folklore and charm. Blue Zircon is also one of the birthstones for the month of December, along with Tanzanite and…

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Value of Gemstones

Value of Gemstones

There are many different types of “rocks” that exist. Which ones are considered a gemstone and why are they more precious than others? A gemstone grows through natural processes, which eliminates all synthetic or lab-grown material. A gemstone is made up of mineral and organic material and has a particular set of characteristics unique to its specie and variety. In…

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What You Need To Know Before Buying a Diamond

What You Need To Know Before Buying a Diamond

Diamonds are part of a dynamic trade in an industry that has changed significantly in recent years. The world’s supply of diamond rough has increased tremendously with abundant new sources in Canada and Australia. New advances in diamond technology, such as new treatments for improving colour and clarity, as well as treatment detection have added to the exciting changes in…

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