Nude Contemporary Jewellery Blog

 RSS Feed

Category: Education

  1. February Birthstone - Amethyst

    Posted on

    Birthstone - February - Amethyst

    Briolette gemstone and diamond, 18 carat white gold earrings

    Mohs scale of hardness - 7

    Colour - Varies from deep purple to light violet

    Cut - As cabochons or as faceted gemstones

    Found - as large single crystals in deposits in Brazil, Bolivia, Sri Lanka

    Care Tip - Amethyst shouldn't be left out in strong light as this may cause it to fade

    amethyst rivda ed

    Amethyst is the birthstone for February it is also the gem for the 6th & 17th wedding anniversaries.

    Early Greek legends associated amethyst with the god of wine Bacchus because of its colour. The Greek word amethystos can be translated as “not drunken” or “not intoxicated” it was believed to prevent drunkenness, to help you keep a clear head and so wine goblets were often carved from it.

    Bi colour amethyst

    In antiquity the most valued gemstones were known as The Cardinal Gems, they included the expected and most coveted gems that we associate with precious such as diamond, emerald, ruby, sapphire and during these times also amethyst. They were valued for their rarity, religious authority and magical powers and considered a symbol of royalty where it was used to embellish English regalia until the 19th Century. Then in the 1800's extensive deposits of the gemstone were discovered in South America making amethysts less rare and therefore less expensive and valued.

    amethyst and diamond earrings ed

    Amethysts form in long prismatic crystals in geodes or hollow rocks. These geodes form when there are cavities in volcanic rock. As the rock cools the mineral saturated water, gases and volcanic material distil and crystallise. When these crystals harden, they form amethyst. Amethyst occurs in primary hues from a light lavender or pale violet to a deep purple and can exhibit one or both secondary hues of red and blue. Green quartz is sometimes incorrectly called green amethyst, its correct name is Prasolite.

    Amethyst has a good hardness and handling it with proper care will prevent damage to the stone. Amethyst is sensitive is to strong heat and may lose or change colour when exposed to prolonged heat or light.

    Click here to view all of our amethyst jewellery

  2. Sapphire - September Birthstone

    Posted on

    What colour of Sapphire would you choose? (not all are blue!)

    purple sapphire ring

    When most people think of sapphires they think of blue, but in fact sapphires are available in a rainbow of colours. Pretty much everything except for a pinkish, purpleish, red. If it's this colour then it's a ruby!

    blue sapphire silver slider pendant

    Sapphire is a precious gemstone that is a variety of the mineral corundum. Corrundum is one of the hardest minerals which is why it is a popular choice for jewellery and indeed engagement rings. On the Mohs scale of hardness a sapphire is a 9 – the only other gemstone that is harder is a diamond.

    Violet sapphire and rose gold ring

    A sapphires colour is is influenced by trace amounts of elements such as iron, titanium, chromium, vanadium, or magnesium within each of it's crystals. For example, titanium within these tiny crystal elements reflect and refract to make a sapphire blue.

    white sapphire silver pendant

    The name sapphire is derived from the Latin "saphirus" and the Greek "sapheiros", both of which mean blue.

    It is common practice to heat natural sapphires to improve or enhance their appearance. This is done by heating the sapphires in furnaces to temperatures between 800 and 1,800 °C Evidence of sapphire and other gemstones being subjected to heating goes back at least to Roman times and generally applies to most sapphires – in fact an untreated sapphires are quite rare and one of high quality would be of high value.

    Yellow sapphire ring

    Birthstone - September

    Cut - As cabochons or as faceted gemstones

    Found - Myanmar (Burma), Sri Lanka, Australia

    Care Tip - A hard gemstone that can appear cloudy when needing cleaned.  Clean with mild liquid soap, warm water and an old soft bristled toothbrush

    View all of our Sapphire jewellery here...

  3. Ruby: A Symbol of Love and Power

    Posted on

    July Birthstone: Discover the Elegance and Significance of Ruby: A Symbol of Love and Power

    As we step into the month of July, we are greeted by the vibrant and enchanting beauty of the Ruby. This deep red gemstone has been treasured for centuries, not only for its mesmerizing allure but also for its profound symbolism. Being the birthstone for July, the Ruby holds a special place in the hearts of those born in this month. In this article, we will delve into the elegance and significance of this precious gemstone, exploring its historical background, characteristics, colour variations, jewellery options, famous rubies in history and pop culture, care and maintenance, as well as a buying guide to help you choose the perfect July gift.

    Maisie Marquise ruby and diamond engagement ring

    The Maisie Ring - exclusive ruby and diamond ring)

    Historical significance and symbolism of Ruby

    The Ruby has captivated civilizations throughout history with its captivating beauty and mystical properties. Ancient cultures believed that the Ruby possessed the power to bestow good fortune, health, and protection upon its wearer. In medieval times, it was also associated with nobility, wealth, and passion. The deep red colour of the Ruby symbolizes love, passion, and courage, making it an ideal gift to express deep emotions and devotion. In Sanskrit, the Ruby is called "ratnaraj," which translates to "king of gemstones," further highlighting its regal significance.

    Ruby are deco pendant


    Characteristics of Ruby gemstone


    Ruby is a variety of the mineral corundum, with its deep red colour being caused by the presence of chromium. It is one of the hardest gemstones, second only to the diamond, making it durable and suitable for everyday wear. The finest Rubies possess a vibrant red hue, known as "pigeon blood red," which is highly sought after in the gemstone world. Rubies also exhibit a remarkable brilliance, making them truly eye-catching. Its hardness and durability, combined with its intense colour and brilliance, make Ruby a gemstone of exceptional value and beauty.

    astraea trillogy ruby and diamond ring


    The colour variations of Ruby

    While the classic colour of Ruby is a deep red, ranging from pinkish to purplish tones, there are also other colour variations to explore. Some Rubies may display a more pinkish-red hue, known as "pink Ruby," which exudes a delicate and feminine charm. On the other hand, the "blood-red Ruby" showcases a rich and intense shade of red, evoking a sense of power and passion. The colour variations in Rubies allow individuals to choose a shade that resonates with their personal style and preferences, adding a touch of uniqueness to their jewellery collection.

     ruby and diamond eternity ring

    Ruby birthstone jewellery options


    The Ruby's timeless beauty and significance make it a popular choice for birthstone jewellery. From delicate necklaces and earrings to stunning rings and bracelets, there is a wide array of options to explore when it comes to Ruby jewellery. A Ruby pendant, adorned with diamonds, can add a touch of elegance and sophistication to any outfit. For those seeking a statement piece, a Ruby cocktail ring featuring a large, vibrant gemstone is sure to turn heads. Whether worn as a single stone or combined with other gemstones, Ruby jewellery is a beautiful way to celebrate your July birthstone and showcase your individual style.

     ruby and dia toi et moi ring

    Famous Rubies in history and pop culture


    Throughout history, certain Rubies have gained legendary status due to their extraordinary size, colour, and historical significance. One such renowned Ruby is the "Sunrise Ruby," a 25.59-carat gemstone that is considered one of the finest in the world. Its rich and vivid red hue, combined with its exceptional clarity, makes it truly remarkable. Another famous Ruby is the "Hope Ruby," a 32.08-carat gem known for its deep red colour and incredible size. This Ruby has passed through the hands of several famous owners, adding to its allure and mystique. In pop culture, the Ruby shoes has also made appearances, such as in the iconic movie "The Wizard of Oz," where it represented the power to grant wishes.

     ruby and dias

    Care and maintenance of Ruby gemstone


    To ensure the longevity and beauty of your Ruby gemstone, proper care and maintenance are essential. Rubies should be protected from scratches and sharp blows, as they can chip or scratch the surface of the gem. It is advisable to store Ruby jewellery separately in a soft pouch or jewellery box to prevent any damage. Regular cleaning with a soft cloth and mild soapy water will help maintain the sparkle of your Ruby. Avoid exposing Rubies to harsh chemicals, high temperatures, and ultrasonic cleaners, as they can adversely affect the gemstone. By following these simple guidelines, you can enjoy the brilliance and allure of your Ruby for years to come.

     Ruby Infinity Ring

    Buying guide for July birthstone Ruby


    When purchasing a Ruby, it is important to consider several factors to ensure you select a gemstone of high quality and value. The four Cs - colour, clarity, cut, and carat weight - play a crucial role in determining the overall beauty and worth of a Ruby. The colour should be vibrant and evenly distributed, with no visible inclusions affecting its clarity The clarity or a ruby also contributes to it's value but a flawless ruby is more likely to have been treated so not necessarily more valuable.The cut should be precise to maximize the gem's brilliance and sparkle. As for carat weight, personal preference and budget come into play, as larger Rubies are rarer and more valuable.

    rose gold allsorts d


    Celebrating the beauty and power of Ruby


    In conclusion, the July birthstone Ruby holds a special place in the world of gemstones, exuding elegance, significance, and timeless beauty. Its deep red colour symbolizes love and power, making it a perfect gift for loved ones or a treasured addition to your own jewellery collection. The historical significance, colour variations, and famous Rubies all contribute to the allure and mystique surrounding this precious gemstone. By caring for your Ruby gemstone and making an informed purchase, you can cherish its beauty and significance for a lifetime. So, embrace the elegance of the Ruby and let its vibrant red hues ignite a sense of passion and love in your life.


    Take a look at all of our Ruby jewellery here....