1

Sell With a Story: All Things Green

Is it really March already? The calendar says so, and that can only mean we Northern Hemisphere dwellers will soon be welcoming in spring and packing up our winter wardrobes. But March means more than just spring — it also means St. Patrick’s Day is on the way!

Wednesday, March 17, marks this year’s celebration, and we’ve got just what you need to invite good fortune AND to wear something green to protect yourself from being unwittingly pinched.

The Luck of the Irish

To kick off your social-distanced St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, we’re highlighting five gemstones that will have you and your customers green with envy. We suggest getting your hands on these gems as soon as possible so that you can enjoy the luck of the Irish all March long.

1. Fancy Green Moissanite

Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, our gemstone team is THRILLED to introduce a most fitting gem: fancy green Stuller Lab-Created Moissanite™ (in addition to four other new fancy colors).

Offering both a lush green hue with the intense sparkle that is Moissanite’s claim to fame, our green Lab-Created Moissanite is perfect for any green aficionado. Share these cool facts about Moissanite to let them know you’re their gemstone expert for any need:

  • This stone was discovered in an Arizona meteorite crater, but all Moissanite used in jewelry today is created in a lab
  • Ranking at 9.25 on the Mohs Scale, Moissanite is harder than ruby and sapphire — and strong enough for daily wear in engagement rings, fashion styles, and body jewelry alike
  • Moissanite has more than twice as much sparkle as diamonds due to its unique refractive properties
  • Scientifically known as silicon carbide, Moissanite is used in computer motherboards
330616 330603 330612

Stay tuned for next month’s Sell With a Story, where we’ll do a deep dive into everything about Lab-Created Moissanite: its history, our two brands, Stuller’s five fancy colors, and even a new video showcasing why Moissanite is so marvelous.

In the meantime, you can shop our colored Lab-Created Moissanite here or learn more about the benefits of this wonderful gem.

2. Emerald

Ranging in hue from a warm yellow-green to a cool blue-green, it’s no surprise we embrace emerald for those born in May, the height of spring. As one of the Big Three gemstones, emerald has endured in popularity for centuries, being THE go-to gemstone for all things green.

Of course, there’s a variety of green gems available today, but for customers who want the traditional green gem, emerald is the only choice. Just be sure to treat it with care since these gems can be finicky and fragile to work with.

  • The name emerald finds its root in the Sanskrit word marakata, meaning the green of growing things
  • Due to its lush, rolling countryside, Ireland is famously known as the Emerald Isle
  • Emeralds and emerald jewelry are the gifts for the 35th wedding anniversary
  • The world’s largest emerald is a privately owned 7,052-carat uncut crystal from Colombia
91934 92123 92533

Take a deep dive into the verdant beauty and history of emerald at Sell With a Story: Emerald Gemstones, or find your perfect stone in our calibrated assortment or Notable Gems®.

3. Demantoid Garnet

Garnet comes in a wide range of richly hued shades that are both reasonably priced and readily available. But as with all stones, there are select types that are superstars. In garnet, that standout superstar stone is the Demantoid variety.

Getting its eye-popping color from trace amounts of chromium and ferric iron, this lime-green gem has one thing that makes it outshine the rest of the garnet family: Demantoid garnet has incredible fire dispersion — more so than diamonds!

  • Demantoid, meaning diamond-like, comes from the old German word demant
  • The highest quality gems come from Russia’s Ural Mountains, where it was discovered in 1853
  • Faceted stones above two carats are rare, and most are under one carat
  • Some have beautiful, unique golden horsetail inclusions — which make them even more valuable
204466

You can find Demantoid garnet in Stuller Notable Gems®.

4. Tsavorite Garnet

Meet the other green giant of the garnet family: Tsavorite. This vivid grass-green gemstone gets its color from the element vanadium, although some Tsavorite garnets contain other elements that give their exceptional color a whisper of blue.

Tsavorite has a long, rich history that starts with its 1961 discovery — which you can read all about in our in-depth analysis at Sell With a Story: Tsavorite Garnet.

  • Tsavorite is an excellent, more durable birthstone option for May babies who shy away from their traditional emerald
  • Tsavorite’s name comes from Kenya’s Tsavo National Park
  • The finest quality Tsavorite hails from a deposit in Kenya’s Kuranze region
  • Most Tsavorite is natural and untreated, so the stone you receive looks exactly how it came out of the ground, offering the raw beauty of Mother Nature to customers
92459 92345 92600

We offer calibrated Tsavorite garnet in a variety of shapes, sizes, and vibrant color qualities as well as in our Notable Gems® collection.

5. Peridot

Also called the Evening Emerald, peridot is a radiant green with a hint of gold. This lush hue embodies true splendor and growth. While best known as the birthstone for August babies, anyone can enjoy peridot’s unique shade — and indeed, people are enjoying it, as peridot has been trending in a huge way recently.

If you have a customer who loves peridot for what it is, let them know that birthstones aren’t limited only to those born in a specific month. Anyone can enjoy this lovely bright green, perfect for both a spring celebration of St. Patrick’s Day and for sweltering summer days spent poolside.

  • Peridot is the gift for the 16th wedding anniversary
  • Why pear-a-doe and not pear-a-dot? Peridot was first mined in the town of Peridot, Arizona
  • Peridot is one of few gemstones that appears in exactly one color: a perfect pistachio panache
  • The oldest peridot gemstones came to Earth in a meteorite, and they’re 4.5 billion years old — a far cry from the meager millions of years of Earth-forged Peridot
92144 92309 92570

Check out Sell With a Story: Peridot Gemstones to learn more, or stock up in our calibrated collection.

More Things Green

Are you feeling the luck of the Irish (or perhaps even envy) yet? If not, check out these previous Sell With a Story blogs about some lesser-known green gemstones:


Many Needs, One Source: Stuller Gemstones™

Whether you need to shop gemstones by color, find a perfect match, or have a team of gemstone experts embark on a worldwide treasure hunt to find a very specific gemstone, Stuller has you covered.

With more than one million gemstones in our inventory and our next-day delivery on all in-stock products, we can get you what you need, when you need it — with the spectacular customer service for which we’re known.

Not sure where to get started?

Check out Stuller Gemstones™ today!




Sell With a Story: Tsavorite Garnet

Garnet comes in many colors — beautiful, richly hued, readily available, and, for the most part, reasonably priced. But we have a couple of exceptions, rare members of this family that command particular attention. Tsavorite is one example.

Thank goodness for the buffalo

In 1961, Scottish geologist Campbell Bridges was working in what is now Zimbabwe. He noticed unusual combinations in rocks near his camp and decided to explore their gemstone potential. One day while investigating the area, he made his way up a gully only to find “an old rogue buffalo” — his words — ready to charge. He dove back down the ravine remaining there until the threat wandered off. It was there on the gully walls he first saw spotted “small bright green crystals,” though not of gem quality.

Fast forward

tanzanian-crystal

A highly magnified gem quality crystal from Tanzania

In 1967, he again laid eyes on the green crystals and this time, he found them in Tanzania near its border with Kenya. The crystals were remarkable for their intense color and high transparency. He gathered some for further investigation. And so tsavorite emerged from many millions of years in hiding.

What is it?

Gemological examination identified the specimens as green grossular or green garnet. This garnet was unusual for its richly saturated green color and, as time revealed, its rarity. To this day, gem quality tsavorite is found principally in northeastern Tanzania, southeastern Kenyan and two locations in Madagascar.

A place and a name

Sometime in 1968, Bridges contacted Henry B. Platt, president of Tiffany’s and told him about the green garnet discovery. Platt shared Bridges’ enthusiasm, and when Bridges could provide a steady supply from Scorpion Mine, Platt wanted Tiffany’s to introduce it to the U.S. market but they needed a name. Platt decided on Tsavorite after Kenya’s Tsavo National Park, not far from the site of Scorpion Mine.

What else do we know?

Tsavorite comes in vibrant green hues with some rivaling emerald. For this reason, it is considered an alternate birthstone for May. So how does tsavorite compare to emerald? Quite favorably. Though the range of colors and Mohs scale ratings are similar, there are striking differences. Tsavorite —

  • Is more durable than emerald and better for daily wear.
  • Has a higher refractive index than emerald: 1.74 to 1.58, and higher dispersion rate of 0.28 to 0.14 giving it more fire and brilliance than emerald.
  • Has greater clarity than emerald.
  • Has no treatments, enhancements or synthetics.
  • Up to 3 carats, costs less than emerald.

Kuranze

Most tsavorite gets its color from vanadium. But a deposit in Kenya’s Kuranze area yields tsavorite with chromium giving them exceptional color with hints of blue. The mine produces few stones, most of them small, but they are considered the finest quality. Naturall they’re called Kuranze tsavorite.

Is there a mint green tsavorite?

In a word, no. Some people call them tsavorite, but the name refers to the vivid greens. Mint green is mint garnet or mint green grossular.

Colorful Bridges

A legend in the gemstone world until his death in August 2009, Campbell Bridges led a colorful life.tsavorite-gems

  • After his 1967 discovery of tsavorite, he began mining in Tanzania. Shortly after, the government embraced socialism and nationalized the mines.
  • He followed the geological formation north of the Kenyan border and once again mined tsavorite. Life in Kenya was . . . Let’s say “unusual.”
  • He named the Kenyan mine Scorpion Mine in recognition of the many 8′ scorpions that infested the area.
  • Other challenges included swarming army ants that devoured all in their path, blood-sucking tsetse flies, and lions.
  • He kept these perils at bay by living in a tree house 25’ off the ground. He said that it was “cooler up there, and the view was magnificent.”
  • He used a python or cobra to guard his gems.
  • When away from his tree house for long, one or two of the area’s leopards would drag their kill up there to feast. On Bridges return, the offended leopard would circle the tree growling angrily, scratching his claws on the bark.

kenyan-rough-tsavorite2

Tsavorite rough from Kenya shows the many fractures

Sadly, Bridges’ death proved as tragic as his life was remarkable. On August 11, 2009, an angry mob killed him over disputed access to his mine or property. The details are unclear. At the 2010 AGTA Tucson GemFair, the International Colored Gemstone Association, American Gemstone Trade Association, and Gemological Institute of America paid tribute to Bridges, an industry icon, and active contributor for many years.

Now that’s intense

Tsavorite weighing more than several carats is rare. The gems formed when tectonic plates collided. The pressure and heat were so intense that most were fractured at this time, emerging as small and even tiny pieces.

We offer calibrated tsavorite in sizes up to 5mm round and 7x5mm oval. Sizes greater than several carats are rare and costly. However, our special order department can find them.

Dazzling exceptions7-carat-cushion-tsavorite

The Smithsonian has two prized tsavorites. One is a 15.93 carat pear-shaped tsavorite. The other is a 7 carat cushion tsavorite (pictured).

Then something extraordinary happened

In early 2006, miners found a large extremely clean mint green grossular. When cut, it yielded a 120.68 carat gem. Shortly after and not far away, they found the largest known gem-quality tsavorite crystal, weighing 925 carats. It was cut into a spectacular 325 carat tsavorite (shown) and displayed at the 2007 Tucson Gem Show. How much is it worth? I couldn’t begin to imagine.

A powerful adornment

Tsavorite hasn’t had enough time to accumulate many unique powers nevertheless it has acquired some. And it shares the powers belonging to all garnet. Here’s the scoop.

Tsavorite—

325-carat-tsavorite

325 carat tsavorite

  • Protects all travelers
  • Encourages love and compassion
  • Helps build self-confidence
  • Imparts strength, vitality, and optimism
  • Aids in decision-making
  • Helps calm emotions
  • Supports the immune and respiratory systems
  • Boosts the metabolism (strength and vitality)
  • Detoxifies the wearer’s body

So go ahead and start sharing tsavorite’s story. You’ll find many rapt listeners and buyers.

With help from Stuller customer Jack Russell, Graduate GIA Gemologist and Owner of Newport Jewelers, Newport, TN