Tag Archives: gemstones

The Jewelry Insider

June 1, 2010

Zodiac Stones & Colors – Your Jewelry Personality

The Modern Birthstone List is the official birthstone list from the American National Association of Jewelers, Jewelers of America. These gemstones were officially adopted in 1912. In the US, this is the accepted list. The American Gem Trade Association added tanzanite as an additional birthstone for December in October 2002.

Your Zodiac Gemstone List

Capricorn (Dec. 22 – Jan. 21) – Capricorn, the goat, is a Cardinal sign, its element is Earth. Careful planning and meticulousness characterizes this nature. Those born under this sign are very sensitive to their appearances and reputation. Ruby captures their attitude.

Aquarius (Jan. 21- Feb. 21) – Aquarians are a Fixed sign, Air is their element. These folks like to keep things under wraps and organized. Totally objective, they don’t let emotions or preconceived notions rule their mind. Garnet is their stone.

Pisces (Feb. 22 – Mar. 21) – A symbol of evolution, it’s no wonder that Pisces are a Mutable sign and that their element is Water. Emotionally reserved, Pisces are a well of sensitivity and intuition. They are reserved and do not like to show their emotions. Amethyst is the gem that best fits their personality.

Aries (Mar. 22 – Apr. 20) – A Cardinal sign with Fire as its element, Aries are known for their self-confidence and their courage. It’s no surprise that bloodstone captures their feisty spirit. A symbol of purity, white is the color of April so diamonds, pearls or any other clear/white stone is appropriate.

Taurus (Apr. 21 – May 21) – These bulls are a Fixed sign and their element is Earth. A combination which makes these lovable bull-heads set on acquiring material possessions. They are also very sensual and like to be the center of attention. Just like their stone, sapphire, they are always liked.

Gemini (May 22 – June 21) – Of course, Gemini are a Mutable sign and their element is Air. These personalities are everything and their opposite. Highly intellectual, they need news and cerebral stimulation like oxygen. Black Onyx is their stone.

Cancer (June 22 – July 22) – A Cardinal sign with Water as its element, Cancer, the crab, loves to explore the deep and wide range of emotions. Highly generous and sensitive, they can also be prone to many excesses and extremes. Emerald is a perfect fit for this sign.

Leo (July 23 – Aug. 22) – The king of the jungle is a Fixed sign and his element is Fire. Many Leos are artistic and creative because they are powerful and very expressive. However, this noble animal loves praises and affection. Lion-Gold Citrine is their gem.

Virgo (Aug. 23 – Sept. 22) – A Mutable sign deeply rooted in its element, Earth. Virgos are known to be one of two kinds, evil or saint. They have a compulsive need for perfection and depending on the category to which they belong, are capable of the worst or the best. Virgos are not assigned a specific stone, but any stone in a round, cabochon or bead shape is appropriate.

Libra (Sept. 23 – Oct. 23) – The scale is a Cardinal sign, and its element is Air. Fabulous matchmakers, they know how to get things done. Just don’t ask them to take a stand on anything, they don’t like to take chances and be held accountable. Peridot is the stone of Libras.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 – Nov. 21) – Although they can’t swim, their element is Water and Scorpio is a Fixed sign. Control freaks, they can be possessive in friendship and highly jealous in love. Their stubbornness can be maddening, but at the same token, their loyalty never falters. Close to their element, their gem is Aquamarine.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22 – Dec. 21) – A Mutable sign with Fire as its element, Sagittarians crave adventure and travel. They love to explore new cultures and philosophies. Definitely always on the move, they can easily leave you behind if you can’t or won’t follow. Topaz is their gemstone.

Learn More About Gemstones

The Jewelry Insider

December 29, 2009

We all know gold fillings and glittering grills are status symbols famous hip-hop stars and wannabes use to put the Midas Touch on their teeth. But a recent study uncovered evidence that wealthy hip-hoppers aren’t the only ones who like to decorate their dentures.

According to National Geographic, sophisticated dentistry allowed Native Americans to add bling to their teeth as far back as 2,500 years ago.

An analysis of thousands of teeth examined from the collection in Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History revealed that ancient peoples had semiprecious gems soldered on to their teeth as a pure form of decoration.

While the origins of the samples are not known for sure, it’s clear that people – mostly men – from nearly all walks of life opted for the look, noted Jose Concepcion Jimenez, an anthropologist at the institute.

The ornamental gemstones (including jade) were attached with an adhesive made out of natural resins, such as plant sap, which was mixed with other chemicals and crushed bones, Jiminez said. He added that the dentists likely had a sophisticated knowledge of tooth anatomy. For example, they knew how to drill into teeth without hitting the pulp inside, he explained. Lucky for them.

Today, the art of tooth decoration is still alive and well – and not just on the likes of Lil Wayne or 50 Cent. Some folks opt to have gold, diamonds, birthstones and more bonded to their teeth as more dentists offer the service as a way to distinguish themselves in a crowded market.

And if you decide that bling on your bicuspids is getting in the way of say, chewing or speaking clearly? The decoration can be easily removed without causing any damage. Lucky for us.

MTV Movie Awards – A Jewelry Fashion Round Up

Yellow gold, blue gemstones and layered bangles were the top three jewelry trends emerging from the MTV Movie Awards last night, as teen idols from a sultry Vanessa Hudgens to a sophisticated Miley Cyrus rocked the red carpet

Teen vampire phenomenon, Twilight, took most of the top honors, with a gawky Kristen Stewart looking like she might vomit every time she took the stage – even dropping her golden popcorn statue when accepting her Best Female Performance award.


Maybe the spotlight is shining too brightly these days? (See Susan Boyle’s recent treatment for ‘exhaustion’ for further reference).

Laughs came fast and hard, with host, Andy Samburg at the helm (his reaction to Miley’s acceptance speech was priceless!).

But perhaps the best moment of the night came in the guise of a floating set of bare butt cheeks. Namely the ones Sasha Baron Cohen planted on a not-so enthused Eminem’s face. A pre-planned gag or a surprise attack? You be the judge.

Thankfully the fashion police didn’t much have their work cut out for them, as the MTV set rocked it out in sequined minis, cowl neck classics and a good amount of bling.
Vanessa Hudgins made her peach Max Azria shine with layered yellow gold pendants and bangles, and stars like Megan Fox and Paris Hilton followed suit with their own gold statements.

Blue gemstone made their way on the likes of Ashley Tisdale, Sandra Bullock and Malin Ackerman, and diamond divas included Stephanie Pratt, Hayden Panettiere and Leighton Meister, with diamond cuffs making a strong showing.


And while I could do without Cameron Diaz’s blue boots, Sandra Bullocks’s black tights and Kristen Stewart’s nervous tics, I’ll leave the freaking out to the Twilight fans. And Eminem.

Check out the Jewelry.com Facebook page for more pics, including an unfortunate necklace look from Heidi Montag’s sis. Why is she famous again?

Upgrade Your Dial Tone with Diamonds and Dior

Diamonds and gemstones have been dripping from hi-tech gadgets like ipods, ear buds and remote controls for years now.

Dior Phone Diamonds

And while top designers like Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and Armani have all entered the designer phone market, Dior is launching a luxury model that’s about to blow them all out of the water.

Dior Phone DiamondsThe new Dior Phone Diamonds (Glorious Black) is set with a whopping 641 diamonds and weighs in at 3.251 carats. Not enough bling for you? How about 34 black sapphire crystals for good measure?

Of course this game of telephone will cost you. But what fashionista on-the-go doesn’t want to spend $28 g’s for her all-important talking device?

Yup, that’s three zeros, people…

The ultra-slim clamshell design was created by Modelabs and comes with a sleek hand-brushed stainless steel case engraved with the Dior logo. A flat electro-luminescent keyboard and a luxe crocodile holder are also part of the package.

For the frugalistas out there, Dior offers a less expensive Swarovski crystal version in a leather case. Prices start at a mere $8160, and there are five glittering color options to choose from.

But why sell yourself short when you can carry the equivalent of a decent four-door sedan in your Birkin bag? Ring a bling bling…

More Jewelry News

The Jewelry Insider

November 25, 2008


It wasn’t long ago that buying diamonds, gemstones and gold online was considered either a big risk or a bit tawdry. But online jewelry aggregators like Jewelry.com and cutting edge retailers like JCPenney helped to redefine the experience, and now shopping jewelry on the web is as normal as buying airline tickets and overstock sheets.

Luxury jewelers have been the last to hold out on the online movement – until recently. Diamond lovers everywhere all know that the words “Harry” and “Winston” signify the ultimate in icy jewelry fashion, and lucky for us, they are finally jumping on the web-worthy bandwagon.

“The Harry Winston Online Salon is an exciting step in our retail development plan,” Thomas J. O’Neill, chief executive officer of Harry Winston, Inc. told Fashion Week Daily. “Designed to showcase our signature diamond jewelry collections, the new Online Salon will offer a discreet and highly personalized experience for customers who prefer the convenience of online shopping.”

Whether you are lucky enough have immunity from our depressing economy or just want to drool at your computer screen, the Harry Winston online salon showcases diamond styles that will make your inner diva sit upright – from rings, necklaces and bracelets to earrings, pendants and cufflinks.

The pièce de résistance is this stunning necklace from the sunflower collection, which weighs in at approximately 25.8 carats and sells for $135,000. Or you can downgrade to the 15.70 carat sunflower bracelet for $85,000.

There’s probably not a Harry Winston Black Friday coupon online yet is there? There’s always next year…

The Jewelry Insider

October 18, 2008

Diamonds, gemstones, gold – it’s easy to fall head over heels for jewelry this season. We all know by now the “big and bawdy” trend is taking the runways and red carpets by storm. But there’s another look emerging that’s giving the statement necklace a run for its money: bejeweled hair pieces.

Maybe Sarah Jessica Parker started the hunkering for headwear with that green bird thingy she wore in the SATC movie this summer? Or maybe it’s a longing for our Richard Simmons, headband-wearing, 80s past? Regardless, it’s clear the noggin is clamoring for a little more attention this season – and the celebs are taking note!

Mad Men’s January Jones threaded an elegant diamond strand throughout her updo at the Emmys. Nicole Richie kicked it old school during Fashion Week with a glittering band across her forehead, John McEnroe style. Paris Hilton and The Hills diva, Lauren Conrad, opted to bedazzle a traditional Jackie-O inspired headband, and Pink threw some ice on just one side of her punk rock locks.

Whether you’re an elegant Audrey Hepburn type or a happy-go-lucky hippie chick, there are many ways you can add a little moxy to your melon. So channel your inner Olivia and get physical with some headstrong jewelry fashions this season!

The Jewelry Insider

September 30, 2008

Feel like the rug is being pulled out from under you? It happens when the DOW takes a tumble – OK a plunge! In honor of that ‘not so swell’ feeling of loss, we thought we’d take a look at some of the fabulous gems that have been stolen over the ages. The good news? Each and every one of them were returned to their rightful owners. Let’s hope the same can be said for our 401ks!

The Millennium Star
In 2000, police foiled a plan to steal the 203-ct. flawless pear-shaped Millennium Star diamond and 11 other rare blue diamonds, including the 27.64-ct. blue Heart of Eternity diamond from London’s Millennium Dome. In a scene right out of the James Bond movie “The World is Not Enough,” the robbers planned to make their getaway via a speedboat on the nearby Thames River. But police, acting on a tip given several weeks ago, had prepared for the theft and had officers stationed around the Millennium Dome dressed as members of the cleaning staff carrying weapons in their refuse bags. Some 100 officers lay in wait as a gang attempted to use a mechanical digger to steal the gems valued at £350 million. The robbers only managed to damage the glass display case, however, as the police swapped the jewels for worthless copies.

Koh-I-Noor
This fabled 105.60 ct. stone goes back to the 1300s, when it was owned by India’s Rajah of Malwa. Following a series of wars, it fell into the hands of Sultan Babur in the 1500s and remained one of the most precious gems of the Mongul Emperors for the next 200 years. In 1739, the stone was obtained by Nadir Shah of Persia, who had invaded Delhi. Legend has it that Nadir Shah, failing to uncover the gem during his pillage of Delhi, was told by one of the harem women that the conquered Mongul emperor hid it inside his turban. Taking advantage of an Oriental custom, Nadir Shah invited the vanquished emperor to a feast and suggested they exchange turbans. After the feast, he unrolled the turban and found the gem, which he took back to Persia.

Black Prince’s Ruby
Perhaps the world’s most famous ‘ruby’, this stone is actually a red spinel that is part of the British Crown Jewels, mounted in the Imperial Crown. The stone first surfaced in fourteenth century Spain. It was seized by Don Pedro the Cruel of Seville from Abu Said in 1366. After changing through numerous hands over the next few centuries, it was bought by an unknown party in 1660 and resold to Charles II after the restoration of the Stuarts. During the reign of Charles II, the gem was nearly stolen by the notorious Colonel Blood, who was later pardoned by the King.

The Regent Diamond
The Regent is one of the world’s finest diamonds and has a long, well documented and interesting history complete with murder, revolution and theft.

In the rough, the diamond weighed 410 carats. It was found in India in the 17th century and smuggled to the coast hidden under the bandages covering a self inflicted wound. The finder was murdered by an English sea captain, who sold the diamond for $5,000 to a Iranian trader. In 1702, the diamond was sold to Thomas Pitt, Governor of Madras for about $100,000. Pitt sent it home to England where it was cut into a cushion shaped brilliant weighing 140.5 carats. The stone then became known as the Pitt. In 1717, Pitt sold the gem to Philippe, duke of Orleans and regent of France. It was worn in the crown of Louis XV at his coronation in 1722, and was frequently worn by Marie Antoinette two generations later.

In 1792, the diamond was stolen together with the French Blue and other French crown jewels. Unlike many others, it was quickly recovered. It was given as security for a war loan in 1797 but redeemed five years later.

When Napoleon Bonaparte was crowned emperor of France in 1804, he carried the great diamond in the hilt of his sword. His second wife, Marie Louise, took it to Austria after the fall of Napoleon, but the jewel was later returned by the Austrian emperor. Charles X wore the Regent at his coronation in 1825, and it remained in this crown until placed in a diadem for the Empress Eugenie, wife of Napoleon III.

In 1887, all of the French crown jewels except the Regent were sold at auction. The Regent was put on exhibition at the Louvre. Except for a short time during the Second World War when it was hidden behind a stone panel at the Chateau du Chambord, it remains at the Louvre.

Idol’s Eye
In 1607, the East India Co. seized the stone from the owner, Persian Prince Rahab, in payment for his debts. It then disappeared for 300 years and was rediscoverd in 1906 in the possesion of Sultan Abdul Hamid II of Turkey as the eye of a sacred idol in the Temple of Benghazi. Legend has that it was given as a ransom for the Princess Rasheetah by the Sheik of Kashmir to the Sultan of Turkey who had abducted her. Again, after being stolen from the Sultan’s messenger and sold to a Paris pawnshop, it was purchased by a Spanish grandee and remained in a safe-deposit box vault in London for several years.

The Jewelry Insider

August 13, 2008

From a diamond ring to gold hoops, jewelry can be the most important gift you give a loved one. Feeling the pressure? We understand. Guys, and the gals who love them, pay attention to the following tips on how to buy jewelry. We guarantee you’ll impress her with your remarkable taste and insight.

Know the facts:
We’ve all heard it before: knowledge is power. Buying jewelry can be one of the first major purchases in your lifetime, so it’s important to know the facts before you face all the glitter. Take the time to educate yourself about gold, diamonds and gemstones. Thinking of popping the question? Be sure to check out these Bridal Tips as well. We promise it won’t be as bad as algebra class.

 


Know your audience:
There’s nothing like that look you get when you know you missed the mark. The slight grimace followed by the fake smile? The best way to avoid awkward gift giving is to study what your significant other likes. What does she usually wear? Has she complimented friends on their looks? You know how to make her laugh, you can surely pick up some tips on her personal style. Take notes and bring what you know on your shopping trip.

Know your budget:
There are many price points in the jewelry world – from $99 to $9999 and beyond. Don’t get in over your head with a bauble that will break the bank or make her afraid to wear it. Also, bring what you learned about stone and metal quality to the store, so you won’t be duped into thinking ‘bigger’ is ‘better’. Often, it’s not.

Know her size (mainly for ring purchases):
There’s nothing like wowing her with a diamond ring she’ll just have to wait three weeks to wear. Guys, break out your inner sleuth for this one. Find a ring she currently wears, trace the inside and bring it to your jeweler. You can always size a ring, but delayed satisfaction doesn’t always fly when it comes to jewelry.

Know the occasion:
• If you’re not about commitment but want to impress her with a gift of jewelry, word to the wise: stay away from the ring category. A ring, no matter what the design, is loaded with symbolism that screams “I’m in it for the long haul.” A nice pair of diamond studs might be the better choice in this case.

Right Hand Rings are the perfect self-gifting occasion to celebrate a promotion, graduation, or ‘just because’. It’s also a great friend-to-friend or mother-to daughter gift. Think female power!

• The ‘go big’ calendar moments are of course Valentine’s Day and the December holidays. If she’s expecting a ring, and you’re thinking peridot earrings to match her eyes…you might want to think again.

Know the return policy:
Even with all of the Jewelry Insider’s words to the wise, there is ultimately no guarantee your jewelry gift is going to hit a home run. Most stores – whether they are online or in the mall – have a return policy. Don’t be afraid to ask your salesperson.

With a little preparation, education and thought, we guarantee buying jewelry will move decidedly from “a little better than a root canal” to “right up there with no calorie ice cream and winning the lottery”.

Happy Shopping!

P.S. We want to hear from you! Tell us your own shopping success – or horror – stories. Are there tips we’ve missed? Share the wealth!

The Jewelry Insider

August 13, 2008

From a diamond ring to gold hoops, jewelry can be the most important gift you give a loved one. Feeling the pressure? We understand. Guys, and the gals who love them, pay attention to the following tips on how to buy jewelry. We guarantee you’ll impress her with your remarkable taste and insight.

Know the facts:
We’ve all heard it before: knowledge is power. Buying jewelry can be one of the first major purchases in your lifetime, so it’s important to know the facts before you face all the glitter. Take the time to educate yourself about gold, diamonds and gemstones. Thinking of popping the question? Be sure to check out these Bridal Tips as well. We promise it won’t be as bad as algebra class.

 


Know your audience:
There’s nothing like that look you get when you know you missed the mark. The slight grimace followed by the fake smile? The best way to avoid awkward gift giving is to study what your significant other likes. What does she usually wear? Has she complimented friends on their looks? You know how to make her laugh, you can surely pick up some tips on her personal style. Take notes and bring what you know on your shopping trip.

Know your budget:
There are many price points in the jewelry world – from $99 to $9999 and beyond. Don’t get in over your head with a bauble that will break the bank or make her afraid to wear it. Also, bring what you learned about stone and metal quality to the store, so you won’t be duped into thinking ‘bigger’ is ‘better’. Often, it’s not.

Know her size (mainly for ring purchases):
There’s nothing like wowing her with a diamond ring she’ll just have to wait three weeks to wear. Guys, break out your inner sleuth for this one. Find a ring she currently wears, trace the inside and bring it to your jeweler. You can always size a ring, but delayed satisfaction doesn’t always fly when it comes to jewelry.

Know the occasion:
• If you’re not about commitment but want to impress her with a gift of jewelry, word to the wise: stay away from the ring category. A ring, no matter what the design, is loaded with symbolism that screams “I’m in it for the long haul.” A nice pair of diamond studs might be the better choice in this case.

Right Hand Rings are the perfect self-gifting occasion to celebrate a promotion, graduation, or ‘just because’. It’s also a great friend-to-friend or mother-to daughter gift. Think female power!

• The ‘go big’ calendar moments are of course Valentine’s Day and the December holidays. If she’s expecting a ring, and you’re thinking peridot earrings to match her eyes…you might want to think again.

Know the return policy:
Even with all of the Jewelry Insider’s words to the wise, there is ultimately no guarantee your jewelry gift is going to hit a home run. Most stores – whether they are online or in the mall – have a return policy. Don’t be afraid to ask your salesperson.

With a little preparation, education and thought, we guarantee buying jewelry will move decidedly from “a little better than a root canal” to “right up there with no calorie ice cream and winning the lottery”.

Happy Shopping!

P.S. We want to hear from you! Tell us your own shopping success – or horror – stories. Are there tips we’ve missed? Share the wealth!

The Jewelry Insider

August 11, 2008

Botox, collagen and rare earth facial masks are so 2007. Today’s taut and trimmed are obsessed with wrinkle busters that can be found in your jewelry box, not the hidden mud pods of the Amazon. Yup, the trendiest facelifts and facials today use gold and gemstones to wipe away those wrinkles. Confused? Here’s all you need to know:

Gold Thread Facelift:

The newest treatment on the market is the gold thread facelift. According to Trendhunter Magazine, “the patient remains awake as a 24 karat gold thread framework is sewn permanently under the surface of the skin. The only painkiller used is dozens of local anesthetic injections applied to the face.” Dozens? Ouch. The gold mesh stimulates the body’s own production of collagen, which in turn plumps up the skin naturally. The procedure costs approximately $4,000 and takes about three months to show results.

For those who want instant gratification (or if needles aren’t your thing), you can settle for a liquid gold facial. UMO, a Japanese beauty company, introduced a treatment that uses a sheet of pure gold on the face to improve fine lines and wrinkles. The procedure will set you back a more ‘reasonable’ $250.

Gemstone Facial Treatment

Acugems Facial Rejuve has another glittering solution for younger looking skin. Their therapy involves the use of gemstones, micro-currents and therapeutic light to re-educate facial muscles, encourage collagen production, smooth wrinkles and improve skin tone. The stones and color frequencies used depend on the individual consumer. They recommend 10 treatments for lasting results for a total cost of about $2500.

Micro currents and color frequencies? Seems a little flighty even for this jewelry hound. I say stick to the gemstones you can wear with a cocktail dress, get a big bottle of Cetaphil and call it a day.