With color and sparkle for every occasion, this soft stone is known for the wonderful way it seems to play with the light to exhibit a number of different images based on changes to that light. The overwhelming majority of Opal comes from Australia, notably South Australia and New South Wales. Its frailty is due to its water content and cutters need to take care in producing the wonderful pieces of Opal jewelry.
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You have many alternatives such as earrings, rings, pendants and brooches. In dry climates they may actually crack so keeping your opals moist in some way, a damp cloth within a plastic bag, is a wise precaution. Regular wear certainly helps preserve its color and quality with exposure to anything but the driest of air.
Color, clarity and cut
Few gemstones come in such a rich variety of colors ranging from white right through to black. Every stone however can show the colors of the rainbow as the light is diffracted within the stone. Tiny pieces of silica within the gemstone bend the light to produce a magical effect. You can buy an opal which will look different every time you wear it.
It needs particular care and it is wise if you clean it with a soft cloth every time you take your Opal jewelry off.
It is such a versatile stone that you really can get any base color you require. The value of your Opal gemstone jewelry is dependent on the base color, its transparency and the effect it produces. You may find your own favorite to be relatively inexpensive as its appeal is subjective.
The huge variety of Opal makes your adventure into this gemstone fun. Wood Opal, Honey Opal, Fire Opal, Angel skin Opal, Harlequin Opal and Boulder Opal each provide a picture for you of the color of the stone or the effect it may reveal. As the birthstone of October it is a must for your jewelry box if you were born in that month.
It even has a descriptive word, opaque which describes its common property.
Opal is seen at its most impressive at dawn and dusk, particularly in its round or oval form which is one of the most common cuts. Fire opal, an orange red variety from Mexico is often faceted. The other common cut is cabochon.
Perhaps 95% of Opals comes from Australia with smaller deposits Mexico, Brazil, Central America, USA and Japan. It is with Australia it is largely associated and this October birthstone is the gemstone of Australia.
The Aborigines believe that God came down to Earth on a rainbow to promote peace and where he touched down, the stones began to sparkle. Thai is the origin of Opal.
The name Opal however comes from Sanskrit ‘upala’ valuable stone. It was a stone known to the Romans, ‘opalus’ meaning stone from several elements. The Romans thought it combined the various elements of color and sparkle from several precious gemstones.
Opal was thought to have healing properties much the same as many other gemstones. It promotes happiness and fends off depression.
Opal is available in any color you want. The different effects that light through an opal portrays may make your friends think you have a jewelry box full of this wonderful gemstone.