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Gemstones A

Agate gemstones Bamboo Agate Black Agate Blue Lace Agate
Botswana Agate Fossil Agate Green Agate Moss Agate
Red Agate Striped Agate Tree Agate White Agate
Wooden Agate Fire Crackle Agate Amazonite Amethyst
Angelite Apatite Aquamarine Aragonite

Agate is a banded multicolored, variety of Chalcedony, and belongs in the Quartz family. These gemstones come with a huge variety of colors and patterns, and are very popular stones, cherished for their beauty and uniqueness. To bring out its charm and lovely patterns, it has to be polished. Some varieties are dyed or/and heated as well for enhancement. Unpolished Agate may appear dull and boring. Agates are durable stones, with a hardness of 6,5-7 on The Mohs hardness scale

Bamboo Agate
This agate is named for its bamboo-like inclusions. It is a rather new agate on the market. It has a beautiful blend of earth tones in distinctive patterns, which is more prominent in larger beads. It ranges from translucent to opaque.

Black Agate
Black Agate is dyed to obtain its beautiful coloring and lively patterns. Un-dyed it normally appears gray. Details of how it is dyed are a commercial secret, but some believe sugar and sulfuric acid is used in the process. It has beautiful banding and deep, dark and rich tones of brown, black and beige. It is a low price stone, and easy to come by, so do not hesitate using it in your jewelry designs.

Blue Lace Agate
This really is a beautiful stone, with lovely banding of light blue, light purple to purplish blue and white. It brings out the thought of clouds in the sky, with its wavy patterns. This semi precious stone needs no treatments, except polishing. Blue lace Agate is beautiful with silver. Try it with a black stone, like Onyx, or with its opponent on the color wheel, Carnelian. This is a stone with many opportunities.

Botswana Agate
Gorgeously laced with contrasting patterns in black, pink, brown, gray, white and occasionally rust, this gem is placed very high on my favorite gemstone list. It is beautiful in its natural state and has no need for enhancement, other than polishing. Botswana Agate gives a nice pastel-like look to your jewelry.

Botswana Agates are sourced in Botswana, hence the name. Because of their soft and silky colors these gemstones are beautiful with silver. Use them to enhance other pastel colored or white stones, or give them a more contrasted appearance with darker beads or gems in browns, black and rust.

Fossil Agate
This is a old and dignified looking stone, with its gray color and swirls of white and pink. It contains fossil inclusions, made of shell imbedded in mud. Its interesting patterns and coloration looks very nice when used with shell or corals.

Green Agate
This is a beautiful translucent green stone. It is dyed to display variegated color saturation, making each bead unique. It range from almost milky or cloudy white-green to dark emerald and blue-green. It is said to be used in jewelry by the Egyptians about 3000 years ago. Ideal for long-wearing designs, because of its hardness. Try it with copper or brass, or combine it with gems or beads ranging from blue to orange.

Moss Agate
Think of a crystal clear river where small bits of moss floats under the surface. Moss Agate is semi translucent to translucent and has beautiful green shades from sea green to dark forest green, mixed with gray, cream and occasionally mustard yellow. This is a gem that expresses tranquility. Moss Agate needs no treatment or enhancement other than polishing.

Red Agate

Red Agate is dyed and heat treated to enhance its natural color and vivid banding. It ranges from translucent to opaque, and its colors from almost white to warm red and red-orange hues. It is very durable and is perfect for long wearing jewelry. It looks beautiful with other Agates, like Black- and White Agate. Golden beads are lovely with its rich reddish colors.

Striped Agate
Striped Agate has banding from black, rich brown to cream and white. It comes natural, but also dyed black, red or gray to give it different appearances. It is quite similar to Botswana Agate, but is more faded in color. It polishes to a beautiful sheen. It ranges from translucent to opaque in its bands, which make each bead unique.

Tree Agate
Tree Agate is the opaque version of Moss Agate, and is also called Dendrit Agate, after the Greek word dendron, which means tree. This gemstone has an opaque white base, and has green and occasionally brown inclusions that resembles what you see when you look up at the sky through the leaves of the trees in a forest. It gives a cool, dignified impression and is a lovely accent to other green gems or large silver beads.

White Agate

This semi-precious stone really is white as snow. It has soft banding of semi translucent to opaque with occasionally brown and cream inclusions. The gem has a wonderful luster. Try mixing it with black for a Yin and Yang effect.

Wooden Agate
Ranging from cream and rusty gold to deep mocca brown, this is a lovely warm colored stone, that resembles teak in coloration. Its banding is not prominent and it is not dyed or enhanced other than polished. It is perfect for warm, earthy toned jewelry.

Fire Crackle Agate
Man made through coloring and heating, these beads are truly amazing. You can get them in several colors, but the red-brown or light orange and gray-white are the most common. They are natural Agate, colored with Umber and then heated to produce the crackle effect. The white inclusions are man made, permanent surface additive. When I look at them I cant help thinking about giraffes.

This is a truly beautiful stone with pastel blue-green colors. Think of a crashing ocean wave. It is cool and refreshing, needs no enhancement or treatments other than polishing. When polished it does not get very shiny, but has a dignified toned down silkiness.

It is gorgeous when pure without inclusions, but gives a more lively appearance when it is contrasted with brown and black matrix. It ranges from opaque to translucent and sometimes has an iridescent luster. Amazonite is a very durable gemstone and has a hardness of 6-71/2 on the Mohs scale.

Match it with gemstones in creamy and dark brown, like black Agate or wood Agate, or with tigereye. It is truly gorgeous when used with mocca colored Swarovski crystals.

I am particular fond of Amethysts. They have the most lovely dark to pastel purple. Its transparent to translucent appearance gives it a clear and clean look of elegance. Amethyst is a very popular and common gemstone. It is inexpensive except from pure, medium to dark purple colored stones with great clarity. But its beauty makes them worth the price. It is very durable with a hardness of 7 on the Mohs scale, but may fade if exposed to light over for longer periods.

Because of its spectacular purple color, other purple gemstones cannot match its beauty. What makes the stone less expensive is the fact that it is easy to come buy. It is mined around the world. Stones from Guerrero Mexico are the most valuable Amethysts in the world. They come with a dark purple interior and a clear or white Quartz exterior. Amethyst is particular beautiful if used with white or cream pearls.

Angelite is also known as Anhydrite, and is its lilac-blue variety. It is called Angelite for its “angelic” color. It has a hardness of 3–31/2 on the Mohs scale, which means that it is quite soft. You should therefore avoid using it in jewelry that will be used a lot, since it scratches easily. It will also be wise to wrap it if it is kept with other jewelry.

Some say that it it will convert to Gypsum if it is immersed in water, Anhydrite means in Greek “waterless” because it does not contain water (in contrast to Gypsum which do contain it). So you should probably not use it while bathing or swimming.

Apatite is a transparent to translucent gemstone most known for its beautiful green-blue color, but it also comes in colorless, white, yellow, brown, red, pink, purple, blue and multicolored. It resemble Amazonite in color and Aquamarin in translucency. It has a hardness of 5 on the Mohs scale. It is therefor prone to scratching, and should be treated accordingly. It's name come from the Greek word “deceive” due to its similarity to more valuable stones like Olivine, Peridot and Beryl.

Chatoyant stones are normally cut as cabochons. It displays an effect like a cat's eye, and is therefore often called Cat's eye Apatite. When transparent it is mostly faceted. The transparent green is also referred to as “Asparagus stone”. When faceted and clear Apatite is relatively expensive.

This is a blue-green variety of Beryl. It's name means in Latin: Water of the sea”, and it really brings out the thought of blue-green tropical seas with it's gorgeous coloration. It varies from faint light blue to bluish-green. When lighter colored Beryl is heated to 750 Fahrenheit it is transformed into Aquamarine. The deeply colored stones are in general heat treated. The deeper blue, the higher the value.

Aquamarine is a relatively common gemstone, and comes at an affordable price. It may fade in prolonged exposure to light. With a hardness of 7 1/2-8, it is a very durable stone, and can be used in jewelry for everyday use.

Aquamarine is often completely flawless. Other stones are sometimes sold as Aquamarine, so if you ever see these names, you know that they are fake:
- Brazilian Aquamarine is actually a blue Topaz.
- Mass Aquamarine is light blue glass.
- Nerchinst Aquamarine is also a blue Topaz.
- Siam Aquamarine is a heat treated blue zircon.

This gemstone has a warm, golden-yellow color, with soft banding and medium translucency. It is also known as Tufa and Tchazar crystal. It was first discovered by the Spanish river Aragone, hence the name.

Aragonite is a fragile gemstone and has a hardness on 3 1/2-4. It should therefore not be used in hard wearing jewelry, and should be protected against blows and scratching. A synthetic resin and acrylic overlay is often applied to protect it from damage.

The gemstone is sought after for its metaphysical properties. It is said to boost self-confidence and self worth, and to diminish anger and relieving stress. It's normally used in its natural color, but is sometimes colored for enhancement. The warm and sunny color is beautiful with rust colored beads or gems.

Aventurine is a sem-itranslucent stone that comes in several colors, like soft green, dark green, silvery, yellow, reddish-brown, greenish-brown, bluish-green and orange. It is distinctive in that it contains inclusions of small crystals that reflects light, like mica flecks. This effect is called aventurescence.
It is an inexpensive and charming stone that has been used in jewelry for centuries. It is also relatively durable with a hardness of 6,5 on the Mohs scale. Combine its green variation with White Jasper for cool and serene jewelry, or with dark Amethyst to strengthen its coloration.

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