The gemstone with the most amazing range of colours, even an incomparable variety of colours to all others including families is the Tourmaline and therefore it is the one gem that suits every taste, mood, colour preference, and even skin tone to give everyone on earth his or her own unique gemstone because no two Tourmaline with their endless colour variations and nuances of the same colour are exactly alike.
The Tourmaline’s colour spectrum is so varied, in fact, that it surpasses that of all other gemstones and has earned it the titles of the Miracle Stone and the Gemstone of the Rainbow.
It is an ancient stone, having been known and used as gemstones as far back as the 16th century and legend has it that it was a favourite of Tzu Hsi, the Chinese Qing Dynasty Dowager Empress who, being fond of pink and red, had them set in headdresses and other decorative items. Also, in the Russian Crown Jewels a large, vivid red Tourmaline adorns the 1730 Anna Ioannovna Crown.
But not until the late 1800s, was the Green Tourmaline discovered in a Maine (U.S.A.) mine by George Kunz, an American gem and mineral collector, who then introduced it to Tiffany & Co thereby sparking an interest in the beautiful new find and securing its place in the mainstream jewellery market.
This remarkable gemstone runs the whole gamut of the colour spectrum from colourless to black and all the colours in between as well as different shades and tones of those colours. Most Tourmalines, however, exhibit two or more colours or two or more tones of the same colour in a single stone. Impurities within the stone also cause different colours, e.g. manganese will colour the stone brown, yellow, pink and/or red; lithium can create just about every colour including red, blue, green, yellow and pink; chromium will result in the rare extraordinarily beautiful emerald-green chrome Tourmaline; while iron and titanium together create greenish to bluish-black colours.
As well, though, the Tourmaline is a colour-change stone like a kaleidoscope of colours that shift and change with subtle movement or light source. Even the smallest change can cause completely different colours. Two particularly beautiful Tournalines are the Dusty Rose variety from Mozambique and the Seagreen Foam from Afghanistan but the unequivocal highlight of the Tourmalines (my favourite as well) is the is the Paraiba Tourmaline, so named for the Brazilian state where it was first discovered in 1987. Its electrifying colours of a mesmerising bluish-green or greenish-blue (however you see it) truly are an eye candy experience.
Tourmalines are found all over the world including Afghanistan, Brazil, Sri Lanka, South Africa, West Africa, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Nigeria, Kenya, Pakistan, Mozambique, California and Maine. Such abundance though does not always mean good quality, fine colours, and affordability because they are as varied or as broad as the spectrum of the Tourmaline’s colours, which is why I recommend you speak to Joe or Monika at LL Private Jewellers for their expert opinion if you’re considering buying a Tourmaline gemstone.
For more information about Tourmaline please contact LL Private Jewellers at 604-683-3918.