Some of our newest Le Vian pieces feature a gorgeous, unique gemstone known as Aquaprase—have you ever heard of it? If not, you’re certainly not alone! In fact, Aquaprase has only been on the market for a few years now, and many people have yet to come across it. This stone has a really cool story behind it, and we think it’s worth sharing!
It all started in 2013, when an unusual blue-green stone was discovered by a veteran gem explorer named Yianni Melas. He was certain he had found something new, but controversy ensued as he tried to prove it. After all, the earth has been mined for centuries; most people doubted there could possibly be anything left to discover. Some tried to convince him that he had simply found opal, but he didn’t think it really looked like opal. Others were sure it was chrysoprase (a yellow-green variety of chalcedony), but the stone he found was clearly blue-green.
Initial lab reports said the stone was indeed chrysoprase, but Melas was still not convinced. Certain that the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) could figure it out once and for all, he sent it off to them for analysis. After many months of careful inspection and testing, the GIA verdict came back: it wasn’t chrysoprase afterall—it was a new type of chalcedony! Finally vindicated, Melas dubbed the stone Aquaprase, meaning blue-green in his native Greek.
Ever since, Melas has been devoted to bringing Aquaprase to the marketplace while also ensuring that it’s mined ethically and responsibly. One of the cool things about Aquaprase is that the stone undergoes very minimal processing before being set into a piece of jewelry. Most popular gemstones—like sapphires, rubies and emeralds—are often heat-treated, oiled, dyed, and/or stabilized before being sold. Not so with Aquaprase! It’s about as natural as a gemstone can be, yet it’s strong, durable, and its captivating color never fades!
Take a look at more of our Le Vian Aquaprase pieces online here or stop by one of our stores to see this new fascinating gemstone in person! We think you’ll love it as much as we do!
Add some sparkle to her life with a ring! If you’re looking for a bargain, look for sterling silver and gold-plated rings. If you’re looking for a classic treasure, check out our selection gold rings like this one.
There’s no denying that luxury brands like Rolex and TAG Heuer are worthy of their legendary reputations. Not only are they known as phenomenal timepieces, but also as bastions of timeless design and limitless innovation. Because of these facts, luxury watches are often swept off the market as soon as they appear, disappearing into private collections and onto to the arms of those who appreciate the finest craftsmanship, never to be made again. But did you know that we buy and sell luxury pre-owned watches, both vintage and like-new?
Rolex, TAG Heuer, Breitling, and Frederique Constant are just a few of the famous brands you’ll find in our luxury pre-owned collection in-store and online. When you buy a pre-owned watch from us, you can be sure you’re not only getting an authentic piece, but also that it’s been fully inspected and serviced by the experts at our repair center. If you sell your pre-owned watch to us, you can be sure you’re getting the fairest price for your timepiece.
So if you’re looking for a luxury timepiece or have one you’d like to part with, come to us! Our collection is always changing, so if you don’t immediately see something you like, check back or let us know precisely what you’re looking for—we can always keep an eye out and contact you when we find it!
For December birthdays, there are three amazing gemstones to choose from. Traditionally, the blue variety of tanzanite, turquoise and zircon have been chosen for December, but there are actually many different hues and shades available for each. Let’s take a look at these three stones and see which one is right for you or that special someone!
This amazing stone—ranging from true blue to grassy green—has been treasured for thousands of years, everywhere from Ancient Egypt to Native America. Carved, polished and worn as adornments, this gem was considered to bring good health and good fortune to those who possessed it.
Unlike many popular gemstones, turquoise is often totally opaque and can feature black or brown veining (called matrix). Matrix designs show mother nature’s hand at work, giving these pieces of turquoise a one-of-a-kind look.
Turquoise has been mined all over the world—from the hills of Iran to the mountains of China to the American Southwest—and is rated between 5 and 6 on the Mohs scale of hardness. It’s relative softness is precisely what made this stone so perfect for intricate carving, but a little extra care is in order to maintain its beauty.
Like most fine jewelry, you’d want to remove turquoise before doing housework or gardening, but you want to be careful when you clean the stone too. For example, you should never clean turquoise jewelry with an ultrasonic cleaner or steamer. High heat can damage and discolor the stone, so it’s best to stick with warm soapy water. Luckily, that’s easy to do at home!
Most gemstones have been objects of fascination for thousands of years—but did you know that tanzanite was discovered in the 20th century? Found in the 1960s, this stunning gem was named after its place of origin: Tanzania, where it continues to be mined exclusively.
With velvety hues ranging from rich blue to pale violet, tanzanite ranks between 6 and 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness. That means some extra care is needed when handling and cleaning this precious gem. Like turquoise, ultrasonic cleaners and steamers should not be used on tanzanite, as high heat and damage or even crack the stone.
Earrings and pendants are very popular settings because they can shield tanzanite from abrasion. However, if you’d love to have a tanzanite ring, try to find one with a protective setting—like the bezel-style ring above. These settings will give you extra peace of mind and help keep the stone in stunning condition.
Zircon has long been associated with good health and was even thought to promote deep sleep. This stone can be found in a rainbow of hues or even be completely colorless. In fact, colorless zircon is so stunning that it’s often been mistaken for a diamond! However, zircon should not be confused with cubic zirconia (a synthetic stone sometimes used as a diamond simulant).
Unlike cubic zirconia, zircon occurs naturally and can be found in Sri Lanka and Australia. In fact, zircon is earth’s oldest mineral! It ranks between 6.5 and 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness, and like December’s other birthstones, you should handle it with a bit of extra care. If set into earrings or a pendant, zircon should be quite safe for daily wear, but you’d want to take a zircon ring off before working with your hands.
When it comes to cleaning the stone, you shouldn’t use ultrasonic cleaners or steamers. Not only can high heat damage zircon, but it can also change its color! As always, warm soapy water is an easy, safe way to keep this gem sparkling.
So, there you have it—December’s three amazing birthstones! Why not browse our collection of jewelry featuring these gems online or in our stores? We hope to see you soon!