Happy birthday August babies! Your month has 2 birthstones, peridot and spinel.
Peridot is a gem-quality transparent variety of olivine, a mineral composed of magnesium-iron silicates. Peridot is one of the few gemstones that exists in only one colour; a distinctive signature lime green. Spinel is a bright red colour very similar to a Ruby, so much so that they are often confused with one another.
Centuries ago, Sanskrit writings referred to Spinel as the daughter of ruby. Spinels are actually more rare than ruby but, unlike ruby, they sometimes can be found in very large sizes.
In addition to beautiful rich reds, Spinel can be found in shades of orange and beautiful pastel pink, as well as purple. Of particular interest is a vivid, hot pink with a tinge of orange that is mined in Burma, which is one of the most spectacular gemstone colours and unlike any other gem.
Believed to protect the owner from harm, to reconcile differences, and to soothe away sadness. Spinel also comes in beautiful blues, but these are extremely rare. Needless to say, I haven't had the pleasure of working with them!
Faceted Spinel found via geology.com
Peridot however, is more readily available and I have used it in a few of my designs. A beautiful green which can vary from a bright lime to a softer yellowy tone but can also be found in a dark green tone which is often mistaken for Emerald.
Although less expensive than Emerald Peridot is considered a precious stone and depending on the exact shade of green can be expensive. It is quite popular in modern jewellery.
Today, most Peridot comes from Arizona but it is also found in China, Myanmar, and Pakistan. Peridot gemstones smaller than three carats are very common but gemstones over five carats are rare and therefore have a higher value. Peridot in 10 to 15 carats are even more rare, but provide a big and bold look for an affordable price.
When presented as a gift, Peridot is said to bring the wearer magical powers and healing properties to protect against nightmares. It is also said to instill power, and influence through the wearing of the gemstone.
Most of my standard designs could be made with peridot. I tend to use tourmaline as I prefer it's colour but this is still a lovely stone and perfect for this time of year.