Friday, May 4, 2012

Gemstone of the Week: Tuquoise

(Image from Nevada-Outback-Gems)

Turquoise is a beautiful gemstone.  It's one of the possible birthstones of December, and is also the 11th anniversary stone. Turquoise has been used in jewelry and other decorations for centuries.  While most often people think of Turquoise as only being blue, it can also be green in colour.  Much of the Turquoise on the market will be seen with dark veining in it; this veining is the matrix rock that the Turquoise was found in.  Personally, I think it adds to the beauty of the rock, but the most valuable Turquoise is that with little to no veining. It is very common for Turquoise to be treated to improve the colour so unless a reputable and knowledgeable dealer writes on the receipt that it is untreated Turquoise, assume that it has been treated in some way.  Be careful when cleaning Turquoise as it is a relatively soft stone.  Clean it with warm soapy water and never with ultrasonics, steamers, chemicals, or heat.  Turquoise generally ranges from $1 to a few hundred per stone.  The value has gone down some due to large amounts of low-grade Turquoise jewelry on the market.

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