Ah yes, the purple stone. Amethyst, the birthstone for February got its name from the Greek word “amethystos” which means “not drunken”. Amethyst was suppose to ward off the intoxicating powers of Bacchus which is why wineglasses were often carved from it. Amethyst is also the purple variety of quartz family. Historically, the finest amethyst were found in Russia.
Garnet, the January birthstone, is in my opinion, underappreciated. Garnet derived its name from the Latin word granatus, meaning like a grain, which refers to the mode of occurrence where crystals resemble grains or seeds embedded in the matrix. The name is also thought to be derived from the pomegranate fruit because some garnet crystals bear a resemblance to pomegranate seeds. Believe it or not, garnet displays the greatest variety of color of any mineral, occurring in every color except blue. Garnets can sometimes exhibit optical phenomena such as asterism (a star shaped pattern of reflections), chatoyancy (a “cat’s eye” seen in reflected light), or a color change when viewed under different types of lighting.
As the majority of the country heads into cooler temperatures of late fall/early winter, November’s OTHER birthstone, citrine, provides a much needed burst of sunshine. The warm, sunny color of this popular gemstone inspired its name, derived from the French word “citron,” meaning “lemon”. If you missed my post on topaz, the other November birthstone, read about it here.
Here is an important groundbreaking fact about opals, they are the birthstone of October babies! Are you an October baby?
Opal is a mesmerizing gemstone, it is easy to become lost in the complex play of color of each unique stone. Each opal varies widely in appearance and quality. Each opal is as diverse as a snowflake or a fingerprint.
Sizzling red hot ruby!!! Could there be any better gemstone for a July birthday?
Rubies arouse the senses, stir the imagination, and are said to guarantee health, wisdom, wealth and success in love. It is harder than any natural gemstone except diamond, which means a ruby is a perfect stone for everyday wear.
James de Givenchy operating under the name of his firm Taffin, is creating the most impressive contemporary jewelry anywhere in the world. Givenchy’s use of gemstones and unexpected materials take his jewelry into the next century. He is quite simply, the master of design. De Givenchy grew up in Beauvais, France, a suburb of Paris where the Parfums Givenchy has its factory. Yes, he is from that family. His Father, Jean Claude Taffin de Givenchy and his uncle, Hubert James Marcel Taffin de Givenchy, (the famous fashion designer) were both born there. Taffin as you can see, is a family name.