Gemstones have been sought after and treasured throughout history. They have been found in ruins dating several thousand years. Ideally, the price of gemstones is determined by: size, cut, quality and type.
Here are some questions to keep in mind to ask the jeweller or manufacturer while buying gemstones:
Is it treated? Is the stone natural or synthetic? Are there noticeable scratches or chips? Is the colour levelled throughout the stone? How good is the colour? Are the stones well-matched if they are being bought to create matching sets?
The buyer can ask questions and look for treatments like:
Irradiation: Stones like Aquamarine, London Blue Topaz, Emerald, and Diamond etc. are common to be irradiated. This treatment brings out colour and removes imperfections.
Heat Treatment: Stones like Amethyst, Aquamarine, Ruby, Tanzanite and Topaz are often heated at high temperatures to enhance their colour.
Dye: One of the most common treatment used. Dye may be visible in cracks on clear stones that are darker than the rest of the stone. Sometimes it may appear as residue that rubs off or white patches. Lapis Lazuli and Rose Quartz are normally dyed. Amethyst and Citrine are often dyed. Whereas, Black Onyx is permanently dyed in normal processing.
Coatings: Jasper is often dipped in petroleum products to bring out colour and to seal it. Emerald is oiled; turquoise is waxed.
Fake stones: There is an influx of fake gemstones too and the dealers may not be upfront about it. If a stone looks too perfect it may be fake, irradiated or dyed. Avoid laboratory made products as they are synthetic.
Gemstones are pretty to look at and are sought-after by the collectors. As students of jewellery design it is important to understand that whether while dealing with gemstones or purchasing for your design, be aware about you are offering and being offered. Knowledge of natural gemstones and synthetic gemstones helps not just you but also in your profession. The 1year Diploma in Fine Jewellery Design offered at one of the best jewellery designing institutes in Bangalore will provide insights into the various kinds of gemstones available in the market.
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