alternative birthstone

When people think of white stones (meaning clear colorless stones) you often think of diamonds.  For many years diamonds were the stone that went into every wedding ring.   It was just a couple of years ago that De Beers was telling all young couples they should be spending 3 months salary on a white diamond for their wedding ring.  We look at that in today's world and it seems so stupid.  Why should a big company be telling couples how much they should be spending to get married, and why would you listen to a big corporation anyway!  Many young people still love colorless gemstones (of which diamond is still one), but there is a whole host of options that allow couples to express themselves in all sorts of new ways.  They can pick a colorless gem that reminds them of some special place they traveled together, or the state where they grew up, or even a colorless version of their birthstone.  Many young couples have freed themselves of the belief that they have to select a diamond to get married, or to show their love for another person and because of this, there is a whole array of colorless natural gemstones available today.  

What are some to the options for white, colorless gems?  There are beautiful white and near white sapphire, lustrous white beryl (these are colorless version of emerald and aquamarine), and large white quartz, which is the white version of amethyst and citrine.  Years ago people thought of white zircons as imitation diamonds because of their very high brilliance, but in reality they are a beautiful gemstone in their own right.  Then you will see near colorless tourmaline and grossular garnets, as well as more unusual stones like white faceted opal mined in the state of Oregon.  There is another type of white stone that is cut in the shape of little gumdrops, which are white star sapphire and white moonstones.  So today there is a whole array of colorless or white gems to choose from.  Find what speaks to you and your special commitment, and it will make a beautiful, meaningful piece of jewelry.

When you are thinking of this special piece of jewelry and you want to consider white stones, you want to also think of how it will be ware.  Diamond is a very hard and durable stone, but so is white sapphire and colorless beryl (again, think the colorless version of emerald).  All these varieties of white gems are used in jewelry every day, but when planning, try to think of just how it will be worn and how rough you might be on your jewelry.  Obviously earrings, pendants and necklaces get a lot less wear, so less of an issue there, where rings will have more potential issues.  We had one jeweler that worked with a customer who just had to have a citrine (the yellow version of white quartz) in her wedding ring.  The jeweler said they could make a truly beautiful engagement ring with citrine, but over the years it could get damaged, so as part of the wedding set why not purchase 3 identical stones.  So if one were ever damaged one of the other gems could be put in its place.  In the mean time the other two would make a beautiful set of earrings to go with the ring. 

Today many customers are thinking about their jewelry a little differently.  Yes as heirlooms, but they must mean something very personal too.  There are many colorless, or colored gems that can bring this special emotion.  So be adventurous, and fall in love with all the beautiful options that are out there.  It is a big wide world and there are more ways to express your self and your love than ever before.