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October’s Birthstone Jewelry
All About the Opal BirthstonePeople with an October birthday and opal birthstone should consider themselves quite lucky when it comes to birthstones. October’s birthstone is the eye-catching and pearlescent opal. The stone dazzles in a wide array of jewelry types and settings. You can beset it with sparkly diamonds or feature it alone in a statement piece.
What Color is October Birthstone Jewelry?Black opal is the rarest color of the October birthstone. Experts consider green and grey to be the most common types. Precious opal stands out due to its blue, yellow, and pink iridescence as it catches the light.
Silica chips naturally found in the gemstone refract light, causing it to bounce off in brilliant colors. These can range from cool tones like blue to fiery tones like orange depending on the light source. However, common opals (a.k.a. “potch”) do not have this same iridescent quality.
What is Opal Made of?As with most gemstones, pressure, minerals and time help form these gorgeous stones when not created by humans. When water runs downward through the earth, it carries silica deposits from local stone such as sandstone with it.
This silica-rich slurry mixes with natural items like fossils until the water evaporates. It then leaves a silica deposit behind and, after many repetitions of this process, an opal is created.
Are Opals Rare?Opals often have unique patterns to them. In fact, no two stones truly have the same pattern. October birthstones with rarer patterns often carry higher price tags. Experts consider the Harlequin pattern, for instance, to be the rarest pattern. It features a broad mosaic pattern that casts close-set and angular colors.
History and Meaning of the Opal BirthstoneThroughout history, people revered opals for their value and rarity. In Europe, many associated the gem with royalty. The Bedouins thought that opals fell from the sky during thunderstorms with lightning in them.
Many people today associate opals with truth, purity and hope. Some also believe that, as it can pick up light, the gem also picks up feelings and thoughts, too. The October birthstone can also be given as a gift for a 14th wedding anniversary.
Explorers discovered a large area with many deposits in Australia in the 19th century. Before that, many considered Červenica, Slovakia to be the only source of the October birthstone. People have been synthesizing opal in labs since the 1970s, as well.
Opal CleaningOn the Mohs Scale, the October gemstone rates a 5 to 6.5. This means that harder stones such as emeralds, diamonds, sapphires and rubies can all scratch opals. High heat can cause opals to weaken or fracture. Avoid wearing this jewelry in wet conditions, such as swimming or showering.
Gently clean opals with soapy warm water and a soft cloth. Avoid steam, ultrasonic cleaners, wax, plastic and oil when cleaning this gemstone.
Shop October Birthstone JewelryBrowse online to see our wide selection of October birthstone jewelry. You'll find opal necklaces, earrings, bracelets and more. If you need help finding the perfect opal birthstone, stop by a Jared store near you to shop.
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