Alexandrite is one of several gemstones traditionally coupled to the month of June as it’s birthstone. Alexandrite is a strongly pleochroic gem, which means it can show different colors when viewed from different directions. This gemstone is a very rare variety of the mineral chrysoberyl. Its chameleon-like quality arises from the way this particular mineral absorbs and reflects light. Alexandrite has been cherished throughout history for its extraordinary and mysterious attributes.
Alexandrite’s most desirable color is a green to bluish-green hue in daylight with a strong color change to a red to purplish-red hue in incandescent indoor light. A fine quality gemstone with these saturated color and strong color change is relatively rare. Most natural alexandrite found today will be yellowish-green in daylight and change to a brownish-red in incandescent light. The gemstone owes its intense color change ability to the mineral’s unusual light-absorbing properties, and the presence of chromium in its crystal structure. Alexandrite’s dramatic green to red color change is sometimes described as “emerald by day, ruby by night.”
Listed below are the locations where alexandrite naturally occurs and is mined to be transformed into beautifully faceted gemstones.
- Brazil – A relatively new mining location for the rare gemstone, Brazil became an important new alexandrite source in the late 1980s and early 1990s.
- Tanzania – Gem miners in Tanzania find alexandrites, sapphires, and occasionally diamonds on the banks of the Muhuwesi River, near Tunduru.
- Madagascar – Alexandrite rough mined in Madagascar often displays intense color and color change.
- Sri Lanka – Sri Lanka is home to a wide variety of colored stones, but alexandrite is one of the most desirable gems to be mined in this location.
- Russia – Large alexandrite deposits were first discovered in Russia’s Ural Mountains in 1830. Russia is considered the most traditional source of the gemstone. The first alexandrites found in those deposits were of fine quality with intense hues and extreme color change. The gem was named for the young Alexander II, heir to the throne when the discovery was made. These mines did not last forever, and we must now rely on other sources for alexandrite. Though some claim that there will never be as fine of quality as the first gems found in Russia.
If you are lucky enough to hold the very rare and extremely attractive alexandrite as your birthstone, let us at Knox Jewelers help you custom create a one-of-a-kind piece to showcase this beautiful vibrant color-changing gemstone. Fine alexandrite is available, but extremely rare. To remedy this, several labs in present day can produce lab-grown stones with the same chemical and physical properties as natural alexandrite. If a you have any questions regarding lab created alexandrite, we would be more than happy to assist. Any custom piece of jewelry could be tailored to incorporate this remarkable birthstone. The possibility are endless with such a curious and colorful mineral. A Knox Jewelers custom created piece, featuring a beautiful alexandrite is the perfect way to celebrate any occasion falling within the month. Contact us today and let’s get started. We can always search our cutters’ inventory for your perfect gemstone, or we have a selection of alexandrites already available just waiting to be transformed!
All gemstones have unique features that make them ideal centerpieces for jewelry. The alexandrite’s ability to absorb light earns it the tag of chameleon of the jewelry jungle. It can be a lovely shade of green in the bright light of day before magically turning to brown or purple in incandescent light. The alexandrite effect is such a fascinating phenomenon. It makes the gemstone a much desired piece because you could have an emerald by day and a ruby by night. Another fascinating feature of the alexandrite is that you see a different color depending on how you look at it. The main pleochroic colors include purple-red, orange and green, which arise from this gem’s unique light absorbing abilities.
Alexandrite’s Colorful History
This gem was discovered in the Ural Mountains of Russia, borrowing its name from heir apparent to the throne at that time, Alexander II. The stone was close to people’s hearts owing to the red and green colors that resemble the imperial flag of Russia. These gems were so beautiful and revered that even today they still remain the standard by which they judge quality. The first Russian alexandrites displayed vivid hues but with the current depletion of Ural mountain deposits, the rare gem can now be found in East Africa, Brazil, and Sri Lanka. The alexandrite found in other parts of the world is still beautiful but some display muddy hues, a fact that raises questions about its purity.
The Gem of June
The rare stone is also a June birthstone together with pearls and moonstone. Due to the rarity of alexandrite it is easier to combine it with other stones and precious metals to create the perfect birthstone jewelry. If you fancy this member of the chrysoberyl family, you can consult with any of the staff at Knox Jewelers to create a custom piece using this magical mineral. Such jewelry is ideal for people who were born in June as it is one of the stones associated to that period on the zodiac. This means that the stone has mystical, empowering and cosmetic abilities if worn by the right people. Legends have it that wearing your birthstone brings good tidings and keeps away evil spirits. We chose to work with the best gem cutters globally to maintain the high standards of the alexandrite. Knox provides master craftsmanship on every heirloom quality engagement ring or fashion piece. Alexandrite jewelry is suitable for many occasions thanks to its ability to change hue depending on light and its mineral hardness. Alexandrite is one of the hardest minerals after diamond and sapphire with a MOHS rating of 8.5. This means your custom jewelry can be worn for years to come.
Custom Creating Your Dream Birthstone Jewelry
The skillful artisans at Knox Jewelers can make you anything from wedding bands, custom engagement rings, or other pieces bearing the beauty of the lovely alexandrite. The pieces are individually crafted and they come with our lifetime warranty as Knox uses the best practices to give you jewelry that will last a lifetime. If you have a party, wedding, engagement or special event that warrants presentation of a ring, choose the unique alexandrite . Knox jewelers will create a piece of art worthy to hold such a rare and spectacular stone. Knox has surely brought the world a new way to enjoy precious stones and you can wear yours everyday. Do not wait any longer to become the owner of one stunning alexandrite ring, come to Knox where all your wishes will be artistically delivered by the most skillful craftsmen who have been at it for years. Get in touch with us today and we can start the custom creation process with you. If you want to stand out from the crowd, it is certainly time to invest in the magnificent and spellbinding alexandrite jewelry.