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Selecting The Perfect Gemstone

Once reserved for status and royalty, the pleasure and exclusivity of owning a precious gemstone now belongs to you

Found in every colour imaginable, Gemstones have been a part of our culture for centuries. There are many ways of incorporating a gemstone into your ring whether you want it to be the centre of attention or to accentuate another central stone. Current variations on this trend include smaller (melee) gems used on the shoulders of your design or small gems used as a frame such as the ‘halo’ design which will make your centre stone pop.

Gemstones can be used to commemorate special events and milestones such as wedding anniversaries and birthstones for each month of the year.

How Do I Decide On The Perfect Stone?

We at Durham Rose advise that when you’re choosing a gemstone for your dream ring, that you ask yourself these key questions;

  • Which gemstone would suit me best?
  • Which Gemstones are the most durable?  
  • How much do gemstones cost?

Consider your wardrobe, your lifestyle, your personal taste, and your budget. All these factors are hugely important, but often overlooked when deciding on your perfect stone.

Gemstones are typically described in two major ways: “precious” and “semi-precious.” The precious gems include rubies, sapphires, and emeralds. The semi-precious gem category however is a huge parameter and can be simplified as ‘everything else’. There can be a huge price differentiation in the cost of precious and semi-precious gems. Some are very rare and command higher price tags whilst others, however beautiful, are more readily available and easily affordable.

Depending on how you wear your jewellery there are a number of ways to determine which gemstone is right for you. When you are wearing your ring it will come into contact with a variety of surfaces, some of which can damage the gemstone.

The ‘Moh’s Scale of Hardness’ was developed by German Scientist named Friedrich Mohs in 1812 to categorise minerals. The harder a mineral is, the better it will hold up against daily wear and tear and its longevity will significantly outlast that of a softer gemstone.

We at Durham Rose, would normally advise to choose a stone on the scale of around 7 or higher so that it lessens the resistance of scratching and breakage. If you are considerably practical with your jewellery on, we would normally recommend the higher up on the scale the better.

Why Do The Prices Fluctuate So  Much?

There are a few factors which can dramatically influence the way in which a gemstone is priced. This includes the following;

Gem Colour

A gemstone’s colour is described by its natural tone and hue. For many the colour is the most important factor when choosing a gemstone. For most stone types, an intense, heavily saturated colour of medium tone is attributed the highest value. Many gems are enhanced to improve coloration and strength. We guarantee that we only source stones which have been treated in accordance to  industry standards.  

Gem Cut

For the majority of gemstones, an ‘excellent cut’ is rated by the stone’s ability to reflect light, its symmetrical appearance, and the lustre of its polish. A five-tier rating system—excellent, very good, good, fair, or poor—is used to measure the quality of a stone’s cut.  Most gemstones are much deeper if you are comparing it against a diamond. Gemstones need to be cut deeper to help bring out their beautiful vivid colours. If a gemstone was to be cut in the same manner as a Diamond, chances are it would appear light in colour and in some cases they can even look transparent! In summary, your gemstone will then lack those intense dramatic hues that gemstones are renown for.

Gem Clarity

Precious gemstones have some degree of naturally occurring inclusions which can be in the form of a cloud, or crystal. These inclusions can be more prominent in certain stones. Some may argue that it provides the stone with uniqueness and personality.  

High quality gemstones are relatively clear to the naked eye. Gemstones that are entirely clear and contain no inclusions are most likely man made.

Gem Size

A gemstone’s size is described by its millimetre measurements rather than its weight, as different stone compositions can vary in density. Gemstones with larger measurements are generally valued higher than those with smaller measurements. When it comes to shopping for gemstones, forget the ‘Carat Sizes’, and instead look at the millimetre sizes and the intensity of the colour instead.

If you want to compliment your design with a precious or semi-precious stone and don’t know where to start please visit out Gemstone knowledge page or speak to one of our experts.

“Gemstones: Rubies, Emeralds, Sapphires and everything else. Find out more about the accessible rainbow of luxurious gemstones with Durham Rose.”

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Our team and their wealth of experience will seamlessly guide you through the design process and create a unique, one off timeless piece of jewellery.

Get in touch with one of our incredible ring designers

We've trodden the path hundreds of times before so whether you have a clear idea about your requirements or are just looking for more information, let us guide you seamlessly through the journey by getting in touch today.