Best blue in the house goes to Namibia, droplet of color#1148

A droplet of color with the best blue in the collection. This medium rich toned blue is Namibian. It is a GEM and the best blue in the collection. It is a proud member of the droplets of .90 carats.

Now it is the policy of the house is that the judging of color be done without regard to size, cleanliness or country of origin.  This standard round brilliant won the coveted title of best blue on its own merits.

Gone are the days when my principle dealer out of Africa would have separate pages for his regular presentation of blue to blue green Namibian tourmaline.  Now we consumers are luck to get a sprinkling of pieces, many of them small.  One page, on one of the more recent set of pages (2012),  had a number of smaller Namibian blues for sale.  All of the blues definitely had a greenish cast to their bright blue color except the last one.  The last one also looked different than the rest because it was a nodule.  A nodule in the world of tourmaline is formed when the crystal breaks twice, perpendicular to the c axis, with one conchordal fracture in the opposite direction to the other conchordal fracture.  This produces an almost spherical piece of rough.  Many times this is the highest quality tourmaline rough available.  The final difference with the last piece, besides being one of the few still left for sale, was its small size  It was the runt of the litter at only about three and half carats.  And anything under a gram/five carats is getting pretty small for rough to be offered individually.  Still I fell in love with that darker blue runt and brought it  to Mars as soon as I could.

Well I got a little excited by the potential of this darker toned blue when I first saw it.  It definitely was blue and its small size actually work to its advantage. This is because its tone level would have been way too dark for a larger stone, but it was just right for the runt.  There were no problems with cleanliness or cutting and now the .90 carat droplet of color sites at the pinnacle of blue.  An indicolite for the ages, though it a bit sad that it is still a runt.





About Bruce Fry

I was born in Summit, NJ in 1947 and graduated from Summit High School in 1966. I graduated from the Colorado School of Mines in 1970 and after spending another year in graduate school, I left to see the world of Brazil. After spending some more time discovering myself, I ended up working for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for 32 years as an Air Quality Engineer in the Department of Environmental Protection. I retired in 2007 and took up faceting gemstones again after a long hiatus that reached back to my twenties. I had started cutting cabochons when I was 13 and bought my first faceting machine when I was 15, but ran out of money and time until I retired. My great love in gemology is tourmaline and the collection presented here represents my effort to get as much beauty and variety in the colors of tourmaline as I can. I was particularly lucky in being able to get unheated cuprian tourmaline before copper was discovered in gem grade tourmaline from Mozambique.
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