Category Archives: Etc.

All those wonderful tourmaline gemstones that defy classification into a simple structure

Tourmaline as a Cinderella waiting to be discovered is over.

Cinderella as we all know was a beautiful, but under valued person that was discovered by the  prince and  love blossomed.  They lived happily ever after of course. Well I just read  in the latest introduction to a series of … Continue reading

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IVCT, intervalence charge transfer, dichroism in tourmaline.

I was searching threw my papers for tax time, when I ran across a copy of a personal email from George R. Rossman of Rossmanite and Caltech.  I want to quote a paragraph on dichroism in tourmaline from that April … Continue reading

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Gigantic paraiba type gemstones for millions.

I put museum grade tourmaline in the search engine and away I went.  I found two gigantic (around 50 to 60 carats each) faceted tourmalines called “paraiba” because they contain trace elements of copper and manganese and were within a … Continue reading

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Public will not buy included tourmaline!

I just finished reading an email from about a year ago, from a cutter that runs a significant selling site on the internet.  He said that people are looking for a reason not to buy gemstones now and he can … Continue reading

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In the pink, another round for everyone.

I just finished a pink oval from a piece of tourmaline rough from Nigeria.  It turned out to be one of the most fragile pinks I have cut.  And this is from a location that has produced very calm and … Continue reading

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Sing the praises of Paraiba, but not a dime for Mozambique.

This is a different twist on an old familiar tune.  And to start me going I went searching on the inter net by putting in  “tourmaline jewelery”.  It is not a subject that I have a great deal of interest … Continue reading

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More tsaisite in my life?

Just finished a small, about 1/2 carat, oval from a sliver that my friend said was purported to tsaisite.  (1/04/2014) It is the yellow that the trade has come to call tsaisite , but as I have posted before it … Continue reading

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Sea Foam, the neon look, Afghanistan and Paraiba like from Mozambique

The events in the following post really happen yesterday (01/003/2014.  The point of the post has been brought up many times, but I still think it needs to be reinforced because it could cost you money. I have cut a … Continue reading

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A dynamic tidal basin of color, yellow, orange, brown, purple, pink round

It is nice to finish a smaller standard round brilliant of 1.75 carats without having anything to pull my hair out for.  The stone is probably rich in manganese of different valence states and high manganese can lead to a … Continue reading

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It has never been prettier riding the edge of red, oval.#295

This oval has a rather self effacing personality.  She has too high a tone level, with its reddish implications, to be a hot pink and not quite enough size or tone level to be a red.  Still she rides the … Continue reading

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Prized Plume almost did not get baked in my pudding, purple red oval.#293

A large water worn pebble was offered for sale and was not getting any takers.  It has a reddish color with an overtone of purple, but its tone level was dark.  Now I don’t have any of my stone treated … Continue reading

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Mixing yellow and pink for a peach oval.#287

This oval has a tender balance of color that I like to call dynamic.  Depending on the light some tourmalines certainly shift and even change color.  I think that it has not gotten the big play that Alexandrite gets is … Continue reading

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A classic Rubellite, inclusions and all.#285

This oval is a pure Rubellite, a treasure trade name for truly red tourmaline.  It has the inclusions, which in this case make little difference in the appearance of the gemstone.  It has the dark tone level, but in this … Continue reading

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A medium toned purple with significant flaws.#281

This standard round brilliant is typical of the type of cuprian tourmaline that became available after the world was introduced to its beauty.  About half of it is clean and flashy while the rest is so included that it obstructs … Continue reading

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Copper and Manganese made a Lady of Her, round#271

I am not a great believer in luck, but there are times when you’re game plan works out.  My game plan with the collection was not to secure the best investments or even the prettiest tourmaline, but to chase color.  … Continue reading

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Brown, long ratio oval, table perpendicular to principle axis. cuprain #268

I like this oval’s color.  It is the closest to a pure brown in the collection.  I does approach brown from the yellow side, but it has no pretenses of having a fancy name.  It has a nice even color, … Continue reading

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Gold to Green color changer, Dravite the species oval.#300

In my opinion this is a true color changer.  I have run into a few on the inter net, but this is the only one in the collection.  I did not realize that I had a another type of color … Continue reading

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An exceptional, red purple emerald cut with punch.#949

I have not been particularly enamored with many of the purple reds that I have seen.  The purple cast seems to produce an overly dark tone level that limits flash.  Well this emerald cut stands above all that.  It is … Continue reading

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Significantly included, Laurellite, cuprian, round, Mozambique#947

This standard round brilliant has a nice purple color in daylight, but its flash is significantly lessened by it feathers.  I say daylight with the purple, because it is a Laurellite.  Laurellite is a name I gave to a new … Continue reading

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Great blue pink bicolor from Afghanistan.#947

This emerald cut is a beautiful gemstone.  It has a body that is a little over half pink with the remainder blue.  Both pastel colors have a great medium light tone value.   It appears to be eye clean and of … Continue reading

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Included, Oval, Laurellite, Cuprian, Elbaite from Mozambique.#945

This oval was actually the first Laurellite that I cut.  It is not as colorful as her sister #944, since her color change goes from purple to more of a grayed blue, but she set me up to take action … Continue reading

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The Laurellite “discovery” gemstone. Cuprian tourmaline from Mozambique#944

This GEM, exceptional gemstone, started my path in helping discover copper bearing tourmaline from Mozambique.  I gave her, Laurellite, as a name that is based on my older daughter’s name, because this exceptional, new variety of Elbaite, deserves a pretty … Continue reading

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A yellow green bi color that appears to be eye clean, emerald cut.#450

I love this stone.  It is a wonderfully subtle, but effective mixture of about 2/3 medium toned green and 1/3 quite pale yellow.  It is as bright as an emerald cut can be with superior crystal and the complete lack … Continue reading

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slightly included, green powerhouse, emerald cut, Afghanistan#446

Viva La Afghanistan and its tourmaline.  This hunk of an emerald cut is pure tourmaline heaven. Now it is slightly included and I can see those pesky disturbances in the force, deep in this flashing well of green, but it … Continue reading

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This is a GEM, exceptional gemstone, sea foam, emerald cut.#444

Now I knew that this was an exceptional gem, but it was in a different tray than the other sea foams, so I never really compare it with them.  Now, thanks to this effort in posting (2013), I have all … Continue reading

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Hexagonal cut green tourmaline.#422

This gemstone was an experiment in cutting a “hexagonal cut”  in a moderately toned, bluish green tourmaline.  The shape of the gemstone and its crown are the same as an emerald cut, but the pavilion is angled toward a culet.  … Continue reading

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Usambara effect, chrome chromophore, green emerald cut.#420

I will be posting more on the usambara effect in tourmaline, but I will focus more on this specific gemstone in this post. It is always a pleasure to discover something new about tourmaline and then to discover something unexpected … Continue reading

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Lightly included, pastel yellow washed with green, oval. cuprian#419

This is another gemstone that I did not buy as cuprian, but my spectroscope uncovered the proper absorption curves.  It is very clean for a cuprian tourmaline from Mozambique, with only a very few light inclusions that do not effect … Continue reading

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Gray with blue flash round, Mozambique#1185

The purchase of the rough for this standard round brilliant shows a bit more discipline on my part than my earlier days.  The dealer had gotten a lot of a tourmaline with a different color that is never stated.  It … Continue reading

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Chrome green dot of color#1178

This chrome tourmaline has a nice flash driven green color.  It weighs .20 carats. Bruce

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Chrome tourmaline, flash driven green round.#1177

This dark green dot of color has a flash driven green color.  It is called chrome tourmaline despite the fact that it is probably colored by vanadium.  It weighs .20 carats. Bruce

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Dark green chrome dot of color.#1176

This dark green dot of color has some flash driven color.  It is called chrome tourmaline despite the fact that it is probably colored by vanadium.  This standard round brilliant weighs .17 carats. Bruce

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Emerald green dot of color.#1175

This small standard round brilliant is cut from chrome tourmaline.  It has a bit better tone values than the other five green dotes of color on the same tray.  It weighs .20 carats. Bruce

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Chrome green dot of color.#1174

This small dark green, but with good flash, round is called chrome tourmaline.  It has a different feel to it than green Elbaite the most common form of green tourmaline.  This dot of color weighs .16 carats. Bruce

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Green dots before your eyes, chrome dots of color (6)#1173

Dark, but with a very nice flash driven emerald green color.  This chrome tourmaline is one of six rounds that I cut from the last of a dealers inventory.  Chrome tourmaline has a different presence than green Elbaite and you … Continue reading

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Included medium toned pastel blue green oval.#1172

This is one of four ovals that I cut from a large included piece of rough.   I describe the work in another post that discusses the cutting of included rough.  I hope that you would read that for more details … Continue reading

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Really a tourmaline? Purple green bicolor, round.#1168

First of all, cutting a round out of a bicolor is not the “normal” way of bring the best out it.  But the rough was unbalanced and so stubby that to cut an emerald cut would not show the colors … Continue reading

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Exceptional Rubellite Unique to the Collection Round.#1162

Deeply cut bicolor, colorless crown, red pavilion, 6.60 carats. Nice longer ratio emerald cut with bright red c axis, 4.51 carats This is a GEM, an exceptional gemstone.  It has everything including a secret.  But first a question.  How do … Continue reading

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Pink center and blue ends makes a different oval.#1160

A unique gemstone in this collection must have a interesting story.  I cut away a good part of this oval’s story, when I preformed this oval.  It had been a rather flat section of a watermelon tourmaline with a pastel … Continue reading

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An included round from the sea.#1158

This is an old stone that is so included that it sat away from the collection for years.  Still when I was getting the collection in order for this website and photography, I looked it over again.  And I still … Continue reading

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

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. … Continue reading

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Standout Dichroic blue green oval#1141

Most of my later, higher number trays, are a mixture of gems as I cut them and not the ordered field that my son put together after the last Carnegie Museum show.  With the desire to post information about every … Continue reading

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Included pale gray oval#1137

This gemstone is just another little step to cover the world of color in tourmaline.  Its pale gray color is rich enough to keep it from being achroite, but doesn’t give it much life.  It is noticeably include in one … Continue reading

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Summing up the parts, beautiful yellow green shield cut.#1124

With all the difficulty and expense of getting natural tourmaline rough, it makes me wonder sometimes why I just don’t cut synthetic.  I don’t believe in any mystical force of nature or the healing power of natural gemstones, but I … Continue reading

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Classic blue green emerald cut tourmaline.#1118

There, I have brought up the fact,in the title, that this beauty which screams tourmaline when you look at it, is a tourmaline.  I think you may have been surprised by the world of color in tourmaline as you brows … Continue reading

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What can I say, I like even gray, in the color world of this round.#1105

I was once looking threw a list of gemstones and their colors presented by the Gem Institute of America GIA.  I always like to see which colors are not included in the list of colors for tourmaline.  The most notable, … Continue reading

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Apple green, medium toned, oval, Mozambique#1101

This is a beautiful gemstone.  The discovery and production,from a location in Mozambique of apple green rough, from which I recently cut (2012) this stone, appears to have had world wide repercussions.  This is according to a recent article by … Continue reading

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A special pink from Mozambique, cuprian.#49

The story you are about to hear is true and no names  will be mention to protect the innocent if there are any. I had just purchased one of the most important pieces of rough I will ever be blessed … Continue reading

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A great red GEM from Nigeria, round#47

Well this is my vote for the best Rubellite/red in the collection.  I have bigger ones with great color and I have smaller ones with great color.  Some are brighter and flashier than others and some have cleanliness problems.  They … Continue reading

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Historic lavender deeply cut round, Mozambique, cuprian#31

This round has a horizontally split main pavilion and a deep crown.  This helped produce a stronger medium light tone value in the first lavender tourmaline I had ever seen.  The stone is eye clean and with fine crystal. This … Continue reading

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A hot one in the hole, slightly included pink round.#27

I am sure that it takes a variety of factors (known and unknown) to make a great hot pink round.  I can do my  best, but some pinks are hot and some are not.  This is one of those hot … Continue reading

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Greatness is in the eye of the beholder. Bright, Green, Cuprian, Round.#148

This is a beautiful gemstone. There are many movies, books and even myths, about a creative person paying their dues and striving for greatness, but would not have made it, without the help of someone who believed in them. I … Continue reading

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Blue to blue green medium dark round.#142

This is a beautiful gemstone. I never realized until I started posting my collection that I had so many blue to blue green medium dark gemstones. This one has to be one of the best.  It is eye clean and … Continue reading

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I am a round of constant blue hue (color).#133

One of the joys of the collection is to be able to compare subtle differences between tourmalines that might appear identical under casual observations.  I finished a post on a beautiful tourmaline that I have called blue since I cut … Continue reading

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High quality medium dark blue round#132

My principle supplier from Africa has pretty much given up on supplying a provenance for his tourmaline rough.  He generally deals indirectly with the mines threw a “miner” who really is a whole sale intermediary.  The natural inclination of these … Continue reading

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Include sleep time purple with an attraction to me, oval#130

My principal dealer out of Africa still manages to pick up a few cuprian tourmaline pieces of rough (2013) and I keep spending too much for too little because of my purple addition.  I bought the rough for this gemstone … Continue reading

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Little, dark tone level with green flash, chrome tourmaline#118

This round chrome tourmaline has the classic green color, but is so dense that the color is only seen in the flash of this small round.  It appears to be eye clean and with fine crystal.  There are many things … Continue reading

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A perfect beautifully green chrome tourmaline.#117

Saying a chrome tourmaline is green is redundant, but I don’t want anyone, even for a moment to think that this standard round brilliant is anything other than the ideal green tourmaline in a medium tone level.  It is not … Continue reading

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A deep round in yellow washed with green.#116

Once upon a time I had a roommate, during my freshman year at college, that appeared to have pink underwear and socks.  Now this was in 1966 and some social movements had really not come out of the closet.  So, … Continue reading

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Big brother of the outstanding sea foam Barion Cut #190 from Afghanistan#200

Many tourmaline crystals have broader bases than the areas toward their terminus and when you trying to get the most of a spectacular sea foam tourmaline crystal, you cut for the largest quality stone you can get.  This is why … Continue reading

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A treasured pink of great visual impact, emerald cut. Afghanistan#197

She and her family are known wide and far in Afghanistan and their given name is strawberry.  When I heard of this exceptional, saturated pink from Afghanistan, that was found in large crystals that were always included and had to … Continue reading

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One of a pair of outstanding sea foam Barion Cusions, Afghanistan. #190

In the middle of supporting my daughters threw college I received some money from my mother’s estate.  Now most of the money probably ended up at school, but dad deserves a little fun too. I had run into an interesting … Continue reading

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Now we have an outstanding, Tang orange colored shield cut.#189

I don’t know how many people remember Tang or whether they still make it anymore, but it was one of the memorable items on my mother’s diet along with peanut and bananas, on dark Hollywood bread, sandwiches.  Well this shield … Continue reading

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The only triangular cut in the collection pink.#166

This triangular stone with the tips cut off is the only time I have made this style of cut.  It is a fine little stone that would need a custom setting because of its shape.  It is eye clean and … Continue reading

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The droplets of color demand this green with golden wash, cuprian round.#165

This standard round brilliant is a nice, eye clean, gemstone with a flashy, medium dark tone green, that is a bit on the yellow side.  I found out that this round was cuprian because I tested it with my spectrometer.  … Continue reading

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Smallest round in the collection and a green dot of color.#109

This is as low as I have ever cut a small gemstone.  This standard round brilliant only weighs .11 carats, but it is a chrome tourmaline and probably has as good a green as there is in the collection.  If … Continue reading

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A medium light tone, dichroic, golden brown emerald cut.#100

This smaller emerald cut has an exceptionally nice medium light toned golden brown color.  A color that is not common in tourmaline that has lighter tones.  It is dichroic and the c axis, which is in the ends of the … Continue reading

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Pink culet and the rest green makes great mixing for a round. Nigeria #98

This is both an interesting and beautiful gemstone.  The standard round brilliant is a great cut to mix up colors and this gemstone has great ones to mix.  Both the pink culet and green crown rather disappear when the stone … Continue reading

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Larger Nigeria pink green mixed to orangy, round #97

This standard round brilliant is big enough to really see the mixing of green and pink into yellow and oranges that happens in this interesting stone.  The mixing certainly depends on the light and you can still see the pink/ … Continue reading

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What you see face up is not what you have green/pink round.#96

I have gotten more than a few pieces of this interesting rough from Nigeria over the years.   It is really a pink crystal that has some faces that look they had a chomophore (trace element that effects color)  diffused into … Continue reading

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Lots of competition to be eye candy in yellow green, meet a winning round #92

This standard round brilliant has a great combination of decent size, bright yellow with a wash of green color, eye clean purity and fine crystal to be eye candy and she has accepted the honor.  She weighed in at 2.05 … Continue reading

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A bit of mint covered in chocolate, dichroic round. #88

When I came to this small round that was cut years ago, it made me pause.  I have written golden green on the back of its storage box ,but I am seeing a more complex picture than that.  This standard … Continue reading

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Mahogany Barion cushion cut. #84

This is a beauty gemstone with a great brown (root beer) hue.  Some would say that a brown can not be great, but this Barion cushion cut mixes the pastel brown a/b axis color with the much richer orange brown … Continue reading

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A Blue/Pink/Gray colored mess of a standard round brilliant. #77

My father use to tell me one of his few stories about his college days, that centered on making tuity fruity ice cream, over again many times.  He always smiled and it was good that he had at least one … Continue reading

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When red is not enough, brown red round. #74

This is the “red” that goes brown. (maybe call it red) This is the “red” that goes orange (maybe call it color changer) This is the “red” that is stable. (maybe call it Rubellite) Metamerism is when two color samples, … Continue reading

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A most unusual pastel yellow orange round.#73

It is hard to tell exactly what is going on in this unique gemstone.  It is a standard round brilliant that from the back appears not to be zoned.  Therefor the flashes of pastel orange and pastel yellow must be … Continue reading

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A beautiful tricolor, blue green, colorless, pink, emerald cut. Afghanistan. #70

This is a beautiful gemstone.  I was given the opportunity to buy this tricolor rough because it is fragile like many bi and tri color tourmaline.  I was successful in cutting this long ratio emerald cut, but it needed to … Continue reading

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Unique faceted watermelon pink center, green rind, emerald cut. #69

Everyone seems to love watermelon tourmaline,(a crystal with a pink core that runs down the long axis of Elbaite tourmaline that is coated with a green rind.), but it is rare that this distribution of color is useful to the … Continue reading

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This droplet of color is a dark brown with flashes of violet. #68

Every brown is a desaturated (not a pure tone) color and this dark toned droplet of color, spectral color is violet.  In good light you can see the violet flash, but when the clouds move in, the flash turns to … Continue reading

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Mom’s Stone, A GEM of blue force from Namibia, emerald cut.#397

I have been looking forward to sharing this GEM, exceptional gemstone, with you.  It came as a lot of one, separate from all the well saturated medium dark toned material I had been getting from Namibia.  Its bright blue hue … Continue reading

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Crown jewel, a Blue Emerald Cut, in Lot from Namibia#381

This is a beautiful gemstone.  It came in a lot of over a dozen pieces of rough that I bought privately from my principle African deal.  At the time it seemed to be a continuance of steady production from Namibia, … Continue reading

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On the edge of tiny, medium light pastel emerald cut.#359

This has to be one of the smallest emerald cuts I have made.  Its medium light blue color is a fine pastel and its open ends give life to the stone.  It weighs .37 carats and will probably will not … Continue reading

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One lost baguette in the collection, small blue.#355

I decided to cut a baguette to see how I would like it.  I decided that I much preferred emerald cuts so this medium blue one was the only baguette I have cut.  It has a nice medium tone and … Continue reading

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Light pastel non-copper purple, droplet of color.#648

  A standard round brilliant, non copper, less tone level than the following cuprian purple, but very similar hue (color).  It weighs 1.01 carats. A standard round brilliant, cuprian, a bit darker than the non copper above, but with a … Continue reading

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Cuprian, light yellow, round#644

I did not buy the rough for this gemstone as cuprian and I did not know it was cuprian until I check it out with my spectrometer.  I have no idea whether the copper content effects the color of this … Continue reading

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Copper plus manganese equals a well saturated purple, round#641

No one should get too blase about well saturated purples in tourmaline.  It is rare and always will be rare because the saturation, if not the actual color, is dependent on both copper and manganese chromophores.  Manganese is pretty common … Continue reading

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A gray sweeps in to save the day, droplet of color.#640

Now the droplets take pride in having every hue (color) and I try to help them all I can.  But a true gray in tourmaline is not common.  Having colors that are grayish is a piece of cake.  But this … Continue reading

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Included pinker shade of cuprian tourmaline, Mozambique#631

This pink definitely has the glow of copper’s purple and it has been confirmed with my spectrometer.  It is included, but the medium light, well saturated, standard round brilliant is still bright and flashy because most of the area corrupted … Continue reading

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Cuprian, Purple droplet of color from Mozambique (included)#630

A very nice rare color in tourmaline, I call purple, needs copper to being it to the level of saturation that I see in this standard round brilliant.  The inclusions, which frankly are expected, can not draw me away from … Continue reading

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And the third orange contest is this droplet of color.#627

Posted stone, bit light, brilliant orange weighs .87 carats Winner of the contest of three oranges, weighs .77 carats. Bit darker brilliant orange weighs .62 carats. This standard round brilliant is the third droplet of color in the contest to … Continue reading

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Medium toned sea foam from Afghanistan, droplet of color#626

This standard round brilliant was cut from the lot of high quality sea foam I obtained from Afghanistan.  It is eye clean and medium toned, but really too small to show the dynamic interplay of the blue green and yellow … Continue reading

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Grayed Purple Droplet of Color without Copper#611

The vast majority of purplish tourmalines do not have copper as a chromophore, but I remember the cuprians the most because they are saturated. (and expensive)  This droplet of color has a nice medium toned lavender color, but the grays … Continue reading

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A solid sparkling pink droplet of color#800

This standard round brilliant is really a fine little stone.  It is eye clean with fine crystal.  It pink is crisp and without overtone.  It weighs 1.03 carats and would make a delicate piece of jewelry beautiful. Bruce

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Magnificent bicolor with yellow crown and rust culet, orange round. Del Delgato#791

I have put together a general post about Del Gado and other sources of rough that peaked at different times in my time of collection building.  Still it should be said here that Del Gado, which is the most northern … Continue reading

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Smallest round I ever made, blue color dot.#779

It looks like a little sapphire and deserves a note as the smallest stand round brilliant I ever cut. (and any other style of cut).  It has a nice medium toned blue and weighs a spectacular .11 carats. (That is … Continue reading

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Snappy, sassy, cuprian, pinkish purple, but still lightly included oval#549

When it comes to cuprian tourmaline with a great pinkish purple color, I am very forgiving with cleanliness, but in this case I don’t really have to be.  It has a moderate tone level, which is beautifully complemented by just … Continue reading

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Purple brown in a dark package, oval#546

This gemstone is an example of how you have to buy in the world of tourmaline rough to quest for color.  I consider tourmaline to be a world of color possibilities. Opportunities appear which demand action because if you miss … Continue reading

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A medium pastel blue with a touch of gray oval cuprian#539

I did not buy the rough for this oval as cuprian.  It was too early in the game. Later, I did not expect this somewhat different blue, with a touch of gray, to be cuprian because it does not have … Continue reading

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A purple without copper, oval#533

This purple without copper does not have a good saturation level, but it is a purple and therefor rare in the collection.  The stone is included, but its medium dark tone level tends to obscure the inclusions. (I just spotted … Continue reading

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Smaller round with rind of blue and a heart of pink.#528

I purchased the rough for this standard round tourmaline as a bit of cuprian color, but my spectrometer said no copper.  It is still interesting, even if it has moderate inclusion that inhibit the flash.  They are at least spread … Continue reading

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Cyan blue and cuprian rich emerald cut.#525

This smaller emerald cut is a GEM (outstanding gemstone) and was one of the first gemstone from Mozambique that I got, that proved to have copper in it.  It has such a bright neon look that I  knew it was … Continue reading

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A heavily included experiment in the round.#510

The standard round brilliant that is heavily included was just an experiment.  I had purchased some Brazilian “salad”(low grade faceted gemstones) to try and see if I could get something different.(I did get a couple of grayed purples that are … Continue reading

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Make way for a little red round that shouts Rubellite.#504

It is my opinion that Rubellite (varietal name for red tourmaline) should be used with the reddest most intense color that tourmaline is capable of producing.  Not pinks or reds that desaturate to brownish off color gemstones.  Smaller gemstone usually … Continue reading

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Something different a maroon emerald cut.#501

With all the rough I have bought to enlarge the spread of color you would have thought I would have more maroon.  Now maroon has a part of me since it was part of my high school colors.  Maroon and … Continue reading

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A nice sized sea foam colored round#716

The phrase “eye candy” connotes a certain element of superficiality that this superior, sea foam, standard round brilliant doesn’t have.  But it will grab your eye as soon as you spot it and it is eye candy to me.  Most … Continue reading

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Decent lavender without copper emerald cut.#715

This emerald cut will not win any prizes for cleanliness or excessive brightness since its crystal is below average, but its color assure it a place in the collection.  This is one of my better non-cuprian purples and it is … Continue reading

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An emerald cut with a greened bronze color.#713

Now a collection of tourmalines that wants to be inclusive can not only go for the eye candy in the world.  Besides I wouldn’t have a lot to cut if every stone had to have great commercial potential.  This dichroic … Continue reading

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A large fantastic graded pink emerald cut.#712

Some gemstones are so easy to write about.  I can not say enough about this absolutely beautiful pastel pink emerald cut.  Its tone level grades from a pale pink to a very nice medium pastel pink with a saturation (purity … Continue reading

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Fascinating green to golden brown color changing oval.#300

This tourmaline is unique in the collection.  It is a color changer from golden brown in incandescent light and green in daylight.  Neither color really grabs you, but the color change is hard to miss.  I looked at the stone … Continue reading

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Large Exquisite Purple Round, One of the Best Tourmalines in Collection#291

When I started faceting again after a long hiatus, one of the colors I wanted very much was bluish purples.  I could get purples as shades of pink and red, but to go to the blue side was unattainable.  Then … Continue reading

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Slightly included, gorgeous, lavender round, that is cuprian.#271

I don’t believe that this saturated (purity of color) a purple exists in tourmaline without  a copper component in its chemistry.  (I think it maybe possible with iron and manganese and I haven’t seen it all, so who knows for … Continue reading

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This is a Rubellite, top quality red color, round#261

Some tourmalines are memorable even when they are not large.  This standard round brilliant is a Rubellite and I really only like to use that old trade name for high quality red tourmaline.  The red tourmaline should not desaturate into … Continue reading

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A tale of two golden ovals.#260

This is #259 and is piece of bright golden eye candy This is #260 and is a dravite with golden flash.   I am going to post one comment for both of the next two stones in the tray.  My … Continue reading

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Darker bicolor emerald cut of pink and brown.

Before I was able to buy cuprian material from Mozambique, my opportunities to buy purple tourmaline had been severally limited.  My hope to buy blue purple had been fruitless.  I wished that I had been active when Paraiba was affordable … Continue reading

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A slight bicolor with a peach end and a colorless end emerald cut.

You could call this emerald cut a graded color gems, but I prefer to call it a bicolor with an orange end and a colorless end.  The darker, but still moderate pastel, reflects down the long axis of the emerald … Continue reading

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A wild side yellow with a long body, oval

I kept this yellow piece of rough for a long time because I wanted to cut this rare color in tourmaline with as little loss in weight as possible.  But that meant I would have to cut a very long … Continue reading

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Medium Dark Gray Transparent Oval.

This gray with a touch of brown is quite transparent for its darker tone value.  It came from Thailand and was probably heat treated.  I have enough similar material to feel that this color and saturation occurs in nature, but … Continue reading

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Medium Gray Oval

I obtained the rough for this medium gray oval from Thailand.  It has probably been heated and my principal interest was to see if I could tell the difference between heated and unheated tourmaline.  I could not tell there was … Continue reading

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An amazing GEM green emerald cut.

To be a GEM (highest quality gemstone) in the world of green tourmaline is saying a lot.  The competition from chrome tourmaline and cuprian tourmaline is intense.  Now I am not saying that this gem can match the level of … Continue reading

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What can I say about gray, dark emerald cut.

I really don’t know how much dark gray tourmaline is out there to be faceted, but this is the only example that I have.  It is not just a dud to be kept as an example of the range of … Continue reading

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Possibly heat colorless oval

This colorless oval could have possibly been heat treated since it went threw  Thailand from where ever it was mined.  The principle reason I purchased the rough was to see if heating effect it, in a way that I could … Continue reading

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Strongly dichroic purple (Blackberry Bliss) Barion Cushion Cut

After awhile the dealers I dealt with out of Africa realized that I was a buyer of something different in tourmaline.  If they could just come up with  a good attempt at “different color” it didn’t have to be commercial … Continue reading

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Green and Pink make yellow all in pastel, round

This is another example of a tricky tourmaline from Nigeria.  It is really a combination of pink and green that is mixed by the standard round brilliant into almost a completely uniform blend, that produces a creamy yellow.  There is … Continue reading

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Larger pastel yellow shield cut

This larger pastel yellow shield cut is a milestone in the quest for yellow in tourmaline.  And the yellow I speak of must be saturated and without even a touch of  green or desaturation problems with brown,  This beautifully clean … Continue reading

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Important red, eye clean, cushion

When I retired, I put my money into tourmaline rather than the stock market or the bank.  The rough for this 21.4 carat, red, Barion cushion with a three step crown was purchased with some of that retirement money.  It … Continue reading

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A sophisticated cream/pink bicolor emerald cut

This eye clean bicolor is a beautiful smaller emerald cut.  The hot, medium toned pink is a little over one half of the length of the stone, while a cream color fills up the rest.  There does not appear to … Continue reading

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A golden droplet of color.

I think I found gold in my stash of tourmaline rough years ago.  The pastel golden tourmaline with just a touch of brown had been purchased in the quest to  see all the nuances of light yellowish browns that I … Continue reading

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Wheat, Cream, or Slightly Brownish Yellow, oval

This oval can be call by many colors, but it is so pale that the IceT group already has a place for it.  It is slightly included which does not effect the stones brightness, but rather looks like little drops … Continue reading

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It is final, this is the best green, bar none, in the collection!

Now that is a big title for such a small stone, but it is true.  This standard round brilliant only weighs .21 carats, but it is a chrome tourmaline and that means GREEN.  Chrome is really a misnomer because it … Continue reading

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This blue to green, lighter and brighter, emerald cut is very nice.

This emerald cut has a different feel to it than many of the smaller ones I have been cutting in the blue/green range of colors.  Its ends are darker, but I don’t think that they are closed.  The color goes … Continue reading

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Violet droplet sighted on the starbord side, captain.

It has been a long journey for this smaller and included gemstone to reach safe harbor in a plastic box in my collection.  In a distant land, awash in gemstones, the secret of its color was undiscovered.  Then some natives … Continue reading

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A purple that wants to be lavender without copper, emerald cut

  Well it is time to let you see the difference or not between two similar colors.  One is the classic lavender of copper in tourmaline from Mozambique.  It is the first image and is a round.  The second is … Continue reading

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A lighter lavender with a selection of moderately light inclusions, round

Lavender, in the words of a poet, is copper’s sweet song of seduction in tourmaline.  It seduces me into accepting flaw material that would be questionable in other colors of tourmaline.  And when I am reward with an included gemstone, … Continue reading

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Off the edge peach lands in with the droplets of color.

This moderately included standard round brilliant has a different peach look.  It is a muted look and I think that I hit it on the head, when I wrote on the back of its box, dusty golden peach.  Now don’t … Continue reading

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Slide the tone level of green all the way up with this emerald cut.

This attractive and interesting emerald cut is not a bicolor or tricolor.  It is just one bright acid green color displayed along the long axis of the stone from very pale to a dark tone.  There is a darker end … Continue reading

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What is the difference between rusty yellow and peach pink? Dichroism.

This is a great oval and I am glad that I put the extra effort into a “supper nova” pavilion that makes  a deep pavilion.  It has a three step crown that is relatively shallow in this stone.  This adds … Continue reading

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In the Name of Beauty Everyone should have a Pink Shield.

I like shield cuts and this larger one is in the pink.  And I mean pure pink.  The shield cut brings out a vibrant  scintillating flash the is not obscured by any flaws or a lack of transparency.  The medium … Continue reading

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Transparent pink to orange pink slider, oval

This oval stays basically pink, but has a weakness for orange.  It is a very transparent gem because of its eye clean, high quality crystal, but that is only part of the story.  Its tone level is medium and it … Continue reading

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A different purple without copper round

This standard round brilliant has a color of tourmaline that is difficult to categorized.  It is some shade of purple that is a mixture of pink, purple and gray.’  It bears little resemblance to the copper, red purples, that have … Continue reading

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Lavender purple without copper droplet

This standard round brilliant is a welcome guest because it is pastel purple without copper content.  One of the complexities of color in tourmaline is the production of similar if not exactly the same color by different chromophores.  In this … Continue reading

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Sultry, bright, included, pink that may have copper droplet.

\This standard round brilliant is included like most of the rich sultry pinks are.  I saw some indications of copper with my spectrometer in this gemstone, but I can not confirm the finding because my instrument tests too narrow a … Continue reading

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Great, cuprian, eye clean, yellow round.

This standard round brilliant is a great gemstone.  It is eye clean and has a medium light pastel yellow that is reasonably stable in any white light.  No greenish yellow here, but it can not compare with the sharp saturated … Continue reading

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Included purple cuprian round from Mozambique

Sometimes I think that movie critics are not the people that should judge which pictures people should like.  They have seen so many films that they can not judge the individual movie without considering how it works within the world … Continue reading

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A shade of pink purple owned by copper, droplet of color

Color in tourmaline is truly a wonderful trip, but you have to be careful about coming to conclusions about its chemistry based on color alone.  Two areas of major confusion are the coloring of Dravite the species with either chrome … Continue reading

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Included bright pink with hint of purple, round

This medium bright pink standard round brilliant has a hint of purple, that makes me think it may have copper.  The absorption data from my spectrometer is ambiguous so I can not really tell.  I can say this, the gemstone … Continue reading

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great color, purple, I know this is cuprian, droplet of color.

I don’t need a spectrometer to know that this standard round brilliant is cuprian, though I did check it out.  It is written in the purple color of its being.  I could use a fancier name for purple, but I … Continue reading

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Great Sea Foam from Afghanistan, round

The droplets wanted this really high quality sea foam from Afghanistan, but she is just too big.  She has a medium toned flawless beauty that can stand alone.   This standard round brilliant is cut with its table perpendicular to the … Continue reading

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Stormy purple droplet of color.

c The rough for this standard round droplet of color came from Madagascar.  It is a rather peculiar grayed purple that I have more examples of.  I get the feeling of a cold austere soul that will join the droplets … Continue reading

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Red/Pink droplet of color

When does a pink cross the line and become red?  Tourmaline shares this problem with corundum (ruby and pink sapphire) and it can be a very personal opinion,  that will be debated forever.  I think that lightning makes a big … Continue reading

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Great green to blue droplet of color

This standard round brilliant has a great tone level for a small gemstone.  It goes from a fine green in yellowish light to a fine blue in natural light.  I would call it a color changer, but it is hard … Continue reading

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Complex color of yellowish red orange round.

I think that this is a dichroic standard round brilliant gemstone.  I see redder flashes as I turn the basically medium toned,yellowish orange gemstone around.  It appears to be eye clean and has fine crystal.   It weighs 4.07 carats. I … Continue reading

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Top of the Line Afghanistan Sea Foam Emerald Cut

The title of this post should be put up in neon lights, because this top grade sea foam gemstone is so bright.  It also appears to be eye clean with great crystal.  On top of all that it has a … Continue reading

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My secret place

It has been a challenge to keep posting descriptions of my collection’s stones as quickly as I can, while seeing the stones under a limited number of white light sources.  This is not to say that when I cut the … Continue reading

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Bicolor IceT beverage only for the faint hearted.

I once bought a second round of pale colored tourmaline from Afghanistan for business reasons that did not pan out.  I cut most of the first batch into included rounds that I have presented and written about a number of … Continue reading

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A score of ten for the flawless high quality sea foam from Afghanistan.

This Barion cushion is cut from a very high grade of sea foam tourmaline from Afghanistan.  It has the desirable neon look and the cut blends the blue green and yellow green together wonderfully.  It has great crystal and appears … Continue reading

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A beautiful top quality sea foam with a feather Barion cushion cut.

Face up this top quality sea foam looks flawless because I manage to get a slight feather just out from under the table.  As you tilt and rotate the nice sized Barion cushion cut you can see a few islands … Continue reading

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A GEM Emerald Cut of Afghan Sea Foam

Years ago I bought a National Geographic’s tape about diamonds.  I was still not focused on my destiny in stones.  Part of the tape was about cutting diamonds.  One example was  in India  and showed a boy using a platform … Continue reading

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A great sea foam with a small flaw, Barion cut cushion

At first glance, this sea foam Barion cut cushion is a GEM and couldn’t be better.  It has the very desirable “neon” glow in an excellent mixture of bluer and yellower greens.  As I move the stone off face up, … Continue reading

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Wounded pink to orange color changing oval.

Decisions, decisions and you have to make them cutting gemstones.  I have chosen with this gemstone to retain a white feather that is close to vertical with the table, in order to get a descent sized oval.  The rest of … Continue reading

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Favorite green in the collection is a fighter, round.

Now to be the favorite green in this collection is saying something and it did not come easily.  I purchased the rough for this gemstone well before copper was discovered in tourmaline from Mozambique, in “Laurellites” I supplied the GIA. … Continue reading

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IceT anyone, A modest included Afghan round

The inclusions definitely are visible in this smaller standard round brilliant.  Most of them look like white specks that still permit to the stone to be bright.  There are not major flaws or problems.  Its very pale color is not … Continue reading

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Color droplet of pure green, chrome tourmaline

This small standard round brilliant is a pretty average size and color for a good chrome tourmaline.  Its tone would be too dark for large pieces, but the green has great saturation.  It absolutely loves yellow light and would put … Continue reading

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Green Dot of Chrome Tourmaline

When I first started back into faceting after a long hiatus, I did not spend a lot of money on rough.  To get anything to cut that had decent color in tourmaline I had to go small.  And being small … Continue reading

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Sea Foam Droplet from Afghanistan

The rough for this stone came from a large lot of high grade sea foam tourmaline from Afghanistan.  I was able to buy one over 10 carats piece and some smaller stones.  This round standard brilliant does not have the … Continue reading

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A Dark Plot Leads to a Red Purple Round Again.#1100

  The sun is up and bright so this droplet of color can spread a brighter flash and announce its red purple color.  I don’t consider red purples with their dark tones, Rubellites and they consistently have a lack of … Continue reading

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Clean rich tourmaline green in a closed ended emerald cut#1094

The combination of a pure rich tourmaline green with a touch of yellow and closed ends produces a very modern look in an emerald cut with steep ends.  The steep ends produces a pattern of flash where alternate bars of … Continue reading

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Darker red purple trilliant cut.#1091

  I don’t use the trilliant cut very much because I prefer shield cuts for triangular shaped rough.  But this red purple, which is not a rubellite in my book, has such a high tone level that I needed as … Continue reading

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I get really juiced with orange, emerald cut#1077

I reignited my faceting adventure because I wanted tourmaline in all its colors.  One of the colors I wanted the most was orange.  Not the browned oranges of Dravite infamy, though they were welcome, but pure and fruity pleasures.  Well … Continue reading

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A Gemstone of Tea Please#1074

A color addict let loose in the abundant fields of tourmaline color should only be searching for well saturated, medium toned gems with great hues, right?  That ain’t necessarily so!  My passion goes beyond the obvious color champions in tourmaline … Continue reading

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A Purple without Copper Oval#1067

  This gemstone has a place in the collection not because of its great beauty, but it is attractive, or size, though it is a decent size, or clarity, though it is has good crystal or …  It is here … Continue reading

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Aqua in Jest, for it is really A … tourmaline droplet.#1057

  I think that tourmaline would steal much of aquamarine’s thunder if it was more available and less expensive in the lightly toned blues.  Of course aquamarine struggles to be blessed with a darker tone level, while blue (indicolite) tourmaline … Continue reading

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A straight beige that could have been wheat round

This beige is almost without tricks.  He is pure and without dichroism.   He flashes abundantly under even low light conditions.  He has excellent crystal and weighs 5.84 carats.  But he was give a different path than most rounds, by having … Continue reading

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Beige on a different axis with a secret, oval.#1045

  Thank goodness I just followed my own advice.  Face up I am looking at a rather paler stone with a darker middle and light pastel ends.  This means that the c axis which usually goes down the long axis … Continue reading

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Rich Reddish Orange Round#1044

  The tourmaline the jester has brew up a good one this time.  Not only does this tourmaline have a garnet color, but a tone level that is very believable for garnet.  It is not too dark, but has a … Continue reading

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Beige for another round of color#1040

  Now I didn’t look up the definition of beige when I name this standard round brilliant, it just came to me.  What I am seeing is the pinker side of wheat and I still like beige for that.  I … Continue reading

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Melon color in round gemstone.#1038

  Now I am probably splitting hairs to distinguish a fruity melon color from a Pad (a variety of sapphire) from pink orange, but it is close to dinner and this stone looks delicious.  It is mostly orange with a … Continue reading

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A richer wheat for a fine round gemstone#1037

  If I was a drinking man I would call this color some expensive white wine color, but I am a down to earth wheat man so wheat it is.  This nice standard round brilliant has a good medium tone … Continue reading

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Winning Wheat Droplet#1034

  This small round still has enough tone level to be wheat rather than just pale out on me.  It is so much rarer than pink, but certainly not as highly valued, accept for collectors like me.  The gemstone appears … Continue reading

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True blue that so sweet in the round.#1029

I think that Namibia should be declared a world treasure for the blue tourmaline (indicolite) it produces.  It also produces other colors that I don’t want to put down, but blue is the name of the game for me.  My … Continue reading

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Pad your bet with this orange pink round#1028

After dravites, brown yellows to brown oranges and all tourmalines in the brown world, (progress is being made in that area) the mixture of orange/pink is the most under appreciated color range in saturated colors.  (Achroite, colorless, I am leaving … Continue reading

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How long I have waited pink/champagne/green tri-color#1010

  Now I love tri and bi and watermelon and completely mixed up tourmaline, but they are not the main thrust of the collection.   Color in all its diversity is center stage, yet chances do come along and I have … Continue reading

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White bread sort of wheat oval#1001

  A bright clean oval that is so pale that I have to look at it closely to call it wheat.  Now this is not your whole wheat variety, a bleach look that has very little brown and might even … Continue reading

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Sea Foam Tourmaline from Afghanistan#200

Only Large Barion cut from Large Lot.   One of two Barion Cut from first large crystal.  Weight 13.39 carats     We down to earth people, who actually make things, have been known to scorn those who are just … Continue reading

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Pale Golden Peach and I think of Topaz oval#985

  Now everyone would love a fantastic Imperial Topaz and this dichroic pastel golden peach tourmaline does not measure up, but it does look like topaz that I could afford and was actually offered for sale.  I can see its  … Continue reading

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Dichroic, golden orange oval#984

  Some gemstone grab you even with a casual glance while others get passed over.  This strongly dichroic (two different colors/intensity of color depending on the axis of view) deserves a closer look.   The higher tone level c axis color … Continue reading

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Cutting & Faceting Tourmaline

Cutting & Faceting Tourmaline by Bruce A. Fry Considering Color & Weight Retention When cutting rough tourmaline, as with any colored gemstone variety, the lapidary must consider both color and weight retention. The unique complexity of cutting tourmaline comes into … Continue reading

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A cream round with a touch of strawberry juice#970

  Cream is not a strong color and it is not that common in tourmaline.  Especially when you compare it with pink.  So, of course, I have actively sought out cream, while the pinks keep rolling in.  I just looked … Continue reading

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Achroite with a secret#966

There is always a danger in seeing what you want or expect to see in a pale colored stone with tourmaline.  Many to most tourmalines have two colors (a/b and c axis) and those colors can be quite sensitive to … Continue reading

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Dravite long ratio emerald cut

  On the back of this box I have brown for the color of this beautiful emerald cut,   That certainly lacks the flickering fire of inspiration that is need to sell tourmaline.  We need a spice name for the long … Continue reading

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Large oval of the earth (color)#937

  This very nice, eye clean, larger oval with great crystal is in search of a name.  Older tourmaline lovers, that have been around a crystal/gem or two would call it dravite.   This is because dravite is a trade name … Continue reading

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Smaller Golden Barion Cushion#914

  This 1.66 carat Barion Cushion is about as small as I make this style of cut. (pavilion a Graham design)  It was done to try and mix a golden c axis color with a purer yellow a/b axis color … Continue reading

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An Orange that thinks it would be a peach of an idea to be a Pad.#904

  Now one of the reasons to spend time showing my collection is to let people see the beauty of tourmaline and for me, to get this “semi” precious gemstone some respect.  Now the color of this nice sized (4.29 … Continue reading

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A shifty Mauve thats in the Pink#902

  I don’t attach mauve to a gemstone’s color casually.  I always check color in various “white” lights,  incandescent, morning light and evening light etc. Many members of the tourmaline color world are not known for being consistent in shade,  … Continue reading

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Queen Ecru Different Cut

  This is one of my favorite gemstones.  She is big and bright with a different,subtle color that is not common.  I call the color ecru which is a term used with wool and can have many tone levels, because … Continue reading

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Uniquely oriented watermelon emerald cut

  This smaller emerald cut looks like it consists of bands of bluish green on either side of a pinker  band running the length of the emerald cut, where the ends have a much more intense pink color.  Except for … Continue reading

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ring sized tri-color red-golden-green

This pretty tri-color is flawless and weighs a couple of carats, a nice size for a ring. It is the best example of of color combination of green to red with a narrow band of yellowish between them that I … Continue reading

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Included golden yellow colored round

This stone is an example of a developing trend in my tourmaline collection. The rough was purchased within the last few years, as of 2013, as semi-facet grade. That grade means that I will probably not be able to get … Continue reading

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A face-up beige with a split personality.

  Watermelon is a great term for describing a classic color distribution in tourmaline.  The most famous combination of colors is pink/red in the center with a pale color band separating it from a green skin, but it comes in … Continue reading

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