Semi Precious Stones

quartzFor such a long time now, I have been fascinated with Semi Precious Stones. My mom has really been the one to get me started actually collecting them and she was the inspiration in me using them in my art work….it has then been taken from there. Where now, I am not only a collector of Semi Precious Stones for my art, I have been more and more intrigued with them. The more I learn the more I love them.

Though long ago gemstones might have been found glistening on a beach or along the base of a mountain, most gemstones are found deep in the earth. Mining for gemstones is often carried out using primitive methods in some developing areas of the world. These miners work in open pits with makeshift tunnels dug alongside gemstone deposits where they use hand tools to remove gemstone deposits. Some miners have access to air compression drill devices and explosives to help loosen deposits. Larger corporations mine gems using industrial machinery including excavators, hydraulic drills, bulldozers, underground vehicles and “shaker” machines which separate rocks into various sizes. Riverbeds are also home to many gemstones, and the mining efforts for these are essentially larger productions of traditional techniques used for gold-mining such as sifting and panning.

Any gemstones that is not a diamond, ruby, emerald or sapphire is a semi-precious gemstone. Calling a gemstone semi-precious does not mean it is less valuable than precious gemstones. Semi-precious gemstones are just usually more abundant (but there are a few exceptions).

The value given to semi-precious gemstones depend largely on color, availably and quality. Because these gemstones typically have more sources, they are a good choice for larger, clean-eye stones and come in a rainbow of colors.

Some semi-precious gemstones are not stones at all, but are made of organic material like amber, coral and pearl. This guide will reveal details about some of the most popular semi-precious gemstones – garnet, peridot, amethyst, citrine, blue topaz and turquoise.

Gemstones are found all over the world. They begin as minerals, rocks and organic formations and become desired for their specific colors, phenomenon, shine, inclusions or rarity. There are gemstones found in primary deposits (their places of original formation) and those found in secondary deposits (locations they are carried to via water, wind or even lava). Diamonds, for example, are formed underground and carried upward via pipes created by volcanic activity. A few gemstones have even been found in meteorites … possibly an article for another time!Certain parts of the world are known for the types of gemstones discovered there:

  • Australia: Opal
  • Africa: Diamond
  • Sri Lanka: Sapphire, Ruby and many more
  • Brazil: Amethyst, Emerald, Citrine and more
  • Columbia: Emerald
  • Arizona, United States: Sleeping Beauty Turquoise
  • Tanzania: The only known deposits of Tanzanite
  • Dominican Republic: Exclusive deposits of Larimar
  • Alberta, Canada: Ammolite

Rare Semi Precious Stones: 

Eventually, many gemstone deposits could be depleted; yet there could also be new gems unveiled. It was just in the last 40 years that larimar and tanzanite were discovered. And don’t forget, there are tons of finished gemstones out there in the world waiting to be passed on to new generations as heirlooms or to be sold to new owners and turned into magnificent new pieces of art.