Category: Birthstones

November birthstone: Topaz

Forget the mislabeled citrine and the cheap, irradiated blues. Here’s a new look at an old gem that’s making a comeback, in all its glorious and often-overlooked variations.

Opals on the block

opal hat on model

In honor of this month’s magical birthstone, Bonhams & Butterfields is dedicating an entire auction to opals, from fiery Mexicans to cool Australians. There’s even an opal hat.

September birthstone: Sapphire

Known as the “king” of gems in Ancient Rome, sapphire is still most coveted in deep blue – like the stunning parure Christie’s Dubai will auction off next month. But sapphire comes in a rainbow of colors and, increasingly, creative jewelers are getting their hands on those.

August birthstone: Peridot

First recorded peridot was found as early as 1300 B.C. on Saint John’s, an Egyptian Island in the Red Sea. It’s said that this green gem was impossible to spot by day but glowed in the dark, so was mined…

July birthstone: Ruby

“When a ruby exceeds five carats, and is perfect, it is sold for whatever is asked for it,” Jean-Baptiste Tavernier wrote in 1676. Not much has changed in that regard.

June birthstone: Pearl

Nothing is more universal and timeless than pearls. Wander through any major art museum and you’ll find them on everyone from maharajahs to lowly servants. There’s Rembrandt’s “Weighing of Pearls,” Vermeer’s “Girl with a Pearl Earring”—which inspired a Hollywood movie—and…

April birthstone: Diamond

Few stones can match the legendary powers of a diamond, from betrothal to battlefield. A flawless diamond was considered the ultimate protector, said to ward off serpents and evil spirits, fire and flood, poison, illness and thieves.