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Information You Should Know About Loose Faceted Gemstones

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Loose faceted gemstones are beautiful! Seeing a group of them might bring to mind far off, exotic locations or might give you a sense of adventure. Perhaps the blue of a sapphire might remind you of the sky while the green of an emerald might bring to mind a lush, tranquil garden.

Finding the right gem for you can be an exciting adventure, but there are several factors you should keep in mind before taking the plunge.

You should know what you are looking for before purchasing loose faceted gemstones , or gemstone jewelry for that matter. Ask yourself; What cut do I like best? Does the color excite me? What is my price range? These are important questions to answer before you go shopping. Knowing the answers to these questions beforehand can help you make an informed purchase, instead of just an emotional one.

When purchasing loose diamonds, it is important to be familiar with the four C’s. The four C’s are Cut, Color, Clarity and Carat Weight.

When purchasing colored gems, the four C’s still apply. However, one of the four is definitely more important than the rest. COLOR! When purchasing colored loose faceted gemstones, color is the very first and foremost thing to consider.

Information You Should Know About Loose Faceted Gemstones

Color

In general, stones that are very pale or very dark sell for less per carat. An example might be a blue sapphire that appears black or a tanzanite that appears light periwinkle.

Light can greatly affect how the color appears to the eye. Retailers tend to use recessed incandescent spotlights. Many of these spotlights are made to make gems appear more vibrantly colored than they would if viewed in natural light. If your local jeweler uses this type of lighting, ask if you can take the stone close to a window or at least out of the spotlight.

When you’re examining a loose faceted gemstone, make sure that your light source is coming from above or behind you. This way the light that is traveling down through the stone will be reflected back up to the eye. You should also rotate the stone in order to view it from several different angles.

Clarity

When examining the clarity of a loose faceted gemstone, a great tool to bring with you is a 10x loupe. A loupe (pronounced “loop”) is a special type of magnifying glass that is used specifically in examining gems and jewelry. If you’re using a loupe, try to focus both on the surface and on the interior of the stone. Focusing on the surface will help you see any blemishes or scratches while focusing on the interior will help you look for inclusions.

Cut

Cut can greatly affect the beauty and value of a gemstone. Let’s examine gem cutting in more detail.

There are a few common terms that are used frequently when referencing the parts of loose faceted gemstones . These parts can greatly affect the brilliance and beauty of the stone. They are:

Girdle -The border or perimeter of the stone.

Crown -The upper portion of the stone above the girdle.

Table -The flat part of the stone at the top, often called the face.

Pavilion -The bottom portion of the stone, from the girdle to the point at the bottom.

Culet -The lowest part of the stone, located at the point. If the point is missing, this can indicate damage.

Carat Weight

If all of the above factors are to your liking, then carat weight is a consideration. Generally, a loose faceted gemstone with small carat weight will be less expensive than one of the same quality with higher carat weight. A good rule of thumb is to look for the color, clarity and cut you want and then buy what you can afford in terms of carat weight.

Loose faceted gemstones are only one way to buy gems for a collection. Another fascinating way to appreciate minerals is to admire them in their natural state.