October Birthstone

Opal

October is here and with it comes the feeling of fall.  I already miss the summer weather!  If you think about it October isn’t so bad, the fall colors are gearing up, football is in full swing, plus you got to love Halloween.

However if you could use a refresher of that summertime feeling your in luck because our stone for the month of October is the Opal.

Why should Opal remind us of the summer, well with all the color play I see the ocean, or fireworks, a rainbow, maybe even lightening?

A fine opal seems infinite in the depth of its beauty much like the stars in the galaxy.

There are 5 main types of Opals

White or light opal: Translucent to semi translucent, with play-of-color against a white or light gray background color, called body color.

Black opal: Translucent to opaque, with play-of-color against a black or other dark background.

Fire opal: Transparent to translucent, with brown, yellow, orange, or red bodycolor. This material—which often doesn’t show play-of-color—is also known as “Mexican opal.”

Boulder opal: Translucent to opaque, with play-of-color against a light to dark background. Fragments of the surrounding rock, called matrix, become part of the finished gem.

Crystal or water opal: Transparent to semitransparent, with a clear background. This type shows exceptional play-of-color.

Did you know Opal contains up to 20% water trapped in its silica structure?

Because opal has the colors of other gems, the Romans thought it was the most precious and powerful of all. The Bedouins believed that opals contained lightning and fell from the sky during thunderstorms. When Australia’s mines began to produce opals commercially in the 1890s, it quickly became the world’s primary source for this October birthstone.

Now that you all love opal, I should mention that Opal should be worn with care.  It’s Mohs hardness rating is only a 5 – 6.5 so it is not extremely durable.  Not that this should discourage you from buying an Opal, you simply need to wear with care.

For more information about Opal please visit

http://www.gia.edu/opal