Iridescent Opals

Iridescent Opals

10 October

The beautiful Opal is October’s birthstone!

Precious opal” flashes iridescent colors when it is viewed from different angles, when the stone is moved, or when the light source is moved. This phenomenon is known as a “play-of-color.

Read our ABC’s of Opals below and our favourites from this month’s upcoming Auction of Fine Jewellery on October 24th!

  1. Australia’s National Stone: Over 90% of the precious opal supply in the world can be found in Australia. This major opal deposit was formed by intense seasonal rains in Australia which soaked the ground, forcing silica deposits through the earth and down to the crevices in rock layers. After the water evaporated, the deposits formed opals. Today untreated, natural opals are becoming increasingly rare, as Australia’s deposits diminish.
  2. Birthstone for October: This multicoloured gemstone is October’s official birthstone. It has been regarded as a protective stone and symbolizes purity, hope, and confidence. The word ‘opal’ comes from the Latin word opalus, which means ‘precious jewel’. Opals are also a stone typically given as a gift to celebrate fourteenth wedding anniversaries.
  3. Caring for Opals: Like most other gemstones, opals must be handled with care to prevent damage and scratching. Opals can contain as much as twenty percent water and therefore they should never be kept in confined and airtight spaces, such as bank vaults which often employ dehumidifiers. If an opal begins to get too dry, it will start to crack. Therefore, it is imperative to keep your opal properly hydrated by immersing it into water for a couple of hours every few months.

Opals in our Upcoming Auction: Catalogue Online October 24th

Lot 13:AN OPAL AND DIAMOND OPEN CRESCENT BROOCH, in 15ct gold

Lot 14:AN EDWARDIAN OPAL AND DIAMOND CLUSTER PENDANT, and 18ct gold chain

Lot 254: AN OPAL DRESS RING, with one cushion shape crystal opal cabochon of approx. 5.18ct, mounted in 9ct gold.

Lot 413: A PAIR OF OPAL AND DIAMOND DROP EARRINGS, mounted in silver topped yellow gold.