In this month's Birthstone Series we are looking into the gemology and the symbolic meanings of the June Birthstones. Yes that is right, June has several designated birthstones: the Pearl, Alexandrite and Moonstone. With so many beautiful options, individuals with June birthdays can have a birthstone that fits their preference and budget, due to the different colours, shapes, sizes and price points that these gems offer.
Beautiful pearls are the only gemstones that are created entirely inside a living creature. Pearls are shaped and formed within mollusks such as oysters and scallops, and the creation can take up to eight years! Pearls have always been loved by brides because of their delicacy and soft hues, and are widely recognised as a symbol of purity, integrity and loyalty, making them the go-to choice for weddings. Pearls represent love, friendship, integrity, honesty and innocence in many cultures.
Inspired by the Al Thani Exhibition of antique pearl jewellery at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the natural beauty of Marrakesh, Augustine Jewels' Pearl Collection combines pearls with natural gems and precious metals to achieve exquisite examples of elegant jewellery. Our 9ct white gold Bridal pearl jewellery appeals to brides who want to be traditional and daring at the same time, featuring freshwater pearls to add an elegant touch to a wedding ensemble or just an everyday outfit.
This 7.19 ct alexandrite (as it appears in fluorescent, left, and incandescent, right, illumination) is from the Tunduru region of Tanzania. Photo: Robert Weldon/GIA. Courtesy of: GIA.edu.
“Green in sunlight. Red in lamplight. Colour changing Alexandrite is nature's magic” GIA.
Often described as “emerald by day, ruby by night”, alexandrite is the very rare colour-change variety of the mineral chrysoberyl. It was originally discovered in Russia’s Ural Mountains in the 1830s and is now found in Sri Lanka, East Africa and Brazil. According to a popular but controversial story about the origin of this gemstone, alexandrite was discovered by the Finnish mineralogist Nordenskiöld and named alexandrite in honour of the future Tsar, Alexander II of Russia.
With this gemstone having the ability to display some of the most remarkable colour changes in the world, it is important to note that alexandrites have two primary value drivers. First, the closer the colours to pure green and red, the higher the value. Second, the more distinct the colour change, the higher the value. Alexandrites can exhibit everything from 100% to just 5% colour change. Thus, the most valuable gems would have a 100% colour shift from pure green to pure red. Blue-greens and purplish or brownish reds hold less value.
This gemstone is said to strengthen confidence, creativity, imagination and intuition. It is also said to intensify feelings of love and sensuality. What we also want to note and for you to take away with you: with its power of its remarkable changing colour, it is a reminder to ourselves that we are too always changing and becoming more remarkable.
Rough moonstone found in Sri Lanka. Photo: Vincent Pardieu. Courtesy of GIA.edu.
The third June birthstone is moonstone, which in a way shares characteristics of the other two stones: it has the iridescent shimmer of pearl, and, while not as dramatic, some of the colour-changing properties of alexandrite. As ancient as the moon itself, the meaning of the moonstone lies within its energy. The power that it gives is said to nourish, stabilise, give passion, and awaken feminine energies. It is also associated with the inner goddess: a symbol of fertility and sensuality. The life-giving feminine figure is an empowering visualisation that gives us the gift of creating harmony within and increasing intuition, the perfect prescription for cleansing the mind of negative emotions holding you back.
Moonstone is a variety of the feldspar group mineral orthoclase. During formation, orthoclase and albite separate into alternating layers. When light falls between these thin layers it is scattered producing the phenomenon called adularescence - the metallic glow-like iridescence from inside the stone - a kind of play of light one could say.
Moonstone has been used in jewellery for millennia, including ancient civilisations. The Romans admired this stone, as they believed it was derived from the solidified rays of the moon. Today, the most prized moonstones are from Sri Lanka and India. Blue moonstones are highly valued because of their rarity; such stones are predominantly found in Sri Lanka. Many other moonstone populations are said to be found in Switzerland's Adula Mountains.
The gemstone’s distinctive opalescent sheen reflects a rainbow of pearly hues such as blue, yellow, silvery grey, and white, which symbolise the moon, and its connection to fluctuating moods and the ever-flowing cycles of life. It is a powerful gem that can mean a lot of things to someone with the diverse healing effects that it is said to hold, and we think you can find your magic within this stone.
And finally we would like to show you our Egg Birthstone Pendants from our Russian Collection. Your chosen birthstone, Pearl, Alexandrite or Moonstone will be encased inside a beautiful sterling silver or 9ct gold shell, or even be adorned with beautiful diamonds all around the outside.
Pictured second: 9ct yellow gold pendant with 18ct yellow gold plate with Diamonds, £2,500. Also available in Sterling Silver, £490 and 9ct yellow gold with white gold adornment, £1,700.
Now that you know a little more about the history of the June birthstones and where the June birthstones come from, you probably have a deeper appreciation for these classic beauties. June is a month for celebrations, be it weddings, anniversaries, graduations or birthdays. And what better way to celebrate than with sending your loved one a June birthstone.
You can explore our stylish yet classic ready-to-wear jewellery to gift to a loved one or to treat yourself with. Our services also include luxury bespoke jewellery design, creating exquisite designs and sourcing extraordinary gemstones tailored to you. We can also re-design & re-set old jewellery to avoid leaving beautiful gemstones hidden in your jewellery box. To find out more visit our website or book a complimentary consultation online!