Opal and Pink Tourmaline are the traditional birthstones for October and we offer the option of both in our range of October birthstone Claddagh rings.
Tourmaline is a semi precious gemstone that comes in a wide range of vibrant colors and is referred to as the gemstone of the rainbow. There are various different species of tourmaline but the three most common are: schorl, dravite and elbaite. Each differing in color and compound structure.
Many tourmaline gemstones have more than one color. One variety of tourmaline is known as a watermelon tourmaline which is green on the outside, changing to white and then a beautiful pink in the center.
For many centuries people have been lured by the dazzling and brilliant colors of tourmaline stones and they were often mistaken for emeralds and rubies. So deceiving, in fact, that they feature in some of the British crown jewels including the Imperial State Crown of England and it wasn't until the 1880's that it was recognized as Tourmaline. The name comes from the Sri Lankan word "thuramali" which means mixed gems.
China was once the biggest importers of Tourmaline until the collapse of the Chinese government in 1912 which in turn led to the crash of the US tourmaline industry at that time. In the same year the American National Association of Jewelers declared it to be the birthstone for October. It wasn't long before its popularity grew when Tiffany and Co. gemologist George Frederick Kunz praised the stone and it thus it made it's way into the fine jewellery industry.
The physical properties of tourmaline are extraordinary. It is pyroelectric and piezoelectric meaning under pressure or temperature changes it produces an electrical charge. Tourmaline is associated with positivity, friendship and love.