October Birthstone | Tourmaline & Opal

If I could pick my birthday based off of birthstones, October would be my month! Lucky October babies get two of my favorite gems as their birthstone: the opal and the tourmaline. I've already gushed about my love for opals in an earlier post: http://seaandstonejewelry.com/opals-inspiration-and-superstition . So, I will spare everyone from a continuation post about why I love opals.We haven't talked about tourmalines though, and they also sit at the top of my list of favorite gems. So this post will be about them!

Like I said, I wasn't born in October, I was born in June. Like many Gemini's, I can be a bit restless and thrive on the excitement of change and variety. I get bored of experiencing the same thing repeatedly which makes it hard for me to have any kind of favorites (songs, colors, food, etc). Yesterday my favorite food was vietnamese noodles. Today, it's probably tacos. And who knows what it will be tomorrow.

I think this is why it is so easy for me to pick out tourmaline as one of my favorite gems. This one species of gemstone comes in a wide spectrum of hues. In fact, the name tourmaline comes from the Sinhalese words "tura mali", which translates to "stone of many colors". Tourmaline is one of my favorite stones to work with because of the fact that it does present itself in so many different ways! It's hard to get bored with a stone like tourmaline. Most people are familiar with green tourmaline. Green tourmaline if often referred to as "Elbaite" tourmaline in the trade. Elbaite actually comes in many colors, but colors aside of green are given their own names. Pink tourmaline is known as Rubellite, black tourmaline is Schorl, blue tourmaline is Indicolite, neon blue/green tourmaline is called Paraiba. Tourmaline sometimes grows to show multiple colors in the same crystal. This is known as watermelon tourmaline because the gems are pink on the inside and green on the outside!

There is a tourmaline to suit everyone's taste and price point. Many varieties are inexpensive, and some varieties can cost more than a diamond. The beautiful electric blue-green color of Paraiba tourmaline can easily command five digit per-carat prices. This particular variety only came out of a specific region of Brazil, and the rough was depleted quickly. Apparently another source has been found in Mozambique, but the color is still outrageously rare (especially in larger sizes). The vibrant neon color is caused by copper and manganese.

Metaphysically, the different hues of tourmaline are said to have different properties.

Pink tourmaline is said to be a stone of the heart. It encourages compassion and gentleness as well as love and spirituality.

Green tourmaline is attributed more to physical rather than emotional benefits. It is believed to deliver positive energy to all parts of the body and is associated with vitality and regeneration.

Black tourmaline is said to protect the wearer against negative energy and destructive forces. Tourmaline carries a slight bit of electric charge. Because of this, people have viewed black tourmaline as a grounding stone. It is believed to carry the current of negative energy, deflect it from the wearer, and ground that energy back into the earth where it can be converted into new, positive energy.

Oh, October babies, you have it so good: tourmalines and opals, crisp fall weather, pumpkin spice lattes, Hocus Pocus! Enjoy your birthday month!

Do you love tourmaline and opal as much as I do? Sea and Stone has some extra special pieces featuring October birthstones coming soon! Stay tuned:D


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