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Blue Garnets

Discussion in 'Colored Gemstones' started by Sniven, Sep 22, 2010.

  1. Sniven
    Rough_Rock

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    by Sniven » Sep 22, 2010
    I was thinking of buying one...who has one and what should I need to know when buying?

    pic are always appreciated :love: :love: :cheeky: :cheeky: :love: :love:

    I am looking for something over 1 carat to have set in a ring.

    -Sniven
     
  2. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Sep 22, 2010
    A blue garnet is quite rare; the only ones I’ve seen are in the colour change garnets. As of today, there are no non-changing blue garnets. Even so, most of the time, the blue is a grayish blue.
     
  3. LD
    Ideal_Rock

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    by LD » Sep 22, 2010
    I'm sure somebody will correct me if I'm wrong but a blue garnet used to be considered a "this will never be found" type of stone or "you can get garnets in most colours but not blue". As Chrono has said, blue garnets are normally of the colour change variety and the "bluer" the colour (all other things considered) the more $ you'll pay. So a greenish blue should be less valuable than a garnet of the same size, clarity etc., that is more blue. If you do get one however, please bear in mind that they tend to be quite dark.
     
  4. Lady_Disdain
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    by Lady_Disdain » Sep 22, 2010
    I have heard of pure blue garnets but I have never seen one or known anyone who has seen one (urban legend? :bigsmile: ). I believe it was Pala who had one in their physical inventory, but I am not sure. If you want a pure blue, I wish you good luck and a good budget!

    If you are going for a colour change, look for a strong colour change, preferably with both colours a nice tone and saturation (this is hard, as usually one colour will be much better than the other). Often, the blue is a purplish blue, not a pure blue. I don't think you can be too picky with clarity and cut, as these stones are hard to find. I would be insist on not having fractures that might compromise the gem, but I would settle for not eye clean.

    Most of these stones are smaller and, from what I have seen, there is quite a jump in price at above 1ct. Dan Stair had some rough, but they were all for stones below 0.3ct. Tan has the largest number on inventory that I can remember, but few of his stones really caught my eye.

    A pink to blue colour change garnet has long been in my wish list.
     
  5. Edward Bristol
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    by Edward Bristol » Sep 22, 2010
    There are some coming from the Umba Valley, Tanzania, and yes, they are always color changing.
     
  6. Richard M.
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    by Richard M. » Sep 22, 2010
    It's not an urban legend; I've seen them. =) A major international gem dealer I sometimes work with received some of the first parcels of color-change garnets from Bekily, Madagascar some 7 or 8 or years ago. Those garnets became famous because blue was one of their hue positions -- big news in itself at the time because blue in garnets was thought to be a myth. None had ever been reported previously.

    Then he discovered that a few of the stones remained blue in all lighting conditions and did not change color. I happened to walk into his office on the day he was proudly showing them off.

    In my opinion the Bekily stones are not very pretty, displaying a lot of gray or a slight greenish tinge, not true sapphire blue. But because they are unique and rare they are expensive and now very hard to find. I'd have snagged a couple for my own collection that day but the dealer's price was firm at $800/ct. At the time I didn't know if they'd remain rare or if new sources would be found and the price would go much lower.

    Richard M. (Rick Martin)
     
  7. zeolite
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by zeolite » Sep 22, 2010
    Blue garnets are rare beyond belief. Here's a 0.71 ct garnet from Bekily, Madagascar.The picture was taken with a GE Reveal incandescent bulb on one side, a daylight fluorescent on the other side. Both lights are on at the same time, so there is no trickery with Photoshop to manipulate the color. This is how it really looks to your eye! The strength of both colors is quite remarkable for a color change garnet, since usually the daylight color is weak and the incandescent color is too strong.

    4843bekily.jpg
     
  8. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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  9. Sniven
    Rough_Rock

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    by Sniven » Sep 22, 2010
    What a great story!
     
  10. Sniven
    Rough_Rock

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    by Sniven » Sep 22, 2010

    Very cool shot. Is this your Garnet? Are you going to have set?
     
  11. Sniven
    Rough_Rock

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    by Sniven » Sep 22, 2010
    That seems like a well cut stone and the price isn't that bad.

    Color change Garnets were definitely not on the top of my list. I actually didn't even know they existed until this week.

    Our 2nd Wedding Anniversary is coming up in November. The Anniversary Gemstone for number two is Garnet and I want to get my wife something special and unique while sticking to tradition.
     
  12. T L
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by T L » Sep 22, 2010
    Aren't the new color change garnets rather dark in tone and lacking in saturation?
     
  13. zeolite
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    by zeolite » Sep 22, 2010
    Yes. No.
     
  14. Arkteia
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    by Arkteia » Sep 23, 2010
    I read somewhere about imitation garnets coming from the area of Kenya. (I am not sure of the source and the type of the stone). I think they change color from blue to purple. I am concerned because I have such a color-changer and I have been planning to set it but today I sent it to AGL for verification.

    Blue in this stone is very blue. Evening color is not pink, rather, dark purple, a shade darker than alexandrite, but the color change is fantastic and the stone is beautifully cut. It is in Gary's website but his pictures do not do the stone justice. It is much better in real life.
     
  15. Pandora II
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    by Pandora II » Sep 23, 2010
    I have a blue to raspberry CCG which is interesting to me as a collector but wouldn't be something I'd want to set. The blue is not a very attractive colour and has a very strong grey to it. Also to get the blue 'blue' you have to be in certain light conditions - ie totally overcast - or else the raspberry comes through and makes it look like a grey purple colour.

    Unless your wife is a gemnut then I would suggest going for one of the more aesthetically pleasing garnets!
     
  16. chrono
    Super_Ideal_Rock

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    by chrono » Sep 23, 2010
    I have a blue to purplish red colour change garnet of Madagascar origin purchased many years ago but it is unset now. The tone is dark and I didn’t like how it looked set, so now I’m leaving it unset. The colour change is very obvious and the purplish red colour is the better of the two. In fact, it is quite pretty but the blue has a strong gray cast to it.
     
  17. Sniven
    Rough_Rock

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    by Sniven » Sep 23, 2010
    So are these stones more for collecting than wearing? My wife doesn't really care for the traditional garnet color, but she does where blues, greens, reds, purples, pinks etc...
     
  18. chrono
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    by chrono » Sep 23, 2010
    The stone is definitely wearable but what I’m trying to say is that most colour change garnets are not terribly attractive; most are overly dark, too gray and/or incomplete colour change. The other downside is that you will not always see a pure blue or pure red/purple colour because of the lighting condition. Most of the time, the colour will appear muddy because at work, you will get a strange mixture of indoor and outdoor (window) lighting. The reason I leave it unset is so that I can play with the colour change by going indoors and outdoors with controlled lighting. If you are set on a garnet, I’d suggest green (demantoid, tsavorite, grossularite) or a good rhodolite. I find most pyrope (red) garnets rather brownish although I have seen a handful of fine ones. Garnets also come in orange and might be a consideration; they are known as spessartite.
     
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  19. Sniven
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    by Sniven » Sep 23, 2010
    Wow! Thank you. This information is invaluable and will keep me busy reserching for some time. I really, really appreciate it :))
     
  20. Lady_Disdain
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    by Lady_Disdain » Sep 23, 2010
    Thank you for the information, Rick. DO you know what causes the blue?
     
  21. Pandora II
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    by Pandora II » Sep 23, 2010
    Not Rick, but they're a pyrope-spessartite mix with a dose of vanadium or more rarely chromium thrown in.

    However, you can get pyrope-spessartites with the vanadium that don't behave in this way, so it's not just the chemical composition in play. Bit like making a cake... you can use all the same ingredients but depending on the quantities of each and how they are mixed every cake will be different.

    Here's a picture of a non colour-change blue garnet - as you can see they're not going to win any prizes in the 'pretty blue stone' department and I dread to think what the price tag on this one would be if you could ever find one to buy!


    OP - depending on your budget, I would look at spessartite (orange - orange/red), green grossular garnet (mint - grass green), tsavorite (bright green - forest green) or rhodolite (all shades of deep pink).

    I'd probably advise against demantoid as it's a lot softer than the other garnets.

    bluegarnet.jpg
     
  22. MakingTheGrade
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    by MakingTheGrade » Sep 23, 2010
    I would love to see one in person :)
    Zeolite, as always, you seem to have everything a garnet lover could hope for!
     
  23. digitaldevo
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    by digitaldevo » Sep 24, 2010
    Some of the blues out of Umba are actually kind of pleasing, but they are dark, but not overly. There are lots of more pretty ccg garnet IMO to wear/set. The red to purple Tanzanian and the green to copper/yellow to brownish-red/greenish-yellow to copperish garnets from VOI Kenya. Some of the Mali garnets can do a color shift(cs) as well. The VOI are my favorite though for jewelery followed closely by the red to pink Tanzanian ones. The VOI can be really nice when you find a slightly yellowish-green to copper as it looks almost like a Demantoid ccg garnet, hehe! There are even some bluish-green to purple/red ccg garnets coming out of Kenya as well here and there, but so far ones I have seen have a sort of weaker ccg then the others.

    Pandora gave a good list of alternative non-ccg ones. But add in the Merelani Mint and Merelani yellows/golds as well, amazing stones cut!! I think I like the yellow/golds the best. The Mandarin from Loliondo are extremely nice as well. The Malaya (both "Imperial" and the orange) coming out of Tanzania area are stunning too! That "Imperial" as they are calling it is the real bright, but lighter colored, pinkish stones and they color shift too most of the time.

    My all time fav will be this 5-6ct (should get good yield as shape is perfect, figuring a nice 2-3ct stone) rough Leuco garnet rough, from Lalatema(sp) Mountains area near Merelani, once I get it faceted and into my collection! hehe ;-).
     
  24. Edward Bristol
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    by Edward Bristol » Sep 24, 2010
    Here is a pair cc garnets from last year.

    Mark the color variation in the daylight image.

    pccg125-bD.jpg

    pccg125-bN.jpg
     
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  25. LD
    Ideal_Rock

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    by LD » Sep 24, 2010
    Oh Ed, they're lovely. I would have snatched your hand off for those!
     
  26. Edward Bristol
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    by Edward Bristol » Sep 25, 2010
    Lovingdiamonds, Geez! Thank God I work online only!
     
  27. Sagebrush
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    by Sagebrush » Jul 11, 2017
    Garnet that changes color from purple-red/red-purple to gray-green-blue have been known for many years. I saw my first example in Nairobi in the early 1990s.

    However, I seriously question the accuracy of the images I have been seeing online. In the era of dial-a-color lighting, incandescent light (from a flame) can vary dramatically in color temperature and CRI. In my opinion, we should either standardize or abandon the incandescent standard for evaluating color-change gems.

    RWW
     
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  28. Seaglow
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    by Seaglow » Jul 11, 2017
    There was another thread just now with a seller having blue garnets. I have seen nice green blues but they are color change garnets. Is there really a blue that is not a color changer? I have yet to see one.
     
  29. suzanne2
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    by suzanne2 » Apr 2, 2018
    Screenshot (56).png

    Screenshot today from David Klass' Instagram. This color is much brighter and clearer than the blue-grays I've seen online. I wonder if a PSer owns it...
     
  30. Nosean
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    by Nosean » Apr 2, 2018
    I really doubt this is a blue garnet!

    Some color changing stones look blue under LED light or 6000 Kelvin daylight lamps - some small 0.10-0,30 ct Bekily garnets have a dominant blue in daylight too - slightly greenishgreyish blue.

    But this color - no...
     

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