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bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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Joined
May 14, 2010
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4,086
Tell me what you think of these spinels. Range from 2.5 to a little above 3cts

mahenge-tanzania-spinel-gemstone-spi-00336-l.jpg

spinel-mahenge-tanzania-gemstone-spi-00350-l.jpg

17388.jpg

feat_zircon_mix.jpg
 

chrono

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Joined
Apr 22, 2004
Messages
37,494
1. Nicest of this batch of pictures. Could be a little sleepy, and while saturation is good, there's something a little off to me that I can't quite put my finger on. It is still worth a further inquiry to AJS though.
2. Not bad, but since I know what you are looking for, I'd say it is lacking saturation.
3. Probably from Pala, correct? It looks really desaturated. It's not a spinel that screams Mahenge to me, although it looks a little better in the last picture.
4. The Swala spinel is very hot, but lately, I've been wondering about their photography...
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
Did you ask if these were newer material, if they have orange, for shots in artificial light? If not, I would pass on most of these. I hate to say it, but I honestly think you should give up looking for a Mahenge online. I don't think you'll find what you want unless you spend a fortune, and even then, you might not get somethng great. Everything I'm seeing as of late is too orange, too purple, not saturated enough, and certainly overpriced because they're living off the hype of the older material, which was much finer. I think to get a great Mahenge, or any nice red spinel, you need a gem afficionado to help you out (and to cover your back so a vendor won't try to pull the wool over your head), and you really need to see many stones in person, otherwise, you'll be spending a foturne on S&H charges. Most vendors don't even know what a good mahenge is (as I have found out the hard way), so how are you expected to know?

If you can't get to a gem show to see many in person, then you'll never know. You can't tell by photos alone.

The search for a fine mahenge is reminding me of the search for a fine paraiba tourmaline. Most people, and many vendors, have never seen a good one in person, so they hype the mediocre material, and to make a hefty profit as well. It's really frustrating, I'm sorry.

BTW, the Swala one looks the most promising, but if he can't provide photos in artificial fluorescent light, I would pass on it. That photo could be heavily photoshopped, or taken in the absolute most optimal lighting conditions.

I hate to be blunt, but you're looking at very high priced stones, so when that happens, I'm a bit more honest. I feel I can help someone save more heartache and $$$ that way. I know it's not what you want to hear, but I get really sad seeing someone make the same mistakes over and over again. You really need to build your eye for color when searching for a fine red spinel, or any fine red stone. I feel that red is one of the most difficult colors to search for, and unless you've seen a great one in person, you'll never know.

BTW, if you want me to just "shut up and go away," I can do that too, I won't be offended (seriously!!). I know my comments can sometimes be harsh and annoying, but I do it in the best interest of the people here. However, I know I can be really annoying. :oops:
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
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May 14, 2010
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4,086
TL|1308666615|2950985 said:
Did you ask if these were newer material, if they have orange, for shots in artificial light? If not, I would pass on most of these. I hate to say it, but I honestly think you should give up looking for a Mahenge online. I don't think you'll find what you want unless you spend a fortune, and even then, you might not get somethng great. Everything I'm seeing as of late is too orange, too purple, not saturated enough, and certainly overpriced because they're living off the hype of the older material, which was much finer. I think to get a great Mahenge, or any nice red spinel, you need a gem afficionado to help you out (and to cover your back so a vendor won't try to pull the wool over your head), and you really need to see many stones in person, otherwise, you'll be spending a foturne on S&H charges. Most vendors don't even know what a good mahenge is (as I have found out the hard way), so how are you expected to know?

If you can't get to a gem show to see many in person, then you'll never know. You can't tell by photos alone.

The search for a fine mahenge is reminding me of the search for a fine paraiba tourmaline. Most people, and many vendors, have never seen a good one in person, so they hype the mediocre material, and to make a hefty profit as well. It's really frustrating, I'm sorry.

BTW, the Swala one looks the most promising, but if he can't provide photos in artificial fluorescent light, I would pass on it. That photo could be heavily photoshopped, or taken in the absolute most optimal lighting conditions.

I hate to be blunt, but you're looking at very high priced stones, so when that happens, I'm a bit more honest. I feel I can help someone save more heartache and $$$ that way. I know it's not what you want to hear, but I get really sad seeing someone make the same mistakes over and over again. You really need to build your eye for color when searching for a fine red spinel, or any fine red stone. I feel that red is one of the most difficult colors to search for, and unless you've seen a great one in person, you'll never know.

BTW, if you want me to just "shut up and go away," I can do that too, I won't be offended (seriously!!). I know my comments can sometimes be harsh and annoying, but I do it in the best interest of the people here. However, I know I can be really annoying. :oops:
Thanks TL. I appreciate your comments and am not offended by you bluntness. I feel that you have my best interest in mind. I am asking for such comments when asking for advice.

Most everything that I have found is very expensive and I have spent a lot on shipping and Iinsurance. How would I go about finding an afficionado to find a gem for me?

Of these the Swala trillion the looks best to me and is the least expensive.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
I don't know how you would go about finding an afficionado but there are many people on PS that are friends outside of this forum, and they go on shopping trips together, or some do the shopping for others. It's not something you can hire out, sorry. However, you can become more of an afficionado yourself if you have the ability to go do the gem shows, and see lots of fine material in person. I know that's not an option for everyone, but it does help tremendously. Take a trip to Tuscon perhaps when the public show opens?
 

LD

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 29, 2008
Messages
9,682
None of them scream out of the page unfortunately. The Pala oval looks great in the picture with all the other stones but when photographed on it's own, it is far more lacking. The Swala trillion (in the photographs) has a lovely colour but, like Chrono has suggested I wonder about the photography. If you're seriously interested in that one then ask Eric for some handshots and several in different lighting conditions.
 

faegrace

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Feb 24, 2011
Messages
373
BrightIce ~

I don't profess to know anything about pink-red spinel. I am wondering though, are you sure you truly want one? Please don't take offense to my question. I only ask because I myself wonder that very thing when the color of a specific gem I am envisioning (or perhaps have "seen" elsewhere) is this unbelievably elusive.

~ faegrace

Heck, maybe that very elusiveness (aka: hard to find high quality) is what drives the strength of people's desire for a particular gem....
 

stargurl78

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 19, 2010
Messages
3,296
I like the 4th stone you posted but I have no knowledge about Swala's photography. As suggested above, maybe you could request some additional photos.
 

Indylady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
5,574
I like the color of the trillion.

TL, I both agree and disagree with you.

I agree that its important to develop your own eye, and that the Mahenges around now, for the most part, aren't quite as good as what you'd find a few years ago. Same goes for rubies, and a few other gem varieties. It does help tremendously to see fine gems in person; gem shows and some jewelry stores will carry higher end gems will help you do that.

That being said, I don't think that gem buying is quite as difficult and elusive as you make it out to be--if it were, we'd never actually be able to buy anything!
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
IndyLady|1308683889|2951215 said:
I like the color of the trillion.

TL, I both agree and disagree with you.

I agree that its important to develop your own eye, and that the Mahenges around now, for the most part, aren't quite as good as what you'd find a few years ago. Same goes for rubies, and a few other gem varieties. It does help tremendously to see fine gems in person; gem shows and some jewelry stores will carry higher end gems will help you do that.

That being said, I don't think that gem buying is quite as difficult and elusive as you make it out to be--if it were, we'd never actually be able to buy anything!
Indy,
I never said gem buying was elusive. However, for certain colors/saturations in certain gem species, especially in an untreated stone, it can be, unless you have giant wads of cash and/or good connections.

The more variables you place on a stone
1) rarity of color
2) rarity of high saturation
3) rarity of gem species
4) rarity of no treatment (which in this day and age is getting to be rarer and rarer).

etc. . . then it does become more elusive.

For example, pure red gems are rare, and then natural untreated red gems of high saturation are rare, and then you're looking for red spinels, which are even rarer than rubies, so the more rare factors you place in there, yes, it can be really elusive. I could more easily find a treated red rubillite than a natural untreated highly saturated red spinel any day of the week.

If BrightIce were to ask me where to find a pretty violet spinel of medium to moderately strong saturation, then I would have plenty of suggestions, and I do recommend buying those online. :))
 

Indylady

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 28, 2008
Messages
5,574
Right--not as gem varieties are as elusive as others.

You often have strong criticisms of gems when posters ask for advice--I don't get it. You seem to have high standards, and encourage posters to find better gems than they've posted, without any actual direction towards a better gem. Perhaps I would understand if your collection consisted of a few 'museum quality' pieces, but you have gems from all price ranges and varieties and rarities--not all are as saturated as you expect others to purchase. I do admire your collection, I don't agree with the criticisms that you post; sometimes they are helpful, but many other times they are more confusing than not.
 

T L

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 20, 2008
Messages
23,268
IndyLady|1308692675|2951317 said:
Right--not as gem varieties are as elusive as others.

You often have strong criticisms of gems when posters ask for advice--I don't get it. You seem to have high standards, and encourage posters to find better gems than they've posted, without any actual direction towards a better gem. Perhaps I would understand if your collection consisted of a few 'museum quality' pieces, but you have gems from all price ranges and varieties and rarities--not all are as saturated as you expect others to purchase. I do admire your collection, I don't agree with the criticisms that you post; sometimes they are helpful, but many other times they are more confusing than not.
I only give my opinion when people ask for opinions. You may want to construe it as criticism, but these are opinions. I never criticize a gem that someone posts about, who is intending to keep it and who likes it. As for BrightIce, in this case she's not spending $150 on a spinel, but several thousand. Therefore, honest opinions are even more important. Also, I compliment many people this forum on their gems and jewelry pieces when they show them as eyecandy here. I especially love when people get a really good deal on a gemstone, even if it's not the most saturated stone, and they can make a beautiful piece of jewelry out of it. I love when people get what they pay for and more, and it doesn't have to be a vivid gem. BrightIce is obviously looking for a vivid gem as she is disappointed with stones that are considered highly saturated by the vendors selling them.

If you are confused about my posts, then perhaps you may want to elaborate on what I have said that is confusing in order that I can make myself more clear.

As I've said before, many times in this forum, not everyone likes my tastes, and not all of my gems are highly saturated. However, having seen a fair share of Mahenges in person and at shows, and I've been in her shoes returning a lot of them, I think I can be of help to BrightIce. Obviously, some people don't want my help, and that's fine too. I even asked her above if she continued to want my help.
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 17, 2008
Messages
7,289
Bright Ice, FWIW, the ones you recently posted look more hot pink than red. I guess I'm a little confused now? Are you looking for red, or do you want a hot pink or as red as you can get?



-A
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 14, 2010
Messages
4,086
Arcadian|1308699980|2951406 said:
Bright Ice, FWIW, the ones you recently posted look more hot pink than red. I guess I'm a little confused now? Are you looking for red, or do you want a hot pink or as red as you can get?



-A
More of a hot pink but some red is fine.
 

ooo~Shiney!

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jun 6, 2010
Messages
1,501
Chrono|1308658664|2950929 said:
1. Nicest of this batch of pictures. Could be a little sleepy, and while saturation is good, there's something a little off to me that I can't quite put my finger on. It is still worth a further inquiry to AJS though.
2. Not bad, but since I know what you are looking for, I'd say it is lacking saturation.
3. Probably from Pala, correct? It looks really desaturated. It's not a spinel that screams Mahenge to me, although it looks a little better in the last picture.
4. The Swala spinel is very hot, but lately, I've been wondering about their photography...
Of course, do your homework and ask for additional pictures of that trillion. :love: :love: :love:
As you know, TL Trillion possesses AMAZING color, and came from Tan.

At the risk of embarrassing myself, I wanted to post yet another picture of Marilyn....
Perhaps the comparison will help a bit ? (shrugs)
First, my photo
And then, the Vendor's photo
No photoshopping

Marilyn can look Sooooo different in different lighting,
as you can tell from my many pictures in different threads.
but the vendor photo seems to match her too... if anything,
I think she typically appears a bit redder, which is totally fine by me :sun:

I don't know if I am adding anything meaningful to this thread.
Just that I have purchased from Eric, and I have purchased from AJS, too
(photo in the Vendor Photo thread)
I have had what I consider a good experience all around !!!.
I'm pretty much of a newb though, of course.
And I don't have particularly exacting criteria, which I am sure is TL's point .... :))

5-21-11 023 (2) (Large).JPG

My Swala Pear !.jpg
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 17, 2008
Messages
7,289
bright ice|1308700168|2951410 said:
Arcadian|1308699980|2951406 said:
Bright Ice, FWIW, the ones you recently posted look more hot pink than red. I guess I'm a little confused now? Are you looking for red, or do you want a hot pink or as red as you can get?



-A
More of a hot pink but some red is fine.
Ok.

The 3ct stone to me looks the best. I believe Eric said something about it being cut a tad deep, but that may also just give a bit better color too.

Of all of them, I like the cut and color on it the most.

-A
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 17, 2008
Messages
7,289
Have you spoken with Eric about the saturation of this stone? There's a definite difference between the pictures for sure. I've liked all the stones Ive bought from Swala so maybe I'm the wrong person for this, BUT, Eric has always been forthcoming about the colors of his stones. We've had plenty of conversations about stones and I always felt I could ask him anything about them without coming off as a total coocoo :lol:

-A
 

bright ice

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
May 14, 2010
Messages
4,086
Arcadian|1308701310|2951433 said:
Have you spoken with Eric about the saturation of this stone? There's a definite difference between the pictures for sure. I've liked all the stones Ive bought from Swala so maybe I'm the wrong person for this, BUT, Eric has always been forthcoming about the colors of his stones. We've had plenty of conversations about stones and I always felt I could ask him anything about them without coming off as a total coocoo :lol:

-A
Thanks Arcadian.

Eric is very slow to respond to e-mails and then they are not complete responses. Have you spoken to him via phone?
 

Arcadian

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Sep 17, 2008
Messages
7,289
bright ice|1308702018|2951441 said:
Arcadian|1308701310|2951433 said:
Have you spoken with Eric about the saturation of this stone? There's a definite difference between the pictures for sure. I've liked all the stones Ive bought from Swala so maybe I'm the wrong person for this, BUT, Eric has always been forthcoming about the colors of his stones. We've had plenty of conversations about stones and I always felt I could ask him anything about them without coming off as a total coocoo :lol:

-A
Thanks Arcadian.

Eric is very slow to respond to e-mails and then they are not complete responses. Have you spoken to him via phone?
No, just via email. I will say its rare he's not gotten back to me within a few days of an email though. Have you inquired with him if you could have a phone consult instead of email?

-A
 

Arkteia

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Nov 3, 2009
Messages
7,565
TL|1308666615|2950985 said:
Did you ask if these were newer material, if they have orange, for shots in artificial light? If not, I would pass on most of these. I hate to say it, but I honestly think you should give up looking for a Mahenge online. I don't think you'll find what you want unless you spend a fortune, and even then, you might not get somethng great. Everything I'm seeing as of late is too orange, too purple, not saturated enough, and certainly overpriced because they're living off the hype of the older material, which was much finer. I think to get a great Mahenge, or any nice red spinel, you need a gem afficionado to help you out (and to cover your back so a vendor won't try to pull the wool over your head), and you really need to see many stones in person, otherwise, you'll be spending a foturne on S&H charges. Most vendors don't even know what a good mahenge is (as I have found out the hard way), so how are you expected to know?

If you can't get to a gem show to see many in person, then you'll never know. You can't tell by photos alone.

The search for a fine mahenge is reminding me of the search for a fine paraiba tourmaline. Most people, and many vendors, have never seen a good one in person, so they hype the mediocre material, and to make a hefty profit as well. It's really frustrating, I'm sorry.

BTW, the Swala one looks the most promising, but if he can't provide photos in artificial fluorescent light, I would pass on it. That photo could be heavily photoshopped, or taken in the absolute most optimal lighting conditions.

I hate to be blunt, but you're looking at very high priced stones, so when that happens, I'm a bit more honest. I feel I can help someone save more heartache and $$$ that way. I know it's not what you want to hear, but I get really sad seeing someone make the same mistakes over and over again. You really need to build your eye for color when searching for a fine red spinel, or any fine red stone. I feel that red is one of the most difficult colors to search for, and unless you've seen a great one in person, you'll never know.

BTW, if you want me to just "shut up and go away," I can do that too, I won't be offended (seriously!!). I know my comments can sometimes be harsh and annoying, but I do it in the best interest of the people here. However, I know I can be really annoying. :oops:
Agree 200 %, and I learned the hardest way. There is a Mahendarium in my box, and I still can not find the perfect one, and should give up looking. Luckily, I am not much into tourmalines so at least I did not spend $$ on this, but spinels, with all their benefits, may be overrated and overpriced. All spinels. The prices are going to plateau sooner or later but for now the window of opportunity has been firmly closed. I bought so many that I can see why not to buy any of the stones (except for Swala but you never know with Swala). Returns are costly and the time spend searching is not worthy of the results. I was obsessed with this stone, and now I think I should have invested in a trip to Tucson or Las Vegas or any other show and learned something instead of pushing "buy" button each time I would see something remotely resembling red, pink or orange.
 

Harriet

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
Messages
12,823
bright ice|1308700168|2951410 said:
Arcadian|1308699980|2951406 said:
Bright Ice, FWIW, the ones you recently posted look more hot pink than red. I guess I'm a little confused now? Are you looking for red, or do you want a hot pink or as red as you can get?



-A
More of a hot pink but some red is fine.
Hi, have you considered a hot (pure) pink sapphire?
 
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