13 February

5 Ways to Wear Amethyst

11 July

History of Jewelry: Amethyst

This purple stone celebrates level-headed sobriety as it comes from the Greek word “amethystos” meaning “not drunken.”  Ancient banquets frequently served wine in Amethyst goblets to promote soberness in guests through the long hours of feasting.  The legend behind the name stems from Dionysus, the Greek god of intoxication.  One day he was very angry and cursed the first person to cross him, which happened to be Amethyst, a young maiden on her way to pay tribute to the goddess Diana.  Amethyst prayed to Diana for protection as Dionysus released tigers on the maiden and in return, Diana turned Amethyst into a statue of pure crystalline quartz.  Dionysus immediately wept tears of wine in remorse which stained the quartz purple and thus creating the gem we know today.

Amethyst is also representative of piety and celibacy; bishop’s rings have been set with amethyst since the Middle Ages.  Leonardo da Vinci believed that amethyst could prevent evil thoughts while sharpening intelligence.  Tibetan Buddhists often use amethyst in meditation rosaries to aid in peace and tranquility.  Medieval European soldiers used amethyst amulets for protection and healing.

Amethyst is the traditional February birthstone.  The color range is from light pink to deep purple which comes from iron impurities in its quartz structure.  It was formally a precious gem with values similar to diamond, ruby, sapphire, and emerald but has since been modified to semi-precious after large deposits were discovered in Brazil.

Shop amethyst jewelry at Gemvara

1 February

February Fancies

It may come as a shock, but February isn’t all about pinks and reds. There’s another color that represents the month of February and it goes beyond Valentine’s Day. That color is purple, or what we like to refer to as amethyst.

Amethyst, February’s birthstone, is a welcome change for those who don’t love the super girly colors of V-Day, but still appreciate the romance. In fact, amethyst was actually the gem of cupid – they say St. Valentine wore it himself.

Have a loved one with a February birthday? Need a more subtle Valentine’s Day stone? Amethyst jewelry would make a marvelous gift. Check out some of our customer’s recent designs (below) for some inspiration.

Written in the Stars Ring, Pear Gem Drop Earrings, Oh La Lovely Ring, Double Helix Ring, Sailor’s Knot Ring, Twin Hearts Ring, Infinite Heart Pendant, Counterpoint Ring, Yin Yang Heart, Lotus Ring, Monsoon Earrings, Twist Ring

9 February

Amethyst for Your Valentine

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February’s birthstone Amethyst is the gem of cupid too: they say St. Valentine himself wore an amethyst ring.

Does that make amethyst the gem of love? After all, it’s the gem of peace and tranquility. Tibetan Buddhists use amethyst rosaries to enhance meditation. The ancient Greeks thought amethyst could even keep you sober.

Because purple is the color of royalty, amethyst rings were long reserved only for kings, queens, and bishops. Today amethyst inspires jewelry designers to create affordable and not-so-affordable treasures.

Amethyst is one of the most popular gems in our palette at Gemvara. Our customers love setting amethyst in platinum, probably because this combination is difficult to find anywhere else. Here are some of our customer’s recent creations in this lovely purple gem.

14 July

Initial It: Bridesmaid Gifts Get Personal

There are a lot of ways to show your bridesmaids your appreciation for their friendship, support and keeping their cool during all the drama of planning your big day. But how many monogrammed totes and gift baskets does a girl need? Buck the trend and get your bridal party presents that are thoughtful, meaningful and will stand the test of time, like gorgeous, personalized jewelry you design yourself.

It’s traditional for the bride to give gifts to her bridesmaids at the rehearsal dinner. Surprise your girls in front everyone with initial necklaces available in her favorite metal, whether sterling silver, white gold, yellow gold or rose gold. Initial necklaces come in beautiful, modern designs in every letter of the alphabet, so if you have a Nicole or an Amanda or a Zelda (hey, you never know!) in your bridal party, there’s an initial pendant for her.

Your bridesmaid gift of an initial pendant necklace is made even more special with the inclusion of a specially selected gemstone. The gemstone jewelry you choose could be based on your bridesmaid’s birthstone or perhaps the gemstone of the month of your wedding. One of the most fashionable options is placing a gemstone on each initial pendant that matches one of your wedding colors — making them the perfect accessories for your bridesmaids to wear at the wedding.

If your summer wedding features a sunny yellow, for example, citrine jewelry would be the perfect choice. Or, if you’ve chosen purple, one of the most popular wedding colors of 2010, amethyst jewelry would complement your bridesmaid dresses or flowers.

Jen Byck is a freelance writer, television enthusiast and appreciator of all things shiny.

3 February

Amethyst: Purple Reign

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Not just February’s birthstone, amethyst today is an essential part of your jewelry wardrobe. That’s because this lovely purple quartz looks great with both warm and cool colors. You can set it in white, rose or yellow gold, sterling silver or any combination of those metals that you like to wear. And amethyst is available and pretty affordable in large sizes so it’s a good choice for a bold fashion ring.

Amethyst has a long been treasured for its regal purple color. Because of this gem’s peaceful aura, Tibetan Buddhists use amethyst rosaries to enhance the tranquility of meditation.

The name amethyst comes from the Greek “amethystos,” which means “not drunken.” People once believed that amethyst could keep you sober, even serving wine in amethyst goblets at banquets. (Maybe the purple tone of the glasses allowed them to water down the wine without being detected!) Even today, amethyst’s role as a symbol of sobriety makes this gem a perfect “one day at a time” reminder.

Today, most amethyst is mined in Brazil. When buying amethyst, look for a medium purple tone. Pale almost pink amethyst, sometimes called “Rose de France,” will be less expensive than stronger tones. Well-cut faceted amethyst should sparkle with brilliance evenly across the stone, with no washed out or dark areas that don’t change when you rock the stone back and forth.

Amethyst is durable and great for everyday wear. Clean with mild dish soap and use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect. Avoid exposure to high heat, which may cause its purple color to fade.

Gemvara’s gem library has more amethyst information and Gemvara has a great selection of amethyst jewelry too.


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