Find out more about the March birthstone and how it earned the name ‘water of the sea’ or ‘aquamarine’
Although available naturally in a wide range of shades of blue, with the most valuable and rare being sky-blue and dark blue, the majority of aquamarines have a ‘hint of’ blue-green in the same way shade of whites are described by paint companies! The colour is subtle, a drop of blue and green so pale in colour it’s more like a suggestion than anything else. The birthstone for March, so my birthstone, the colouring is ideal for Spring heralding the coming of brighter and longer days.
I see aquamarine stones and I immediately think of the sea. In fact you only have to say the word and in my mind I’m there; the sun is shining and I’m able to see beautiful blues which seem cooling and inviting at the same time. The name actually comes from the Latin meaning ‘water of the sea’ so I suppose it’s no surprise really! According to legend, aquamarine is the treasure of mermaids and is often stated to be the gemstone of sailors. The March birthstone has been used over the centuries in healing, as practitioners claim it helps bring you in touch with your spiritual being bringing inner peace and it has a soothing effect on relationships too.
A member of the Beryl family of stones like emerald, aquamarine is a relatively hard stone measuring 7.5 on the MOH scale (diamond is the hardest at 10) making it ideal for jewellery. The cut of aquamarine really does change its appearance; my preference is a step cut which draws the eyes in to the centre of the stone with a clean, clear cut perfect for showing off the subtleties of colour in the March birthstone. Round brilliant cut and tear cut are also popular giving the stone a more sparkly and eye-catching look.
With its colouring aquamarine works really well when set alongside diamonds in white metal and I think that some of the simplest of designs are the most alluring. Elegant step cut stones in an uncluttered claw setting with diamonds nestled in between is one of my personal favourites. Many of the styles we have in our range in 9ct yellow gold still have the white gold setting as the white gold is the perfect way to show off the colour of the stone. When we look at the designs we carry we notice that there aren’t any of the more traditional cluster styles of rings, for example. Instead we find more modern inspired pieces showcasing tears and step cut aquamarines rather than round brilliant cuts. Perhaps this is an indication of our preference to have more subtle styling for such a delicately coloured stone; whatever the reason aquamarine is definitely here to stay and although not as popular as sapphires or blue topaz its appeal is certainly enduring.