- Natalie's Fine Jewelry -
Mon - Fri 10am - 5pm
Sat 10am - 4pm
Closed - Sunday 

5654 Cortez Rd W. 
Bradenton, FL 34210 
October Birthstone

Traditionally, Opal is the Birthstone for October

Opals are the most misunderstood and maligned gemstones of all. Each
one is unique, and their colors are unsurpassed in the gemstone world.

While most of us think of opals as being from Australia, opals are mined in many different

locations, all over the world. Opals are found in Mexico, where the finest ones are a deep,
rich orange color. They are also found in Honduras, Hungary, and the United States.

There is really no other gemstone that displays the intense, bright myriad of colors that opal
does. Fine opals command incredibly high prices, and must always be worn with care, as
they are susceptible to cracking and breaking rather easily. One of our customers had her
opal fissure throughout the entire stone, by just going from the heat of her home in the
winter, outside into the frigid air.

Ethiopian opals, of which we are very fond, seem to be a lot harder than most of those

that come from Australia. We have not tested how easily opals from other countries can
be damaged, but we have damaged a few of our own inventory that came from Australia.
Once in a while one will drop on the floor, and chip, or the pressure of setting them in prongs
or a bezel, chipped them. We have not had that happen with any of the opals from Ethiopia,
however, they are still not as resilient as the harder gemstones.

Below is some intereting trivia about opals: 

* History records that Mark Antony exiled Nonius, a wealthy senator, for refusing to sell his opal.

* There exists an silly superstition that you should never wear an opal, unless it's your birthstone.

* Another inane belief is that you should never purchase an opal for yourself, because it is bad luck.

* Opals are supposed to give the wearer protection against disease and the power of prophecy.

* The Romans called it "Cupid stone" because they felt it was a symbol of hope and purity. 

* Opals from Mexico  are often  clear and intense orange. Opals from Ethiopia generally have 
intense patches of green and orange. Opals from Australia run a gamut of colors, with  solid 
"black opals" commanding the highest prices.

We have heard so many customers tell us that their jeweler instructed them to put a light coating of baby
oil or mineral oil on their opal, to keep it in prime condition. Well, we all know that water and oil don't
mix - not usually anyway - and opal's exquisite beauty comes from the water molecules within the stone.

DO NOT COAT YOUR OPALS WITH OIL, OF ANY KIND! We suggest our customers keep 

their opal jewelry in a solution of glycerin and water, to keep them moist when 
they are not wearing them.

The chemical composition of opal is SiO2nH2O - silicon, oxygen, and water.

September Birthstone

- Wise Men STILL Seek Him -