Trends & Fashion
Perfect in Peridot
August’s Birthstone Goes Green
Traditionally the symbol of fame, dignity and protection, Peridot, August’s official birthstone, adds stand-out style and symbolism to any kind of apparel. Peridot even pairs well with the newer eco fabrics, due to its vibrant and bright color. In artificial light the gem’s color deepens, making for a lovely addition to evening wear.
Peridot encompasses the green portion of the color spectrum and varies from vivid pure green to green with yellow or brown modifiers, creating pleasing olive and khaki hues, the reason mineralogists refer to it as “olivine.” Quite the unique stone, peridot splits light into two widely divergent paths, creating a velvety glow and luster. The distinctive green of peridot combines well with any color metal, but is especially enriched when surrounded by yellow gold.
The word “peridot” is derived from the Greek peridona, loosely meaning “to give richness.” Their neighbors, the Romans, called peridot the “evening emerald” when they noticed its enhanced color in lamplight. In fact, due to its ability to remain radiant even in darkness, peridot was favored by pirates for warding off the evils of the night.
Due to the commonly blocky crystal shape of peridot in rough, it is often fashioned into an oval mixed cut to bring out the liveliness of the material, or, as with deeper colored material, it is cut into an emerald cut to display its unique color. Whereas smaller crystals often are cut into caliber-sized stones made for mass manufactured jewelry, larger crystals often are cut more imaginatively either in shape, facet arrangement or both. Clean material is used for faceted stones, while the more included material is used for cabochons.
The ancient and traditional source for peridot is the volcanic Isle of Zabargad, also known as the Isle of St. John, located in the Red sea, 188 miles east of Aswan, Egypt. This source was mined for over 3500 years, but forgotten for many centuries; it was only rediscovered around 1900. Modern sources for peridot include Pakistan, Burma (Myanmar), Norway, Tanzania, and the U.S., in the state of Arizona.
During the Baroque period, peridot experienced a brief bout of fame before fading back out of the limelight. Peridot was equally popular during the Art Nouveau period. Today, however, the fashion world is rediscovering its love of color and returning peridot, once again, to the spotlight.
Cushion Shape Peridot
Image by Paul Wild
Round Brilliant Cut Peridot
Image by Paul Wild