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Here we are in the dog days of summer once again, and today we’re going to celebrate all those lucky August-borns, who have not one, not two, but THREE official birthstones. Last year we covered the primary, most popular and well-known August birthstone with a variety of Art Deco peridot pieces, but this year we’re going to focus on one of the lesser known gems with some beautiful art deco spinel pieces.
Spinel is an intriguing gem that comes in a variety of colors including red, cobalt blue, pink, orange and even black.
From the GIA:
Until recently, spinel was an underappreciated gem with little consumer recognition. Increasing demand for ruby alternatives rekindled appreciation for spinel’s rich red color and history. In ancient times, southeast Asia’s mines yielded exceptional large spinel crystals, which became the treasured property of kings and emperors, often passing through many hands as spoils of war.
The most valued spinel colors are bright red, cobalt blue, and vivid pink and orange. Pale lavender is more affordable.
And from the AGS:
Some of the most famous rubies in history have turned out to be spinel. Large red gems, such as the “Black Prince’s ruby” and the “Timur ruby” in the Crown Jewels of England have confirmed to be large red spinels.
Many English monarchs, including Henry VIII, have prized spinel. It has survived them all, through attempted theft, bombings, and fires! One member of the spinel group, magnetite, has magnetic properties. As early as the 11th century, mariners used this form of spinel known as lodestone to magnetize their compasses.
Take a look at some of these beautiful pieces of art deco spinel jewelry, with modern designs and elegant estate finds in a wide variety of price points.
First up this sparkling turquoise spinel pendant, by Judith Ripka:
Gorgeous! Next we have this bezel set lime green spinel art deco ring, a truly lovely vintage find:
Next is this cheery vintage pink spinel bracelet, circa 1940.
For a more modern look, these spinel accented art deco earrings are chic and subtle.
Meanwhile this glittering green art deco spinel piece is a fabulous (and affordable) statement cocktail ring.
Another modern design featuring black spinel, these turquoise-accented art deco sunburst earrings by Nickho Rey:
This beautiful spinel necklace would make a spectacular “something blue”, or a vintage necklace fit for any formal occasion:
And the clear, brilliant blue of this art deco spinel ring would make a gorgeous accent piece:
And let’s not forget the men! We featured a cabochon beauty at the top of the post, but here’s one more cobalt blue spinel men’s ring, with stunning depth of color.
Happy birthday to all those august babies out there, and enjoy your three birthstones. Next year we’ll feature your third and final birthstone: vintage sardonyx!