September’s Birthstone

Sapphire-inspired lampwork headpin by Tacoma 2017 exhibitor Lara Lutrick
After a fun-filled long weekend, and with Fall just around the corner (and Bead Fest Tacoma!), we’re ready to talk about our appreciation and love for September’s gorgeous birthstone–sapphire!

With its mesmerizing blue hue that has been described as “the blue of a clear sky just minutes after sundown”, the highly-coveted sapphire has been the favored gemstone of kings, queens and even Hollywood stars. Let’s dive in to this gemstone’s fascinating world.

Introducing: Sapphire!

Appearance: The sapphire belongs to the same family as the ruby (they are nearly identical in composition!), and it is comprised of aluminum oxide. Sapphires are most famously featured in a deep, cool blue. This beautiful gemstone can also be found in yellow, pink, black, and a very unique blush-pink variety known as padparadscha. Depending on color and quality, sapphires can range from less than $20 per carat to more than $10,000 per carat. 

Origin: Highly-coveted blue sapphires are often sourced in Burma and Kashmire where the stones are a pure spectral blue color. They can also be found in Sri Lanka, Thailand and Australia, but these stones are often a more muted blue or blue with green undertones. While they may not produce the rarest varieties of sapphires, Sri Lanka currently produces the largest amount of sapphires.

Blue Sapphire Gemstones | Source

Fun Facts:

  • Sapphires are a traditional gift for those celebrating their 5th or 45th wedding anniversaries
  • They are tied with rubies as one of the strongest stones, second only to diamonds
  • Iron and titanium give blue sapphires their unique hue
  • The rare padparadscha sapphire gets its name from the Sanskrit word for lotus flower
  • Due to its durability, sapphires have been used for industrial purposes–the Apple watch has used sapphire glass in its screen
  • The sapphire is a symbol of nobility and faithfulness
  • The largest sapphire is called, The Star Of Adam Sapphire–it was found in Ratnapura, Sri Lanka, and it weighs in at a whopping 1,404.49 carats

Sapphire’s Healing Benefits:

  • Wearing the color blue evokes creativity, courage and intelligence
  • It is believed that sapphire is a strong promoter of inner peace, and can help ward off evil
  • Happiness is a sapphire–it has been said that wearing sapphire boosts one’s mood and joyfulness
  • Where sapphire to your next interview! Sapphires have been said to elevate prosperity, success and self-fulfillment
Titanic’s Heart of the Ocean | Source

Sapphire in Pop Culture:

  • James Cameron’s Titanic and Kate Winslet’s (character) blue, heart-shaped diamond known as “Heart of the Ocean”
  • Donald Petrie’s How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and Kate Hudson‘s (character) wearing a 51.94 carat sapphire-adorned necklace
  • Elizabeth Taylor’s Bulgari Sapphire Necklace, featuring a 321-carat Burmese sapphire pendant

Famous Figures with September Birthdays:

  • Elizabeth I of England
  • Nicole Richie
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Beyoncé
  • Amy Poehler
  • Roald Dahl

Design your very own sapphire-inspired jewelry art at Bead Fest Tacoma!

Intro to Prong Setting – Ring | Kieu Pham Gray

Add prong settings to your repertoire! Learn how to set gemstones into a prong setting and also learn to remove them. Plus, be introduced to the basics of measuring and notching the setting for the perfect fit.

Wild About Wire: Jellies | Steven James

“Dive” into Steven’s newest workshop as you play with color and wire! Learn how to form the metal, enamel copper and the fine silver wire, to then pull it all together into your finished pendant.

Cab Set Niobium Pendant | Marti Brown

Set a true-blue cabochon in a niobium pendant using metalsmithing, texturing, dremel and anodizing techniques.

Sasha Pendant | Sarah Thompson

Sailor Moon vibes, anyone?! Learn how to capture a faceted stone using wire weaving and simple symmetry techniques.

Shop for sapphire gemstones and inspired pieces in Tacoma, WA!

Aquamarine & Sapphire with Pyrite Gold Vein Beads from Tacoma 2017 exhibitor Beads Creation

September is an exciting, wonderful month. The leaves begin to change, sweater weather lingers in the near future and the grocery stores begin to release pumpkin spice everything. It also means that Bead Fest Tacoma is almost here! Celebrate your love for sapphires and gemstones of all varieties by shopping our curated Expo Floor and indulging in a few workshops.

Before we wrap up, we want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to all of you out there with September birthdays!

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