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  • World's Largest Faceted Citrine at 20,200 Carats Seems to Have Vanished

    November 9, 2022

    The sunny yellow November birthstone you see here is the world’s largest faceted citrine — an oval-cut, 20,200-carat marvel that vanished from the public eye in 2012.Named for what was once its host city, the “Malaga” had been selected as one of the “Special Exhibition Gems” of the Programa Royal…

  • NRF Predicts Record Holiday Season Sales Despite Economic Headwinds

    November 8, 2022

    Despite economic headwinds, holiday season spending is expected to shatter previous records. The National Retail Federation (NRF) is predicting that retail sales during November and December 2022 will grow between 6% and 8% compared to 2021. That translates into consumer purchases that could top $960 billion, and easily outpace the…

  • Colossal 187,775-Carat Cluster of Emerald Crystals Could Set Price Record

    November 7, 2022

    The Kafubu Cluster, a colossal 187,775-carat matrix of individual and intertwined emerald crystals, is expected to set a Gemfields' price record at the mining company's rough tender in mid-November.The impressive, 82.8-pound specimen was extracted in March 2020 from the Chama pit of the famous Kagem emerald mine in Zambia. Kagem…

  • Music Friday: Beatles Sing, 'Give Back Your Ring to Me, And I Will Set You Free'

    November 3, 2022

    Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you great throwback songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. In today’s selection, John Lennon of The Beatles performs the lead vocals to “Anna,” the third track of the legendary group’s 1963 debut studio album, Please Please Me.In the…

  • Frank Perdue's Widow to Auction 400-Year-Old Emerald in Support of Ukraine

    November 3, 2022

    Four hundred years ago, a galleon named Nuestra Señora de Atocha was making a return trip to Spain from the New World when it was hit by a squall and sank along the reefs near the Florida Keys.This was no ordinary ship. It was packed to the rafters with treasures…

  • Gold Rush-Era Sunken Treasure Was Destined for E. Coast Jewelry Stores

    November 2, 2022

    For more than 130 years, the sunken steamer known as the Ship of Gold, rested undisturbed in the Atlantic Ocean 7,200 feet beneath the surface, about 200 miles off the coast of South Carolina.The side-wheeler, also known as the SS Central America, met its watery demise in 1857 when it…

  • 22,892-Carat American Golden Topaz Nearly Perished on Basement Floor

    November 1, 2022

    The colossal cushion-cut specimen you see here is the American Golden Topaz, a 22,892-carat Smithsonian resident that's widely recognized as one of the largest faceted gems of any type in the world. It's also a great example of November's official birthstone.Despite its impressive address, life was not all glitz and…

  • Mysterious, Otherworldly Black Diamonds Take Center Stage on Halloween

    October 31, 2022

    Hey, it's Halloween, so let's take a deep dive into the curious, otherworldly origins of black diamonds — the spookiest variety of the world's hardest material.Black diamonds are also known as “carbonado diamonds,” and gemologists believe that they likely formed in outer space and were brought to earth by meteorites.…

  • Today's Gem Quiz: What Do Sunstones and Bon Ami Cleanser Have in Common?

    October 27, 2022

    Here's a fun quiz. What do this beautiful sunstone from the Smithsonian National Gem Collection and Bon Ami's original formula cleanser have in common?The answer is feldspar.Sunstone — along with moonstone, amazonite and labradorite — are the members of the feldspar family most familiar to the jewelry-buying public. The mineral…

  • Rock Guitarist and LA Rams Super Fan Nita Strauss Earns Championship Ring

    October 26, 2022

    Here's the story behind how one of the world's most accomplished female guitarists earned a Super Bowl LVI championship ring.Los Angeles born guitarist Nita Strauss has become a force to be reckoned with in the music world, dazzling audiences across six continents. She was Alice Cooper’s touring guitarist from 2014…

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