Gemstones and Birthstones: Sapphire — Beautiful Blue and All Colors of the Rainbow

Sapphire. The word itself has come to represent the color: deep, rich, brilliant blue. And the very best sapphires capture that color. (Take a look at Mia Dixon’s photo of the Ceylon blue sapphire in Gemstones & Birthstones: Smokin’ Sapphires, Just the Facts.) But sapphires of that color are rare and possibly out-of-the-budget world for many September women seeking their birthstone. Of course you can find pastel blue sapphires that are less heart-stopping, price-wise, but just as heart-stopping beauty-wise.

ABOVE: These loose fancy-colored sapphires show some of the range available for sapphire lovers. 3.44ct. oval violet; 2.01ct. oval light padparadscha; 1.57ct. cushion-cut purple, and 2.86ct. oval green. (Contented sigh.) Photo by Mia Dixon, courtesy Pala International.

But not really a “blue” person?

Are you ever in luck. Because sapphire come in literally every color of the rainbow—and just about every color in between, behind, and around it.

fancy sapphires from the rainbow sapphire collection

If you love all the colors of the rainbow, then rainbow sapphire jewelry is perfect. This 14k yellow gold bracelet offers a double shot of fancy colored sapphires in princess cuts. Photo courtesy The Rainbow Sapphire Collection.

Like green? Sapphires have it. Yellow warm your heart? Look no further. Fiery orange more your statement? Wait until you see padparadscha. (Yes, that’s a word.) Nothing says color like sapphires. (Except maybe garnets, but they don’t do blue and that’s a story for another time. January babies, wait for it.)

Sapphires of colors other than blue are, as a group, called fancy sapphires. Otherwise, except for the special pink orange of padparadscha, they are known by their color: yellow sapphires, green sapphires, pink sapphires, red sapphires….

Nope. Technically there are no red sapphires. Red sapphires, as we’ve mentioned before, are known in the jewelry world as rubies and they have their own month, July. (See Gemstones and Birthstones: Ruby — Just the Facts.)

Sapphires are not always vibrantly intense, either. So if you like softer, gentler colors, you can find a sapphire that is your favorite.

Some women can’t choose between all this beauty. Fortunately, if you are one of them, you don’t have to. You can build a bracelet or necklace with the whole rainbow of sapphire colors. Even blue.
Lucky you!

For more on sapphires, see these other articles by Sharon:
Gemstones & Birthstones: Smokin’ Sapphires, Just the Facts
Gemstones and Birthstones: Star Sapphires, a Gem with Stars for the Stars

Sharon Elaine Thompson is a GG and FGA who has been writing on gemstone and jewelry topics for Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist since 1987. She also writes a line of Birthstone Romances under the name Liz Hartley.

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