If you have your heart set on an opal ring, you are not alone, Opals are a very popular gemstone, and are used in many jewelry designs, like opal engagement rings, opal pendants, and opal earrings. The gorgeous colors in an opal seem to glow from within with no apparent light source. Here are some interesting facts about opals that you probably didn’t know.
Opals are made of a mineraloid gel that has solidified. It has a high water content, usually between 3-10%. Precious opals have an internal structure containing ordered silica spheres that produce the seemingly glowing colors inside by causing interference with and diffraction of the light passing through the gem. Common, opals, sometimes called potch opals, are milky and do not have the lively play of colors that are seen in precious opals.
Precious opal is often found in thin veins, and so several techniques for preparing the stones for use in jewelry have been developed. Sometimes the opal is backed with a dark mineral such as ironstone. The dark backing causes the colors in the opal to be more evident. This type of opal is called an opal doublet. These produce a gem which is often used to create black opal rings. Genuine black opals are very rare and very expensive, so they are not often used. Another technique is to back an opal with the darker stone, and also add a cap over the top of the opal, either, quartz or sometimes plastic. These are called triplet opals. The top layer protects the relatively soft opal and also magnifies the opals colors. Because they have an artificial look to them, triplet opals are not classified as a precious gemstone.
Fire opals are transparent to translucent and usually have a warm orangey-yellow color. They don’t have the interior play of color that precious opals have, but may occasionally have a flash of the green color present. They are often faceted, whereas most precious opals are cut into cabochons, which show off the play of colors to their best advantage.
Opals that do not have the protective quartz or plastic dome should be handled with care, as they are not particularly hard. If precious opals dry out, they may crack and/or crazing. Storing them in a sealed plastic bag is recommended. Cleaning should be just a quick wash with mild soap and room-temperature water. They should never be put into commercial jewelry cleaner. Also, opals shouldn’t be exposed to quick temperature changes. Be careful when going from a warm house to very cold temperatures outside suddenly, because opals have been known to crack under those circumstances. Because of the fairly fragile nature of an opal ring, they should be reserved for wearing on special occasions, and not worn on a daily basis. Opal engagement rings which will be worn continuously should be of the triplet variety so that there is a protective layer for the opal and it won’t be damaged by the daily wear and tear it will receive.
White gold opal rings would look absolutely beautiful with cubic zirconia rings, or even a ruby ring, and would also look great with vintage jewelry. They are versatile, yet it is good to remember that they are also fragile and must have some special care. Now that you know some interesting things about opals, it’s time to go shopping, don’t you think?
Unique Opal Ring
Opal rings capture all the vivid colors of the rainbow in their elegant beauty and natural radiance. For thousands of years, opals have been highly desired as symbols of grace and good fortune. An opal ring is as unique as it is beautiful – each has its own distinct pattern, colors, and brilliance. The dazzling allure of an opal ring makes this one piece of jewelry that never fails to go unnoticed. While many different kinds of opal exist, those most commonly seen in rings include white, black, and fire opals. Whether for a friend or yourself, the stark beauty of an opal ring is one gift that’s always appreciated.
Finding a Fantastic Opal Ring
The first step to finding a fantastic opal ring is to understand what qualities are desirable in a valuable opal stone. Opal rings are unlike gemstone jewelry in that the centerpiece is not a cut and polished gem. The four attributes of opals which are most important in determining its quality are patterns, color, shape, and clarity.
The patterns seen in an opal ring are a vivacious swirl of different colors which are unique to each particular stone. Different people will have different preferences as to what constitutes the best combination of color and pattern. While more colors generally tend to make the opal ring more alluring, this is not always the case. Some of the most amazing opals rings rely on the bold brilliance of two rich colors.
An opal ring which uses a dome-shaped stone will be able to display more brilliance than one with a flat stone. When opal is used as the centerpiece, this is generally the shape which is used. Inlaid Opal tends to be flat and provides amazing accents to other kinds of rings.
The opal ring should have a high clarity to be a quality product. This means that no visible inclusions should be present. Most opals have small pieces of sand in them, and this is entirely unavoidable. So long as they are not visible to the eye, they will not degrade the quality or aesthetic of the opal ring.
Black Opal Rings
Black opal rings are one of the most beautiful and rare kinds of jewelry available. They rely on special black opal stones which are typically found in Australia. The black opal is differentiated from regular opals by the darker backdrop of the stone. A black opal ring is exceptionally gorgeous and alluring and makes a wonderful gift. Many people value high-quality black opals as rarer and more desirable than diamonds.
Fire Opal Rings
Another exceptional category within opal rings uses the rare and incredible fire opals. This kind of stone is most famously from a small region in Mexico. A fire opal ring will exhibit amazing orange hues which are sure to take the breath away from any who view them. This kind of jewelry is incredibly rare, so it’s something which is sure to be noticed. If you’re looking for stunning beauty and exquisite brilliance, look into fire opal rings.
Featured Opal Rings
The products below represent some of the more exceptional opals rings available on the market today.