November’s Gemstone – Citrine

Today’s member blogger is Mary of Sandcastle Jewels.

As we enter the gift giving season, lots of people want to give gifts of jewelry, but aren’t sure where to start. If you aren’t sure what to give as a gift, but you know your “giftee” was born in November, consider Citrine. Besides being the November Birthstone, Citrine is also the Anniversary stone for the 13th Anniversary.

The good news for gift givers is that Citrine is a reasonably priced gem, and is sturdy enough for daily wear. Because of its hardness (a 7 on the Mohs hardness scale) and the fact that its growth structure means it doesn’t split easily, there were times when larger pieces were even used as handles for daggers & small tools. Gem lore is that Citrine is a gift of sunshine that brings happiness & optimism to the wearer. It’s sometimes called the Merchant’s Stone, as it is said to bring prosperity to shop owners. Just in case, I take my piece of Citrine Rough to all of my shows!

Citrine is a member of the Quartz family of gems. It is the Yellow, or Golden variety of Quartz. It ranges in shade from a warm butter yellow to the deep amber tones of Madeira Citrine. The photo above is citrine from my own collection. You can see from the large piece of “rough” That the crystals form on a thick base. You might notice two stones that are different from the others. One is a Bi-Color citrine, where half is clear quartz & half is citrine. The other is an Ametrine. Ametrine comes from Bolivia, where there’s a prominent seam of Amethyst that was affected by changes in the Earth’s crust, so stones mined along that seam show the purple of Amethyst along with the Golden yellow Citrine. Sometimes it’s a faint division, other times a fairly clean color split. While Citrine has been found all over the world at one time or another, most commercial production is in Brazil & Zambia. It’s common and accepted for Citrine to be heat treated. Believe it or not, much of it begins as lighter toned Amethyst or Smoky Quartz. As of this writing, there are over 20 listings from teamhandmade members for pieces using Citrine. So why not think about a gift of Citrine this year?


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