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December Birthstone - Zircon

SITR Zircon

Steven Kretchmer’s Custom Zircon pendant featuring a 37.17ct color change Zircon.  Winner of AGTA’s 2015 Spectrum Award for Evening category.

 The name Zircon probably comes from the Persian word zargun which means “gold-colored,” although zircon comes in a wide range of different colors.

The legend of Zircon began when Hyacin, the Greek youth, was killed. A blue hyacinth flower grew from the spilled blood. The blue color of the zircon found in Greece matched the blue of the flower. Pliny the Elder started this legend by his written comparison of colors.

In the Middle Ages, this gem was thought to induce sound sleep, drive away evil spirits, and promote riches, honor, and wisdom.

Blue zircon was a particular favorite in Victorian times, when fine gems were often featured in English estate jewelry dating from the 1880s. Gemologist George Kunz—Tiffany’s famed gem buyer whom Kunzite was named after—was a notable zircon advocate. He once proposed the name “starlite” to promote the gem’s fiery nature. The name never caught on.

Zircon is a natural stone (not to be confused with synthetic cubic zirconia or CZ). The most popular color is blue, which is created by heat treatment and can fade over time. Zircon also comes in a variety of browns.  Colorless zircon was popular in the 1900s as a diamond substitute until more durable substitutes came on the market.

Zircon is rated 6 to 7.5 on the Mohs scale. It has fair to good toughness. While zircon is not as hard or tough as a stone like sapphire, it can still be worn in all types of jewelry as long as proper care is given to avoid rough wearing or hard blows. Also, zircon can be brittle, so it should be worn and stored in a manner that avoids hard rubbing against other materials.

Becky Ring 4

Steven Kretchmer Custom Zircon Ring

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