Gemstone beads are remnants or fragments of gems, carved in a variety shapes, including round, bicone, disc and hard-to-find cuts.
Colorful sapphires, emeralds and rubies are some popular examples of the gemstone beads you may choose. If you want to design your own necklace, bracelet or earrings, gemstone beads can lend a sophisticated and elegant appearance to your creations, but imitations may be more affordable.
Pendants of Black Onyx and Tiger Eye are tremendously popular, as are Topaz, Amber, Amethyst and Garnet. With gemstone beads that have been polished, facet-cut or carved, it’s easy to create attractive jewelry. While these beads may be more expensive than their glass replicas, they are genuine stones, which can be difficult to imitate with total accuracy. Semi-precious is a term that isn’t used among jewelers, since a flawed diamond isn’t more precious than other unflawed stones, when it comes to jewelry-making.
While it’s possible to find imitation gemstone beads that are quite realistic, they are for those that are content with costume-jewelry quality. There are many choices, including faceted crystal, glass and acrylic resin beads that replicate the look of marble, lava, or other multi-colored gemstone beads. When you consider all the earth’s treasures, there are all kinds of stones made into beads, which can be strung or purchased in gem-strands.
Many of today’s gemstone beads are processed in China or India, but they are enhanced with color or dyed. Some stones may be irradiated, to bring out darker hues, like in the case of Blue Topaz, for example. In natural occurrences, you will find that minerals may contain natural variations, which means the color or quality of gemstone beads may not be identical. During processing, gemstone beads may be stabilized and reconstituted, in order to provide some uniformity, among the selections. This also means that you may not be getting the precious or semi-precious stones you think you are!
You shouldn’t be so naïve to think that some overseas sources may not be selling genuine gemstones, because they may only be selling dyed or color-enhanced versions of cheaper quartz or low-grade stones. You should purchase from trusted sources, if you hope to get the real thing, when it comes to authentic gemstone beads.
When you see the term “reconstituted”, it applies to those stones that are a combination of small chips or ground-up powder and epoxy or resin that turns them into blocks, from which beads can be cut from. It’s possible that reconstituted stones are low-grade rocks that are dyed and compressed, to resemble real gemstone beads.
According to historic accounts, gemstone beads date back to the 18th century B.C., when used by ancient Anatolian people.
Indian turquoise beads, Botswana agate beads and Korean jade beads are some of the selections you are likely to find, when browsing the Internet. Many beading enthusiasts are familiar with the wide varieties, but those that love jewelry-making are attracted to the natural element the Earth’s stones can provide, through real gemstone beads.