James Avery Jewelry selects the best quality natural, enhanced, and lab-created gemstones based on three qualities: beauty, rarity, and durability. Beauty can be measured by the gemstone’s color, clarity and cut. Rarity is determined by the scarcity of the gemstone in nature or in the marketplace. Durability is based on the hardness, toughness, and stability of the gem. James Avery Jewelry does not use any imitation or artificial gemstones.
Carats, Shapes and Sizes
Carats are a measure of weight in gemstones. Due to variations in the chemical composition and the density of various types of gemstones, a one carat (1.00 ct.) stone will vary in size depending on the type of gemstone. For instance, the density of a topaz is greater than the density of a peridot. Therefore, the same weight of a one carat topaz will physically be a smaller stone than a peridot of the same weight.
Gemstone sizes are usually given in carat weight (ct) or described in millimeters (mm). Some typical gemstone shapes and approximate weights for various sizes and shapes are shown below, although the exact size varies depending on the type of gemstone.
In addition to weight and size, the prices of finer gemstones typically vary depending on the shape, cut, degree of clarity, and the tone and color of each gemstone.
A natural gemstone is any stone that has crystallized in the earth unassisted by man before it is mined. Gemstones are rated on the Mohs Scale of Hardness which indicates the durability of the stone in jewelry. Minerals are ranked from the softest (1 for talc) to the hardest (10 for diamond).
For select gemstones, enhancements such as heat, oil, wax, resin, diffusion, dye, stabilization, and irradiation are required to achieve a certain color. Gemstone enhancement is a common practice and the results are permanent.
A gemstone that is grown in a laboratory is not imitation or artificial. Rather, it is carefully crystallized over time. Lab-created gemstones have essentially the same optical, physical, and chemical properties as a natural gemstone. Only a trained gemologist can tell them apart.
Natural gemstones are crystals formed by heat and pressure within the earth. A similar heat and pressure environment is created in the laboratory using the same natural elements. The lab-created gemstones used by James Avery Jewelry are high quality stones that are created using a process that takes 10 to 14 months to complete, compared to the lesser quality stones that may take only hours to create.
Care and Cleaning
We recommend removing all gemstone jewelry before any vigorous physical activity to prevent loss or damage to the gemstone or setting. Most gemstones can be cleaned using a soft brush and a mild solution of lukewarm, soapy water. Use only those jewelry cleaners that are made specifically for cleaning delicate gems and pearls. Many gemstones are heat sensitive to high temperatures and direct sunlight. Do not put gemstones in an ultrasonic or steam cleaner, and avoid the use of harsh chemical dips. For more information on how to care for and clean your James Avery Jewelry please visit our Care and Cleaning Information page.
Mohs Scale of Hardness
The Mohs scale of mineral hardness characterizes the scratch resistance of various minerals through the ability of a harder material to scratch a softer material. It was created in 1812 by the German geologist and mineralogist Friedrich Mohs and is one of several definitions of hardness in materials science.
The first lab-created gemstone was produced in 1902 in Paris, France by a chemist named Louis Verneuil. A gemstone that is grown in a laboratory is not imitation or artificial, and is carefully crystallized over time. It has essentially the same optical, physical and chemical properties as a natural gemstone. Only a trained gemologist can tell them apart.
Natural gemstones are crystals formed by heat and pressure within the earth. A similar heat and pressure environment is created in the laboratory using the same natural elements. This process takes 10 to 14 months to complete.