Those celebrating October birthdays lay claim to the lush opal as a birthstone. The opal, with its distinctive play of color and soft opalesence has a long and distinguished history that includes Roman emperors and British queens. This elegant stone with its soft, luminous quality has been enchanting wearers for thousands of years, and today’s lovers of fine gems are far from immune to the generous rainbows of light that emanate from the best quality stones.
Black opal is, by far, the most valuable form of this gem that’s created by the mineral silica. Found mainly in Lightening Ridge, Australia, black opal is opal that has a dark background as opposed to a light one. Black opal refracts light in glorious ways, making it a beautiful addition to any collection.
White or light opal is the type of opal that most people picture when someone mentions this attractive stone. Colors in the white opal are refracted back from a base that ranges from colorless to medium gray. When positioned correctly, a rainbow of glorious colors can often be observed. This type of opal is also found in Australia. In fact, Australia is the world’s biggest supplier of opal — it’s national gemstone.
Fire, Boulder, and Jelly Opal
While black and white are the two most recognized colors for opal, this stone actually occurs in a range of colors from blues and purples to golds and oranges. These are called everything from fire opals to boulder opals to jelly opals. If you’re drawn to this stunning form of naturally occurring silica, the color selection is nearly endless.
Opals make beautiful accompaniments to diamonds in engagement and bridal jewelry. See our stunning collection today.
Dancer, singer, actress Julianne Hough has packed a lot of living into her brief 27 years, including her recent engagement to Washington Caps player Brooks Laich. Hough officially announced her engagement in late August, via her website: JulianneHough.com.
According to Hough, the ring was custom ordered by her fiance in collaboration with jewelry designer Lorraine Schwartz. It features a massive prong-set oval diamond nestled solitaire-style on a petite band. Though Laich apparently proposed earlier in the month, Hough kept photos of the ring to herself until the dramatic reveal on August 27th.
But this power couple isn’t breaking any rules of fashion by opting to go bold with their choice of engagement ring. The diamond solitaire has been a staple of the wedding industry since the late 1800s when Tiffany first invented the six-prong setting to contain it. The trend of late has simply been to go bolder and bigger, adding pave diamonds to the band and mixing up the diamond cuts. This design that once featured petite stones nestled on dainty shanks is now capable of showcasing massive stones of heavy carat weights.
If you’re considering investing in a timeless solitaire diamond engagement ring, you’ll be pleased at the stunning options available. A solitaire diamond is simply one that stands alone. It can be any cut, any carat weight, any color. It can be enclosed in a exquisite halo of smaller gems or showcased by a vintage-inspired split shank. It can weigh as little as a fraction of a carat, or — as in the case of the Hough-Laich union — be a six-carat stunner.
When you’re ready to purchase this modern spin on a timeless design, we have diamond solitaires to satisfy every bride-to-be. See our comprehensive selection today.
As Rachel Green, Jennifer Aniston portrayed everyone’s favorite friend for ten years, as we watched her tumultuous social life behind the scenes both soar and plummet. But finally, fans of this cheeky girl-next-door can celebrate in a big way. After a three-year engagement, Aniston finally tied the knot on August 5th, 2015 with long-time love, Justin Theroux.
Theroux, star of the HBO series, “The Leftovers,” has seen big screen success as well in such movies as “Zoolander” and “Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle.” But you may know him better as a screenwriter. Theroux helped pen “Iron Man 2” and “Rock of Ages.” He and Aniston reportedly met years ago through mutual friend, Ben Stiller, and they’ve been “Friends” ever since.
According to CNN, the couple married quietly in the seclusion of their home in Bel Air amid 70 guests who included “Friends” alum, Lisa Kudrow. Aniston’s ring was designed by close friend and jewelry designer, Jennifer Meyer, who opted for a simple channel of small diamonds surrounded on both sides by a plain gold band. The ring is classically gorgeous — like Aniston herself — with just enough bling to make us all envious.
When asked to describe the latest love-of-her-life in an interview with “Good Morning, America,” Aniston jokingly referred to Theroux as …”the most cold, icy, fishy kind of guy.” and then went on to state that she was working on warming him up.
But judging by the chemistry that the two mega-stars have together, things have already heated up in the Theroux-Aniston camp, and fans of the previously unlucky-in-love Rachel Green couldn’t be happier.
Wondering which engagement ring looks are trending among your favorite celebrities these days? The good news is — anything goes. Unlike previous eras that chose a specific look and wrung it until it was dry, modern celebrities are embracing all combinations of setting, stone, and shank.
If you’re shopping for an engagement ring, or if you expect to begin shopping in the near future, take a little inspiration from your favorite celebs who aren’t afraid to change things up to get the individualized look they love:
Alison Brie’s Rose Gold Sparkler
“Mad Men” alum, Alison Brie, recently announced her engagement to actor Dave Franco — brother of James Franco, with the debut of a rose-cut diamond ring complete with pave diamonds. The sizeable stone is nestled snuggled in a shank crafted of feminine rose-colored gold. Brie’s ring was designed by none other than famed California jewelry designer, Irene Neuwirth, and is big on sparkle factor and presence.
Storm Uechtritz’s Titanium Trinket
It’s not really a trinket. In fact, Storm Uechtritz’s engagement ring that was recently bestowed upon her by Irish Boyzone singer, Ronan Keating, is anything but petite. It features a huge oval diamond that’s made that much more dominant by the slim, diamond-encrusted titanium shank that supports it.
Uechtritz is an Australian television producer who has contributed to such popular shows as “The Voice,” and “X-Factor.” It was on the latter show that she met Keating, who was working on the show as a mentor.
FKA Twigs’ Bow-Shaped Beauty
Team Edward fans all over the world are sporting broken hearts with the recent announcement of Robert Pattinson’s engagement to singer FKA Twigs. The two reportedly sealed the deal back in the spring with a 4-carat, pear-shaped diamond that forms one-half of the glittering bow.
When you’re ready to shop diamond engagement rings, we have a comprehensive collection to rival that of all your favorite celebrities.
ESPY Award winner and role model for transgender people everywhere, Caitlin Jenner continues to wow fans with her aristocratic fashion sense. Drawn to sleek gowns and form-fitting tops. Jenner appears as comfortable in a plunging neckline as she is in a more casual day-out-on-the-town ensemble. You could call her style understated, yet elegant, and it doesn’t begin and end with clothing. Caitlyn Jenner knows her bling as well.
At the ESPYs, Jenner was spotted wearing vintage emeralds on each ear, and in Vanity Fair’s iconic images taken by none other than Annie Leibovitz, Jenner donned earrings that featured a simple cushion-cut stone of rock crystal encased in a serviceable bezel setting — polished, not pretentious.
Given Jenner’s influence by the Kardashian clan, her simple, classic style — revealed first in Vanity Fair — surprised the world. Fans and critics alike expected more eyelashes, more lipliner, and more flamboyance. What they got instead was the classic elegance and understated beauty of a woman who is comfortable in her own skin.
Indeed, Jenner is not one to over-accessorize. A simple pair of earrings, an occasional small pendant that dangles from the end of a long chain — these are the trademark pieces worn by America’s newest sweetheart. It’s a clear choice of quality over quantity, and it’s expected to take the fashion world by storm.
We can’t stop looking at Caitlin Jenner — not because of her identity as transgender American — but because her look is compelling. Her style represents all that is refined and dignified with nary a trace of ostentatiousness. It was unexpected, and that’s what makes it so intriguing. We can’t wait to see what the future holds next for this pioneering fashionista.
If you’re lucky enough to be born in the changeling month of September, you’re familiar with the brilliant blue of the luxurious sapphire. What you may not know is that sapphire occurs naturally in many colors including pink, yellow, green, and purple. It also appears in nature as colorless — known as the white sapphire.
When you see a brilliant, dark-blue sapphire, you’re typically looking at a stone that’s been enhanced through a heat process to bring out the intensity of the hue. This stone is a form of the mineral corundum, which is an aluminum oxide. It’s the presence of the trace mineral titanium oxide that makes a sapphire blue. The color of the sapphire varies with the type of trace minerals that are present. If nature tosses in a pinch of chromium, for instance, a ruby will be produced instead of a blue sapphire.
Hence the enchanting, unpredictable appeal of this popular stone.
The blue sapphire is the official birthstone for those born in the month of September. It’s also a recommended gift for a 45th wedding anniversary. Some associate the blue sapphire with healing properties for mental illness. The brilliant blue is rumored to act as an antidepressant, and indeed, what woman could be sad when presented with a shimmering sapphire?
Blue sapphires are found all over the world, including in the United States and the Middle East. Some of the best and most-sought-after sapphires hail from mines in India and Burma because they already exhibit such intensity of color that heat treatment is not needed. Sapphires can also be cultivated in labs. These stones are synthetic and not as valuable as those mined from nature.
When it’s time to woo her with the magnificent blue sapphire, we have a generous collection from which to choose.
The recent summer nuptials of Italian television personality, Beatrice Borromeo, to Monaco heir, Pierre Casiraghi, was marked by gorgeous settings, a line-up of dresses to challenge any New York runway, and a stunning pear-shaped diamond encased in a halo setting.
It began with a simple civil ceremony at Grimaldi Palace in Monte Carlo, followed days later by a more traditional ceremony held in Stresa, Italy, along the shores of Lake Maggiore. The bride, a well-known journalist and member of the aristocratic House of Borromeo, wore a variety of gowns by such top designers as Valentino and Armani. The groom — in line to the throne of Monaco — wore a variety of tasteful suits and tuxedos ranging from gray to black.
This latest royal couple is as beloved as those who’ve come before them: Pierre’s grandmother was none other than the enchanting Grace Kelly, and Beatrice is a celebrity in her own right — holding a journalism degree from Columbia University. She’s a well-known television journalist in Italy.
The couple’s wedding festivities will not be easily forgotten. They spanned the period of an entire week and included a whirlwind of locations such as the Hotel de Paris in Monte Carlo and the Borromeo Islands.
If you’re planning a European wedding in the near future, you could do worse than to take inspiration from the captivating union of these two famous sweethearts. Stunning settings, elegant attire, and an A-list of guests that included royalty, celebrities, and fashion models were the earmarks of this over-the-top celebration that joined the two young people in holy matrimony. It may not exactly follow all the guidelines of a Cinderella story, but it’s close enough to captivate our hearts regardless.
The heart-shaped diamond engagement ring gained a boost recently with the announcement of the celebrity engagement of Nicki Minaj to rapper Meek Mill. The ring — a whopping fifteen-carat yellow diamond creation enclosed in a double halo of pave diamonds is rumored to be worth a cool half-million dollars. And if that weren’t enough, Mill recently upped the ante with a double heart yellow diamond ring to match. The second ring is estimated to be worth $75,000.
And the Minaj-Mill union comes on the heels of Lady Gaga’s Valentine’s Day engagement earlier this year to actor/model Taylor Kinney. Gaga’s heart-shaped ring is also estimated to be worth a good half-million dollars. Though the value is similar, the two rings couldn’t look more different. Gaga’s ring features a single, huge white diamond in a prong setting with a diamond-studded band.
The heart-shaped gemstone has been around since at least the 16th Century when Mary, Queen of Scots is rumored to have sent one to Queen Elizabeth of England. More recently, the heart-shaped diamond has become a popular choice of stone for engagement rings among couples who aren’t afraid to break with tradition.
Part of the appeal of a heart-shaped stone is it’s ability to hide inclusions, or flaws, in the diamond. This cut is a modified brilliant that is basically a pear-cut with a notch at the center top. For this reason, the heart-shaped diamond engagement ring is often more affordable because it can feature a slightly lower-quality diamond without the visible defects.
One thing is certain, the heart-shaped ring hasn’t lost its appeal down through the ages, and with the recent surge of popularity among favorite celebrities, odds are good it won’t anytime in the near future. If it’s a heart-shaped diamond that flits through your dreams at night, we have the perfect, romantic selection just waiting to enchant.