There are many Cat’s Eyes gems, including Tourmaline, Quartz, Spinel, Apatite, Scapolite, and Feldspar. However, the most prized is the Chrysoberyl Cat’s Eye.
The Cat’s Eye effect is a phenomenon that gives certain gemstones the appearance of a cat’s narrowing pupil, hence the name. It really is spectacular with its narrow, bright band of light on a shimmering golden background, which seems to glide magically across the surface when the stone is moved.
Cat's Eyes colour ranges from a golden honey to mint green; the finest of all show a ‘milk and honey’ effect. When light is directed at the side of the stone, one side will be milky white and the other remains gold. When the stone is rotated, the colors switch.
Inclusions: The characteristic that gives this stone its name is the wonder known as chatoyancy, which is French for Cats Eye. The reason for this characteristic is the very fine inclusions within the stone. When a light source is directed on these inclusions it creates a bright strip that appears and runs perpendicular to the inclusions.
Localities: Sri Lanka, India, Brazil, China.
Mythicism: Due to it's golden hue, it has often been associated with wealth; this idea is certainly not without foundation, since high-quality cat's eye is up among the gemstones of the luxury class.
Moonstone displays an adularescence or schiller effect, which is an optical phenomenon due to the diffraction of light. Light hits thin, alternating layers of the components Orthoclase and Albite within the gem and produces either a white or blue adularescence. The overall body color of the Moonstone is generally due to iron content.
Moonstone became widely popular at the end of the 19th century and was featured in Edwardian and Art Nouveau jewelry.
Hardness: 6 to 6.5
Inclusions: Characteristic inclusions in Moonstone include tiny tension cracks called Centipedes. They are called this because they resemble those long, thin creatures with many legs. Moonstone inclusions secure its identity; pairs of tiny stress cracks running parallel to the vertical axis of the crystal and smaller cracks running alongside them, have been likened to and are known as “centipedes".
Burmese moonstones are characterized by oriented needle inclusions.
Localities: Burma and Sri Lanka
Mythicism: Some legends say it was formed out of the rays of the moon. Others claim you can see the future in a moonstone during a waning moon.
Moon worshipers would recharge the energy of their stones by placing it in direct light of a full moon.
Moonstone is believed to be very powerful at reuniting lovers who have quarreled. If your spouse or lover is mad at you, you should perhaps consider giving him or her a gift of moonstone jewellery.
The very rare and valuable Alexandrite is extremely pleochroic; it changes from green in daylight to red, mauve or brown under incandescent light, such as a light bulb. It is referred to by some as "an emerald by day and a ruby by night"
Due to its rarity, it is usually as expensive as the traditionally most precious gems, Diamond, Ruby and Sapphire.
Alexandrite was first found in Russia during the year 1830. Czar Alexander II came of age on the day the finest of the gems were found, so the name Alexandrite was given to the gem.
Inclusions: Typical inclusions include tiny crystals that look like black spots, silky threads or tiny elongated tubes. When certain types of long, thin inclusions are visible they can create the phenomenon called chatoyancy, or the cat’s-eye effect, increasing the Alexandrite’s value.
Localities: Ceylon, Russia, Brazil, India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, China, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Madagascar, Tasmania and the United States.
Birthstone: Alternates with Pearl and Moonstone as the birthstone for the month of June
Mythicism: Some believe that, with its changing colour, it is a reminder that life is not only what it seems to be.