Welcome to the Irit Sorokin Design blog! In this space you can look forward to learning about my jewelry making process, my inspirations and some of the materials I use in my handmade jewelry, created in Vancouver, Canada. I often use natural gems and metals in my work and love sharing about the meaning of those gems and the individual journey that goes into each handmade piece of jewelry.
The birthstone of August is peridot, a beautiful olive green gemstone that is known as the stone of compassion. Peridot, also called olivine, is traditionally given as a gift to mark the 16th year of marriage. Ancient Egyptians called this gemstone “the gem of the sun” and it is associated with the fiery zodiac sign Leo.
Physical Peridot is exceptional as it is one of only two gemstones which are formed in the molten upper mantle layer of the earth, rather than in the earth’s crust, so it can literally be said that this stone is forged in fire.
Peridot even has an uncanny ability to glow, almost like a hot coal, when it is placed under a light source like a lamp. The bright lime green of peridot can vary slightly in tone depending on the amount of iron present in the stone.
Meaning Peridot gemstones have long been believed to have a protective quality, driving away fears and even keeping nightmares at bay. Because of the protection they offer, peridot stones were often carved and used as talismans for travelers.
Peridot also carries a feeling of lightness that undoubtedly comes from its light internally glowing color. The bright green of peridot gemstones can bring joy and invigorating energy to the wearer.
Peridot In History
Peridot was so highly prized by the Ancient Egyptians that they kept the source of their peridot hidden. The volcanic island of Zebargad where Egyptian peridot was mined was such a secret that its location was lost until it was finally rediscovered in 1906. Egyptian priests would even grind up peridot and mix the gemstone powder into drinks so as to bring more light into the life of the person drinking it.
Hawaii is famous the world over for its gorgeous beaches but Mahana Beach, on Hawaii’s Big Island, is one of only three green sand beaches in the world. Peridot is what makes this beach green.
The gemstones are the first crystals to form when magma cools, which is why they can be found on the beach of this volcanic island.
Locals refer to these tiny peridot stones as Hawaiian diamonds or Pele’s tears. Pele is the volcano goddess of the islands.
Style Tips for Peridot
Peridot can be mistaken for emerald but the tone of peridot is usually more of a lime yellow green than the deep wintery green of an emerald. This lighter and brighter color gives peridot more seasonal versatility.
The protective qualities of peridot are believed to increase when the stone is set in gold, however it can look beautiful in any setting, featured as a focal point, or added to compliment and brighten another piece.
Care and Cleaning for Peridot Jewelry
Peridot is best cleaned with warm sudsy water and a soft cloth or toothbrush. Strong cleaning agents, especially those containing acid, should be avoided as they can discolor the stone. It is also best to avoid contact with hair spray and pool chlorine. Peridot jewelry should be stored separately from other harder gems as they may scratch or damage the somewhat softer peridot.
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