The 5 Most Common Gemstones Used for Jewelry-Making
Jewelry-making is an art form. And if a necklace, bracelet, or other piece is a jeweler’s canvas, then gemstones are the paints on their palette. But of the nearly 100 gemstones out there, you can add only so many to a single piece. If you’re looking for the most popular choices to add to your next piece, consider these top five most popular gemstones used for jewelry-making.
Rubies have been highly sought-after gemstones by cultures worldwide since ancient times, and they make eye-catching additions to any piece. But along with being beautiful, rubies are also ideal gems for use in jewelry-making thanks to their durability. They’re ranked a 9 on the Mohs hardness scale, making them resistant to damage such as scuffs and scratches. This means wearers of rubies don’t have to worry about significant wear and tear to their pieces.
Blue is considered one of the most universally beloved colors across cultures in part because of its association with positive things, from sunny skies to crystal-clear seas. So it’s no wonder that sapphires are also some of the more common gemstones used for jewelry-making—though one can also find them in yellow, purple, pink, and other colors. Whatever color you prefer, sapphires still make the perfect additions to any piece thanks to their clearness and durability.
Many powerful civilizations have treasured emeralds, and to this day, emeralds remain sought-after gems, often associated with peace and new beginnings. Emeralds are somewhat softer than rubies or sapphires and thus more prone to flaws. Even so, this increases their rarity and the demand for well-cut, flawless emeralds. This is a gemstone to work with once you have become a more experienced jeweler.
Technically speaking, pearls aren’t gemstones. Rather than coming from the earth, they’re found in the mouths of mollusks. However, with their hardness, color, and beauty, you’ll frequently find pearls in jewelry. White is the most popular color for pearls in jewelry-making, though they come in a number of other colors, such as pink, yellow, blue, and even black. They’re the softest material on our list, and they can be difficult to work with without cracking. But when you use them well, you can create truly elegant pieces.
Long associated with elegance, wealth, and luxury, diamonds are arguably the most famous gemstones used in jewelry, whether they’re yellow, pink, or white. Diamonds are at the top of the Mohs hardness chart. However, they can also be brittle. Given their value, these are gems you don’t want to work with without prior experience.
These are only five of the scores of gems used for jewelry-making, to say nothing of agate, lapis lazuli, and amethyst. Browse our collection of gemstone beads for jewelry-making for these gemstones and many other varieties.