In this first post, I wanna take you on a bit of time traveling.
I wanna take you back to 2012.
Into one of Lisbon’s most coveted areas, the Chiado neighborhood.
Chiado’s one of the most touristic places of Portugal’s capital.
It’s got a good dose of memories from the past, has some charming vintage architecture, modern and trendy shops, and “A Brasileira” which is one of the most famous coffee shops in the city. It was in that atmosphere that I took my gem classes. Not the coffee shop, but at the top floor of one of the buildings in Garrett Street, Chiado’s main street.
Talking about prime location, right?
During class breaks, we would open up the windows and let the soft jazzy street music being played bellow come inside for some relaxing minutes. Plus, we had a top view of the tourists from the balconies, but that’s a whole other story. 🙂
On one of those classes, there was an episode that inspired my idea for this blog and ultimately led to the name, No White Diamonds.
We must’ve been about to enter the study of colored gems (quite probably rubies and sapphires), when the teacher asked: “You already know GIA 4C’s for diamond quality, right?“
To which we replied: “Color, Cut, Clarity, Carat weight.“
She smiled back and went on asking: “And how about with colored gemstones? Do you also know their 4C’s?” This time the answers were a bit more insecure.
Me? I could see why these four characteristics used for diamonds would make sense in colored gems, but I was also thinking that there was probably something more. I just had no idea what.
I mean, I could imagine that much like in diamonds, some colors would be considered “better” than others. The color was obviously one of them! Then I thought, “who wants a badly cut emerald, or an emerald so full of stuff inside, right?” So, cut and clarity must be a part of that group also. And finally, I could also imagine that “the bigger, the better.” Carat weight also made sense. But, could it be just that or was there something different?
After a while, she smiled and said: “The 4C’s for colored gemstones are… color, color, color, and color!“
Now, let’s get back into a few months ago.
For quite some time, I’ve been wanting to do something more with gemstones other than collecting them. One thing was obvious: it had to involve writing and teaching. The moment that memory popped, it all became clearer.
“That’s it!“, I thought. “I’m gonna focus on colored gemstones. That’s what I liked the most in gem school and what I’ve been collecting all these years anyhow. No more looking into what others are doing! I’m gonna focus on the actual colors of gems, the meanings coming from those colors, and show off some great examples of jewels with them. I’m gonna focus on why they’re so special. I’m gonna focus, not only on the science behind them but also tell all the myths and legends I can find on them.“
Now that I see this written down, it looks quite simple and obvious. However, it wasn’t always the case because I’d been searching for “a different angle” for so long. The moment those two neurons of mine clashed, the one about me wanting to blog and teach, with the one of my love for colored gemstones… When I connected those dots… It felt like an electrical discharge.
All of a sudden I was disconnected from the outside world and entirely focused on that idea. It sounded great in my mind, got me moving, got me here, and I can’t wait to share more about colored gems with you.
So I have one question for you…
I wanna know if you’re anything like me, someone who finds diamonds Ok but not great.
Someone who would love to see colored gemstones take over the center stage of jewelry because the world we live in is also like that, full of color!
Let me know in the comments if you’re just as nuts about colored gemstones as I am.
Do you like them? Not so much? What’s your favorite gem?
Talk to you soon,