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Feldspar Group

What is feldspar?

Feldspars are the most widespread minerals on earth. Imagin, if you pick up a rock anywhere in the world, and you’ll probably find that it contains a mineral or two from the feldspar group. As feldspars are the most widespread minerals in the earth’s crust, as well as some of the most diverse.

 

The feldspar group’s wide variety of unusual gems includes moonstone, non-phenomenal orthoclase, phenomenal and non-phenomenal labradorite, sunstone, and amazonite.

  • There are some feldspar varieties that people love to wear—cool, gleaming moonstone and warm, glittering sunstone are two of the most prized.
  • There’s also spectrolite, with its rainbow of phenomenal color.
  • And amazonite, with its subtle shimmer, is a turquoise alternative.

Like spodumene, and Diopside, feldspar, are soft gems with cleavage in two directions, so they require protective settings to keep them safe jewelry that subject to daily wearing basis.

Since, supplies of feldspar, spodumene, and diopside are unpredictable, which results in weak consumer recognition

What are the gems that belong to Feldspar group?

Like the garnet group, the feldspar group has many members. Some of them are suitable for jewelry use, some aren’t.

  • The important species for gemstones are orthoclase, labradorite, and microcline.
  • The most popular varieties for jewelry are moonstone and sunstone.
  • Members of the feldspar group vary slightly in chemical composition, and those variations produce a variety of gemstones that differ widely in appearance.

Basically, the chemical elements that make up feldspar determine its appearance. All feldspars contain these basic chemical elements: aluminum, oxygen, and silicon. But elements, like potassium, calcium, and sodium, can also be part of the mix. There are two main branches of the feldspar family tree which are feldspars that contain potassium and feldspars that contain a mixture of both calcium and sodium.

Moonstone is the best known gemstone of the feldspar group. It is a colorless stone with milky adularescence effect, better quality examples of which show a bluish flash of light as they are turned. This effect is due to the interference of light between very thin plates of two different types of feldspars. For the best effect, these plates must lie parallel to the base of cabochon cut stone. This cutting style is the best for moon stones to show its best effect.

Moonstones which sometimes shows a cat’s eye effect, comes mainly from Sri-Lanka, though a darker variety is found in Myanmar. There is a constant demand for moonstone, which is used in cheaper jewelry and attractive bead necklaces. Good quality is now getting scarce, which must eventually boost the stones’ value steeply.

Any simulant of moonstone would seem unnecessary, but there are at least two stones have been made to imitate it. They are schillerized rock crystal quartz that was heat treated to produce a “schiller” or milkiness and similarly treated white spinel. But neither truly reproduces the moonstone’s lovely blue sheen.

Find out more about some other story about gemstones from Feldspar group.

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