The Four Hottest Gems Right Now (You Know You Care)
When it comes to gems, we have nothing against the classics (heck, even Prince sang a song about diamonds and pearls), but there’s something to be said for freshening things up. So we asked jewelry designer and cool-object curator Lauren Wolf, who makes a yearly pilgrimage to the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show, what’s the what. Below, the raw stones she’s sourcing now.
“Opal is really popular right now—it’s luminescent and just so pretty. We’ve been seeing it at the shows for a while, so it does feel like it’s trending. It has a traditional feel, but we’re not using it in that sense since we’re using new cuts and shapes to make them feel different. Its texture is a little softer than other gemstones, so we’re setting them in earrings and rings so they won’t get as banged up.”
SALT AND PEPPER DIAMONDS
“Diamonds have always been at the forefront of my designs. Salt and pepper diamonds have a really brilliant color and these deep, scattered inclusions, but they still have a really nice clarity. They’re some of the prettiest stones out there. We’re not chasing trends, but sometimes we do find certain stones we work with just happen to be getting more popular, which is what’s happened with these.”
“I’ve used pyrite in my collection before. Even though it’s semi-precious—it’s also called Fool’s Gold—it has that sparkly aspect that’s hard not to like. We sell whole pieces in our store as objects, but I also like using it in jewelry in unusual settings.”
“I like using raw and natural stones, and this tanzanite is perfect—I love the color! We bought a lot of blue tanzanite at the show last year, so that’s where the stones for our Of a Kind edition come from. We have a special relationship with the dealer, who’s really connected to the mining process in Tanzania. He’s involved in the community and makes sure it’s ethically mined.”