A Basic Guide to Jewelery Grade Coral

A Basic Guide to Jewelery Grade Coral

Before delving into the schematics of coral jewelry, we must first understand the term ‘Coral’ and why it is considered a special gemstone.

What is a Coral?

Coral exists as an organic gemstone and originates from the hardened tissue of Coral Polyps. Corals are often found in tropical oceans. Basically, corals are marine animals which exhibit a hard skeleton produced from calcium carbonate. The hardened skeleton is what makes the gemstone.

Although the population of corals is diminishing, it still exists in different varieties of color. A common example would be the Chinese white coral, which is often dyed red during processing. Processed corals are then used to craft magnificent jewel pieces.

Coral Jewelry, brief history

Many cultures around the world produce their own variety of coral jewelry. They come in different colors ranging from white to black, and from blue to red. Coral jewelry has many times been connoted to have religious and spiritual interpretations in Italian and Chinese cultures. Going far back in time, it didn’t take very long for Native Americans to appreciate the value of the coral jewel.

In comparison to other gemstones, coral gems are softer, making them malleable enough to be shaped into beads and the like. Coral jewelry stands out for their intricate sculpting and design. The market for coral jewelry is booming. Although supply is dwindling, due to coral gems depleting in numbers, the price for the gems continue to rise. Small coral gems may cost up to a $1000 per millimeter in diameter.

The Beauty in Coral Jewelry

In recent times, coral has been used for all types of jewelry. Often set in sterling silver, corals are shaped into beads, rings, earrings, bracelets, pendants and necklaces. Coral makes jewelry pieces, no matter the structure, very elegant and beautiful. Some great coral pieces would be:

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