Outback treasures and the jewellery they make
The Outback is famous for being a rich source of gemstones, and it has become a tradition for tourists to try their hand at fossicking to uncover some of these hidden gems. Let’s look at some of the Outback’s treasures and the jewellery made with them:
Sapphires –– there is even a town named after this precious stone! In Sapphire there are four major fossicking areas, where visitors can look for their own gems.
Sapphires can be set in fine jewellery, but they are also used in watches and fashion accessories.
Opals – perhaps the most famous of the Outback’s treasures is the opal. The opal is officially Australia’s National Gemstone, and it has been mined for nearly 200 years.
However, changing times mean the industry has had to make some significant changes to remain productive, and it faces many challenges such as drought and also attracting a new generation of miners.
There are several kinds of opal, but the most sought after is the black opal, found in Lighting Ridge, New South Wales. The black opal is considered one of the most beautiful gems of all and it’s far more rare than regular, clear opals.
Australia is also famed for its boulder opals, irregularly shaped and are dark in colour, but they are not as rare as the black opal. Opals are fragile and usually set into rings, necklaces and earrings.
Zircon – although the zircon comes in many colours, including blues, greens and reds, most stones are brown. Blue zircon is popular and looks beautiful set into pendants and rings.
Zircons go back a long way in Australia – one crystal in Jack Hills is thought to be more than four billion years old.
The outback is famed for its opals, sapphires and zircons, but garnets, rubies and topaz can also be found fossicking in the outback. Each of these gems looks fabulous set in jewellery, but of course you don’t need to go mining in the outback for them yourself. For a beautiful piece of jewellery, visit Diamonds by Design today.