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October - Opal and Tourmaline

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“October’s child is born for woe,
And life’s vicissitudes must know,
But lay an opal on her breast,
And hope will lull those woes to rest.” 

October is here, and it’s usually when things start looking seriously autumnal, if the weather hasn’t turned already. Perhaps that’s why the Gregorian Poet is so hard on October’s child.

The accepted list of birthstones includes two absolutely stunning gems – opal and tourmaline. These are both naturally found in many different colours, just like the leaves and greenery are turning outside. 

Opal
Opal is an interesting gemstone, and is unlike any other.  It diffracts light, which results in colours that change when viewed from different angles – this is known as “play of colour”.

Each opal is completely unique. It is worth thinking of opals as ‘multi-coloured’ gems due to the pay of colour, and they truly do go with anything! 

However, opal is a soft gemstone that deserves special care. Opal is best suited to earrings, necklaces and pins, rather than rings and bracelets. If you do wear an opal ring, you should always remove it when doing any physical activity.

Opal is believed to stimulate originality and creativity in its wearer, not bad compensation for suffering woe and vicissitude! This also makes opal a great gift for artists, writers and musicians, even if they weren’t born in October. 

Hollywood A-lister Susan Sarandon, reportedly wears a bracelet strung with her birthstone - opal - together with the baby teeth of her children, making it a bracelet with extra-special significance.  

Tourmaline
Tourmaline is another interesting gem. It occurs in more colours than any other gemstone, and its name is actually derived from Tura Mali meaning ‘stone mixed with colours’.

An old legend states that tourmaline travelled to earth along a rainbow, and gathered all the colours on the way. Pink tourmaline can range in tone from pale, dusty pink, to deeper, more saturated pink. Rubellite is a rare variety of tourmaline that is exceptionally vivid, deep purplish-pink. Since tourmaline comes in so many colours, October’s children can have fun personalising their birthstone by choosing one of the other hues.  Blues, light and dark; greens from lime to deep forest green; yellows and browns, red, or colourless – there are so many choices! You can even have a watermelon tourmaline, which is pink in the centre and green along the outside. 

Tourmaline is considered the gemstone of love and friendship, rendering them long lasting, making it an ideal choice for your engagement ring or a special gift for a friend or the special someone in your life.

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