Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
I bought a 0.83 carat alexandrite on e-bay that turns from a mint green to yellow. When I got it I had it appraised, the appraiser said it was crysoberyl and was worth only $200. What is the difference between Alexandrite and crysoberyl?
Sorry about your gem from eBay. What so many people don't realize is that for crysoberyl to be called 'alexandrite' there are three conditions that must be met:
- Alexandrite has a standard that states the gem must change from green in fluorecent light or daylight, to red or purple in incandescent light or candlelight. Some crysoberyl that cannot be considered Alexandrite displays a color change from green to shades of green, yellow, grey, or brown.
- Crysoberyl with the proper color change but with a color-change of less than 30% is not considered Alexandrite.
- The color from alexandrite comes from a specific combination of chromium and iron.
It isn't enough for a crysoberyl to change color in order to be considered Alexandrite. If the color does not change to red or purple, if the color change is not strong enough, or if under lab analysis the gem does not contain the proper composition of elements, it is not Alexandrite.
I have found a ring I would like to purchase, but it is not my size. Will you resize it for me?
Yes; however, we recommend that you have the resizing done by a local jeweler because, due to the width of the band, the size needed may be 1/4 to 1/2 larger or smaller than you expect. Also, once a ring is altered, it becomes non-returnable, so you loose the benefit of your 10 day return policy.
Who sets the standard for price and color-change for Alexandrite? Also, how does one find an appraiser that really knows about Alexandrite?
The standard for price of alexandrite is the average retail cost over the period of a month, quarter, and year for the different grades of the gemstones.
Color-change is determined by counting the number of facets that change color in the stone when looking down through the table of the gem. The GIA labels these changes by using the terminology of Weak (considered color-change crysoberyl), Medium, Medium-Strong, Strong, Very-Strong. Other labs and several international governmental agencies use a numerical grading which is determined by the percentage of facets changing color. These conditions are performed scientifically but the reading of them is subjective. Therefore, color-change strength may be rated differently by different gemologists.
To find an appraiser that knows alexandrite, check out the American Gemological Labs (AGL), American Gem Trade Association (AGTA), Gemological Institute of America GIA), Gem Trade Lab (GTL), to name a few.
I have desired an Alexandrite for some time and yours look beautiful; however, if the retail is $5k carat or more, how can you sell them for so much less?
Yes- excellent natural Alexandrite retails over $5000/ct for stones under a carat. We have family and agents buy from the mines and cut the stones for us. This takes out the middlemen between the mine and the consumer that adds several thousand percent to the final price.
Where and how do you get your Alexandrite?
Most of our Alexandrite comes from gem mines in India. These mines produce outstanding alexandrite with top color and color-change. We have family and agents in India who obtain the rough Alexandrite directly from the mines and then cut and polish them in their factories for us.
The mines in India are under government regulatory laws to conserve the precious gemstones mined there. The mines are closed for approximately three months per year due to monsoons and other climate conditions. Most of the stones are under half-carat weights although a new mine that opened in March 2005 is producing some larger rough which is leading to gems of higher carat weight.
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