For millennia, Tourmaline has taken us into a whirlwind of colors similar to those of the rainbow. Reinforced with many gems due to the extent of its colors, it is nonetheless unique.

Toumaline Very often allows us to discover it in unexpected colors and concentrations of colors, all in the same crystal and sometimes even it reveals its magic, by revealing a cat eye! The Tourmaline encompasses a group of minerals full of surprises, which share the same crystalline structure but which are distinguished by their chemical and physical properties. Once again, we see that nature has many treasures: the same gem can be declined under a thousand and one faces, according to the elements that compose it.

Small technical sheet of a large colorful family

Tourmalines are silicates: that is to say composed mainly of silica combined with various metal oxides. The diversity of these said elements gives these atypical gems the originality of presenting a gradient of colors. Few of the Tourmalines fully monochrome! Crystalline structure: A tourmaline crystal is a length prism, the section of which takes the form of a triangle at the rounded ends. Tourmalines in the raw state also have vertical streaks on the surface. Hardness: on Mohs scale ranging from 1 to 10 (1 for dry soap and 10 for diamond), tourmaline oscillates between 7 and 7.5, which gives it good stripes. Maintenance tips: We favor cleaning with a soft cloth, soap and lukewarm water.

Treatments: Just like many gems, it is common for tourmalines to be heated or irradiated, these two processes not altering the fact that they are natural. The heating helps reduce too pronounced or poorly distributed shades. So a very dark green can become shiny green for example. There is also irradiation treatment, which can transform too pale a stone into a gem in vibrant and intense colors. In this way, you can go from a bland pink to a sparkling pink. Heating and irradiation are the most common treatments in tourmalines, sometimes carried out by nature itself. These are common and undetectable processes, which give the Tourmaline the opportunity to reveal itself in a more beautiful, more sparkling light, thus taking us into its countless spirals of ever more lively colors!

The different spirals of a colorful whirlwind of the tourmalines

Many terms exist to designate this or that type of tourmaline, depending on its dominant color, the intensity, the distribution, the plurality of its colors, or the phenomenon created by its inclusions. The five most used and coveted varieties on the jewelry market are:

- La Rubellite: This tourmaline isRed-Red Color Intense linked to the presence of a chemical element called manganese. Professionals find it difficult to agree on the exact definition of the characteristic color of a Rubellite. However, it is clear that a tourmaline cannot be considered such if her pink is too pale or her red too dark: the rubellite remains a pink to bright red gem, the most popular shade being that is similar to a sparkling fuchsia ruby. Sometimes carved in cabochon as on the pendant Gourmandise From the creator Philippe Tournaire, she arouses desire and lust ... Her color recalls that of candies, we would almost eat it! Here is a pretty anecdote concerning this Tourmaline-Frriandise: in 1978, an unprecedented discovery forever marked the history of the Rubellite. Indeed, it was in the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil, more precisely in the Jonas mine, that minors have got their hands on a treasure of Rubellite never equaled: hundreds of kilos of Rubellites of quality jewelry buried in the rock! This event that has toured the world is known as "Bamburrio", which means Jackpot. It must be said that before discovering this wonder, minors discouraged by their unsuccessful 6 -month research no longer believed in the miracle! Another beautiful lesson in persistence to achieve what seems inaccessible!

- Paraiba tourmaline: Discovered in 1989 in the Paraiba State in Brazil, its color goes from electric blue, sometimes called "blue-born" to fluorescent green. This gem must largely have its vibrant color to the combination of copper and manganese. This unusual association of chemical elements is its own and allows scientists to identify it, in addition to its unparalleled color. It is the most popular of all tourmalines and the one that reaches the wildest prices. Its intense color, its rarity has a lot to do with it. Paraiba enthusiasts focus on its color and not its weight. It is infrequent to meet a tourmaline worthy of the name whose weight exceeds 2 carats! Since this discovery in Brazil, other deposits have appeared in Nigeria in Africa in 2001, with tourmalines in colors close to the Paraiba, also containing copper and manganese. This tourmaline being the eponymous gem of Paraiba State, it is difficult to speak of "paraiba" tourmaline when it does not come from the said Brazilian region. It is also sometimes complicated to assert the origin of the said gem because in Brazil as in Africa, it has the same chemical properties.

- Chromal Tourmaline:Known since the 1960s, its color goes from an intense green tinged with blue to an intense green slightly tinged with yellow. Like Brazilian emeralds, most chromiferous tourmalines are largely colorful to the chemical element called Vanadium. This gem comes mainly from Tanzania and Kenya. The less intense green tourmaline is generally called Verdelite and encompasses all the shades of green due to the presence of the iron.

- Indicolitis or indigolite: this term is used to designate blue tourmalines, in which iron is also very present. The majority of these tourmalines with green and blue tones must be of a certain caliber to show an intense color, which is not the case for chromiferous tourmalines and paraiba, which they have the capacity to combine both small caliber and vibrant color. The blue and green tourmalines come mainly from Brazil, the United States, Afghanistan and Africa.

- Multicolored tourmaline and water melon: It frequently happens that several colors are distinguished along aTourmaline crystal. This phenomenon is explained by changes in concentration of chemical elements, during the formation of the gem. A disturbing example is that of the tourmaline "water melon", commonly cut in edge, like a watermelon: the heart of the crystal is pink-red, the sustainable yellow-white and the border is green ... exactly the fruit! In addition to these five reputable varieties, we can also evoke the schörl and the cat eye, atypical tourmalines, one by its intense black and the other being a puzzle stone ... The Schörl tourmaline designates the black tourmalines in their entirety . Long used in mourning jewelry, this gem rich in iron is present in many countries ... No need to look very far, there is in the Monts du Forez, region of the regionCreator Joaillier Philippe Tournaire! So there is an intriguing phenomenon, that of the shimmering tourmaline. A cat eye then takes shape on a tourmaline carved in cabochon. This is due to a group of large inclusions in the shape of tubes, parallel to each other, which once highlighted by the lapidary give rise to this type of particularity. The cat eye of a tourmaline is often wider and disturbed than on other enigmatic gems such as shimmering chrysoberyl for example.

From this gem in endless colors ...

Whether colorless, black, pink, blue, green, yellow ... Tourmalines swirl around us around the world. Just as Australia is the cradle of the opal, Brazil is that of tourmaline. In particular the state of Minas Gerais which is considered the largest producer of Tourmalines of all colors and this internationally. Next come Africa, Asia and the United States. Of course other deposits exist, those listed above are the main ones. Tourmaline is one of the gem families offering the most Wide variety of colors. Tying combinations, nuances, tones reflect the wealth whose nature is full of! Surprising harmony of colors that one and the same stone can reveal! When the tourmalines are lively and their sparkling shine, Philippe Tournaire likes to use them for his jewelry creations, sublimating them by associating them with other wonders such as sapphires, diamonds ... and the magic of the organized disorder operates ... The Tourmaline tornado takes all the colors of the world in its path and makes us want to be voyage !

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