Violet; the hue that made Elizabeth Taylor's eyes immortal. In the gemstone world, a natural violet color is a rare occurrence.
Violet spinel can be a richly saturated sparkler that is almost too good to be true. But it's glamorous by nature. We all appreciate the crayon box of precious gems, no matter how they come to us, as long as their color remains stable. In the case of violet spinel, they own that birthright---straight from the ground. So for collectors, these raucous rocks are righteous.
Violet spinel is found in alluvial deposits mostly in the far east. Sri Lanka, Viet Nam, Madagascar, Myanmar and Thailand are where various spinel varieties are found.
Their best form is octahedral. Since they are recovered from alluvial or river bed deposits, finding them in this pristine condition is extraordinary. When found in this shape, they may be mounted in jewelry as is. Any version of the octahedral configuration makes polishing spinel into cushion shapes the most ideal use of this rough.
One look at strongly saturated violet spinel, and its easy to see why this is a couturier jewelers' darling for their original creations. Every violet spinel is somewhat different in tint. The 8 Mohs rating doesn't hurt either. These durable stones are suited for every jewelry type including rings, and take a great polish that create sharp facet junctions to boot.
Very very vivid violet spinel pictured here has all the bells and whistles that one could ask for. Charming shape, clean stone (VSI) and good saturation of hue. Thanks to ThaiGem.
Pear shaped violet spinel photo courtesy: http://www.thaigem.com/