Rubies and sapphires are amongst the world’s most precious gemstones. Their fiery reds and radiant blues are unmistakable. Less well known are the facts that both these stones are members of the corundum family, and that this family has much more to offer than just red and blue.
The corundum family, in fact, has everything you could want in a valuable gemstone: gorgeous colours, great brilliance, and an excellent hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale, putting it right behind the diamond – our hardest natural mineral – and that means it has excellent wearing properties. Its refraction is unusually high too, as evidenced by the wonderful brilliance of perfectly cut specimens. Experienced cutters know that the colour looks markedly more intense when the stone is viewed from one angle than it does when viewed from another.
After they had led a rather shadowy existence, the reputation of peridots gradually began to change: in the high mountains of Pakistan, at an altitude of over 4000 metres, some very fine, brilliant gold-green crystals were discovered. Today, the peridot is among the most coveted coloured gemstones worldwide. Its seductive, lush green hues and clarity have made it a strong competitor of the tourmaline and the emerald. The peridot is one of the very few gemstones which come in one colour only. This stone displays the most beautiful green tones of the summer: its range includes olive shades, the famous gold-green of the stones from Pakistan, a clear yellow green, a light lime green and the bluish green typical of stones from Burma. Very small but beautiful yellow-green stones come from China. And the best thing about this gemstone is that its colour will flatter the complexion of any woman! However, these fantastic stones do have one major disadvantage: all of them are very rare. Fortunately, I have a few remarkable peridots in my treasure chamber.
Insider Katerina Perez is a specialist with professional knowledge and insight as regards the jewellery industry. On her website, she reports on the most recent trends in the gemstone and jewellery trade. When I met her a few weeks ago in Basel, we found a number of things to talk about right away. But one thing that always remained in focus was the fascinating world of gemstones. As for the interview, in which I talk about my family, the love I have for my profession and my ongoing quest for treasures on behalf of my customers, you can read it here at katerinaperez.com
It’s not only German television that has shown interest in the ‘Tour de Wild': a few days ago the Japanese singer and TV star Saori Yuki came on a visit of discovery together with a TV team. She herself is a great gemstone fan and really got her money’s worth in my home town of Idar-Oberstein!
Jens Hübschen sets out to retrace the history of the stones, in the gemstone world of Idar-Oberstein in the rocky Nahe region.
I have said it time and again: Idar-Oberstein is one of the most beautiful places in Germany. And gemstone fans are particularly likely to agree with that. After all, my home town was the cradle of the gemstone industry! A team from the German TV station SWR recently set out to retrace that fascinating history. For what began centuries ago with the first agates, found in volcanic rock, and rapidly brought forth the very best gemstone cutters and goldsmiths, has also managed to make a successful transition into the modern age. But how is that possible? In this documentary, I open the doors of my treasure chamber and chat a little about my fascinating world of gemstones – and about my beloved Idar-Oberstein.