- 1.81ct hot pink asscher cut Spinel
- Measures 6.66 x 6.67 x 4.87mm
- Purchased from Abdallah in Tanzania
- Cut by artisanal cutters in Chiang Mai, Thailand
Spinel is one of the most captivating and yet underappreciated gems, in our opinion. It comes in bold blues, bright pinks, pastely lavenders, and reds that shockingly resemble ruby. The “Black Prince’s Ruby” that is set in England’s Imperial Crown is actually a spinel that had its identity mistaken! Spinel crystals grow in “octahedrons” like garnets and diamonds, which look like two little pyramids stacked on top of each other. Funnily enough, some red spinels have been nicknamed “Jedi spinel” because they glow so much they are “untouched by the dark side.” East Africa is home to some of the most sought-after spinels: from lavender and purple from Lukande, Tanzania to hot pink from Mahenge, Tanzania.
Spinel is an alternative birthstone for the month of August.
Gems from the heart
Moyo means 'heart' in Kiswahili. Our new project expands our Moyo Gems cutting from one person in the US, Beth Stier, to a group of five independent artisanal cutters in Chiang Mai, Thailand. These gems are beautifully precision cut by Gao and Khal (husband + wife) along with Lek, Yod, and Albert. Gao does all the dopping and polishing and Albert cuts the majority of the melee-sized gems. This kind of cutting efficiency can allow us to purchase more of the smaller East African rough gems, which brings fully traceable gemstone melee to the market AND provides a valuable outlet for the gem miners in East Africa: win/win!
A Moyo gem gives back a higher percentage of the sale than an ANZA gem, and this amount is re-invested into the Moyo Gems program to help run market days and support local community needs.