The Beautiful World Of Star Sapphires

Star Sapphires

I remember the first time I saw a star sapphire.  I was was smitten!  It was impossible to stop rotating it to make the star pattern on this magnificent blue gemstone pop out.  My affinity for star sapphires has been a constant since then.  While they are nowhere near as common as faceted sapphires, they are still sought after and can command very high prices.  Especially if the start is pronounced and the rest of the stone has good clarity and color.

Sapphires Are One Of The Most Popular Stones In History

If you’re a fan of colored gemstones, then you know what sapphires are.  Sapphires are known for their deep blue color and durability.  They have been treasured by people all over the world for millenia. Many of the crown jewels of the world feature sapphires.  However, there is a special type of sapphire called “star sapphire” that is not as well knows.  These gems are named for a unique and singular attribute: a star-shaped pattern that seems to levitate on the surface of the stone. It is not always prominent, or even complete.  But when it is, it is something beautiful to see.

What are Star Sapphires?

Star sapphires are a captivating gemstone that possess a unique optical phenomenon known as asterism. This phenomenon creates a star-like pattern on the surface of the gem when it is properly cut and polished. The star effect is caused by the presence of needle-like inclusions called rutile, which intersect at specific angles within the crystal structure of the sapphire. These intersecting rutile inclusions reflect light in a way that forms the distinct star pattern.

To understand how this type of sapphire are formed, we must first delve into the geological processes that shape these precious gemstones. Sapphires are a variety of the mineral corundum, which is composed of aluminum oxide. They are typically found in igneous and metamorphic rocks, such as basalt and gneiss. During the formation of these rocks, intense heat and pressure cause the corundum to crystallize and grow over millions of years.

The presence of rutile inclusions is crucial for the formation of star sapphires. These needle-like inclusions can become trapped within the growing crystal lattice of the sapphire, aligning themselves in a way that produces the desired star effect. The orientation and symmetry of the rutile inclusions determine the number of rays in the star pattern, with six-rayed stars being the most common. The size and intensity of the star can vary depending on the quality of the sapphire.

Starred sapphires are formed through a combination of geological processes and the presence of rutile inclusions. Their unique star-like pattern adds a touch of magic and allure to these already mesmerizing gemstones. Whether you’re a gem enthusiast or simply appreciate their beauty, star sapphires are sure to capture your imagination and leave you starstruck. So go ahead.  Indulge in the celestial beauty of star sapphires and let their twinkling rays guide you to a world of enchantment.

Colors of Star Sapphires

Star sapphires can grow in a variety of colors, including blue, pink, yellow, green, and purple. However, the most valuable color for a star sapphire is typically blue. The intensity and richness of the blue hue, along with the presence of a well-defined star pattern, greatly contribute to the value of a star sapphire. While other colors can be beautiful and desirable, blue star sapphires are generally considered the most sought after and valuable in the market. So, if you’re looking to add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your jewelry collection, a blue star sapphire would be a fantastic choice.

Star Sapphire Quality

Natural star sapphire specimens are highly valued gemstones due to their unique optical phenomenon known as asterism. This phenomenon creates a star-like pattern on the surface of the gemstone, which adds to its allure and beauty. The value of a star sapphire is determined by several characteristics.  The include the intensity and clarity of the star, the color and transparency of the gem.  The overall size and weight are also factors in value.  The larger the stone is, the more rare it is, adding to the value.

When it comes to grading star red sapphires, experts consider the quality and visibility of the star as the most important factor. A well-defined, sharp and centered star that is easily visible under different lighting conditions is highly desirable. The number of rays in the star also plays a role in determining the grade of the gemstone.  Consequently, 6 rayed stars are more valuable than four or two-rayed stars.

In addition to the star, the color of the sapphire is another crucial aspect in grading. The most sought-after colors are deep blue or violet-blue. However, star sapphires can also be found in shades of gray, green, and even pink. The color should be evenly distributed throughout the gemstone, with no visible zoning or color banding.

Overall, the value of a star sapphire is subjective and can vary depending on personal preferences. However, a well-defined star, vibrant color, and high transparency are generally considered desirable qualities. So, if you’re looking to invest in a star sapphire, make sure to choose one that captivates you with its mesmerizing star and stunning color.

Where Do Star Sapphires Grow?

When it comes to finding starred sapphires, you’re in luck! These stunning gemstones can be found in various locations around the world. One popular destination is Sri Lanka, known for its rich deposits of high-quality star sapphires. Another option is Myanmar, where the famous Mogok region is renowned for producing beautiful star sapphires. If you’re looking for a more local experience, you can also find star sapphires in Montana, USA. So whether you’re planning a trip abroad or prefer to stay closer to home, there are plenty of options for finding these mesmerizing gemstones.

Star Sapphires
Here are starred sapphires of varying qualities.

Starred Sapphires & Jewelry

Star sapphires have a rich history in the world of jewelry. These stunning gemstones are known for their unique asterism, which creates a star-like pattern when light is reflected off their surface. The history of starred sapphires dates back centuries, with evidence of their use in ancient civilizations such as Greece and Rome.

In ancient times, star sapphires were believed to possess magical properties and were often used as talismans or amulets for protection. They were also associated with divine powers and were highly valued by royalty and the upper class.

Over time, the popularity of star sapphires continued to grow, and they became a symbol of luxury and opulence. During the Art Deco period in the 1920s and 1930s, starred sapphires were particularly favored due to their unique and captivating appearance. Today, starred sapphires are still highly sought after by collectors and jewelry enthusiasts. As a result, they continue to be cherished for their beauty and historical significance.

In our opinion, starred sapphires are truly remarkable gemstones that have stood the test of time. Their rich history and unique optical phenomenon make them a captivating choice for jewelry. Whether it’s a vintage piece from the Art Deco era or a modern design, star sapphires add a touch of elegance and mystique to any jewelry collection. So, if you’re looking to make a statement with your jewelry, consider adding a starred sapphire to your collection.

What Do Star Sapphires Cost?

Starred sapphires can vary greatly in cost depending on various factors. The most important factor is the quality and size of the gemstone. Generally, star sapphires with a strong and well-defined star pattern command higher prices. Additionally, larger starred sapphires are also more valuable compared to smaller ones. Other factors that can influence the cost include the color intensity, clarity, and origin of the gemstone. It’s worth noting that star sapphires from certain regions, such as Burma and Sri Lanka, are often considered more desirable than other.  As a result, these stones tend to have higher price tags. Overall, star sapphires can range in price from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars, or even more for exceptionally rare and high-quality specimens.

When it comes to buying a star sapphire, it’s important to do your research and shop around to find the best deal. Prices can vary significantly between different jewelers and online retailers.  Consequently, it is wise to compare prices and quality before making a purchase. Additionally, it’s advisable to seek the assistance of a reputable gemologist or jeweler who can help you evaluate the quality and value of the star sapphire you are interested in. This way, you can ensure that you are getting a fair price for your desired gemstone.

Basically, the cost of starred sapphires can range widely depending on factors.  These factors are quality, size, color, clarity, and origin. It’s important to consider these factors and shop around to find the best deal. With careful research and the assistance of a knowledgeable professional, you can find a star sapphire that fits your budget and meets your desired specifications.

black sapphire
Here is a 4 rayed black sapphire

Lab Vs Natural Sapphires

As with faceted stones, starred sapphires are also grown in labs.  Lab created star sapphires are created through a process called “diffusion treatment.” This involves heating natural sapphires and infusing them with certain elements, such as titanium or iron.  These trace elements  enhance their color and create the star effect. The result is a stunning gemstone with a distinct six-rayed star pattern that seems to float on the surface.

The main difference between lab starred sapphires and natural stones lies in their origin. Natural sapphires are formed deep within the Earth’s crust over millions of years, while lab-grown sapphires are created in a controlled environment within a matter of weeks. Some may argue that natural stones have a certain allure and rarity that lab-grown ones lack. However, lab starred sapphires offer a more affordable and sustainable alternative without compromising on beauty or quality.

Lab starred sapphires are a fantastic option for those who appreciate the beauty of sapphires but are mindful of their budget. They provide an opportunity to own a stunning gemstone with a unique star pattern, without breaking the bank. Additionally, lab-grown stones are more environmentally friendly, as they eliminate the need for mining and reduce the impact on natural resources. So, if you’re looking for a dazzling and ethically-sourced gem, lab starred sapphires are definitely worth considering.

Give Us A Shot!

Are you looking for a piece of jewelry with a starred sapphire in it?  Why not have something made that matches your style and personality? We make custom jewelry.  That is all we do.  So, why buy a piece of mass produced jewelry from the mall that thousands of people can have?

We can create something just for you that no one else has.  And many times, it can cost less than a comparable item from the chain jewelry stores.

You can view our portfolio of custom engagement rings or custom pendants to look for ideas.  Or you can contact us with your own idea. You will not be disappointed.  Our GIA graduate gemologist will give you the best starred sapphires for your budget and let you choose the stone that speaks to you.  Then, we will put it into a stunning custom jewelry creation just for you!


The Beautiful World Of Star Sapphires

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