Have you noticed the world getting more colorful lately? We don’t just mean the twinkle of holiday lights. From maximalist home decor to bright clothing and funky hairstyles, tastes seem to be trending away from neutrals and back towards color. The same thing is happening in the jewelry world, and gemstone pieces are poised to be the hottest styles of 2024.
You know what that means: it’s time to dive into the world of gemstones and prepare your jewelry box for a pop of color. In this blog, we’ll share a few of our favorite colorful gems, diving into the meaning behind them, suggesting some trendy jewelry and giving you helpful styling tips. By the end, you’ll be ready to add a rainbow of gemstones to your collection for 2024!
I. The Magic of Gemstone Jewelry
While gemstone jewelry is particularly popular right now, it’s one of those things that never goes out of style. You can find gorgeous, colorful pieces from every era of fashion. As other trends come and go, gemstones have always been treasured. But what, exactly, makes gemstones so special?
Part of the magic is that each gemstone is steeped in history and lore. Most gemstones were discovered hundreds, if not thousands of years ago. Different cultures incorporated gemstones into their stories and myths, their art, and even their medicinal practices. While we don’t always hold the same beliefs about gemstones today, we can still appreciate the legends behind them.
Gemstones also offer a uniquely powerful way to express ourselves. No two gems are exactly alike, and with their rainbow of hues, they help us distinguish our style. Gemstones also allow us to personalize our jewelry a bit more. We can wear our birthstones or the birthstones of people we love, show off our favorite colors, or share a special message through a gemstone with symbolic meaning.
II. Gemstone Meanings
While we can't cover every gemstone in this blog post, we did want to touch on a few of the most commonly worn gemstones. Here is a look at the symbolism behind six of the most popular gemstones.
Historians and archaeologists have found amethyst jewelry dating back as far as 2000 B.C. However, it was the Greeks who had special reverence for this stone. The name ‘amethyst’ comes from the Greek ‘amethystos,’ meaning ‘not drunk.’ Yes, the Greeks believed that amethyst could protect you from intoxication, and it was common to wear amethysts to feasts and parties for that very reason.
Over time, amethyst took on other mythical properties. It is now associated with clear-headedness, focus, inspiration and creativity. The birthstone for February, amethyst is also believed to relieve stress.
Emeralds are considered one of the ‘Big Four’ gems (alongside diamonds, rubies and sapphires) because of its significant impact on human cultures and history. The oldest emeralds are nearly 3 billion years old. Since they can be found across the world, they feature in the art and lore of many different cultures.
In modern times, emeralds symbolize loyalty and new beginnings. It is also strongly associated with the natural world thanks to its deep green color. Irish people proudly refer to their country as the ‘Emerald Isle,’ a nod to Ireland’s hilly green landscape.
The opal’s shimmering rainbow colors made it particularly intriguing to admirers throughout history. Since it could reflect the full spectrum of colors, opal was believed by many to possess the combined properties of every gemstone.
A popular fictional story in the 1800s told of a princess whose opal jewelry brought her bad luck, so opals briefly lost their popularity. Now, however, opals are associated with hope and purity. They are the birthstone for October, and a traditional gemstone gift for the 14th anniversary.
Rubies get their name from the Latin word ‘rubeus,’ meaning ‘red.’ It’s a fitting name for this gem and its fiery glow. They have long been considered very valuable, and were even traded along the Silk Road. Jewelry-quality rubies can be very hard to find, and the finest rubies may be even more expensive than diamonds.
Today, ruby is the traditional birthstone of July. It is associated with improved concentration, as well as passion, thanks to its rich red hue. Ruby is also the gemstone associated with the 40th wedding anniversary.
Sapphires were discovered in ancient Persia (now Iran) around 800 BC. It was once frequently used in engagement rings, and thanks to its durability, it’s still an ideal choice for gemstone engagement rings. Currently, most of the world’s sapphires are mined on the island of Madagascar.
The birthstone for September, sapphire has long been associated with the celestial world. Greeks wore sapphire for guidance and believed it could help in prophesying, while Buddhists believed it could bring enlightenment. Now, it’s said to promote intelligence and wise judgment.
Turquoise has an extremely long history, with the first turquoise beads dating back to 5000 BC. It was especially prized by the Ancient Egyptians, who often used it to adorn the tombs of their rulers. It is abundant in desert environments, and can be found in the Southwestern United States. It holds a special place in the art and legends of Native Americans living in that region.
Turquoise is December’s birthstone. It was once believed to be a stone of protection, and was worn into battle. Some cultures even believed that turquoise could make people immortal. Nowadays, turquoise is associated with friendship and happiness. Its bright color certainly gives off a positive vibe.
III. Gemstone Jewelry We Love for 2024
Wear the mesmerizing beauty of this gemstone with an amethyst necklace. Its deep purple hue gives off an almost mystical aura, perfect for pairing with your bolder looks. With its naturally intriguing glow, amethyst makes an especially stunning pendant necklace.
Cool-toned amethyst is extra gorgeous when set in silver or white gold. Let its vivid, showy color take center stage by wearing your amethyst necklace with muted tones like white or soft pastels.
Emerald Stud Earrings
Adorn your ears with beautiful emeralds for a subtle but striking look. This classic gemstone will add a timeless touch of glamor to any outfit you pair it with.
Emerald’s deep green hues look especially vivid when set in yellow gold. Emerald also complements other rich tones such as navy blue, mustard yellow and ruby red. Pure elegance, emerald stud earrings are sure to turn heads no matter the occasion.
Opals are fairly soft and can break if not properly cared for. Wearing an opal around your neck is a great way to keep it safe from harm and make a stunning statement. Opals were made to be shown off, and there’s no better way to do that than with an eye-catching pendant.
Opal’s rainbow flashes of light will bring out the vibrancy in whichever other colors you choose to wear, as well as your own natural features. Add an opal pendant to your jewelry collection and enjoy the boost it gives to both your inner and outer beauty!
How would you wear your ruby necklace? Would you opt for a subtle, shimmering ruby solitaire necklace? Maybe you’d prefer your rubies set within a larger pendant. Ruby station necklaces, which feature numerous stones spaced apart along the length of the chain, are another beautiful option. There’s no wrong way to wear a ruby necklace–it all comes down to your personal style.
Chic rubies go well with other warm tones, including yellow gold, while white clothing really lets a ruby shine.
Sapphire Engagement Rings
Sapphires rank at a 9 on the Mohs scale, which measures the hardness of minerals. Diamonds are the only mineral to score a perfect 10, but sapphires and rubies are the runners up. This makes sapphire an especially good choice for an alternative gemstone engagement ring.
Sapphire shines with white gold, yellow gold, and just about anything else you pair it with. Accent diamonds can make a sapphire pop even more. The history of the sapphire makes this gemstone even more romantic. In the Victorian Era, it was a popular stone to give to your loved ones. It then made a comeback in the 1980s, when Prince Charles proposed to Princess Diana with a sapphire engagement ring.
Turquoise is the epitome of bohemian chic. The Southwestern aesthetic makes turquoise ideal for roadtrippers, explorers, and lovers of the desert. This cool-toned gem pairs particularly well with silver or white gold.
Eye-catching turquoise was born to make a statement. We think turquoise rings are an especially flashy way to show off this gorgeous gem. Wear them as part of a ring stack with delicate silver bands, or style them in whatever fashion makes you feel most confident!
Find Gemstone Jewelry to Color Your 2024 at Noe's Jewelry in Kansas City, Missouri!
Gemstone jewelry continues to be more than just an accessory: it's a powerful means of self-expression. Each stone carries its own unique allure, allowing us to express our personalities, beliefs, and emotions through beautiful jewelry.
As we move into 2024, gemstone jewelry is enjoying a popularity boost. Prepare for the next few years in fashion by paying your local jewelry store a visit. If you’re in the Kansas City area, stop by Noe’s Jewelry and let our friendly staff help you find the perfect piece to add a pop of color to your accessory collection! Or, feel free to check out our gemstone jewelry offerings online.