<img src="//bat.bing.com/action/0?ti=5560871&amp;Ver=2" height="0" width="0" style="display:none; visibility: hidden;">
the longs blog

Jewelry Education

Why Do You Pay More For Certain Colored Gemstones?

A gemstone is defined as a pearl or mineral that has been cut and polished for use as an ornament. We are all attracted to the colors, the shapes and beauty of gemstones. A gemstone’s charm is individual. It can symbolize emotion, follow generational or cultural traditions and represent memories.

Let's clear the air with the terminology separating gemstones into categories of precious and semi-precious. Traditionally the term “precious” was reserved for the finest gemstones. This term implies they are more desired, rare and costly. The term “semi-precious” is referred to all others, regardless of how rare, unusual, difficult to mine or the level of demand they hold.

In this article, there will not be any distinction between semi precious and precious gemstones. All gemstones are beautiful and are graded for value using the same methods. Alexandrite, for example, doesn’t make “the big three” of what is understood to be a “precious” gemstone (ruby, sapphire and emerald). Often alexandrite, for example, will command as much value as those traditionally labeled “precious."  All gemstones share three important and desired traits. They are: beauty, rarity and durability.

How Much Should You Expect to Spend on Jewelry Repair?

Jewelry is meant to be loved and worn often. When this happens, it's natural for the piece to age and show signs of wear over time. This can range from the jewelry losing it's original shine to needing a minor or even major repair. 

Regardless of the condition that your piece is in, we want to help you restore it to the fresh out of the box look that made your heart race when you first got it. 

There are many different repairs that can be done to restore your jewelry. The cost will ultimately depend on the material and condition of your piece as well as what repairs want to get done.

Here are the most common jewelry repairs and what you can expect to pay for them:

The Legend & Beliefs Behind February's Birthstone: Amethyst

Amethyst is the birthstone for the month of February. The most sought after amethysts shine with the darkest, richest purples. The color can range from a light, pinkish violet to a deep purple.

Amethyst is found predominantly in the volcanic rock of Brazil, Uruguay and Mexico, but it is also found in South Korea, Austria, Zambia, India and the granitic rocks of Russia. The supply of Amethyst is plentiful making this gem affordable for just about anyone.

You will see amethyst in higher priced designer pieces as well as in mass mass-market jewelry. Many jewelry fashion pieces incorporate amethyst because it offers a feminine, strong, and sophisticated look. Amethyst has a Mohs Scale Hardness of 7 meaning it's not easily scratched and is durable enough to avoid scratching and chipping during daily wear.

Hallmarks: What They Are and Why You Should Care


You may have been looking at your gold or silver jewelry at some point and seen small markings in the metal. Maybe you could make out small letters or numbers or maybe they just looked like random scribbles.

Whatever the case, in the world of precious metals, these inscriptions are called hallmarks. They describe the piece and can include metal purity, maker, and assay office location (where the metal was officially tested).

Hallmarks guarantee that the piece has the metal content that the maker or manufacturer claims it has.

10 "Scary" Fun Facts You Don't Know About November's Stone, Citrine

Halloween is fun time to celebrate the color orange, and a perfect opportunity to introduce one of our favorite gemstones, citrine! 

Not only is citrine the go-to gemstone for the November birthday, it holds sophistication that you just don't see everyday. Citrine, with its rich deep golden hue, feels warm and looks elegant. But, this beautiful gemstone has been ignored over the years for one reason or another. 

We're here to show you why citrine should not be ignored with these "scary" fun facts that we think everyone should know about this sophisticated stone. 

Did You Know: Not All Sapphires Are Blue


Most people know that any blue gemstone you see in jewelry is most likely a sapphire. Classic blue sapphire is a stone that exudes sophistication and has often been linked to royalty. Who can ever forget Kate Middleton's stunning engagement ring passed down from Princess Diana? 

But, sometimes sapphire gemstones experience abnormal conditions when they are formed that can actually change their crystal structure. And because of this, the world gets to experience a wide range of sapphires stones that differ from the classic blue. 

So let's explore the different colors of sapphire and how they are produced: