Many people are unaware that there is a beautiful natural gemstone called zircon. Natural zircon today suffers on account of the similarity of its name to cubic zirconia, the laboratory-grown diamond imitation. The oldest dated material on Earth is a 4.3 billion year old zircon crystal, found in an arid region north of Perth, Australia, in 2001. Perhaps it should be said that “Zircons are forever”! Major sources of natural zircon are Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Australia, and Cambodia. But as plentiful as zircon is, its occurrence in large crystals is an uncommon treat, making zircon jewelry a rare treasure.
The three birthstones associated with December are zircon, tanzanite, and turquoise. Like January’s garnets and September’s sapphires, the variety of colors available in zircon gives people with December birthdays a lot of choice! Besides blue, zircon comes in fiery earth tones such as cinnamon, sherry, yellow, orange, and red.
The brilliant tones of blue zircon evoke thoughts of a perfectly clear blue sky, or the lapping of blue Caribbean waves on a sandy beach, and looks stunning against rose gold. Blue zircon was a particular favorite in Victorian times, when fine gems were often featured in English estate jewelry dating from the 1880s. Gemologist George Kunz—Tiffany’s famed gem buyer—was a notable zircon advocate.
Zircon’s brilliant diamond-like characteristics, along with its varied colors, make it a most desirable gemstone that will capture your imagination. At Susan Marie Designs, these zircons are brought to life by goldsmith Susan Marie Phipps, who employs both traditional techniques and contemporary design to create pieces worthy of your once-in-a-lifetime celebrations.