— Michelle B.
— Harriet Lamb, CEO of Fairtrade International
—Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Aquamarine's lore stretches back to the breast plate of the Biblical high priest Aaron. Each stone on this plate represented a quality of one of the tribes of Israel. In the fourteenth verse of Revelations, St. John lists the 'foundation' stones in the church. He gives beryl (the mineral Aquamarines are made of) as his eighth stone, associated with the virtue of mercy and the apostle Thomas.
Our aquamarines are completely natural and have an exceptionally rich color. Their hardness on the Mohs scale ranges from 7.5 to 8, which makes them suitable for all types of jewelry- including engagement rings.
We have a wide variety of aquamarines in our store and just about any of our pieces can be made with aquamarine. If you would like something specific, please contact us.
Like all of our ethically-sourced colored gemstones, our aquamarines come from small scale mining which supports grassroots, local economy.
We source our aquamarines from Tumbuka tribal miners in Zambia, through an extraordinary arrangement that is extremely rare between traders and miners in Africa. Our supplier wires funds to the miners six months before his visit.
The ‘good faith deposit’ supports the miners over the following months, when the digging for the aquamarine is done with shovels. Mining by hand instead of machinery decreases the environmental impact, and allows a more long-term sustainable approach.
When our supplier finally visits the miners, he purchases the gems at top dollar. Thus, he assures that he will acquire the best material while continuing to build upon the trust that he has developed with his African mates for decades.
After obtaining the stones, our supplier hand carries the material to a small facility in Thailand, which is run by a single family, where he personally supervises the polishing of the gems. These aquamarines are entirely natural, without any heat treatment or coloring.