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January Color of the Month: Garnet Red

January Color of the Month: Garnet Red

It won't surprise you to hear that the jewelry color of the month is the same as the birthstone, the deep red of garnet.  Providing a stunning contrast to the grey skies and white, snow-bound land, garnet gives us a spark in the long winter month of January.

Fire and Ice

Nothing is more dramatic than mixing the color of the month with pearl for a true fire-and-ice combination.  These earrings give the appearance of snow on fire with the mother of pearl drop under garnet Swarovski Austrian crystals.

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Garnet Gemstone: More Than Just a Birthstone

Garnet Gemstone: More Than Just a Birthstone

garnet birthstone gemstoneThe Garnet gemstone is the birthstone of January. The stone is a group of minerals that comes in a rainbow of colors ranging from a deep red/orange of the Mandarin Garnet to a green color of the Tsavorite and the usually recognized Pyrope Garnet. It can be given for the second, sixth, and nineteenth wedding anniversaries and it symbolizes eternal friendship and trust. The name comes from the Latin word granatum meaning "seed-like" referencing it to a pomegranate because of it's looks and color. The garnet gemstone is an interesting stone in terms of history, legends, and Greek mythology.

 

History

The Garnet gemstone was found as inlays in the jewelry of a deceased man dating back to 3000 B.C. It was very popular in France in the 18th and 19th centuries and was found prominently in jewelry during the Victorian Era. It was also popular in Old Spain because of its similarity to the pomegranate, which was a favorite during that time period.

Legends

A legend says that Noah used a finely cut, glowing Garnet stone to illuminate the ark during the dark of night. Hebrew writers state the Garnet stone was one of twelve stones in the breastplate of Aaron and the blood-red color of the stone symbolizes Christ's sacrifice. In medieval times, the stone was used to cure depression, protect people from bad dreams, and even relieve liver diseases and hemorrhages. 

Greek Mythology

In Greek mythology, Hades gives a pomegranate to Persephone before she leaves him to ensure a speedy return. Consequently, the Garnet gemstone also represents separated love and a quick return. Today, the stone would be a respectful gift for someone leaving another to bond lovers and to help a broken heart. 

The Garnet gemstone symbolizes several different things including love, friendship, trust, and a swift return by separated lovers. It's a great anniversary gift and January birthday gift.

To explore unique, handmade Garnet jewelry and other gemstone pieces, contact us today.

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8 Things You Didn’t Know About the Garnet

Thinking about garnet birthstone jewelry for yourself or a loved one? Discover why this enchanting gem is much more than a January jewel.

  1. garnet gemstonesOver the centuries, garnets were believed to prevent and cure blood disorders and infections as well as stop bleeding, relieve skin inflammation, and ease depression.
  2. The name garnet has several possible origins, including from Old French (grenat) and Medieval Latin (granatum) meaning "of dark red color," or perhaps from the word pomegranate due to its resemblance to the shape of the seeds or the color of the pulp. It may also be from Medieval Latin granum "grain," in its sense of "cochineal, red dye."
  3. Garnet jewelry has been discovered as early as 3000 BC in burial sites, possibly used as protection in the afterlife.
  4. Garnet has been designated not only for January birthdays, but for 2nd, 6th, and 19th wedding anniversaries (but we think it’s appropriate for everything in between).
  5. Legend says that Noah used a luminous garnet to light the ark, and Christian tradition considered the blood-red gem a symbol of Christ’s sacrifice.
  6. One of the twelve gems in Aaron’s breastplate, according to Hebrew writers, was a garnet.
  7. The garnet lights the Fourth Heaven of the Moslems in the Koran.
  8. Hades gave a pomegranate to Persephone before she departed to ensure her quick return, which is why the garnet may be given to a loved one that is moving or embarking on a trip to ensure a speedy reunion.

With a rich history and an even richer facade, handmade garnet jewelry from SWCreations will be endlessly worn and treasured. Need help deciding between pieces like our Multi-strand Garnet Gemstone Necklace andGarnet Gold Pearl Beaded EarringsContact us; we’d love to help you find that one-of-a-kind piece.

 

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January Birthstone Article - Garnet and Auld Lang Syn

garnet gemstone birthstone

January’s birthstone is garnet, a stone with an inner fire that defies even the coldest winter days. And the month of January is filled with those. January is named for Janus, the two faced Roman God of beginnings, endings, gates and doors. This is because January pays tribute to the year just past and harbingers the journeys we’ll make into the New Year.

As we make those journeys, whether as trips or metaphorical resolutions, no more fitting birthstone could guide us than garnet. This is because ancient cultures like the Romans, Greeks, Egyptians and even Sumerians used garnet beaded jewelry as protective talismans for journeyers. The garnet appears in the bible as the fourth stone in Aaron’s breastplate and Noah is said to have used a garnet lantern to guide his Ark at night.

For those seeking garnet’s sure guidance, garnet beaded jewelry is ideal. But garnet rings are particularly popular birthstone jewelry for January, because a ring represents the completion of the yearly cycle.

So what color should garnet connoisseurs wear?

Blood red garnet beaded jewelry stands out like a blooming rose against January snows; the gemstone’s name itself derives from the pomegranate, a fruit with sparkling seeds that resemble garnet beads. Certainly, deep crimson is garnet’s most popular and iconic shade.

But January’s birthstone can be any shade, and garnet beaded jewelry can be found in a rainbow of hues. For a time, it was believed that garnets came in every color but blue, but the discovery of blue garnets in Madagascar in the 1990s put that idea to rest. Now, smoky blue garnet is amongst the most prized gems both for its rarity and its ability to change color in different light.

Unusually colored garnets each have their own names. For example, purple garnets are known as Rhodolite, mandarin orange garnets are called Spessartine, brown or black garnets are known as Andradite, and emerald green garnets go by the name of Tsavorith. This is to name only a few.

This wide variety of names for January’s birthstone stems from the fact that garnet is not a single gemstone, but rather, a family of related stones. What all varieties of garnet share is a common formation and cubic crystalline structure. Garnets are uniformly brilliant, natural, and durable. Garnets are also amongst the hardest gemstones, rating between a 7 and 7.5 on the Mohs Hardness Scale, and garnet beaded jewelry is generally affordable, making an ideal birthstone.

In fact, there are no known enhancements for garnets, so it’s difficult to fool a consumer with inferior quality garnet beaded jewelry. Perhaps it is this inviolable purity that turned garnet into a symbol for remembrance and faithful friendship. After all, historically, garnet has been a gift exchanged between good friends who are parting, to ensure that they meet again. January’s birthstone is even said to rekindle old feelings.

Thus, in a month when we gather with family and sing of old acquaintances forgotten and never brought to mind, garnet birthstone jewelry stands as a tribute to January’s two aspects--reminding us of the past and guiding us into the future.

Resources:

Garnets
January Birthstones

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