Dear Calla GoldDear Calla,

There’s this watermelon tourmaline that my grandfather mined in Southern California decades ago in his collection. I passed on the dining set so my sister would let me take it. And I liked that dining table. Anyway, I now have this long pink to green tourmaline and want to set it very specially.

When I look at it next to white diamonds it looks less special. Do I figure out what gems look good next to it first or pick a setting style first?

Gems beat tables and chairs

Dear Gems,

Sometimes white sparkly diamonds compete with the delicate look of a special gemstone. Try a monochromatic look where you choose a similar colored gemstone for accent. Another option is to pick side gemstones that are neutral and not bright.

In my view the most important part of setting a special gemstone is to support it with a meaningful design. In other words don’t just let someone plonk it into a four prong setting. Have a crafted design to honor it and set off its beauty.

In my client Leslie’s necklace with the blue tourmaline we ended up using a blue diamond as a monochromatic choice to set it off the best.

Another client Lori needed the soft non-competitive neutral of champagne diamonds to set off her unusual opal.


Before and After Tourmaline Enhancer

A Monochromatic Blue Diamond is the Perfect Accent for this Blue Bi-color Tourmaline

black rhodium pendant with opals

Champagne Diamonds with Black Rhodium were the Subtle Neutral Colors we Chose to Honor Lori’s Yawah Nut Opal

About Calla Gold

Calla Gold is a Personal Jeweler and Author who takes pride in working with clients one-on-one to integrate their personal sense of style and taste into custom designed jewelry and repaired jewelry pieces.   Unlike typical Santa Barbara jewelry businesses, Calla Gold has no brick-and-mortar location. Calla Gold comes to you, bringing you the jewelry collection you want to see and collaborating with you to create unique custom jewelry. Calla also works with at-a-distance clients.

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