What Are Considered as Best Opals?

In Opals
10 May 2020 | No Comments

A stone that symbolises love and hope, 95% of the world’s opals are found in Australia, making the gemstone a national treasure in the country. Dating back the 16th century, opals were first brought from India and passed on as a rare antiquity in Europe. Today, opals make up an exquisite addition to best opal jewellery pieces and can be carved in rings, necklaces, brooches, rings, and more.

Opals are of two broad classes: precious opals and common opals. The former takes a play of colours while the latter lacks colourful flashes. There are varying types of opals which are determined by two characteristics: body tone (light, dark, grey, and black opal ranges) and transparency (any colour that’s opaque and translucent—crystal opal).

It can be difficult to know the best type of opal because it will ultimately depend on your reason for acquiring it and on your budget. Here are some of the best opals and their varying characteristics to help you decide which ones are best for you.

Black Opal – Most Valuable, The Rarest

Although not completely black, this type of opal has a dark body tone and is distinguished by its black ‘body colour’. The play of colours of black opals ranges from being black within but can be crystal or opaque when light hits it, giving a light appearance. Because of its rarity, black opals tend to be the most expensive opal type.

White or Light Opal – More Common

Also considered as a natural solid opal, white opals have a colourless base and can go for a medium grey tone. ‘Milky’ appearance is a more appropriate way to describe its color rather than ‘white’. White opals are an elegant jewellery piece.

Boulder – High Demand and Extremely Valuable

This type of opal can be found in some locations in Western Queensland. It represents only tiny precious opals within its natural rock-forming appearance. But when intricately designed and carefully crafted, these types of boulder opals bring out the unique beauty of each stone, such as these pendant pieces. Boulders can be light or black depending on the rock from where it’s formed.

Matrix Opal – Host-rock relationship

As the largest deposits of matrix opals are found in Andamooka, Australia, this type of opal is found in sedimentary rocks. Unlike the boulder opal, this type is ingrained with the parent rock into a finished or rough mixture.

Fire Opal – Translucent and Transparent

Known for its warm colors of yellow to orange to red, fire opals are commonly used in Australia, although this type of opal is more common in Mexico. When valued, fire opals are based on its uniformity of color. The highest valued are red fire opals.

There are numerous types of opals such as composite opals in doublets and triplets when synthetic and natural opals are combined. With all the varying opals, you can be assured of the best type of opals in Australia jewellery pieces, whether they’d be engagement rings, pendants, or bracelets. If you’re looking to inquire more about opals, you can contact Volle boutique and flagship store.

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