Tanzanite comes from only one place on earth which is at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, in Tanzania, Africa. It has quickly become one of the world's most popular gemstones and is as unique and rare as its color. Discovered in 1967, it is one of the newest gemstones on earth and surged in popularity due to its trichroic nature (ability to show 3 colors).
Tanzanite is predominantly Lavender in color, with undertones of blueberry, and flashes of raspberries. Added to the official birthstone list in 2002 for the month of December and is sentimentally known as the "Universal birthstone of Motherhood." Folklore has it that this gemstone was originally given by the Maasai tribe, in Tanzania Africa, to their expecting mothers as a symbol of motherhood and fertility. Purple is a prominent color in the Maasai tradition and culture and signifies royalty in western culture.
Over the last 20 years, the mines are being depleted and larger gemstones are not being found. The current life span of the mines is approximated to be about 30 years. Consequently, when you now see jewelry that has larger pieces of tanzanite with great intense color, these prices have gone up tremendously because of scarcity and no new mines being found. However, the great news is, Tanzanite is still relatively unknown globally, and it is still affordable with jewelers that carry the product.
Africa Tanzanite produces high-quality jewelry at tremendous value. Whether you are looking for your first 1-carat tanzanite, or if you want the large heirloom quality collectors' piece, Africa Tanzanite has been developing tanzanite jewelry designs for over 20 years. Tanzanite is now being used in non-traditional unique engagement rings but is most popular as pendants, earrings as the ever-popular large gemstone rings.
Tanzanite is a special stone that requires particular care, just like opal or pearls. On the Mohs scale of 10, tanzanite is 6.5 - 7 in hardness, consequently, you need to just soak the piece in a gentle detergent with warm water for a few minutes, then use a soft brush to clean around the setting, trying not to brush the stone itself. Pat dry with a soft cloth or allow to air-dry. When storing tanzanite, make sure to store it in a silk or cloth pouch by itself so that you can avoid scratching or chipping due to contact with other gemstones. If you wear your tanzanite ring every day, in about 5 years you might have to have the table re-polished as it will scratch. Pendants and earrings rarely have this problem. You must also be careful with tanzanite as to sudden temperature changes or heat. Putting your hands in the oven to take out a roast could cause your tanzanite to crack. Be careful!