|Alexander's Choice Ring by David Wein|
Some antique, estate and vintage jewellery sellers, as well as eBay, Amazon and other online jewellery retailers are misleading their customers on purpose or by ignorance by using the "Verneuil", "Chatham" or "Cultured" designation to describe synthetic alexandrite or synthetic corundum laced with vanadium.
Use of the "Verneuil Alexandrite", "Chatham Alexandrite" or "Cultured Alexandrite" term in the context of a description for sales without including the "lab created" or "synthetic" prefix, is incorrect and deliberately misleading. These stones will show a range of colour changes and are usually very clean and available in large sizes but they has no resale, investment or emotional value.
It would do you good to be aware of some basic tips on buying alexandrite jewellery before you buy one.
1. When buying alexandrite jewellery, always ask for a Certificate of Authenticity and a Gem Identification report from a reputed Gem Laboratory. Most reputable stores selling alexandrite will supply a certificate anyway.
2. Each alexandrite is individual and it is impossible to find two that display exactly the same colour change, unless they are cut from the same crystal. An alexandrite with good clarity may display a less dramatic colour change because the silky inclusions often enhance the change.
3. The traditional view is that the best alexandrite shifts from emerald green to ruby red, but this hardly ever occurs. Most alexandrite's seem to show a good green in daylight or a beautiful red under incandescent light but few stones look good under every kind of light. Good quality alexandrite is teal, emerald, or blue-green under natural daylight or fluorescent lighting that ideally changes to purple-red or red under regular incandescent light.
4. Alexandrite is very rare gemstones and it is next to impossible to find decent alexandrite weighing over 0.25 cts. Stones less than 0.50 carat can be worth several thousand pounds and over one carat may retail for ten times this amount.
5. It's not a bad idea to buy loose certified natural alexandrite gemstone from a reputable gem dealer and ask your jeweller to set it for you.