Shell


Consumer Information

What color is it?: Virtually every color in the rainbow.

What is the story behind this gemstone?: Shells are the oldest form of jewelry...and money for that manner. Shells decorations have been found as jewelry in the oldest known burial grounds. Today there are a number of types of shells still being used as ornamental jewelry. Most common is the mother of pearl shell material taken from the inner lining of oyster shells as shown above and below.

Can I wear it everyday?: Well....sure why not. Unless you have something very rare there is a fairly good supply of almost every kind of shell used in jewelry.

Is it expensive?: Generally no. But there are always exceptions.

Is it a birthstone?: No.

What do I need to know before going shopping?: Nothing. Shells are used from everything from the inexpensive puka necklaces of the 1970's, to mother of pearl inlays on fairly expensive jewelry used today. But since there is very little use of imitations, other than plastic which is fairly easy to identify, there is just not much to worry about with shell jewelry.


General Information

Abalone shell buttons shown above.

Source: World Wide

Chemical: CaCo3 (calcium carbonate or aragonite just like pearls and what else......TUMS)

Formation: Well.....as shells for sea creatures.

Crystal System: None

Unusual Properties: Several including orient and play of color (well....sort of)


For the gemological information on this gemstone we invite you to join us in the

International School of Gemology.


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