With its extremely unique neon blue and green color, the Paraiba tourmaline has quickly become a popular and sought after gemstone. Hailing from Brazil or Africa, these stones have been the centerpiece to some gorgeous and unique pieces of jewelry.
From day one of its discovery, the Paraiba tourmaline has been something special. Discovered in the 1980s in Brazil, the neon blue and green color sets it apart from other tourmalines. There are many different colors of tourmaline, from reds, pinks, greens and blues, yet none are as electric and striking as the Paraiba. The cause of this neon color is due to large amounts of trace elements such as magnesium and copper. This color often causes Paraibas to be compared to apatite, another rare gemstone that is highly valued and sought after mostly by collectors. The Paraiba color and gemstone itself, are so rare, that prices have been rising ever since its discovery. To put it in perspective, for every 1 Paraiba tourmaline mined, there are over 10,000 diamonds mined!
Most of the Paraiba tourmalines are found in the Paraiba region of Brazil, but there have been mines found in eastern Africa. This new source has caused some confusion as to if the gemstones can be called Paraiba since they are not found in that particular region. While many in the trade are okay with the use of Paraiba for all tourmalines of this color, many are not. It has caused quite a debate in the jewelry world.
With the rarity and cost of Paraiba tourmalines, these gemstones are often custom cut for bespoke pieces. Many famous and well known jewelers have used Paraibas in their collections, such as Chanel, Chopard, Dior, David Morris and Suzanne Syz. Even some watchmakers have used Paraibas. As an example, Roger Dubuis set the carbon bezel of their Velvet piece with Paraibas while Fabergé paved the dial of the Lady Fabergé Peacock mixing Paraiba Tourmalines with diamonds and tsavorites.
Arunashi is a contemporary jewelry brand which creates modern, bold and vibrant pieces. One such piece is their colorful cuff which is set in blue titanium and gold. The playful colors continue with deep blue, violet, pink and green opals, diamonds of similar colors and a 23-carat triangular Paraiba tourmaline. This piece truly showcases the electric nature of the turquoise color gemstone. David Morris also presented an astounding cocktail ring set with a large Paraiba in its center.
One of the largest pieces of Paraiba tourmaline is the “Ethereal Carolina Divine Paraiba,” which comes in at 191.87-carats! This gemstone was set into a necklace in 2013. Canadian jeweler Moneca Kaufmann of Kaufmann de Suisse, designed a playful and colorful necklace known as the “Paraiba Star of the Ocean Jewels.” This necklace is representative of nature, with the Paraiba symbolizing the ocean. There are 1,706 other precious and semi precious gemstones in the piece, including a 14.79-carat yellow sapphire! These bright colors of purples, yellows and pinks help to highlight the vibrant greenish blue of this spectacular Paraiba tourmaline!
This relatively new gemstone has made quite a name for itself during its short existence. With the beautiful color and rarity comes a hefty price, but one that is well worth it! Unfortunately, every beauty has a price to pay. Considering the love and use of that stone, it appears that Paraiba stones have become harder and harder to mine and collect. Within the next few years, jewelers and stone dealers will have to set their heart on another stone… Good luck !.