A quick search or two on Google will uncover that Opals are quite a popular gemstone, in fact 5th or 6th most popular in the world depending on what you read. This may have something to do with their unique material composition, which gives it an exquisite look once set on different jewelry designs.
Boulder Opal while less popular then its cousins is often a stand out in Jewellery and because of its unusual form, the boulder opal has gained popularity and high market demand today. These gemstones are found sparsely spread over a far-reaching region known as the boulder country. In its natural state, the boulder opal is formed by filling in the narrow cracks of the ironstone boulders of Australia. Boulder opals are not readily cut from their host rock because of the way they are conventionally formed unlike the other types of opals. People will find the boulder opal unusually pleasing even though it is in freeform shape. It has a rippling surface sitting on a bed or dark brown ironstone. It is arched on the top, and is not commonly smooth. The jeweler needs to make a special setting for this kind of gemstone since it has its own individual shape unlike the oval or circular form of the more well-known black and white opals. In order words, castings or settings are custom-made for boulder opals.
Boulder opals come in two subtypes: seam opal and matrix opal. Seam opal is unearthed where the opal material occupies cracks in the ironstone rock. A bulldozer is used to break the ironstone boulder apart or it can be split apart by using a big hammer. The opal is found in each broken piece of the ironstone rock. On the other hand, matrix opal is where the opal flows in a random manner all the way through the rock. The stone itself is cut and polished with the matrix opal inside it. The way boulder opals are formed and the resultant gemstone makes them excellent pieces to make jewelries such as earrings and pendants. In addition, they look absolutely exquisite. Therefore, boulder opal is a perfect alternative to black and white opal. Jewelers and buyers alike find that boulder opals can add beauty to a piece of jewelry, be it pendants, earrings, rings, cuff links, or tie tacks. The Internet has a host of photos of this type of opal where people can look on their different striking characteristics. They will definitely get the idea why boulder opal is popular nowadays.
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