When it comes to natural mineral crystals, are gemstones the first thing that comes to your mind? Produced by nature, it is beautiful, durable, rare, and valuable for craftsmanship. There are many types of gemstones, so there are many ways to classify them according to different dimensions. Have you ever heard the term semiprecious gemstones? what does it refer to? What does it have to do with gems?
In fact, gems are divided into precious gems and semi-precious gems， Precious stones include diamonds, emeralds, rubies, sapphires, and opals. Gems other than these five can be classified as semi-precious. The more precious the gemstone, the higher the hardness, while the semi-precious stone is generally not so hard, which is also a big difference between the gemstone and the semi-precious gemstone.
1. Characteristics of semi-precious gemstones
The preciousness, uniqueness and diversity of semi-precious stones make them indispensable and important in high-end architectural decoration. This kind of stone is loved by people because of its rare and precious material and unique natural texture and color. In application, it can not only make the overall space look high-end and luxurious, but also show the unique taste of the owner. In addition to the unique and precious characteristics of the stone itself, various design innovations such as lighting design, large panel splicing, water jet parquet, etc. are added to make it more gorgeous and luxurious. And because the pasting process of semi-precious stones is very complicated, the pure natural semi-precious stone slabs are assembled by hand with fine typesetting by experienced craftsmen, which is very precious and adds to its luxurious feeling.
Returning to the decoration industry, semi-precious stones are more widely used than some rare gems because of their excellent physical properties. There are even examples of business tycoons who directly airlift stones from distant mines to decorate residences. Some such as tourmaline, ghost Crystals, semi-precious stones of topaz are more precious than precious stones in terms of scarcity, and the price is calculated entirely by carat.
The name of semi-precious stones comes from the literal translation of English Semi precious stones. According to the English meaning, it is the second most precious gemstone, and the second most precious compared to the precious high-grade gemstone. And this semi, although it has the meaning of “half”, there is absolutely no meaning of half (or 50%) in the whole vocabulary.
Semi-precious stones are bright in color, pure inside and rich in color matching, which can make designers overflowing with inspiration and become the darling of accessories in the fashion industry. Well-known foreign actresses are frequently posting all kinds of semi-precious stones accessories that they are overwhelmed on Ins, provoking Come to the fans for a time. In recent years, semi-precious stones have even been regarded as a new type of collectibles and gradually entered people’s attention.
2. Design applications for semi-precious stones
Like other luxury stones, semi-precious stones can be applied to the background walls of indoor spaces, the walls and floors of the living room, the island in the kitchen, the countertops, and other scenes. It is also involved in the decoration of furniture desktops and paintings.
And it is very interesting that the effect of this display is no single, a whole slab of semi-precious stones, it may come from various corners of the earth 150 million years ago, formed by lava deposits of different crustal movements. There are crystallizations of energy magnetic fields and “fusions” of gemstones of different textures, which are more like extraordinary works of art.
Because the pasting process of semi-precious stones is very complicated, there are only a handful of domestic manufacturers that can process them, so most of the semi-precious stone’s decorations, especially the pure natural semi-precious stones slabs, are made by experienced craftsmen from Italian factories. Hand-assembled with fine typography, it looks very precious and adds to its luxurious feel.
3. How to identify semi-precious stones
1. Pen-type spotlight flashlight: used to query the transparency of dense gemstones. The electric beads of the concentrating flashlight should be concave on the surface of the pen head and cannot protrude from the surface of the pen head, otherwise it is not easy to query.
2. Expanding Mirror: It is one of the instruments for expanding the query of gems. The most commonly used is the 10x expander, and there are several types of 20x and 30x. Expanding scopes are a key and must-have item for gemologists and are easy to carry around. It can be used to determine the variety and authenticity of gemstones.
3. Dichroic mirror: Some gemstones are pleochroic, and the best instrument for inquiring gemstone pleochroism is a dichroic mirror. Dichroic mirror is a kind of optical instrument with reasonable design, low price, compact and simple. Note when testing: binoculars, dichroic mirrors and gemstone samples should be spaced within 2-5 mm
4. Agate among semi-precious gems
The history of agate is very distant. About 100 million years ago, underground magma was ejected in large quantities due to changes in the earth’s crust. When the lava cooled, steam and other gases formed bubbles. The air bubbles are sealed when the rock freezes, creating many holes. After a long period of time, the silica-containing solution soaked into the pores and condensed into silica gel. The fusible components of the iron-bearing rock enter the silica gel, and finally the silica crystallizes into agate. It has a gelatinous texture, a hard texture and a variety of colors, usually green, red, yellow, brown, white, and other colors. The most common types are south red agate, candy gate, etc. The shape of agate is generally cylindrical and grape-shaped, with concentric waves on the surface, which is very popular among people.
Agate is a chalcedony mineral, often a banded mass mixed with opal and cryptocrystalline quartz, translucent or opaque. According to the pattern and impurities, it can be divided into the sardonyx, green agate, etc. Commonly used as playthings, ornaments, ornaments. But now agate gemstone has also been used in interior decoration and some furniture and building materials, which has a very good decorative effect and is very popular among people. Agate gemstones contains various trace elements such as iron, zinc, nickel, chromium, cobalt, manganese, etc. Moss agate gemstone is very beneficial to human health. It is warm in winter and cool in summer. It can make people clear, energetic, improve work efficiency, and help create a more harmonious and ideal working and living environment. Agate has no radiation and is resistant to radiation. As a high-grade and safe natural decorative material, its gem-level hardness, high finish, corrosion resistance, compression and wear resistance, no water absorption, less dust, and other quality indicators are much better than natural stone.
5. Agate species reference
Some gems are amazing, some are ordinary. Ancient and magical gems – agate was born hundreds of millions of years ago, and it is the most frequent gem in the history of human civilization. They are scattered in every corner of the world.
In fact, the stone industry has long used semi-precious stones as materials, which are cut into large slabs to decorate the interior and exterior of buildings. The effect is amazing beauty and fashion.Agate has been regarded as a symbol of beauty, happiness, auspiciousness and wealth since ancient times. Because of its three characteristics of magnificence, hardness and rarity, it was named “jade”. Because of the incomparably brilliant colorful patterns on agate, I once thought that it was a painting of God’s art. There is no need for meticulous craftsmanship at all, and it has its own beauty of stunning time.
6. Application scenarios
Agate gemstone is embellished in the home design, showing the nobleness and taste, and each colored agate has a natural and beautiful texture of different colors, and each one is unique. The use of colored onyx patterns in the design of the home can bring many dazzling forms and create a lot of brilliant visual power for the living space.The semi-precious gemstone itself exudes a deep and charming charm, and the application of a small area can increase the design sense of the overall space, saying goodbye to the monotonous wall.
The faded texture is vaguely hidden in the clear gemstone texture, which highlights the trend of the pattern and the shape of the crystal and has an elegant temperament. The tone and texture of the agate has been reduced, the structure of the frame and the semi-precious gemstones of different colors are like a wall of art from a distance, which is amazing.
As a background wall, the effect is also very good. A high-quality space does not need too many design techniques and furnishings. An exquisite blue agate can be installed into a noble, elegant, and atmospheric modern light luxury space.
7. Processing of agate slate
The semi-precious gemstone slab is composed of natural gemstones and minerals. In nature, these semi-precious gemstone minerals usually exist in the form of small pieces, while the whole semi-precious gemstone slab is hand-selected by artisans. Resin binds them together. While the epoxy provides some additional flexural strength to the resulting slab, the processing of semi-precious gemstone slabs is still very demanding.
When cutting semi-precious gemstone slabs, special cutting discs need to be purchased. The polishing of the edges can be performed in the same way as other standard granites. The machining speed must be halved. For manual polishing, the water polishing process must be used, because we the semi-precious stone block is full of minerals. Ammonia, bleach, or any other harsh cleaning agents must be avoided when cleaning semi-precious stones. Mild or neutral cleaning agents are suitable for cleaning semi-precious stones. Store the slate away from direct sunlight and avoid placing the slate at temperatures below 10°C (50°F) or above 40°C (104°F).
8. Identification skills of natural agate and artificial agate
1) Look at the color. If natural agate and artificial agate are placed together, it can be clearly seen from the true and false, because the color difference between the two is obvious. The color of natural agate is relatively pure, and the color is relatively high, which is very attractive at first sight. There are some small dots densely distributed in the stripes on the surface, but there is no artificial agate stone. The color of artificial agate is darker than that of natural agate, and it looks Rather cloudy and not shiny.
2) Look at the texture. Artificial agate is generally made of stone, and its hardness is lower than that of natural agate. If jade is used to rub the two kinds of agate, the natural agate will not change, but the artificial agate will have scratches.
3) Look at the craftsmanship. The craft products of natural agate have stricter requirements in the production process, so the overall visual appearance of the finished product is relatively complete. There are generally no cracks, and the surface is relatively smooth.
4) Look at transparency. Although crystals are said to have high transparency, natural crystals are not absolutely transparent. Artificial agate has high transparency, while natural agate has some natural clouds inside, which should be distinguished.
5) Look at the weight. Natural agate is heavier than synthetic.
6) Sensing temperature. Natural agate will feel cool when you hold it in your hand at first, but it will be the same as your body temperature after a while, while synthetic agate is warm and moist without a cold feeling in your hand.
9. Installation precautions
The standard size of semi-precious gemstone slabs is 1450 x 2750 x 30mm, so you should pay attention when installing semi-precious gemstones on the countertop: Generally, the distance between the support points of semi-precious gemstone slabs with a thickness of 30mm should not exceed 60 cm, and the span between the slabs should be no more than 60 cm. The distance should be minimized to prevent damage and cracking. For the countertop, the distance between the fulcrums should not exceed 30 cm. In the case of suspension, the support points must be solid, if the distance between the support points exceeds the maximum mentioned above, additional support and fixing need to be strengthened.