The distinctive hue of the mineral known as turquoise has captivated people for generations. In finer grades, it is considered a highly valuable gemstone that has been used in jewelry and decorations for thousands of years.
But what is turquoise, exactly, and why is it so prized? Below, we break down everything about this lovely stone, and why a turquoise bead bracelet can be the perfect present for your significant other. We’ll also give you a few turquoise bead bracelet recommendations from our extensive catalog here on By Fabrizio Design.
Some sources assert that the word “turquoise” is derived from the French turquois, which means “Turkish”, and dates to the 17th century. The mineral was first brought to Europe by way of the Ottoman Empire. Other sources, meanwhile, claim that the name dates back to the 14th century instead and comes from the word turkeis (also meaning “Turkish”; replaced with the French turqeise in the 1560s). A famed Roman philosopher referred to turquoise as callais, while the Aztecs called the mineral chalchihuitl.
It is a cryptocrystalline mineral with highly variable properties: turquoise is only slightly harder than window glass with a maximum rating of just under 6 on the Mohs hardness scale. In terms of color, it ranges from white to robin’s egg blue to yellowish green. Its luster is described as typically waxy to subvitreous. The transparency of turquoise also varies; it is typically opaque, but can also be semi translucent in thin sections.
Turquoise throughout history
Turquoise was one of the first gems to be mined, and it has been used in ornamental applications for thousands of years throughout many cultures.
It figured prominently in Iranian architecture: its unique blue hue was considered symbolic of heaven on earth, and the stone was therefore used to cover palace domes. Ancient rulers of the Aztecs, Egypt, Persia, Mesopotamia, and China were also said to often wear jewelry that featured turquoise.
The Aztecs believed that turquoise was fire given form, and combined it with precious materials such as gold, quartz, shells, and corals to make jewelry, as well as ceremonial objects such as knives, masks, and shields.
Turquoise was also one of the most popular stones in Persia for millennia, and was extensively featured in jewelry and to adorn turbans and horse bridles. It was also used to decorate important buildings, such as mosques.
In many cultures in both the Old and New Worlds, turquoise was and continues to be valued as a holy stone that can bring good fortune and protect against maladies of all sorts.
Turquoise in the present
Turquoise is the birthstone for those born in the month of December; it is also strongly associated with individuals born under the star sign of Sagittarius. It is also the gemstone for those celebrating their 5th and 11th wedding anniversaries. Additionally, it is an important gemstone to believers in crystal healing, as well as those who subscribe to the principles of feng shui.
In crystal healing, it is believed that turquoise brings balance and peace to whoever bears it. With its connection to the Throat chakra, it is also said to enhance one’s communication skills. Its soothing blue color is also said to provide spiritual cleansing while attracting good energy and fortune.
In feng shui, turquoise is associated with the areas of Zhen (New Beginnings) and Qian (Helpful People). Placing turquoise in these areas of the home is said to invite divine guidance into one’s life which can provide much-needed support when embarking on new ventures.
Reminiscent of the sky and sea: turquoise bead bracelets from By Fabrizio Design
Here at By Fabrizio Design, we draw inspiration from turquoise and use turquoise beads extensively in many of our bracelet designs.
Our Positano Memory Bracelet, shown here in turquoise, freshwater pearls, and coral, is our thoroughly modern representation of the jewelry worn by Aztec kings and queens. We used different shaped turquoise stones in this four-loop spiral turquoise bead bracelet in order to maintain a grounded and natural look. It suits the Bohemian woman: one who thoroughly appreciates the beauty of the outdoors and is in love with the brilliance of an endless blue sky.
Our Sant’Angelo Adjustable Bracelet, shown here in turquoise, onyx, and silver hematite discs, is a subtle yet statement-making accessory. Designed for the minimalist man, this turquoise bead bracelet features a narrow silhouette and tempers the brightness of the turquoise beads with small discs made out of black onyx and silver hematite to create a balanced look. It can be a wonderful addition to any casual outfit.
For the young woman who loves to travel, we have the Fermo Adjustable Bracelet, shown here in turquoise and freshwater pearls. This piece is for the girl who loves the beach: the turquoise beads and freshwater pearls used in this turquoise bead bracelet immediately evoke images of the ocean. It features two dainty charms: a rectangular bead with the word “road” engraved upon it, and a tiny heart, colored in the same ocean blue as the turquoise beads. Taken together, it sends a meaningful message to your recipient to love the road that she’s on and enjoy every moment of her journey.