|Aurora Borealis seen from the North Pole|
Inuit legend tells us that long ago the Northern Lights were trapped inside the rocks off the coast of Labrador. One day they were found by an Inuit warrior who used his spear to free them. Sadly, not all the Northern Lights could be freed. It is because some of them remained imprisoned in the rock that we have labradorite today.
|Slab of labradorite - photo by Kluka|
The rainbow coloured reflections seen in labradorite, known as labradorescence or schiller, do indeed resemble the beauty of the Northern Lights. It is therefore not surprising that shortly after its discovery in 1770 by Moravian missionaries on Paul Island in Labrador, Canada, labradorite became a popular stone for use in jewelry in France and England.
The stone remains popular today. Labradorite shows at its best when it is able to move to catch the light, which transforms the dark grey stone into a fiery, iridescent thing of beauty. For this reason, pieces that move, such as drop earrings and rings are often preferred to more static pieces, like necklaces or pins.
Labradorite has many internal layers and cracks, so care must be taken with the stone. It can break in two if it receives a blow or if too much pressure is applied to it. It can also easily chip or become scuffed, so it should be stored properly when not in use. Ultrasonic and steam cleaning are not recommended for this gemstone.
Here are some examples of labradorite used in jewelry, brought to you by members of the Starving Artists Team.
|Oxidized Sterling Silver Labradorite Necklace by Shiny Adornments|
|Sterling Silver and Labradorite Necklace by LA Valley Girly|
|Argentium Silver Labradorite Earrings by popnicute|
|Labradorite and Fine Silver Wire Crochet Pendant by Cat's Wire|
|Labradorite Bracelet by Ava Designs|