All About Agate - Part One
Decorative Gemstone Designs: Agate
Agate is not only a grounding and calming stone to work with, but it's stunning and intricate design makes it a staple for home décor and jewelry. Find out more about the history and qualities of this classic gemstone and how you can implement it into your home design.
What is agate?
A chalcedony variety, agate is a type of cryptocrystalline silica quartz that features a range of vibrant colors. The crystal fragments found within an agate stone are so fine that they are hardly noticeable amidst the swirling patterns of this gem.
Like the patterns within, agate has a mysterious and ancient history. Agate crystals are forged within pockets of lava fields and volcanic rock. Over time, their deposits are filled with layers of silica, giving agate it’s well-known “banded” appearance. Agate geodes can also occur when the agate deposit isn’t fully filled with silica and fragmented quartz crystals form within the core.
Agate is one of the most versatile gemstones and is characterized by its array of colors and patterns. It is ranked at a 7 on the Mohs Hardness Scale, making it extremely durable and scratch resistant. This lustrous stone is frequently used to create unique crystal jewelry and gemstone home décor. Agate’s fascinating patterns make it a one-of-a-kind statement piece no matter where it is displayed.
Agate quality and types
Although recognized for its intricate layers of bands, this gemstone comes in many more varieties. Multiple colors and patterns are often present in agate depending on where and how it forms. Minerals like iron, nickel, or titanium can have a big impact on the appearance of this gemstone, as well. Agate is prized for its unique varieties, with some types being more coveted than others.
Agate varieties are typically named after the patterns or inclusions that appear. The most common types of agate are:
Agate Inclusions: Inclusions occur if trace amounts of minerals are present within the agate gemstone. These minerals create even more breathtaking and intriguing designs that resemble other earth elements like moss, trees, and plumes. Moss agate and dendritic agate are both highly prized in the agate community. These inclusions feature breathtaking designs found within these small gems.
Agate Enhancements: Dying methods are common when it comes to cut or polished agate crystals, as well. These methods further enhance the natural beauty of agate bands and patterns. Specialty-dyed agate originated in Germany and dates back to the 19th century.
Since this semi-precious gemstone comes in so many different shapes and colors, each specimen is highly unique. The worth of even a common type of agate increases when this gemstone is cut, shaped, or sliced. Because of its durability, agate can be used in a range of items like jewelry, home decor, or furniture.
The spiritual aspects of agate
No matter your spiritual background, agate’s metaphysical properties can be highly beneficial. This powerful gemstone focuses on clearing energy at both the Third Eye and Crown Chakras. Agate’s grounding and calming energy is said to bring balance to multiple aspects of our lives. This stone reminds us that life isn’t something we should hurry through. Take time to breathe and center yourself with this gemstone and experience the many benefits that agate has to offer.
Other properties of agate include:
- Clearing anxiety and blocking anxious thoughts
- Protecting your energy from negativity
- Improving communication and relationship bonds
- Soothing internalized anger or sadness
- Improving perception and analytical thought processes
Featuring complex designs and a range of colors, agate remains one of the most sought after gemstones for home décor. Put this semi-precious stone on display to invite peaceful energy into your home and experience the many other benefits of agate.
Click here for Part Two to learn how to use agate around the house and as an accessory!