Padparadscha, the Queen of Sapphires

Let’s get the main question out of the way first, how do you even pronounce Padparadscha? Here is a clue “Pad-pa-rad-sha”.


Padparadscha is a name given to a fancy sapphire that shows a unique combination of pinkish orange to orange-pink colour and translated from Sinhalese (native language of Sri Lanka) refers to a lotus blossom. It is one of the rarest colours and is strikingly beautiful!


loose orangey pink oval Padparadscha sapphire on white background

Over the years of working with gemstones, I have seen some spectacular Padparadscha sapphires and when I came across this particular gem, I was mesmerised by its unique colour. I immediately envisioned it in a vintage inspired, rose gold setting with white claws and decided it was time for a new project!


It turned out wonderfully and I am delighted to announce that it is now available for purchase! Keep reading for more details.


loose orangey pink oval Padparadscha sapphire next to two tone rose and white gold semi mount next to tweezers and evergreen on a white satin silk bag on a white background


To learn about such a breathtaking gem, let's begin with some fun facts:


  • Padparadscha sapphires were first discovered in Sri Lanka

  • They are often compared to sunset and fire

  • They represent joy, vital energy and creativity

  • Sapphires in all colours, including Padparadscha are a part of the “corundum” family

  • They score a 9 out of 10 on the Mohs scale of hardness (the only harder material being a diamond at a 10)

  • Padparadscha is the only variety of corundum other than ruby that is given its own name

  • Padparadscha sapphires are considered among the most beautiful and valuable of the corundum gems

  • They are coloured by trace elements: iron and chromium

  • There are many fancy sapphires that differ in tone and saturation and are still sold as Padparadscha, causing some debate

  • Some describe it as “a balance of pink and orange creating a colour similar to a sunset looking west combined with the last hints of orange from the setting sun just after it settles below the horizon” Wow.


In 2018, I was thrilled to hear that Princess Eugenie’s engagement ring featured a Padparadscha sapphire, the design was similar to that of her mother’s ruby engagement ring. Although I love diamonds, I am captivated by such an amazing colour variety of gemstones. Tsarina Gems Padparadscha sapphire ring is sure to make you feel like royalty!


Here is Princess Eugenie's ring on the left and her mother's, Sarah Ferguson's on the right.


Princess Euginie Padparadscha engagement ring with a diamond halo and Sarah Ferguson's engagement ruby ring with a diamond halo comparison next to each other

Other celebrities and royals who are fans of coloured stones in their engagement rings include Victoria Beckham, Katy Perry and of course, Princess Diana and Kate Middleton.


Fancy popping a question with a pop of colour? Visit my previous blog post here to find out if a coloured gemstone ring is right for you.


Is Padparadscha really that rare?


The answer is YES!


Due to the rarity and scarcity of Padparadscha material, the majority of faceted gemstones are under 2 carat in weight. The stones are typically shaped to save as much material as possible. Often, they will be cut into elongated shapes like ovals and elongated cushions to follow the natural shape of a rough sapphire crystal.

The cut of this particular gem was graded as: Very good.


close up of loose orangey pink oval Padparadscha sapphire held with tweezers under magnification on a grey background

In terms of clarity, this Padparadscha is eye clean, meaning there are no visible inclusions to an unaided eye. With the help of a gemological loupe, I can see a tiny crystal, which proves that the stone is natural and not synthetic (lab created) or an imitation. It has been graded as: Very lightly included.


Take a look at this example of a Padparadscha rough crystal.


elongated Padparadscha rough on a dark blue grey and white background

Although some sapphires can be substituted with other gemstones in a similar colour range, there is no other gemstones that can substitute the colour of Padparadscha. For example, yellow sapphire and citrine can provide a similar look, or spinel can substitute a sapphire. The exquisite colour combination of a Padparadscha truly is rare and unique.

Sapphires of all colours are known for their durability, it is an excellent choice for a one-of-a-kind engagement ring, stunning every-day right-hand ring or a glamorous cocktail ring.


loose orangey pink oval Padparadscha sapphire next to a two tone rose and white gold diamond halo semi mount vintage inspired on a lady's hand with red nails on a white background next to an evergreen

Did you know that although diamonds are graded on their 4Cs (colour, cut, clarity, carat weight), when selecting coloured gemstones, the rules apply quite differently?


To find out more, visit my previous blog post titled:

Let’s get some clarity on gemstone inclusions


Origin


The Padparadscha selected for this project was ethically sourced from Sri Lanka, as was this stunning purple sapphire in Tsarina Gems collection.


Some consider Sri Lanka as the only source of Padparadscha sapphires. They are however, also mined in Tanzania, which is another large producer of sapphires. It is also the origin of the gorgeous green sapphire featured in this Tsarina Gems ring.



Please welcome, Queen Padparadscha!

I am pleased to announce that this spectacular ring featuring an extraordinary Padparadscha sapphire is now ready and available for purchase. The oval cut centre stone from Sri Lanka measures 7x5mm and weighs 1.02ct. It is set in a vintage inspired, 14K rose gold setting with white gold claws and is surrounded by fourteen perfectly matched round brilliant cut natural diamonds.


Please contact Tsarina Gems for further information and pricing.


oval orangey pink Padparadscha sapphire vintage inspired diamond halo ring two tone rose gold and white gold on a white background by Tsarina Gems

When shopping for a Padparadscha sapphire, be sure to work with a reputable company as many pink, orange or peach sapphires on the market are falsely sold under the Padparadscha name without proper paperwork.


For your peace of mind and proof of authenticity, our stunning Padparadscha Sapphire Ring comes with a complementary, third party appraisal.



The setting


When it comes to choosing the design, it is important to consider all angles.


I love the gallery on this ring, in this case it is the part in white gold. It looks gorgeous from all sides, especially when wearing it. The rose gold complements the orangey-pink colour of the centre stone, however I chose a more neutral, white gold to actually hold the stones creating a two-tone look.


oval orangey pink Padparadscha sapphire vintage inspired diamond halo ring two tone rose gold and white gold on a white background by Tsarina Gems close up of gallery and basket side profile view showing intricate detail

When it comes to jewellery designs, do you prefer vintage, modern or something in between? Read my previous blog titled Which Jewellery Era are you from to find out!


Would you like to be a part of the gemstone selection process?

Tsarina Gems provides a guided, one-on-one experience which leads you every step of the way through your gemstone and style selection. If you are interested in seeing a selection of loose gemstones before they are set into jewellery of your choice, contact us today!


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Shopping for holiday gifts for yourself or loved ones?

Visit our previous blog post on 5 Easy Holiday Gift Ideas.