Various types of agate gemstones have been valued throughout history, all the way back to the Neolithic Era. It is believed these stones were originally used as amulets of healing, and this tradition continued on through Ancient Greek and Egyptian civilizations. It's said the Greek philosopher Theophrastus gave agate its name because he found the stone in the Achates River of present day Sicily, Italy. (The River has since been renamed to the Dirillo River.)
Agate is a birthstone associated with the months of May, June and even September, depending on the culture. Agate as a general gemstone is also connected to the Zodiac signs Gemini and Capricorn.
Blue Lace Agate Metaphysical Properties
With its soft blue color, it's no surprise blue lace agate is said to be a soothing stone. The circular, graceful banding is stimulating, but still exudes a calm energy. Blue lace agate is said to be a stone of communication, making it easier for people to become confident and articulate. For this reason, it's considered a good idea to wear jewelry with blue lace agate or carry a stone in your pocket when required to speak in public. As a bonus, blue lace agate is sometimes referred to as the Stone of the Diplomat, helping ensure your words are not angry and your meaning is clear. Since agate has a slower vibration frequency than most stones, it is valued as a stabilizing gemstone.
Blue Lace Agate Geological Properties
Blue lace agate is a type of variegated chalcedony, more specifically a variety of quartz. This type of agate is most notably recognized by its predominantly light blue banded layers that have also been known to include bright blue, white and brown hues. Agates typically form as nodules or geodes in igneous rocks. When an empty pocket or hole inside a porous rock fills layer by layer and the molecules begin to crystallize, bands of agate form. The color and banding patterns vary depending on pressure, temperature and the mineral content. The unique colors of various agates are sometimes enhanced through dyeing techniques. The art of agate dyeing was perfected in Idar-Oberstein, Germany, one of the most well-known areas for cutting and dyeing agates since the early 16th century.
Blue lace agate was discovered in Namibia, originally South West Africa. Small amounts have also been found in Brazil, China, India and various places in the United States. Agates in general are found alongside multiple other rocks and minerals, including amethyst.
Microcrystalline quartz, chalcedony group
Black, usually dyed these days
6-1/2 to 7 (Mohs)
2.58 - 2.64
1.530 - 1.539
Proper Care of Blue Lace Agate
Agates tend to be hardy stones, making it a cinch to clean these gems. The best method is to rinse agates in warm soapy water and use a soft brush to remove any extra dust or debris. Due to the soft color, some people assume blue lace agate is less hardy than other agates, but don't let the color fool you. It's still not the best idea to use harsh cleaners though, especially if your agate has been enhanced through any dyeing techniques.
To learn more about blue lace agate and other gemstones, order your copy of Walter Schumann's revised and expanded edition of Gemstones of the World.
Designing with Blue Lace Agate
The soft hue of blue lace agate pairs exceptionally well with other pastel-colored gemstones. Looking at the bands of color, pair your blue lace agate with the tones of the bands to draw increased attention to the swirling pattern. For a complementary color pairing, blue lace agate provides a great base to draw attention to orange/red gemstones such as carnelian, sunstone, amber and other forms of agate or banded jaspers. Learn more about color pairings with our interactive color wheel. Blue lace agate looks especially beautiful when used with sterling silver or similarly light-colored metal materials.
**Please note that all metaphysical or healing properties listed are collected from various sources. This information is offered as a service and not meant to treat medical conditions. Fire Mountain Gems and Beads® does not guarantee the validity of any of these statements.
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