Labradorite & Spectrolite

LabradoriteLabradorite is a mineral whose beauty is not fully realized and may even be completely  missed if not viewed from the proper angle. Most Labradorite is a dull, dark grey to black looking mineral with no special attraction until the colorful shiller-effect is observed glowing on the surface.

Labradorite can produce a stunning array of light refraction across multiple cleavage planes and sections called labradorescence. The usually intense colors range from blues and violets through greens, golds, yellows and oranges. Some rare specimens display all these colors simultaneously. Generally speaking, the more colors in a specimen the more valuable it is.

The color display is from lamellar intergrowths inside the crystal. These intergrowths result from compatible chemistries at high temperatures becoming incompatible at lower temperatures and thus a separating and layering of these two phases occurs. The resulting color effect is caused by a ray of light entering a layer and being refracted back and forth by deeper layers.

This refracted ray is slowed by the extra travel through the layers and mixes with other rays to produce a light ray coming out that has a different wavelength than when it went in. The wavelength could correspond to the wavelength of a particular color, such as blue, green or yellow.

The amount of the effect depends on the thickness and orientation of the layers. If the layers are too thick or too thin no color shiller-effect is seen. If it is not viewed from the correct angle or if light is not supplied from the correct angle then no color shiller-effect is seen. Labradorescence is a one of a kind display and must be seen to be appreciated

Spectrolite was first found in Finland and for years small specimens for cabbing have been available. Spectrolite has much more intense colors and patterns than most labradorite.

In 2010 another single find of Spectrolite occurred in the town of Ampanihy, south of Madagascar. This rare Madagascar Spectrolite has an extremely intense spectrum of colors, patterns and stone structure but was found in much larger specimens making these an exceptional find... and here we are in the apex of another exciting find!

We have seen these limited pockets found, mined and played out many times. We try to find the "Best of the Best" for our customers! Thesehave become a rare and a limited time offering.