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A Guide to October’s Birthstone

22 October 2021
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Discover the perfect jewellery for anyone born this month with our guide to October's birthstone

For years, each month of the calendar year has been given its own birthstone that represents the special properties of each month. Over time, their meaning has changed with new stones being added to reflect the change in trends to better represent modern jewellery. 


Birthstones mean different things to different people and offer beautiful alternatives to more widely recognised gemstones like diamonds, rubies or sapphires. 


Although each month comes with its own birthstone, today we’re focussing on both the traditional and more modern stones for October. We’ll be looking at the history of them, examining how they fit in with other months and recommending some of our favourite items to buy this October.


How Were Birthstones Selected?

Many historians believe that birthstones can be traced back as far as biblical times. In the bible itself, Moses sets out a series of instructions that detail the production of clothing for Aaron, the high priest of the Hebrews. While doing this he specifically instructs the breastplate to contain twelve precious gemstones to represent the twelve tribes of Israel.


Although it is unclear exactly when it happened, at some point these twelve stones became associated with zodiac signs and eventually the lunar calendar. 


In the millennia since Moses first reportedly included these twelve stones within Aaron’s clothing there have been a great many myths and legends associated with their origins. For example, many cultures believe them to contain mythical healing powers or to bring good luck to all who wear them.


Another interesting point about the history of birthstones is that not all cultures can agree on them. This means that over time, the months that they are associated with have changed with a certain unclarity remaining over exactly which stone represents each zodiac sign.




October’s Birthstones - Opal & Pink Tourmaline

For those born in October, they have historically had the option of choosing between two birthstones. Opal is the traditional stone and comes in an array of colours with each individual one featuring a unique pattern and colouring. While beautiful, Opal is one of the most fragile birthstones and requires special care when wearing - many believe this is one of the main reasons for October featuring two birthstone options.



Why Does October Have Two Birthstones?

In 1952, the National Association of Jewellers created a list of accepted birthstones for each month. In the years since, this original list has been changed and tweaked countless times to reflect modern trends. 


In the case of October, there were questions raised about opal’s durability with some even claiming it was ‘too feminine’. This is when the association added pink tourmaline to the list, leading to October’s link with pink gemstone jewellery in general.



What do October’s Birthstones Mean?

The original October birthstone, Opal, originates from India and can be traced back through ancient Rome. Thanks to its shifting colours, Opals quickly became highly valuable with many being made into early jewellery items. 


The name itself comes from Latin ‘opalus’ and Sanskrit ‘upala’, both of which mean ‘precious stone’.


The modern October stone, Tourmaline, gets its name from Sinhalese. The word ‘toramalli’ means ‘stone with mixed colours’ - suitable as tourmaline often has multiple colours within one crystal. There are few precious stones that include as many colours as Tourmaline, perhaps this is why they gained a reputation for inspiring artistic ideas.



What Colour is October Birthstone?

Both opal and tourmaline have distinct colourings and features that set them apart from other stones. Although both come in an array of colours, it is pink hues in particular that have become synonymous with the month.


So much so, that other pink jewellery has increasingly been used to represent the month, such as luxurious pink sapphires.














Our Favourite October Jewellery

Pink jewellery has a glamorous appeal all year round but when bought and worn in October, carries a deeper meaning. Here are some of our favourite pink pieces for October babies to try:


Pear Shaped Pink Sapphire & Diamond Earrings 

These beautiful earrings encapsulate the classy sophistication that comes with subtle pink hues. The inclusion of diamonds means these earrings will complement a range of seasonal outfits.


Pink Sapphire Diamond Eternity Ring

If you’re looking to show your commitment to a partner born in October, our pink sapphire diamond eternity ring could be a perfect choice. 


Oval Pink Sapphire & Diamond Shoulder Set Engagement Ring

If you’re looking to pop the question in October, or proposing to someone born at this time of year, then a pink sapphire engagement ring is an excellent choice.