Color of the Caribbean – The Blissful Beauty of Larimar Beads

Larimar beads, also known as “Stefilia’s Stone,” the “dolphin stone,” and the “Atlantis stone,” are a beautiful addition to any collection of cardinal element stones. Cardinal element stones are created due to wind, fire, earth, and water. They are only found in the Dominican Republic, located in the Caribbean.

This rare gemstone could be found as easily as seashells on the beach by ancient collectors, but that is no longer the case. The blue pectolite, a more scientific way of saying “Larimar,” is found in situ—in its original rock formations which are due to volcanic action.

Although pectolite is abundant, larimar (blue pectolite) is not. When being formed, cobalt replaces calcium in larimar to create a gorgeous blue color. Gemologists, jewelers, and crafters are fascinated by the nature of this intriguingly ocean-colored stone.

In 2017, Larimar beads are at the top of the list of popular sea-colored stones for jewelry making. Their reflection of the sea and sky are a reminder of relaxation and peace for those who wear jewelry with Larimar as the focal point or as the beads that tie the look together. Caribbean natives and people around the world love this blissful beauty for all it represents.

Larimar from Dominican Republic

Color


The Larimar stone was named after Larissa, the daughter of the mine developer who discovered its volcanic source in the 1970s and “mar,” which is the Spanish word for sea. This speaks to its sea-colored tint that ranges from a very pale blue to a deeper, volcanic blue color.

The colors of the bead are significant to Dominican natives for their more spiritual purposes. They believe the stone truly does have healing powers that sooth and calm. Some of these stones may also have green spots or a greenish tint. Larimar beads containing less white, with a deeper and richer blue are considered more valuable to jewelry makers. Larimar beads are coded; the highest quality is volcanic blue and the lowest grade is white.
A strand of polished larimar beads. Larimar is a rare stone found only in the Dominican Republic

Shape and Cut and Style


Because the stone is relatively new to jewelry making throughout the world, it is still used in its raw form as a pendant on many occasions. Others polish the gem in cabochons for a sleeker appeal. As smaller beads, it is seen in round and square polished shapes that are typically paired with sterling silver accents. Larimar is also produced in chips, which gives a more exotic and native look when creating a piece of jewelry. Gold and copper are also used with this oceanic stone, but sterling silver is becoming a popular accent.

Jewelry Making and Uses for Larimar Beads


This heavenly beauty has been used as a healing or tranquility stone for years. Because it is thought to contain more energy in its more natural form, makeshift pendants use raw materials so the gem can be worn closely to the skin. However, it is increasing in its popularity for more refined jewelry and crafts.

It can be used as a beautiful summer bead for bookmarks, key chains, or beaded wall art. The variant shades of the Larimar create a pretty, complementary piece. Different shades can be used to make a symmetrical pattern on a key chain or necklace. The semi-precious gemstone beads can be purchased in bulk where the shades are similar if you are not interested in mixing tints.

Tutorials are available that share the necessary tools for creating a gorgeous Larimar bracelet or necklace. Sterling silver wire, being the most complementary metal for Larimar, can be found in most craft stores and some local chain stores. Also, flat nose and needle nose pliers are a terrific addition to anyone’s craft-making collection. Ring beads, a large trigger, and divider beads (also in complementary sterling silver) give you all you need to fashion your own professional-looking piece of jewelry. Even though sterling silver is rising in popularity, leather is a fun and inexpensive material for making summer anklets, bracelets, or keychains.

Bead making accessories

Larimar beads are also a fantastic addition to your group summer crafting projects. Buying them in pre-made strands or in bulk will have everyone in awe at your upcoming event. Whether you’re coordinating a fundraiser or just a friendly get-together, jewelry making is the perfect attraction for those who plan to attend. Set up stations with jewelry-making tools and a selection of beads. Consider printing out instructions for each person attending to create their own unique piece. This is a perfect craft for any kind of tropical or summer theme.