At The Good Opal co. quality matters.
At the Good Opal co, we stock Crystal opal from Lightning ridge, Mintabie, Andamooka, Coober Pedy, and white cliffs and even Queensland (boulder opal free of iron stone/pipe opal), because we celebrate all Australian opal and recognise its unique qualities and differences in colour, pattern, formation; the list goes on. Crystal opals are unique to other forms of Australian Opal.
Why? Because unlike other forms of opal, in crystal opal the colour can run all the way through the entire stone including the base depending on the level of clarity there is.
The flash of colour in crystal opals is often incredibly vibrant and bright, even more so at times then Black Opal.
They have a high-purity level of Opal and when opaque (non-see-through) can also be well-known as White or Milk Opals. Compared with other Opals, they are composed of hydrated silica.
Purple colouring is the most common type of Crystal Opal. Red is the rarest crystal opal colour. Unlike other forms of Opal, Crystal Opal is formed without a base (like potch, ironstone, or sandstone). It is appreciated by many for its rarity and unique colour patterns. The most expensive variation is Black Crystal Opal from Lightning Ridge, Australia. They have some of the most amazing unique patterns and are well sought after by Opal collectors.
A little bit of history…
Fun fact: Andamooka is well known for producing brilliant crystal seam opal but has also been known to produce dark opal, matrix opal, white opal and picturesque opal known as ‘painted lady’; opal developed in joints of quartzite boulders, usually as a thin film.
Crystal Opal can also be found in the Boulder Opal fields but are rare and hard to find and only really occur when pipe Opal is found. The reason being is unlike other forms of opal, Boulder opal forms in thin veins making it incredibly hard to find deposits of opal large enough to cut that are free of iron stone.
Traditionally Crystal opals are generally cut in a standard oval shape (and we do stock ovals and oval pairs, if you’d like to order some and don’t see any in store feel free to contact us and we’ll make some for you!).
However, at the Good Opal co we are strong believers in playing with the natural formation of an opal and if the nature of the stone allows, a freeform or teardrop shape is cut because our aim is always to maximise and showcase the opals play of colour, pattern and size.
Of all gemstones, when opal was formed through cervices in the earth filling with silica rich water 100 million years ago, silica deposits were left behind. These deposits are spherical, and it is their stacking— layer upon layer—that creates gaps between the spheres.
When the light passes through the spheres and their gaps, it splits like a rainbow from a prism. The result is the stunning patterns and displays of colour we see in opal. The thing we love most about crystal opal, is that if there are nice colours in a crystal opal but they aren’t vibrant enough or the opal itself is too thin to set in jewellery, it can have a beautiful second life as a doublet or triplet. Against a dark background, the translucence of crystal opal colours stands out brightly and more beautifully, simulating the appearance and rich colour of Black opal and Boulder Opal.
Areas that Crystal Opal is mined: White cliffs, Lightning Ridge, Mintabie (now closed), Coober Pedy, Andamooka
Shop our Crystal Opal range at: https://www.goodopalco.com/product-category/opals/crystal-opals/