A to Z 2022, Blog

F Is For Feldspar – #atozchallenge

F is for Feldspar

Feldspar is a group of rock-forming silicate minerals that make up 60% of the the terrestrial rocks on the earth’s surface.

Feldspar is a critical component in most of the products we use in our daily lives –  drinking glasses, floor tile, fiberglass insulation, shower basins, and our tableware. In commercial applications, feldspar is used as a fluxing agent in commercial class and ceramics production and as a filler in plastics, paints adhesives, etc.

Gemstones derived from feldspar include moonstone, sunstone, labradorite, amazonite, and adventurine. All have a hardness on the Mohs scale of 6.5. Both sunstone and adventurine display a Schiller effect meaning they seem to twinkle. Many feldspar gemstones are also iridescent or have an adventuresence effect, which looks like glitter inside the stone. Labradorite displays labradorescence which is well defined and demonstrated in the video that follows.

In my experience, labradorite is one of the most popular minerals I use in my jewelry. People love the color changing effect from yellow to blue to green and seem to have an almost mystical draw to the stone itself. In metaphysical studies, labradorite is considered a powerful protector, especially of health, to those who wear it.

Here are some samples of jewelry I have made with labradorite.

Jewelry with labradorite stones
Sterling silver pendants with labradorite

Moonstone is the most prized feldspar gemstone. The stones have a lovely blue iridescence called adularescence. The Smithsonian has a beautiful 107 carat Tanzanian moonstone on display. You can see it here.

There is no known toxicity when cutting or grinding feldspar, but with all lapidary work – wear a respirator!