Sometimes referred to as “Royal Lavulite” or “Royal Azel”, Sugilite appears in a small range of colours from a stunning light lavender through to a rich purple. It is opaque with a waxy lustre and its appearance always reminds me of the small round violet sweets I was given as a child. The gem received its name from a Dr Ken-ichi Sugi, a Japanese scientist who first documented the gemstone in the 1940’s.
Sugilite occasionally features red, brown or yellow spots, when these are present the gem is often called Wild Horse Sugilite. Similar to the process used to stabilise Turquoise, the gem is often treated to make it more suitable for setting in jewellery.
Some crystal healers believe that Sugilite helps in strengthening the heart, as well as reducing levels of stress, whilst others suggest that it balances your mind, body and spirit. I was recently told that a friend’s mother uses Sugilite to stop her from developing a negative outlook on life and for over four years she has been more at ease and better equipped to deal with the troubles she watches on the evening news.
In addition to its discovery in Japan, the gem has also been discovered in Quebec, Canada, Tuscany, Italy and New South Wales, Australia. The largest discovery to date has been in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa.