This is a comprehensive guide to identifying, buying, using and caring for a wide array of jewels and gems. It covers the origins of gemstones and how to assess the quality, rarity, grade and cut of precious and semi-precious stones. There are clear illustrations and colour photographs to help you identify the different types of gemstone available and demonstrate how they can be used in a vast variety of designs and settings. A chapter on pearls is also included. Cuts and facets, settings - both old and new, designing your own settings, appraising, buying and handling gemstones as well as how to spot synthetics and fakes are also covered. The result is a complete guide to all you need to know about gemstones.