Iridescent Opals Take the Spotlight in These Jewelry Designs [SLIDESHOW]

The exquisitely enigmatic gem shows its range in new designs…

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At once mysterious and mesmerizing, the opal—whose name is thought to originate from the Greek term opallios, which means “color changing”—has entranced us for centuries and is still thought by many to have protective cosmological powers. Each opal—whether it is culled from Australia, Mexico, Peru, or Ethiopia—has an extraordinary range of iridescent tones and hues, making it dynamic material for such top jewelry designers as K. Brunini, Erica Courtney, and others who highlight the gem’s unique light-catching structure in distinctive settings.