I am currently lusting after spinels - any color, shape or size will do! Spinel has a high refractive index (similar to diamond) that gives it exceptional brightness and is found in a wide range of colors from red to purple to blue and black. Colorless spinel is a diamond simulant and red spinel has a long history of being mistaken for ruby (the 170 carat red stone known as the "Black Prince's Ruby" in the Imperial State Crown of England is in fact a spinel!). My favorite characteristic of spinel is its unique metallic quality. I think I need to get this book for my coffee table until I get my hands on the stones themselves....
Red spinel, gold and ceramic ring by Taffin. Available through Simon Teakle http://simonteakle.com/spinel-gold-and-ceramic-ring/; Platinum, orange spinel and diamond earrings. Sold at auction by Sotheby's on April 14, 2011 http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2011/magnificent-jewels-n08732/lot.94.html; Spinel, sapphire, white gold and copper ring by Hemmerle (2009) http://www.hemmerle.com/creations/rings/
Multi-colored spinel and diamond ear clips by JAR. Sold through FD Gallery http://www.fd-inspired.com/21st_century_masters_a_pair_of_multi-colored_spinel_and_single-cut_diamond_ear_clips_by_jar.html;18k gold, violet spinel and diamond earrings by Hamilton Jewelers http://www.hamiltonjewelers.com/products/18k-Gold-Violet-Spinel-and-Diamond-Earrings.html; "Herkimer" earclips in black spinel, diamond and gold by Verdura http://www.verdura.com/store/earclips/gemstone-1/products/herkimer-earclips-blackspinel