Agate, Blue Lace
Be consciously kind to yourself and others.
Express your thoughts and feelings accurately.
Feel nurtured, understood, and truly loved.
Know that you are “enough” just as you are.
Let Blue Lace Agate inspire you to speak lovingly.
Mineralogy of Blue Lace Agate
Mineral Family: Tectosilicates
Chemical Composition: SiO2
Color: Pale blue banded with white or darker blue lines
Crystal System: Hexagonal/Trigonal
Luminescence: Green (long wave) / Yellowish-white (short wave), may vary with bands
Location: Agates are found all over the world, but Blue Lace Agate comes only from Namibia and South Africa, with a small additional deposit located in Romania.
Mineral Family: Blue Lace Agate is a rare type of Agate and a Silicate mineral. Silicate minerals form the largest family of minerals, including more than 25% of all known minerals and 40% of all common minerals. In addition to being a major part of the Earth’s crust, Silicate minerals have also been found on the moon and in meteorites. Silicates are minerals which contain the elements Silicon (a light gray shiny metal) and Oxygen (a colorless gas). Together, these two elements form a tetrahedron – a shape similar to a pyramid – with a Silicon atom in the center and Oxygen atoms at each of the four corners. These tetrahedra connect with other chemical structures, in six different ways, to form various minerals and rocks. There are six main groups of Silicate minerals, and these main groups are further subdivided into secondary subdivisions, such as Quartz and Feldspar. Quartz is a large mineral family in its own right, and has two main subdivisions, macrocrystalline (crystals that are large enough to be seen by the naked eye, for example, Amethyst) and microcrystalline (crystals so small they can only be seen through a microscope, for example, Carnelian). All microcrystalline Quartz fall under the subcategory of Chalcedony, which is then further subdivided. One of these categories is Agate. Blue Lace Agate is a relatively rare type of Agate with blue and white stripes that have a distinctive wave, similar to lace.
Formation: Blue Lace Agate is created when liquid magma from a volcanic explosion cools down and transforms into igneous rock. During this cooling down period, silica acid bubbles shift from being a gas/liquid into a solid compound. The bubble becomes a hollow space in the igneous rock and the silica acid becomes Quartz crystals. Agates are formed when thin sheets of Quartz are layered with other minerals, creating a wide variety of colors and patterns.
Mining: Agates are the primary product of mines located around the world. Typically Agates are found in their primary deposits and still have their original relationship with the host rock. Agates are usually ball or almond-shaped nodules ranging in size from a fraction of an inch to several yards in diameter. If the Agate fills the entire hollow space left by the gas bubble, it is called an Agate Almond. If a hollow remains in the center, it is called an Agate Geode.
Enhancements: Agates are porous and have been dyed bright colors since the Roman Era. As a general rule, the more vivid the coloring, the more likely that it has been dyed. This is particularly true if the color is vivid while the price is cheap! With most Agates there will be “hard” spots that are bright white which won’t take dye, while other areas are “soft” and take dye easily. Currently most of the dyed Agates come from Brazil. They are naturally a pale grey and white stone, but are dyed vivid colors like hot pink, deep purple or bright blue. By contrast, Blue Lace Agate has a soft blue color and is fully natural, enhanced only by tumbling, cutting and polishing.
Synonyms: Blue Chalcedony Lace, “Gem of Ecology”
History of Blue Lace Agate
Blue Lace Agate is a relatively “new” healing stone whose properties have only recently begun to be explored. As a result, it was not included in early lapidaries, texts which describe gemstones and their powers. However, Agates as a larger family group have a very old and well documented history.
Archaeological evidence amply shows that Agates have been treasured since the very earliest times. Agates have been found in many Stone Age graves and appear to have been kept either for their beauty or perhaps for their energetic power. Early lapidaries, dating as far back as 3000 BCE, referenced seals, rings, beads, and other ornaments which were carved out of Agate. The Sumerians were the first to describe the power of stones and state that wearing Agate gave a person special favor with the gods. The name “Agate” was first used by the Greek writer Theophrastus (372-287 BCE) who suggested that all Agates came from a Sicilian River then called the Achates River, and today known as the Dirillo River. (Agates are still found along this river today.) There are many different kinds of agates including Apricot Agate, Botswana Agate, Crazy Lace Agate, Fire Agate, Moss Agate, Onyx, Sardonyx and Tree Agate. The most famous of all Agates is bright orange Carnelian.
While native Africans may have known about Blue Lace Agate for centuries, its modern “discovery” is credited to Willy Preiss. Preiss was a prospector and lapidary who lived in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia. In the 1960s, he made a prospecting trip and discovered a narrow seam of blue and white agate. Unfortunately for Preiss, the seam was located approximately 600 km away from his lapidary shop, making it difficult for him to mine. In 1969, George Swanson staked a property, Ysterputs Farm, near the Blue Lace Agate seam and Willy Preiss offered to give him the mine if he would bring 50 tons of agates to Windhoek. The deal was struck and George Swanson took control of the seam.
Swanson called Blue Lace Agate, the “Gem of Ecology” because he thought the swirling lacy patterns of blue and white resembled clouds as seen from space (this was, after all, the era of the US-Soviet “Space Race”). Today, it is more commonly known as Blue Lace Agate. While a few other deposits have been found, most notably in South Africa, the most exquisite Blue Lace Agate still comes from the same narrow seam on Ysterputs Farm.
Photos: George Swanson
Healing Properties of Blue Lace Agate
Spiritual: Blue Lace Agate teaches us that words create reality and so we should strive to use words that are kind and wise. It is a stone of peace, encouraging us to be tactful and to see both sides of every problem. Blue Lace Agate helps us to communicate with the angelic realms and our own spirit guides. It is a wonderful stone for helping us to calm and center our thoughts, making it an excellent tool during meditation and prayer. Blue Lace Agate inspires us to live with remarkable grace and serenity. It is also an excellent tool for yogis and reiki practitioners. It is attuned to the Throat Chakra and linked to the astrological signs of Gemini, Libra and Pisces. It is connected to the Elements of Wind and Water and vibrates to the number 5 and 7.
Emotional: Blue Lace Agate is an incredibly soothing and nurturing stone, with an energy reminiscent of a loving and wise mother or grandmother. It dissolves negative feelings, especially anger and despair caused by feeling judged, repressed or rejected. Blue Lace Agate gently encourages us to let go of of old patterns and baggage and to be true to ourselves. Blue Lace Agate reminds us that we are love-able as we currently are and that who we are is “enough.” This is a particularly good stone for anyone working through parent-child relationship issues or wanting to be more emotionally expressive. Blue Lace Agate is especially helpful for men who are learning to accept and express their emotions. Blue Lace Agate is also very helpful for anyone who is exploring emotional issues related to loyalty, trust, and anything which is a “secret” between two people or a small group.
Mental: Blue Lace Agate is a wonderful communication stone, helping us find the right words to express ourselves. Equally important, it encourages us to truly listen and hear what others are telling us. Blue Lace Agate can also be used to examine our own inner dialogues, helping us to think more positively and become more mentally kind to ourselves. It teaches us that when we communicate accurately and lovingly, we are moving along a pathway which leads to peace of mind. Blue Lace Agate helps us release mental stress and to neutralize feelings like anger or fear which can cloud the mind. Blue Lace Agate helps us to clearly see what is true and what is false, and to respond accordingly.
Physical: Blue Lace Agate is most commonly used by metaphysical healers to treat the eyes and throat, as well as problems associated with the brain, pancreas, shoulders/neck, thyroid, lymphatic systems, nervous system and skeletal system. In particular, it is believed to be one of the very best stones to use when treating sore and inflamed throats, and is also used for treating arthritis and fevers. It is said to help soothe hyperactive personalities and has been used as a sleep aid for insomnia and nightmares. It is also frequently used by metaphysical healers in sound healing for focusing and directing sound to the appropriate place. Blue Lace Agate is a stone for flight and movement, making it an excellent talisman for dancers and athletes.
Always use wisdom when considering crystal therapies for healing.
Ethically Sourced Blue Lace Agate
The Miners sell directly to the Lapidary.
The Lapidary sells directly to Moonrise Crystals.
Moonrise Crystals sells directly to you.
The Supply Chain
The Supply Chain is clean and short.
The Mine and the Lapidary are located in the same country.
This Blue Lace Agate comes from a small mine in South Africa.
The mine most likely caused only minor environmental damage,
and would have been relatively low risk for miners.
Learn More: Ethical Mining
This Blue Lace Agate was polished in Cape Town, South Africa.
The Lapidary is a family-owned business, founded by father and passed on to his sons.
Factory workers have safe conditions and are paid fairly.
The Lapidary is also the direct-importer & sells primarily at large gem shows.
Learn More: Ethical Lapidary
I have been doing business with this source since the earliest days in my business. They are a major tumbling company and have more varieties, in more sizes, than any other known source. The owners visit many small and industrial-size mines personally. For artisanal-mined deposits in sub-Sahara Africa, the owners work with Gem Dealers who deal directly with the part-time miners. The majority of these Gem Dealers are women.
Some, but not all, of their stones are labeled with country-of-origin. For those that aren’t, I have to ask the owners personally. They tend to get impatient with questions. As I’ve learned more about mining practices in individual countries, I have become increasingly selective about what I will purchase from them. However, they remain my preferred source for most of sub-Sahara Africa.
Blue Lace Agate Tumbled Stone
Color: Blue stripes. This is a 100% natural stone, so minor variations are part of their unique beauty.
Size: 1 inch, or a little bit bigger
Weight: 1 oz
Shipping: Next business day – Domestic First Class averages 3-7 days. International First Class averages 2-3 weeks.
Safe Handling of Blue Lace Agate
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