Historically pearls have been one of the most desired natural materials when it comes to jewelry due to their brilliant color and overall radiance. For centuries pearls have been treasured for their timeless beauty and were considered at one time to be the most valuable gem. Over time pearls have become a symbol of purity and innocence, which is why pearl jewelry today is continuing to be more popular and always “in-vogue” no matter the changes in fashion. From the famed pearl necklace to pearl earrings and more, there are many different gift ideas that can be found with pearls.
However, shopping for pearls requires some knowledge about the history of pearls, how they are formed, and the type of jewelry pearls are used for and tips on how to buy the best quality.
What are Pearls?
Pearls are formed when a grain of sand or other tiny irritant becomes wedged inside a mollusk’s shell. The mollusk responds by covering the irritant with layers of a substance called nacre. This substance will build up over time to create a pearl. Pearls can be found in freshwater and saltwater. It takes years to create a pearl of a size large enough for typical pearl jewelry and it is rare to find one that is perfectly round in the wild. For this reason pearls today are grown in pearl farms in either saltwater or freshwater conditions.
The Difference between Natural and Cultured Pearls
Natural pearls are very rare and hard to find as most of them have already been harvested. Most pearls today are cultured and grown on pearl farms for the simple reasons of high demand and that finding pearls grown by mollusk’s in the wild is rare because of over-harvesting. Cultured pearls are easier to produce in the controlled conditions of mollusk farms and are far more likely to be perfectly round.
Types of Pearls
There are many different types of pearls, which come in different shapes, sizes and colors based on a number of factors: (1) Type of mollusk; (2) Growing conditions (freshwater or saltwater); (3) Techniques Used in Harvesting.
Popular cultured pearl types are:
Akoya, Tahitian, South Sea and freshwater cultured pearls are very popular and are in high demand. They make elegant and stunning gifts and there are so many to choose from.
The Classic Pearl Necklace
There are many different ways that pearls are used in jewelry today as they make incredible gifts for those you love as well as yourself. However, the pearl necklace is arguably the one that captures the imagination.
A classic piece of pearl jewelry, the pearl necklace offers a tradition of elegance and beauty with a style that can be contemporary or traditional. For many, a necklace of pearls makes for the ultimate gift. In fact, there are several different styles of pearl necklaces available:
Of course, there are also pearl earrings, bracelets and other jewelry adorned with pearls and other gems such as diamonds. The question is how do you choose the right one for you?
How to Purchase Pearl Jewelry?
Since cultured pearls are by far the most widely available type of cultured pearl used in jewelry today, understanding the different types and how they are valued will help you decide which one is the best for you to either buy for yourself or give as a gift.
Size: The first thing to know is that the larger the pearl, the more expensive it will be because it takes longer to create. The overall size of the pearls is important both in how they appear and how much they will cost. Generally speaking, the larger pearls are used in necklaces and not so much earrings because their location becomes a distraction. The same is true for rings, as they tend to use smaller pearls, which are more aesthetically pleasing and less bulky than larger types.
Luster: This is arguably the most important aspect of a pearl when you are making your purchase. Luster refers to the intensity and sharpness of the reflections along the surface of the pearl. So, to recognize the best luster elements it is important to see the clarity of the reflection. The more mirror-like the reflection in the surface of the pearl, the better the overall luster. Such pearls do seem to glow from within when they have exceptional luster.
Similarity: Here, you will be looking for how well matched pearls are when they are united with jewelry such as necklaces or bracelets. You will be looking for strong similarities that offer a smooth, flowing appearance as opposed to having one or more of the pearls being slightly off-color, differently shaped or having an unusual finish, which can throw off the entire look of the jewelry itself.
Style: Now that you have narrowed down what you want, the final step is considering how well the pearl jewelry compliments the style of the recipient of your gift. Will the pearl earrings enhance the look and appearance of the person whom you are giving them to for example or is the type of necklace something that they will wear frequently? You’ll need to ponder these questions before you make your purchase so that you know you’ll be getting the right gift for them.
The more you know about pearls, the better you can make the right decision when it comes to purchasing the right gifts for friends, family and yourself. Pearl jewelry will never go out of style and knowing which ones will work best for you or for the person you are giving them to will help make your shopping go much easier when you are looking for the right jewelry.
Pearl Grading for Freshwater Pearls
Pearl Grading for Akoya Pearls
Pearl Grading for Tahitian Pearls
Pearl Grading for South Sea Pearls (White & Golden)
Where To Buy Your Pearls?
Cultured pearls are widely available in the marketplace however we at Gifts Ready To Go pride ourselves on offering quality cultured pearl gift sets that are beautifully packaged and offered at varying price points together with a certificate of authenticity. Our cultured pearl jewelry sets by MaVie are among the elite in the marketplace. Each piece of pearl jewelry is artfully crafted with precision and fine care while being offered in different grading and styles. We are confident that our pearl jewelry will be loved and cherished by all those who receive it. Shop today at Gifts Ready To Go for the finest selection of pearl jewelry gift sets and other gift ideas to leave a memorable impression.
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Section 10 - Personal Information
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Section 20 – Entire Agreement
Section 21 - Governing Law; Jurisdiction and Venue
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Section 22 - Changes To Terms Of Service
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Section 24 - Contact Information:
Mail: Gifts Ready To Go, LLC, 5580 La Jolla Blvd, #623, La Jolla, CA 92037