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The story of pearls

The pearl is the oldest known gem and for centuries has been considered the most sought after. To the ancients, a pearl was known as the symbol of the moon due to its resemblance to that celestial body. Pearls over time have become a symbol of love, purity, beauty, and innocence. One of the most famous pearls, La Peregrina, (“The Incomparable”) about the size of a pigeon egg, was famed for its beauty. Philip II of Spain, Mary Tudor, Napoleon III and Elizabeth Taylor have all been held under its spell.

Unlike other gems formed in nature, the pearl is beautifully shaped and cannot be improved by man. Since the 1900’s, pearls have been cultured thanks to Japanese innovation, making them accessible not only to royalty and the very famous but all that seek their lustrous beauty

In the abundant pristine and unpolluted waters of Eastern China most freshwater pearls are born. The natural process of pearl formation starts when a foreign object such as a parasite or a piece of sand accidentally enters the soft tissue of a mollusc, and can not be expelled. To protect itself, the mollusc secretes a crystalline surface called “nacre” around the intruder. As long as the irritant is present, the mollusc will continue to secrete layer upon layer of nacre until a lustrous pearl is born.

The nacre found in cultured pearls is formed in a similar manner. The only difference is that the irritant is a surgically implanted piece of body tissue from another mollusc. Thus cultured freshwater pearls are composed entirely of nacre, a miracle that takes years to perform.

The virtues of pearls like other precious gems, are judged on five aspects, mainly lustre, surface, color, shape and size.

 


Our pearls

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Our commitment to quality

Our freshwater pearls are gems born in the watershed of the Yangtze River. An average of 40 distinctive sensuous pearls will emerge from the shell Hyriopsis. In their natural colors of white and hues of pink, and various shapes from baroque to spherical, each pearl is selected to make an exquisite piece of jewellery. From the tending of the nets that hold pearl-producing shells to the harvesting of the freshwater gems to the creation of unique luxurious jewellery pieces, only a human hand will passionately attend to the pearls.

All our freshwater pearl jewellery is nature made and knotted on silk (unless otherwise noted) by an artistic hand. Each jewellery item is thus original and cannot be reproduced exactly. Exquisite jewellery and a stunning investment to help animals. 365 days a year.


Imitation or real?

Some of the enchanting beauty of pearls come from their uniqueness: no two pearls are alike. Nature rarely replicates its creations; pearls are seldom perfect and identical. In other words, if a strand of pearls present with no imperfections it is likely an imitation. To further investigate:

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  • Tooth test: although not sanitary, lightly rub pearls against the biting edge of your upper teeth. Real pearls will feel gritty and sandy whereas imitation pearls are likely to feel smooth.

  • Flaw test: if pearls appear flawless, they may be an imitation. Pearls are rarely perfect, hence their unique beauty.

  • Heaviness test: bounce the pearls in the cup of your hand. Unless the imitations pearls have solid glass beads, imitation pearls feel lighter than cultured pearls.

  • Matching test: look at the virtues of pearls described above. Imitations are often perfectly matched.


Caring for pearls

Protect your unique lustrous pearls:

  •  Put them on after hairsprays, perfumes and makeup have been applied.

  •  Bathing and showering with pearls is not recommended as both may weaken the silk thread and weaken glue if used.

  •  Keep them in a soft cloth pouch to preserve their fragile surface.

  •  Strands should be strung with individual knots between each pearl. This helps to prevent pearls rubbing against one another. Additionally, should the silk break, only one or two pearls will fall loose.