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How I Found My Ruckus Pearls

Discussion in 'Pearls' started by Fly Girl, Aug 2, 2014.

  1. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    When Jeremy invited me to the ruckus in April, I immediately accepted and cashed in my frequent flyer miles for a ticket to LA. As the event got closer I got more nervous about sharing a mansion with two dozen people I had never met. So I booked a room in a nearby hotel and I rented a car for the weekend. Jeremy encouraged me to stay at the mansion and even scoped it out and found me a fairly private room there. At the last minute I cancelled the hotel, but I kept my already paid for rental car.

    A local thunderstorm delayed my flight on Friday morning by an hour, and by the time I got to LAX, picked up my rental car (which was upgraded to a Volvo, awesome!), and drove to Pearl Paradise it was time for a late lunch. I arrived as bsomlo was pouring over her bag of pearls which had been collected for her to look at by the good folks at PP. Two stunning strands of multicolor Tahitian rounds with fantastic overtones caught my eye immediately. A Tahitian rope was on my wish list, so I told her if she decided not to get those, I’d be seriously interested. Bsomlo had them weighed and decided they would be too heavy for her. SCORE! As many of you on this forum know, snagging bsomlo’s castoffs is a very good pearling strategy. Ruckus lesson #1. Stay close to bsomlo.

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  2. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    The van out to the mansion arrived, so the two strands I loved were put into a baggie with my name on them and returned to the PP vault. We would be returning to PP on Sunday afternoon to make our final decisions. I hopped into my rental car and hit the infamous LA freeway at rush hour. It was about an hour drive out to the mansion and I figured with a professional driver, the van would surely beat me there. Imagine my surprise when I arrived going north at the driveway to the mansion, just as the van pulled up to the driveway going south. The van driver politely waved for me to go first, but I figured he had more people than I. He pulled up to the door of the mansion and I parked my Volvo next to the gate to the rear of the house.

    As others have mentioned, each room in the mansion was labelled with a pearl type and our name. Mine was Conch pearl and I had the spa. My spa room had the disadvantage of no outside ventilation, but it did have its own toilet, shower, sink and sauna. Also, a large massage table on which to lay out my wardrobe of pearls. I was told that I was a Conch, because I was independent and liked to stand alone. Like the Conch pearl which has never been cultured. I laughed and said I need to get one of those pearls.

    I went to bed early Friday night, so I missed the late night rush to dig into Mikeyy’s suitcase. I had a budget in mind, and the pearls I was most interested in were some brilliant Sea of Cortez pearls. I also wanted to pick out some additional Kamoka earrings in person. With the two strands of Tahitians back at PP, there wasn’t much left for me to raid Mikeyy’s suitcase. But it was lots of fun looking and giving advice to others.

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  3. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Saturday morning I awoke at 5:40 am when the caterer rang the doorbell with food for our 6 am breakfast. I got coffee and sat out on the patio overlooking the Pacific. I love picnics, and I ate most of my meals outdoors on the patio. I was chatting with others on the patio after breakfast when 4Ranch Girl came rushing out to show us the largest Sea of Cortez pearl I have ever seen. Yes, she had just bought it from Douglas. Yes, he was out front selling pearls in the driveway. I rushed through the house to discover Douglas with a suitcase of pearls open on the fender of the Ferrari surrounded by women oohing and aahing over pearls. This was my first meeting with Kay who had just arrived from San Diego and was clutching a plump and juicy-colorful SoC pearl. I assessed the situation and figured that she wasn’t letting go of that pearl anytime soon, so I looked at what remained on the car and claimed two colorful roundish SoC pearls. They glowed with a brilliant rainbow of colors even through their tiny baggies. I got the price from Douglas and said I would purchase them, and they went into a third baggie with my name on it and put into Douglas’ shirt pocket. SCORE! Ruckus lesson #2. Stay close to 4Ranch Girl and make up your mind quickly.

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  4. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    It was time for the Saturday morning seminars. What a treat! I enjoyed them all. Hisano’s designs were a huge hit. I loved the little H white South Sea keshi on the web site, and I loved them even more in person. I spoke to Hisano and she suggested that I pick out my own keshi pearls for earrings the next day at PP. SCORE! Ruckus lesson #3. Yes, little H and her designs are both completely awesome.

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  5. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Saturday afternoon the pearl vendors got busy in earnest. Sarah on the dining room table, Josh on the grand piano, Mikeyy on the patio and Douglas parked himself and his mabes in the middle of the living room on the tiny table that had been used for the morning seminars.

    This was a great chance to compare Sarah’s ripple strands in person. My hand went to the brightest, more colorful one that fit my coloring best. Yep, just my luck. It was the $18,000 Japanese Kasumi strand, rather than one of the $800 Chinese look-alikes. After that, I decided not to get a ripple necklace. I will hold out for the best, or it will be none at all. However, I did discover why my Japanese Kasumi bracelet that I had purchased just a few weeks ago during a Kojima sale was so special. My eyes popped when I realized that the pearls in my bracelet, which I was wearing at the time, were much larger than the ones for sale on the table/web site. Sarah confirmed that she had upgraded my pearls. Now that I know better what I have, I want to thank Sarah once again.

    I headed over to the Kamoka stock. I picked out a pair of Kamoka studs from Josh, some 8 mm blue green ones. Love them. I decided to scoop up a ring with awesome purple overtones. I was undecided about a second pair of earrings, but I did buy them the next day when we were all at the PP offices. I even lusted after a third pair, but decided to stop for the time being. SCORE! Ruckus lesson #4. Buy what you love when they are right there in front of you.

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  6. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Then, it was to Douglas’ table in the middle of the room where he had spread out his colorful mabe pearls. NacreLover was making her decision and it was a treat to see a pearling connoisseur at work. She loved a large pearl that had the illusion of water in it. We selected her mabe pearls and I went to work looking over the pearls. I picked out a large mabe and two smaller ones. I’m planning to have the three put together into a necklace, or perhaps a necklace and a pair of earrings. Later that evening Sheri told me that with the right design, I could have both. I love convertible jewelry, so I am intrigued by her suggestion. SCORE! Ruckus lesson #5. Stay close to NacreLover, pick the pearl experts' brains and learn.

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  7. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    At this point I had completed the pearl selections that I had on my mental list when I arrived. In addition to those I have already shown, I found that I loved Pattye's carved Kamoka pendant. So, when I spotted a carved Kamoka Tahitian bracelet on Josh's tray I asked about it. He told me it was part of a carved Tahitian line that they had made up but which was discontinued. I liked the carving and decided to purchase the bracelet. When I got home I gave it to my DH. Ruckus lesson #6. Buy what you love and share with those you love.

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  8. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Saturday night was the cocktail party and more sharing and wearing of our personal pearl collections. One of my favorite memories is of bsomlo wearing her metallic double strand mixed color Chinese freshwater necklace from Pearls of Joy. The piece is incredibly beautiful in person. I have been saying on this forum that I don't look good in peachy pink Chinese freshwater pearl colors. So, I hold up bsomlo's incredibly beautiful necklace to my throat, and she cocks her head to the side, wrinkles up her face and mouth, and says, you're right, those don't look good on you. I burst out laughing. :lol:

    https://www.pricescope.com/forum/pearls-new/poj-double-metallic-with-mismatched-earrings-t204144.html

    Later on the patio, I told this story, and some of the long time pearl experts told me not to worry about Chinese freshwaters and assured me that I rocked those Kamokas. :mrgreen: Ruckus lesson #7. This is the place to confirm what works for you and what doesn't.

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  9. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Sunday morning the van arrived at about 9:30 am to take the ruckus attendees to Pearl Paradise to visit the vault. I put my bags into my rental Volvo and headed out onto the Pacific Coast Highway. It was a beautiful sunny Sunday and I enjoyed the ocean drive. In spite of my slow drive on the way up to Pearl Paradise, I beat the van by about 45 minutes. I looked over the Tahitian strands and ropes that were ready for the August Tahitian sale coming up, hoping to find a baroque strand just as beautiful as the mixed rounds waiting for me. I took strand after strand outside (thank you John (the elder) from PP, for being so patient and holding up the mirror for me), but nothing was calling to me. :confused: The van arrives and shortly thereafter comes 4Ranch Girl and NacreLover. I get their opinions. Yes, the mixed round is by far the best. Thank you, both. :cool:

    I speak to Hisano about my desire to make a detachable bracelet from the rope, and she cuts apart the two strands. She sets me up in the vault under their best pearl sorting light, and I go to work. For the next few hours I sort my pearls by color, size and work to get an attractive arrangement. I figure since I will be looking at my bracelet far more than the pearls around my neck, I picked the brightest and more colorful overtones for my bracelet pearls. Many thanks to those who gave their encouragement and advice.

    At this point I'm planning to use two Equestrian Clasps in 14kt yellow gold in the arrangement. Those are on order. I'm still working with Hisano on the final design. I'll let you all know how it proceeds. Ruckus lesson #8. Enjoy the journey. :appl:

    Thanks for coming along as I found my ruckus pearls. I loved meeting those of you who came and your amazing pearls. Most of all I thank Jeremy, Hisano and the amazing staff at Pearl Paradise. I hope the rest of you can make it next time and bring along your pearls and your stories. :wavey:

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  10. Fly Girl
    Ideal_Rock

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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Here is a photo of the Tahitian strands before being cut apart for sorting. I'm also adding some pictures of my ruckus purchases that I brought home with me. I already owned the silvery SoC earrings, and in fact, I took them along to the ruckus. The night the new SoC strands were sitting under the photo light, I pulled out my earrings and laid them under the light. Now I could see the brilliant SoC overtones, but they are difficult to make out in normal lighting. This is one reason I was looking for more brightly colored SoC pearls.

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  11. HHPmom
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    by HHPmom » Aug 2, 2014
    Haha, now I figure out your handle name on Pearl-guide.com because of your pictures. It was nice meeting you. I confirmed your pricescope handle when we were at the ruckus but didn't know your PG handle name. It was a hoot reading your write-up and lessons. No wonder you picked out those round Tahitian strands so fast. I didn't know they were saved from Friday. Chuckle.

    I was looking at those Kamoka pendants very closely and have to admit they are a lot more beautiful than the pics on the website. I had bought some pendants from Mark Kane in Honolulu this past May (posted on PG). If I didn't I would have bought a few Kamoka pendants at the ruckus.

    Can't wait to see how you will set those mabes. I have no clue how to set them and that was the reason I didn't consider. I love your large mabe and round Tahitian strand + bracelet. They are exquisite, especially the mabes. Enjoy!

    PS: You ROCK those Tahitians!!!
     
  12. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    Thank you, HHPmom. Yes, at this event, we are definitely known by our pearls. :D I was waiting for you and your SoC with the big blue to make an appearance. :cheeky: Thanks for coming and wearing your beauties. It was so nice to meet and share stories.

    The Kamokas are pretty nice in person, aren't they? Seeing an entire piano and table full of Kamokas and Sea of Cortez is worth the journey right there.

    I have two excellent local jewelry designers that I have worked with in the past and I'm sure one of them will come up with a stunning design for the mabes. I'm always amazed at how their brains work and the ideas they come up with. It may be a few months before I get to this project because the jewelry budget is tapped out a bit right now. But, I'll be sure to post photos when they are set. :))
     
  13. 4Ranch Girl
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    by 4Ranch Girl » Aug 2, 2014
    FlyGirl :wavey: it was so much fun meeting you and being able to see all of your pearls in person. I am glad you had fun. All of the pearls you selected are the best of the best and just perfect for you. I can't wait to see what pearls you wear next year :mrgreen:
     
  14. thecat
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by thecat » Aug 3, 2014
    Thanks for sharing your story. It allows those of who couldn't attend to share in the excitement. Love all your purchases, especially the Tahitian strands and SoC mabe. Can't wait to see your SoC mabe pendant and earrings!
     
  15. bsomlo
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    by bsomlo » Aug 3, 2014
    Fly Girl -- thank you for a top notch read! I really enjoyed your account! I am so glad you were right there to scoop up those beautiful Round Tahitians. They will be in an adoring home.

    I do NOT remember being that harsh regarding my reaction to you holding up peachy pearls, and I totally didn't remember that it was my necklace!!! Your collection is exceptional and you choose your pearls very well in terms of both quality and how they compliment your coloring. You came with beauties and left with yet more. And next year you will attend the Ruckus without trepidation!

    I'll come back and reread this thread whenever I feel like reliving the Ruckus!
     
  16. iLander
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    by iLander » Aug 3, 2014
    Hi FlyGirl! :wavey:

    I loved reading this, I felt like I was there! Very nice, thank you!

    You are so gutsy to drive in a strange area like that, I could never do it.

    The pearls you picked up are lovely, and I fully expect even more pics soon. Really stunning pieces, and I'd like to see the tahitian strand when it's all done. :mrgreen:

    We want to see them all in separate threads with 5-8 pics each, in various lighting, with neck shots, and ear shots (even if they aren't earrings) :mrgreen:

    How many people total were there? Not counting vendors?

    And where are the shots of PS members getting completely drunk and falling of their stools? :mrgreen:
     
  17. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Thank you, bsomlo. After meeting you and your madamas on Friday afternoon, I thought if nothing else happens, the trip was already a success. And, things just kept getting better after that.

    It was Saturday night in the kitchen, you took the necklace off and it was passed around between several people. I keep thinking it was a 3-strand multi, so perhaps it wasn't your 2-strander. Or, maybe your 2-strander is so gorgeous it gets larger in my memory. :cheeky: You softened it by adding that the necklace still looked like a nice necklace on me, because, of course, it is simply gorgeous. I only put that into my account because it was the first time that someone else said what I had discovered for myself, and I really, really appreciated hearing it. It was an important part of my trip. It was totally not a harsh comment on your part. :wavey:

    Everyone at the ruckus was very kind. When NacerLover told me the next day that the mixed round Tahitians were the better pearls, she was careful to ask me first if I wanted her to speak frankly. When you are spending big bucks on pearls, of course you want to hear the truth. ;)

    I do enjoy driving, but I bet you all had some wonderful conversations during that van ride! :mrgreen:
     
  18. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Thank you, iLander! I wanted to share my experiences because everyone has a slightly different account. I left out the parts that have been covered elsewhere, especially those amazing presentations.

    I've driven the German autobahn, downtown Manhattan, Washington DC, and now I've added the LA rush hour to my list. I also fly small airplanes, and I have no fear of getting lost. I might be temporarily unsure of my present position, but I am never lost. I experiment looking for new shortcuts regularly. I take advantage of people who always keep to the same route, no matter how crowded. While they are sitting in traffic, I'm sailing along some side street. :mrgreen: It was very perceptive of Jeremy and Hisano to name me Conch pearl. :P

    Jeremy told me that the mansion had sleeping space for 28, and there were 24 staying at the mansion, with several sleeping under the stars. That's the closest I can get for you as far as count.

    What :!: :?: I don't think that anyone has mentioned the Scotch tasting on Saturday night?? :lol: Actually, there were a number of nondrinkers there, and yours truly went to bed early, so sorry, I never saw anyone falling down drunk.

    I love sharing photos of my jewelry pieces, especially if they come out well. Please be patient. The budget is bare just now, and I am paying for a family wedding coming up...which reminds me, I need to get pearls for my soon to be DIL. :roll:
     
  19. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Thank you, 4Ranch Girl. It was truly a pleasure to meet my muse and my personal pearl selector in person. I had great fun, and by Sunday afternoon, I was feeling completely drained. The entire weekend was such a natural high.

    Thank you, thecat. I go for color, and not subtle shades, so my pearls tend to photograph well, compared to those equally beautiful, but perhaps more subtle, shades of pearls. I gotta say, though, the luster on some of the naturals and whites were stunning.
     
  20. iLander
    Ideal_Rock

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    by iLander » Aug 3, 2014
    This line needs to be printed on a T-shirt, it is so funny. :D :D :D
     
  21. Kay
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    by Kay » Aug 3, 2014
    Fly Girl, I enjoyed reading your account, and it was wonderful to get to meet you (and your pearls) in person. I remember your magnificent Kamoka strand and how well it went with the outfit you were wearing Saturday morning. It was very funny meeting people while conducting “pearl deals” on the hood of a Tesla. It seemed almost illicit. I bought my first Ruckus pearls of the weekend before I even walked in the front door with my luggage. My first Ruckus lesson, from 4RG, was “if you see something you like, don’t let it out of your hand.” I held onto that big SoC for dear life.

    You made some great purchases. I love the colorful SoC rounds and mabes you chose and look forward to seeing how you set them. The additions to your Kamoka collection are lovely, especially that ring. Your mixed Tahitian strand should be magnificent when it is finished! The design of the little h earrings you selected is so cool – I think I will need a pair eventually. What size are the SS pearls you chose for them?

    I had the same experience with Sarah’s ripples. The $18,000 Japanese Kasumi strand was the one I immediately reached for. I really liked the purple coloring in some of the Chinese strands, but they just weren’t the same, so I decided to hold off for now on ripples. I may go for a Kasumi pendant, since an entire strand is way out of budget for me.

    I love the souvenir you took home to hubby – way better than an LA T-shirt!

    See you next year! :wavey:
     
  22. movie zombie
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    by movie zombie » Aug 3, 2014

    I agree!


    great writing, Fly Girl!
     
  23. NacreLover
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    by NacreLover » Aug 3, 2014

    Those strands were Bsomlo's cast offs? When we drove up and saw you in the alley with John holding the mirror and hhpmom standing next to you holding strands for you to hold on your neck, I thought she selected them for you. Those strands were totally the best you could have chosen. They were perfect in everyway.
     
  24. michellechan2211
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    by michellechan2211 » Aug 3, 2014
    Thanks for your account of the ruckus, that was an awesome read! <3
     
  25. bsomlo
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    by bsomlo » Aug 3, 2014
    NacreLover -- Those were two beautiful strands of round multi-colored Tahitians that I thought would make a gorgeous Tahitian rope. I asked Hisano to weigh them and they were over 5 oz -- which is heavier than the grand torsade which was too heavy for my neck. Fly Girl was right there and I said she should take a look at them because they are gorgeous. I could have chosen one strand as a regular necklace, but the two together were just beautiful and Fly Girl agreed and worked on arranging the pearls to her liking. I'm glad I'll get to see them on her next year!
     
  26. bsomlo
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    by bsomlo » Aug 3, 2014
    I think I know why you are calling the POJ double metallic a triple.

    I believe the peachy thing happened Friday night, because I only wore my hanadama strand Saturday night.

    I have a triple multicolor from HK that DH bought me years ago with a lot of peach:



    And I have a double metallic multicolor from POJ that I had under the lightbox on Friday night:



    I think I handed them to 4RanchGirl when I tried on her lovely custom piece made by Hisano that she wore Friday night so that necklace may have been passed around and ended up against your neck? But you have a good memory for pearls so you may have been remembering pictures of the triple multicolor in other threads -- plus I had it out Saturday afternoon in the breakfast nook...

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  27. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    That works. I forgot you owned that HK triple strand. It was probably the HK peachy triple near the breakfast nook on Saturday afternoon that was being passed around. It is still a beautiful necklace that looks a whole lot better on you than me. :doh: :mrgreen:

    Thanks for the clarification. :wavey:
     
  28. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Thanks iLander and MZ! Getting lost is a state of mind. You know which country you are in, don't you? You know which state you are in, don't you? Which side of the river? Which city? The last highway you were on, what direction you are going, and for about how long? You actually have a very good idea of where you are.

    I remember when I first got my pilot's certificate, I was out flying solo in Minnesota. I wanted to land at Brainerd, but as I was in the landing pattern, I looked down and thought, gee, there are a lot of army green jeeps and tanks parked at Brainerd. :doh: I looked under the fold of my aviation chart and yep, it was Camp Ripley. I was outta there pretty quick. :angel:
     
  29. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Thanks, Kay. It was great meeting you at the ruckus. I'm looking forward to seeing pictures of your SoC drop. You are right. If you had set it down, it would not have remained on the car for you to pick up again. :mrgreen: Love the drop shape! :love:

    I spoke with Hisano about making earrings out of her larger SS keshi, which is why I'm holding the pendant up to my ear in the photo. So, back at PP on Sunday she gave me her entire bag of larger SS keshi to look through. The two I picked were larger than the regular earrings at the ruckus but smaller than her pendant. They are a good match colorwise. I think they are small enough to be set in the earring findings. We held up the pendant finding and it covered nearly half the pearl. I am waiting for larger ear wires to be ordered. The little h web site says the earring pearls are 6-7mm pearls and the pendant pearls are 8-9mm. I'm guessing mine are between 7 and 8 mm.

    Best of luck to you this coming year with that wonderful power necklace you have. It was a real treat to see it in person. :wavey:
     
  30. Fly Girl
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    by Fly Girl » Aug 3, 2014
    Yes, as Bsomlo explains, those Tahtians were originally in the baggie of PearlParadise goodies collected by staff for her to look through. This is exactly why I flew in early enough to get to PP on Friday afternoon. I wasn't sure what would be waiting there, but I was pretty sure I had a better chance of seeing beautiful pearls by being at PP, than if I wasn't at PP. :) Thank you for your help in picking them out. It is great fun reading these accounts, and filling in the gaps. :))

    You are welcome, michellechan2211. I'm glad you enjoyed it. :wavey:
     

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