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Pearl Strand Comparison

oceanblue

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
25
Purchased three strands from PP to see the difference and take advantage of the buy more save more. Pictures taken with an iPhone.

Inside, dim lighting:

IMG_1624.jpg

bathroom, canned lighting

IMG_1626.jpg

outside bright TX sun

IMG_1628.jpg

Do you want to guess which is which? Hanadama, AAA Akoya and Freshwater......

The difference of the three is very subtle, color in bright light being the biggest difference. Knowing nothing my husband liked the FW the best. Honestly the differences are so subtle I think I will stick with the FW. I have tried to justify keeping the expensive strand but I just can not do, the certificate is fun and interesting but the cost and actual differences are to slight. Plus I find them dressy and would not wear them often. What would you do?
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,760
I definitely agree with you. If you're happy with the freshwaters and won't wear them that often anyway, the lower price seems like the best option for you.

My guess: The one on the right is freshwater. I can't tell between the other two. "Hanadama" is a certification that costs money so hanadama akoyas cost more. But it doesn't necessarily mean the AAA strand is not also hanadama quality.
 

Snowdrop13

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Messages
2,289
I’m guessing the right hand strand is FW as some of them look slightly off round and the middle is the Hanadama as it has the sharpest lustre? I agree, if you’re not going to wear them much then the FW would be best.
 

dk168

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
Messages
8,068
I'll have a go, CFWP on the right, AAA Akoya on the left, and Hanadama in the middle.

I am a big fan of CFWPs, and have gem grade ones that I am very happy with, and cannot justify spending that much on Madamas, except perhaps a strand of natural blue ones.

DK :))
 

Crazie4Cuts

Shiny_Rock
Premium
Joined
Oct 9, 2014
Messages
486
@dk168 I vote the same! The middle one I also thought is the Hanadamas! So let us know after more folks chime in!

-C4C
 

MakingTheGrade

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
11,728
I'll have a go, CFWP on the right, AAA Akoya on the left, and Hanadama in the middle.

I am a big fan of CFWPs, and have gem grade ones that I am very happy with, and cannot justify spending that much on Madamas, except perhaps a strand of natural blue ones.

DK :))

That’s my guess as well. Though partly influenced by my association of pinked akoyas with handama akoyas.
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,573
Because i know jack s#it i i thought the middle ones were the FW -

....but then they were also the ones i liked the most ....

But when i looked closer i saw that the one on the right had less reflection than the other two
 

oceanblue

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
25
Good Job! Yes the middle strand is the Hanadama, I think the pinking/processing gave it away. I am no expert but it seemed like the pink coloring also gave it a more pronounced soap bubble effect. The luster is essentially the same on all three.

(left was the AAA akoyas and right the FW).

I have a couple more strands coming tomorrow so will add another set of comparisons. At this point I think there might be a good bit of marketing going on in the world of top grade pearls, I just was just not blown away by a big difference in grading......though who knows I may change my mind depending on what the mail brings in tomorrow!

Thank you all for the replies!
 

yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,445
there might be a good bit of marketing going on in the world of top grade pearls, I just was just not blown away by a big difference in grading......

The most phenomenal freshwaters available can't hold a candle to gem quality akoya. Phenomenal akoya are... special to behold... Unfortunately, most strands pre-certified as Hanadama are two or three rungs lower on the ladder than true "gem" akoya.
https://www.pricescope.com/communit...d-gem-quality.256212/#lg=post-4723582&slide=0
https://www.pricescope.com/community/threads/akoya-pearl-terminology-and-quality.261590/
 
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oceanblue

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
25
Thank you for the links I had fun reading them as my new strands did not arrive today.

It would be fun to work as a temporary pearl sorter in Japan and high grade my own strand. Maybe some day.......
 

stracci2000

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 26, 2007
Messages
4,947
All three are marvelous.
I really can't decide which one I like best!
I will gladly accept the two strands you reject! :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

seaurchin

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 2, 2012
Messages
1,760
For those who are new to pearls:

The freshwaters tend to be a bit warmer tinted than akoyas and can have a bit of off-round shape because there's usually no spherical bead inside as there is with akoyas.

But there is definitely overlap in all of it. For ex., some freshwater pearls are now grown with a bead inside. Some akoyas can be warmer tinted like typical freshwaters and some freshwaters more white-white. Some freshwater pearls, especially "metallics," can have better luster than some akoyas. Etc.

And as I mentioned earlier, "hanadama" is a certification that pearls have to be sent to an appropriate lab to be considered for, which costs money. In other words, a strand can definitely be as nice or nicer than a hanadama strand and not be certified as hanadama, with the savings from not having it certified as hanadama possibly passed on to the customer. So just because one strand is "hanadama" and another is not, that doesn't automatically mean the hanadama strand is better quality than the other one.

The akoya strand in the middle has more "pinking" than the akoya strand on the left. That is not natural to the pearl but comes from a process done to the pearls after they're harvested. As far as I know, that does not figure into the grade. (Someone please correct me if that's not correct).

And then there's not a standard grading system for pearls like there is for diamonds. Each pearl vendor can use their own grading system and decide which pearls earn which grade. So it's hard to compare strands across different vendors.

Finally, there's an awful lot of dishonesty going on about pearls. On ebay and at touristy seaside locations, for example, cheaper freshwater pearls being misrepresented as more costly saltwater pearls (whether South sea or akoya) is rampant.

If I was new to pearls, I'd be sure to go to a trusted vendor, such as one of the ones listed on this site as such.
 
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yssie

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 14, 2009
Messages
21,445
Thank you for the links I had fun reading them as my new strands did not arrive today.

It would be fun to work as a temporary pearl sorter in Japan and high grade my own strand. Maybe some day.......

Responding to your post in another thread - true gem quality akoya are hard to come by here in the US (outside of Mikimoto AAA)!! Main reason being - whilst east Asian markets are happy to pay a premium for excellence in pearls, we Americans traditionally haven’t had sufficient appetite for them for any vendor to stock them.

The vendor from whom I bought all my gem akoya has a programme to send a couple of sample pearls out to look at - just to get an idea of what gem akoya are all about without going all in on full cost of an actual piece. I’m not sure what the specifics are - definitely contact him directly for details! His insta - https://instagram.com/molinepearls?igshid=g4btyrcrfkte
 
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oceanblue

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jun 14, 2020
Messages
25
Here are all the necklaces from both vendors (PP and the pearl source).

A mixture of hanadama, AAA akoya and freshwater.

I did end up keeping one of the strands of the smaller pearls..........I watched a documentary and one of the ladies that they featured was wearing a strand of pearls under her button down shirt and it looked very subtle, polished and pretty.

I looked through a loupe to compare flaws and got bored. The PP may have had less flaws but the pinking, to me, sort of a covers up issues.

Also ordered three pairs of hanadama earrings. They all went back. I could not tell a difference between the pair I already own and the hanadama.

Both companies had fast shipping and easy free returns. Would recommend them to anyone who wants to buy pearls.

IMG_1637.jpg IMG_1639.jpg
 

Daisys and Diamonds

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 30, 2019
Messages
8,573
I would say no, I don't think one color looked better than another. They do change colors in different light. I have light skin that tans easily and wear both yellow and white gold.
I think the smaller sizes looked better on me.

I have personally always like smaller pearls





But now after PS i realize that there is a pearl equivalent to diamond shrinkage :lol:
 
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