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question(s) about pearl farming and decisions about selling

whitehotblank

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2010
Messages
122
So I just watched this 1998 NOVA special on Youtube (link, if anyone is interested - it's definitely for the layperson/public but does have some nice pearl-p*rn scenes in it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdCYywE9ynM).

After having watched this and having been intrigued by the scenes of the Sotheby's auction and especially of the incomplete strand Nick Paspaley was shown working on (using the choice pearls from 3+ years harvests) I have all sorts of questions about them. Would Paspaley (and other farms) be using their top pearls from each harvest automatically in a strand? And if so, why? Are strands the best way to make a profit? It seems logical that an exceptional pearl might fetch the best price sold as a single, but again, I know very little about the industry. Who buys directly from the farms? Jewelers? Individuals? I'm intrigued by how it is decided who gets what and for how much. I recently purchased a few Sea of Cortez loose pearls from PP and that also had me wondering - overall, where did the pearls I bought rank in that years harvest? What happened to the top pearls? Would someone like Jeremy from PP get a first look based on a relationship with the farm or is it 100% about the profit to be made? Would the farm itself automatically take the choice pearls to make single item of jewelry?

Does anyone with no chance of affording a strand of perfect, large SS pearls have a shot at a single perfect, large SS pearl or, again, are these reserved for uses in strands/for sale only to certain parties etc.?

Can anyone shed some light on these questions? I'm intrigued. And jonesing for a trip to Australia just so I can lay eyes on some of those beautiful babies. Loved Nick Paspaley's comment that there is something otherworldy about SS pearls - he said "like the moon" and I've thought to myself before that there did seem to be something 'lunar' about them.

Sorry for kind of rambly post.
 

iLander

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2010
Messages
6,731
Re: question(s) about pearl farming and decisions about sell

Well, I was going to point you to the amazing 17mm pearl from Jose (upper right corner), but apparently it's sold. There's a 13mm if that helps. He gets stuff all the time, so it's good to ask. He wholesales to jewelers, so he's a good "back door" to the good stuff you're talking about.
http://www.tahitianpearls.biz/white_south_sea_pearl_pendants.htm

I think the point of putting together a magnificent strand is that it is a labor of love. It would be a quick profit to sell just pendants, but I think it's about the challenge of it. I was talking to Jose about a strand he put together for a customer, and it took several months, it was a strand of tahitian "specials", all had exceptional color (bright blues, deep pinks, etc). It ended up costing a bundle, but it was impressive. Then he told me the customer is so conscious of the cost that she hardly ever wears it! :o

So sometimes spending mega bucks isn't the way to go. I prefer medium bucks ;-) and the peace of mind that lets me wear it everywhere. I was thinking of doing something like this; http://www.tahitianpearls.biz/tahitian-pearl-necklace/multicolor_tahitian_pearls_on_omega_necklace_tnpd.htm Adding to it over time, whenever a fancy color comes in, and eventually having a fancy strand of my own.

I have no idea if I answered your question, :twirl: I think I just rambled too. I'm pretty sure we both had fun though. :bigsmile:
 

whitehotblank

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2010
Messages
122
Re: question(s) about pearl farming and decisions about sell

iLander, that necklace you have linked to is the one I sent out to various people asking if something along those lines (i.e. brightly coloured pearls as you mentioned - esp. the bright aqua blue one) could be made for me, too, possibly over time. Those aqua Tahitians make my heart pound.

Thanks for the response, too. I am looking for some exceptional singles for myself but I was also just wondering about protocol with pearl farmers and sellers. Does an exceptional pearl(s) immediately get sold as a single or go to a strand or what? That sort of thing...!
 
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