Find your diamond
Find your jewelry
shape
carat
color
clarity

The perfect pearl wardrobe?

eloisegirl

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 20, 2011
Messages
72
What do you consider a basic pearl wardrobe, sort of a top three must-haves? For me, I have always loved a graduated strand, dangle earrings and a bracelet, in white with silver/pink tones. My niece is turning eighteen and I would like to start her down the pearl road. What do you recommend? I was thinking of the Tiffany studs, just because it's fun to get a blue box. Any tips on how to choose for a young lady appreciated!
 

portoar

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 16, 2005
Messages
646
My daughters each got a freshwater pearl pendant for their 16th birthday. Older daughter got a pale pink teardrop with hand made 18k white gold setting from Richard W. Wise a few years ago. Younger daughter just received a round freshwater metallic pearl pendant set in white gold from Pearl Paradise last month . . . not sure I could describe the color.

Older daughter's 18th birthday is coming up, and soon I'll be asking Pearl Paradise to look out for a perfect pair of pale pink freshwater pearls to make up into earrings to go with the pendant.

I chose freshwater pearls for many reasons:

1) I like the fact that they are tissue-nucleated instead of bead nucleated. I don't know the exact gem terms to describe the effect, but the depth of the luster is quite different than bead nucleated akoya pearls, which only have a few millimeters of actual nacre (although admittedly they are quite beautiful).

2) In the size I wanted, they are much more affordable. I wanted to get a substantial size that would work well as a casual necklace or something they could wear on the job (when they get jobs), and that would still be age appropriate as they grow older.

3) They are natural and untreated, whereas the akoyas are usually treated (afaik).

4) Even though I wanted something that will still be appropriate when they are older, I think of freshwater pearls as being a great choice for a young person.

Both of my girls love and treasure their pearl pendants. I've been so impressed by the quality from Pearl Paradise that I'm giving my mother in law a color-shifting freshwater pearl pendant (lavender and gold) for Christmas, and I'm having one made up for my husband to give to me (hehe).

I agree the blue Tiffany box is fun, but it's so hard to know what you're getting if you go by the website. They just call them "cultured," and don't say what type of pearl you're getting or what size it is. If you can go to a Tiffany's store and look them over in person, and if you love the blue box, they will undoubtedly be very very pretty.
 

portoar

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 16, 2005
Messages
646
Actually, if you wanted to go the Akoya route, price compare Tiffany Akoya pearls with Pearl Paradise and Mikimoto. I have a nice pair of Mikimoto Akoyas that I never wear.
 

PearlsOfJoy

Rough_Rock
Trade
Joined
Apr 26, 2011
Messages
88
The three essentials IMO are:

16 or 18" white pearl strand (akoya or freshwater)
White pearl studs around 7-8mm(akoya or freshwater)
single pearl pendant(Tahitian or South Sea pearl)
 

Black Jade

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 21, 2008
Messages
1,242
I love the classic white strand for me (in my case, ivory), plus pearl studs and a pendant, but if your niece is 18 she may be more fashion forward (I'm in my 50's). I'd think of getting her a strand with some color--there are lovely colors of freshwaters out there peach/pink or lavender come to mind. What color does she wear a lot? Can you get something complementary?
 

Begonia

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 2, 2011
Messages
2,067
Portoar: All fwp are treated in some way (very rare to find ones that aren't, and PP's are as well). Not just akoyas. Just don't want you not knowing that...
 

eloisegirl

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 20, 2011
Messages
72
I spoke with dear niece and she was quite excited about Tiffany studs, when I told her the options. She's at that age where a name like Tiffany FWP earrings means more than AAA+ Akoyas.
 

eloisegirl

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 20, 2011
Messages
72
Purchased 8-9 mm Tiffany FWP studs today, the post is 14k white gold, the butterfly is sterling. They did not have the 9-10s but I thought that might be a little large for her petite frame. Once I had selected from the display, the saleslady opened fresh ones for me to purchase, but when taken from their package, they looked very ivory. I said, I'd like to buy the display pair, as they were very white with silvery rose tones. The Ivory looked like a completely different pearl. I had brought my loupe along and had a close look - the pair for my niece are very lustrous and smooth and round - all the good things you would expect from the name and the price. Another customer was looking at the 7-8 mm akoya strand with the X clasp, and it was priced at 8500. Yowza! But stunning!

I asked if they had a soft cloth for the pearls. I was given a silver polishing cloth, and when she saw the look on my face she explained they do not have special pearl cloths, but be sure to use something very soft. I was very tempted to say, It's okay, I'll use the one I got from Pearl Paradise! She did admire my PP pearls and I explained I had bought them online... and then I gave her the website. Yes, I am a devil. :)
 

eloisegirl

Rough_Rock
Joined
Sep 20, 2011
Messages
72
Just following up - niece loved the pearls.

Last November I bought her a strand of black freshwater pearls from PP's Black Friday sale which she also loved. She obviously inherited auntie's pearl proclivities! They were 5-6mm so a cute youthful strand for a lovely young neck.

I've also given PP earrings, simple shepherd's hook FW ones, to a dear friend who was really amazed at the quality. They were almost a glowing beige peach lavender, if you can imagine such a colour, in a flawless oval shape. They are now her favourite earrings that go with everything. You never go wrong with pearls, that's for sure.
 

icy_jade

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 1, 2009
Messages
3,447
eloisegirl said:
What do you consider a basic pearl wardrobe, sort of a top three must-haves? For me, I have always loved a graduated strand, dangle earrings and a bracelet, in white with silver/pink tones. My niece is turning eighteen and I would like to start her down the pearl road. What do you recommend? I was thinking of the Tiffany studs, just because it's fun to get a blue box. Any tips on how to choose for a young lady appreciated!
Mm. For a young lady perhaps a small dangle or stud earrings. So I think you made a great choice! Your niece is so lucky to have an aunt like you!
 
Be a part of the community It's free, join today!
    Good Customer Service Goes a Long Way
    Good Customer Service Goes a Long Way
    5.5 Carat Diamond Upgrade
    5.5 Carat Diamond Upgrade
    Style File: Julia Roberts
    Style File: Julia Roberts

Need Something Special?

Get a quote from multiple trusted and vetted jewelers.

Holloway Cut Advisor



Diamond Eye Candy

Click to view full-size image.
Top