Seen as the ultimate symbol of wealth and status by the Ancient Romans, pearls are one of the oldest gems in the world. As Coco Chanel once said, “A woman needs ropes and ropes of pearls.” From classic to free form baroque styles, pearls are here to stay and have an enduring appeal.
Creation of Pearls
Pearls are created from living creatures, known as mollusks and can either be marine oysters or freshwater mussels. They cleverly produce special layers of a substance called nacre to coat any irritant that finds its way through its shell and over time this produces a pearl.
Natural and Cultured Pearls
There are Cultured and Natural pearls. Natural pearls are formed from wild oysters living in the sea but are now very rare and very expensive. The majority of pearls sold on the market today are cultured, which is a method of pearl farming with human intervention. Inspired by Kokichi Mikimoto from Japan more than a century ago, it enabled a whole new audience to discover the joy of owning these lustrous beauties.
A variety of pearls on offer
Pearls are ‘one of a kind’ and can be cultured by in both freshwater and saltwater. In terms of value, pearls are ultimately judged by their shape, size, colour, lustre, surface quality and thickness.
Freshwater pearls are seen as less valuable than seawater pearls because they can be cultivated in greater volumes. They are found in the freshwater lakes of China and are produced in a variety of shapes and colours from pink and peach to lavender and white.
Akoya pearls are viewed as the classic white pearl, perfectly round in shape, with Japan producing the most beautiful, known as ‘Hanadama’, which in Japanese means ‘Flower pearls’.
Tahitian pearls are famous for their dark charcoal grey colour with beautiful overtones of peacock, green, silver, blue-green and more. They are found in the saltwater lagoons of French Polynesia. Perfectly rounded, Tahitian pearls are valuable and rare.
Cortez Pearls are found in the Sea of Cortez in Guyamas, Mexico and feature intense colours such as blue-green, pistachio, copper and aubergine.
South Sea Pearls are often known as ‘Queen of Pearls’ and are the largest and most valuable cultured pearl. They are farmed along the north coast of Australia for their white pearls and found in the Philippine Islands for their golden pearls.
Pearls are often seen as daughter of the moon or associated with the planet of Venus, Goddess of Love, who comes from the sea. Traditionally, the Chinese believe golden pearls bring prosperity and good luck, whilst some say that pearls originated as raindrops swallowed by oysters.
It is said that if pearls are given in love and with a good heart, then pearls symbolise purity and fertility. In western cultures, white is associated with innocence and purity, therefore white pearls are popular as gifts for brides, as well as being the gem associated with 3rd and 30th wedding anniversaries. The layers of nacre in pearls are believed to symbolise your marriage and the love that has grown over time. Why not pair with an eternity ring of your choice.
Pearl Jewellery – choose your look
Pearls pair well with any metal colour. Whether you prefer the cool sophisticated tones from white gold or the warmth of yellow gold, the choice is yours. Why not try rose gold which always gives a warm and feminine look. Pair with silver jewellery for a modern vibe. And did we mention that diamonds are always a stunning match? They can be worn with any style. If you prefer the boho chic look during the day and want to look elegant in the evening, pearls are your best friend.
An alternative offering: Mother of Pearl
As we said, there are many occasions for purchasing pearl jewellery, but what is the alternative for men? Mother of Pearl is the inner shell from where our shimmering pearl is born and is also produced from nacre. It’s a gorgeous alternative for both men and women and is often used in watch dials to produce a unique luxury look. You will be able to find iridescent Mother of Pearl in watch brands such as Olivia Burton, Bering, Bulova, Michel Herbelin, Rotary and Accurist. Why not enjoy browsing through our current selection at David Christopher. You will be spoilt for choice!
Said to attract prosperity and good luck, it is also seen as protective and calming. No wonder, Mother-of Pearl is seen as an excellent gift for giving.
Whatever you choose, good taste never goes out of fashion – spoil someone you love today with a special gift from David Christopher.
Image courtesy of freepik