What Makes Freshwater Pearls So Special
Freshwater Pearls are the most common of produced pearls. The variety of shapes and colours combined with their attractive prices and charm, have made them a favourite amongst both designers and shoppers.
Freshwater pearls come from molluscs that mature in non-saline water from lakes and waterways as opposed to saltwater from the sea. A single earl mollusc is capable of producing up to 50 pearls but most farmers set current production limits to 24 to 32 pieces.
🦪Freshwater Pearl Colour
The most sought after pearls are white pearls throwing pink overtones as they hit the light tend to be the most sought after but colour is really a very personal choice. The easiest pearls to colour are freshwater as their nacre is not so dense.
🦪Freshwater Pearl Shapes
Although pearls are quintessentially perfectly spherical in shape, only about 5% of all pearls are perfectly round. Freshwater Pearls come in a variety of shapes, including near round, button, keshi, mabe, semi-baroque and baroque.
Only about 5 % of pearls are perfectly spherical in shape and while these are very sought after, there are those who prefer the beauty of irregularly shaped pearls. Most freshwater pearls are oval or near round in shape, while about 30% are baroque or semi-baroque.
Perfectly round freshwater pearls can be quite rare due to the nucleation process employed by freshwater pearl farmers. As freshwater pearls are not bead nucleated, they are more likely to form in irregular shapes.
🦪Freshwater Pearl Sizes
Freshwater pearls have the widest size range of all pearl varieties, and typically range from 2.0 mm to about 25.0 mm. Sizes over 10.0 mm are much rarer and these larger sizes are very sought after.
The growth period for freshwater pearls varies from farm to farm, which is why you can find freshwater pearls in a wide range of sizes.
🦪Freshwater Pearl Lustre
Lustre is probably the most important aspect to consider when buying a pearl. It is the lustre that causes a pearl to shimmer and shine and give off that very luminous quality that really takes your attention. The higher the lustre in a pearl, the more valued and sought after, it is.
Generally, saltwater pearls such as Akoya and South Sea pearls were once thought to have better lustre and generally be of better quality compared to freshwater pearls. Today, this is not necessarily the case and it depends on the individual pearls. The quality of some freshwater pearls is amazing.
🦪 Freshwater Pearl Value
Freshwater pearls are the most affordable pearl variety on the market. They are also the most abundant because of modern production methods and, as such, this helps to make them more affordable.
Being the only gemstone produced by a living creature, a pearl is truly unique and very special.
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