pearl,about pearl,pearl information,pearl facts,learn about pearl,color grade,clarity,aniversary gemstones,birthstone,luster,order,secure,inventory,sale,free,price,shape,information,pearl,lot,tahiti black pearl Pearl Classification The classification and value of South Seas and Black Tahitian Pearls are determined in accordance to criteria related to luster, size, shape, surface, and color . Luster This term refers to the how light reflects or plays on a pearl's surface. A pearl with high luster is bright and extremely reflective. This quality is important as any color of pearl can be beautiful but it is the exceptional luster which will set a pearl apart. Size The size of a pearl is very important in assessing its value due to the greater rarity of larger pearls. Pearl size is measured in millimeters, to the tenth. Even a small difference in size of 0.5mm between two large, rare pearls, of otherwise equal quality, can amount to thousands of dollars. Shape Pearls are found in a variety of shapes. Perfectly round pearls are the rarest and therefore command higher prices. Fine drop (semi-baroque) symmetrical shapes are also highly prized. Shapes known as the circle pearls, which exhibit rings of color around are less valued than the more perfect shapes. Baroques, which refer to any shape without a line of symmetry, are often beautiful and unique, but do not command the prices of round or drop shaped pearls. Four basic shapes are defined at the production stage: Round and semi-round, semi-baroque, ringed and baroque. For some jewelry makers, shape is purely a design element, be it the sensuous curves of the drop or the flowing free-form lines of many baroque shapes. For such artists, all shapes that inspire them share aesthetic equality. Most designers agree it is difficult to favor one kind of shape over another. A New York designer once said: "A pearl that looks homely seen loose will be transformed into a thing of beauty if placed in the right setting." Round pearls Round pearls are almost perfect spheres whose diameter variation rate is less than 2%. The round pearl is the most sought after and the most rare of cultured black pearls. Semi-round pearls Semi-round pearls are slightly imperfect spheres whose diameter variation rate is greater than 2% but less than 5%. When a pearl is allowed two years to grow inside an oyster, the chances of even, perfectly spherical nacre accumulation are a long shot. One experienced seller of fine Tahiti pearls says true rounds rarely account for more than 10% of a Tahitian pearl farm's crop. And 5% is more the norm. The percentage gets even smaller, he adds, when taking into account the many round pearls that are so heavily blemished they are unsellable. No wonder, then, that all other things being equal, fine-quality round black cultured pearls are the most rare and expensive of the breed. However, more plentiful semi-rounds and button shapes can give the look of round shapes for less money, especially when these pearls are set in jewelry. In such cases, slight deviations from round and even noticeable elongation can be concealed or, at the very least, masked. Because Tahitian pearls are most commonly used in jewelry, the low incidence of rounds is not considered a drawback. On the contrary, the wide variety of affordable fancy shapes is a big drawing card for jewellers who specialize in them. Semi-baroque pearls Semi-baroque pearls exhibit at least one axis of rotation and are subdivided into three shapes: drop, button and pear. Drop Button Pear Ringed, or circled, pearls Ringed, or circled, pearls are characterized by regular streaks, rings or grooves that are perpendicular to an axis of rotation and cover more than a third of the pearl's surface. Ringed pearls, which generally account for 25-30% of a black cultured pearl harvest, seem to fire the imaginations of many designers. No one knows why "circle pearls" occur so often in harvests. Perhaps it is the species of oyster used to grow them. Whatever the cause of ringed pearls, they often compensate for this characteristic with pronounced color play and multiple hues. Designers often take advantage of their low prices and high appeal by setting bands of precious metal accented with diamonds and colored stones into their grooves. These bands subdivide the pearl into contrasting spheres of color. Baroque pearls Baroque pearls do not have any axis of rotation. Given the transforming impact of design on the look of a pearl, it is hardly surprising that black pearl specialists usually admire drop and baroque shapes. Surface The more flawless a pearl is, the greater its value. "A" quality in this category demands that blemishes or imperfections be confined to less than 10% of the pearl's surface. Pearls of this caliber however, are exceedingly rare. Minor imperfections are generally considered elements which give each pearl a slightly unique character. Color Color is essentially an issue of personal taste although there are a few colors which are especially prized. Pearls which show strong blue, magenta or green overtones exhibit color tones known as "peacock," and are considered extremely desirable. Unusual colors such as vibrant blue, magenta, or apricot are known as "fancy" colors, and also command higher prices.

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