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Appraising Quality Pearl Jewelry

Appraising Quality Pearl JewelryWearing pearls is an art in itself and those who wear them are well aware of their worth and the look of class and elegance it brings to any outfit. Only those who have a great deal of confidence in themselves can wear pearls with natural poise and elegance. Today, pearls can even compete with the finest of diamonds or emeralds and still come out on top if the wearer knows how to select the right kind of pearls. The value of pearls are determined by its color, size, surface perfection and luster and only an expert will be able to distinguish the difference.

When learning on how to appraise pearl jewelry, the first thing that we learn is the difference between the natural pearls and the cultured pearls. Many people think that cultured pearls are fake and not to be considered as those of quality. They are wrong. Cultured pearls can be of the highest quality depending on the time taken to process them. This is where science helps nature to achieve either the finest of pearls or one of low quality. Natural pearls are extremely rare these days and most of the high quality cultured pearls such “Mikimoto” and “Akoya” pearls are recognized as those of very highly quality.

A pearl of high quality will have a fine luster to it and iridescence that come from within the pearl, instead of a surface shine that is seen in the synthetic pearl. The best way to examine a pearl is by the aid of a fluorescent lamp, rolling the pearl on all sides to check if it has a consistent luster. When the light hits the pearl, that particular area will shine brightly whereas the shaded area will create an illusion resembling a tiny ball within the pearl. This is a result of light being reflected through the many layers of the pearl. Thickness also matters a great deal and when appraising quality pearl jewelry, a thickness of .5 millimeters in a pearl means that it will last longer than a pearl with a thickness of .25 millimeters or less.

For most women, it’s the color and luster of the pearl that catches the eye. The best and rarest of them have overtones of rose and can be very expensive whereas cream colored pearls are widely available and therefore less expensive. Rarer the color the costly it becomes with colors such as grey, black, gold, blue pink and green being distinctively harder to find and even if you do come across them never purchase them until you have them checked by a reputed gemologist. This is due to the fact that most of these unusual colors are not genuine but dyed to look like the real thing.
When appraising quality pearl jewelry, always examine the surface of the pearl for blemishes. This can be best carried out by placing the pearls on a dark cloth under bright as well as defused lights. Most pearls do have miniscule defects that can be ignored if they have a good luster and thickness. When it comes to size, the larger pearl is rare and very costly with the Tahitian pearls being quite large resulting in a very high price. Something else that is very important when buying pearl jewelry is to check whether all the pearls in a string of a pearl necklace or bracelet is evenly matched and the drilling has been done in the exact center of the pearl so that it lies well on the neck or wrist. Bad matching will affect the price of the pearl necklace bringing down its value.

Never forget to get your quality pearls appraised by an independent laboratory and always ensure that the merchant who sells your pearl jewelry has a return policy so that in case of any discrepancy regarding the quality and value of your jewelry you can have them returned.

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