HerMJ Freshwater Pearls

Freshwater Pearls Jewelry Primer
Kasumi Freshwater Pearls

Freshwater Pearls – Amazing Facts

Freshwater Pearls How Are They Made?

Blog Cultured Pearls
HerMJ Freshwater Pearl Necklace Design

This freshwater pearls jewelry primer provides information about one of the most sought after pieces of jewelry. It’s common knowledge that a pearl is the product of a mollusk (a mussel or oyster), but that is where all things common become much less so.

As Fresh as the Sea

In a sea of terms like Tahitian, South Sea, Cultured Pearls, and Akoya, the Freshwater Pearl stands out as one of exceptional value.

The formation of the freshwater pearl is a natural product of the calcium carbonate-based generation of a substance called nacre, which builds within the mussel’s mantle of soft tissue.

A Helping Hand

Freshwater Pearls
Nucleating A Freshwater Pearl

Not only does the farmer’s job entail the traditional act of harvesting the prized jewel, but long before, it begins with planting what can be considered a seed within the clam or mussel, the organic material from which pearls are made.

Once introduced, this substance is considered an irritant by the oyster. A reaction then occurs, causing the oyster to coat it with layers of the prized substance that constitutes the pearl itself. This substance, called nacre, naturally grows over time, layer upon layer. At the end of its amazing growth period, the pearl emerges as we see it.

During the early 1900s, scientist Mitsuyasu Kokichi Mikimoto in Japan made it his life’s mission to try and cultivate a pearl by inciting the process within an oyster. Many had tried with no success, but Mikimoto didn’t give up and after almost ten years of trials and errors, he finally succeeded. His success was met with even more attempts at cultivating pearls which eventually resulted in other methods becoming available which used different parts of the oyster.

Mikimoto Kokichi, 25 January 1858 – 21 September 1954
Mikimoto Kokichi,
25 January 1858 – 21 September 1954

Credit must also be given to scientists Tokichi Nishikawa in Japan, along with Tatsuhei Mise, who were also making progress in their own work on cultivating pearls from oysters as well. In 1907, Mise devised a needle used to insert the nucleus material into the oyster in order to successfully provoke the growth of a pearl.

Today, cultured freshwater pearls are not only the most beautiful pearls in the market today but also the most popular. Similar to the famed saltwater pearl, popularly harvested from oysters, the freshwater pearls find their way into the world with a little extra loving care provided by the pearl farmer.

An Important Import

Once considered less appealing than their Japanese counterparts, Chinese cultured pearls are now in high demand. However, it wasn’t until the Chinese pearl industry began producing rounder, larger, and a more prized line of pearls by evolving their techniques to cultivate them. In fact, today they rival the prized Akoya Pearl.

Imported from China, freshwater pearls come in a variety of appealing colors and shapes. Pieces adorned with these stylish accents are sure to suit any occasion no matter how relaxed or formal it may be. This variety makes them the perfect elements for design-savvy jewelry shoppers who are looking to accent their collections with the telltale shimmer of heirloom-quality gems.

In addition to the a limited production of the Swarovski crystal pearl designs, Her Majesty’s Jewels primarily designs our jewelry with cultured, freshwater pearls, valued for their beauty and authenticity, while being obtainable at an affordable price.

Pearl jewelry made from freshwater pearls are beautiful additions to any women’s accessories collection. You can choose from many different colors and shapes in classic or fashion designs. What makes the freshwater pearl such an appealing purchase is its affordability and high-quality appearance as compared to other cultured pearls which can be found on designer/fashion necklaces, bracelet, and earrings.

Did you also know

⚪ A single freshwater mussel can produce up to 50 pearls at a time.

⚪ A seeded mussel (known as bead-nucleated) is grafted with a square piece of a donor mussel, which later becomes the cultured pearl.

⚪ 90% of freshwater pearls are produced in ZHUJI, China.

⚪ Once known as the “Rice Krispie” of the industry, based on initial failures of its earlier production technique, today’s freshwater pearl can rival the cost and acclaim of other pearl varieties.

And those are just a few pearls. Here are some others…

To learn other essential facts about what makes pearls special, have a quick look at our other article describing the 5 important elements you should keep in mind when evaluating the next addition to your jewelry collection. With the right knowledge, you’ll make the best purchase, and your pearl jewelry will be a happy, long-lasting accessory you’ll love to wear.