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  1. #1

    Default What kind of pearl to carve ?

    Hi everybody,
    Thank you for your well looking at my first post, about my project to carve pearls !
    Maybe it's not wise to open this one, around the same subject, but I think it's better to explain my special problem...
    First, I needed largest and most thick nacre pearls to work, irregular, without bead (or the smallest as possible) and none hole.
    I have received from China different samples which are not right, big keshi reborn pearls, but with thin nacre, in fact, around pieces of grey stone as nucleus... When I carve these pearls, I quickly drill a hole in the nacre, and even without it, the colour of the bead appears behind the nacre layer. It's a shame, because my tests show that it's really a good material to carve and reach a nice result.
    Well, these pearls are very far from this real "keshi" (or over) quality I need.
    The petal shape of the keshi pearls seems the only garantee to have an unucleated pearl, so I am looking for theirs biggest sizes on China's webstores, but I don't find any enought large, thick, and above all, without hole. The only I have seen are sometime sold one by one by american sellers, but I should want to find more regular suppliers.
    Have you an idea to help me how to find this special quality of pearl I need, not too much expensive, obviously ?
    Thanks for your friendly expertise !
    Last edited by ericw; 07-10-2017 at 11:39 AM.

  2. #2
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    NW England


    What you need, specifically and exactly are all nacre pearls. Freshwater pearls with no nucleus. These are not keishi. You can find round or elliptical fairly easily. I think you want undrilled from what you write.
    They can be found in large sizes. Price depends on quality very much.
    Up to 10mm in good quality round or bigger if you do not need a smooth and regular surface round pearl.
    Your best chance of getting these is to have one of us going to HK to find a few pearls specially for you

  3. #3


    Thanks for your reply.
    Yes, full nacre pearls will be the best, and it's found in freshwater.
    Irregular shape interest me more than round, anyway too much expensive in sizes I need : 30 to 45mm if possible...
    I try to find in biwa kind, but typical shape is a little too much lenght for my use. Some baroque shapes will be perfect, but how to know what bead there have, without to go to meet the true chinese producers... in China...
    Last edited by ericw; 07-10-2017 at 06:45 PM.

  4. #4
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    NW England


    Those would be huge pearls. There may be lumps of nacre out there but as to shape and general quality. I think that size could be unrealistic.
    What are you planning to carve. You may have to find some way of joining two or three pearls to get that a triptych
    The farmers- the producers - are largely in the countryside in remote areas of China. Pearls of that size will need some sort of pleading to wholesalers to find

  5. #5
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl Expert
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Orlando, Florida, USA


    True reborn pearls should not have a stone in the center.

    But I think what you want are tissue nucleated freshwater pearls which are all nacre, or old style Tahitians before the did away with the nacre thickness requirements.

  6. #6


    Thanks for your replies,
    Pearlescence thinks that the sizes I need are unrealistic, it's not quite exact : I have spent more than a full week to explore every pearl suppliers'sites, and I have seen some, but stored by specialized suppliers to sell gems and over fine natural material to collectors. Sure, These suppliers must have special contacts in China to provision theirs choices.
    To meet each farmer to find such a right product is impossible for me, of course, but it's a shame...
    Real problems, I think, is one that all chinese suppliers sell a same standard product to be drilled in low cost jewellery pieces, and nothing over, the second that they don't give the right designation to theirs pearls, as BWeaves suggests it about reborn pearls.
    At last, I must buy with closed eyes, not allowed to know what to find inside the pearls. I don't like that...
    About carving, the light game in nacre only allows abstract expression.
    Last edited by ericw; 07-11-2017 at 04:13 PM.

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