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  1. #1

    Default Looking for general information about this strand

    This strand belonged to my mother. I'm not exactly sure how old it is, but it must be 20+ years old, because I remember her having them when I was a kid. The pearls seem to be around 6mm. They feel gritty on my teeth, so they might be real, I guess? The clasp is stamped "BL 585." It has a pouch that reads "_______ Essence by Mikimoto II" (I can't make out what the first word says because I have the dumb). I have a general idea of Mikimoto from google, but I'm not sure what Mikimoto II means. Any info about them in general would be cool. Thanks in advance!

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  2. #2
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    They're cultured akoya pearls, and 585 is 14K gold.

    I'm no expert on Mikimoto and their off-brand labels but perhaps someone else will be able to comment on that.

    Edit: Found something! The first word is "Cultured".
    https://queenmayjewelry.com/products...trand-necklace

    I'm wondering if that is the original clasp, or whether the clasp was changed.
    And also whether that is the strand that belonged with that pouch. Did your mother have other strands?
    Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 10-05-2017 at 11:20 PM.

  3. #3

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    Honestly, I have no idea if my mother had other strands. This is the only one I ever remember her having, and the only one that was in her jewelry box. She wasn't big on jewelry, so it seems unlikely that she had other strands, but I can't know that for sure. Thank you for the link though! It really bugged me that I couldn't figure out what that first word was

  4. #4
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    If you think you would like to wear them, I urge you to give them a bath (bottled water and mild soap) wipe them clean with a soft cloth (including around the drill hole where grime accumulates), and restring them. Silk becomes weak over time and with exposure to skin oils etc. and can break-- it would be a shame to lose them.

    If you are inclined to restring them yourself, it's easy to do and doesn't require buying much--just some strong synthetic thread (easier to work with than silk, and more durable), a fine flexible wire needle, and some gimp/ "French wire" to cover the thread where it meets the clasp. One of our members even sells these items in her Etsy shop. Lots of us string our own pearls.

    See tutorials on this forum:
    http://www.pearl-guide.com/forum/for...y-Beaders-Club

  5. #5
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    I have a necklace EXACTLY like yours. It's Mikimoto's Blue Lagoon brand, which is where the "BL" comes from. It's one of Mikimoto's several lower cost, lower quality pearl lines. However, even Mikimoto's lower quality pearls are still excellent quality.

    The clasp and the bead end caps are original to the necklace. It's one of the few times I can tell someone that the clasp is actually from the brand that made the necklace. The clasp is 14K gold. The pearls are in the 6-6.5 mm range, so on the smaller size for akoya pearls these days.

    I even found the original appraisal document in my Mom's jewelry file. The pearls belonged to my Aunt Love.

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    There's no way these cost $1500. That was probably the price for insurance purposes. I think they were more in the $500-$600 range when new, but I'm guessing. Oh look, the appraisal is 1998, so almost 20 years old, just like yours.

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    Somebody, a year ago, was asking about Sakura pearls, and there was no info on the internet about them. And lo and behold, here's Sakura pearls mentioned. I think the appraisal form covered every brand of pearl that Best company sold. My Aunt Love's pearls were definitely Blue Lagoon, because they still had the Blue Lagoon tag hanging off them. She had never worn them.

    Moral of the story: You have a really lovely strand of pearls. Give them a gentle wash, as mentioned previously, wrap them loosely in a towel. When the towel is dry, the pearls will be dry, too. Your knots look pretty good and clean, so you may not need to restring yet. Wear them and enjoy them. They're good quality.
    Last edited by BWeaves; 10-06-2017 at 12:05 AM.

  6. #6
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    So helpful, BWeaves! Mystery solved!

  7. #7

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    That's amazing. Thank you so much for the information!

  8. #8
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert amti's Avatar
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    Like BWeaves mentioned, they are Blue Lagoon pearls from Mikimoto. The clasp is the older style clasp but BL nonetheless. Enjoy the strand!

  9. #9
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member Lady_Disdain's Avatar
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    How interesting - I would never have guessed Mikimoto, even second line Mikimoto, from the finish on the strand. That kind of finding screams low quality to mean and that is not the case of Mikimoto's Blue Lagoon.

  10. #10
    First-graft Pearl Senior Member Abi's Avatar
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    Welcome EBG!
    They're a lovely strand of pearls. I look forward to seeing them post pearl bath and restrung
    "The heart of man is very much like the sea, it has its storms, it has its tides and in its depths it has its pearls too."-Vincent Van Gogh

  11. #11
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    Case closed!

    Enjoy your mother's Miki's, hope we see more shots of your string in action soon!

  12. #12
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    Sakura!!! That is one I have long wondered about. Those photos answered a lot of questions!

  13. #13
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Well done BW !!! If you are interested in prices you can use this information to check on EBAY and ETSY etc and see what they are selling for.

  14. #14
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady_Disdain View Post
    How interesting - I would never have guessed Mikimoto, even second line Mikimoto, from the finish on the strand. That kind of finding screams low quality to mean and that is not the case of Mikimoto's Blue Lagoon.
    Yeah, I was surprised at the findings on the pearls, too. The clasp is really cheap looking for a 14K clasp, and I hate the end cap things. I've toyed with the idea of restringing them with a real Mikimoto clasp and proper gimp, but I think it might be better to leave them as is, just for occasions like this. It's the only thing that marks it as a real Blue Lagoon strand. The pearls however, are very, very nice.

    I have no idea what the current Blue Lagoon clasp looks like. But this is what they were using 20 years ago. Early Mikimoto pearls had silver clasps, so things change.

    UPDATE: I did a little GOOGLING, and the newer Blue Lagoon clasp looks a bit more like the current Mikimoto clasp. It's two scallop shells with a tiny pearl in between.

    https://www.ebay.com/i/332039982821?chn=ps&dispItem=1
    Last edited by BWeaves; 10-06-2017 at 01:35 PM.

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