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  1. #1
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    Question Question about FWP changing color and luster

    Hi everyone —

    Long time no post — (well, not that I posted a lot to begin with being the perennial lurker that I am…) I’ve been thinking a lot about pearls lately and just placed an order with PP for some Tahitian studs, and have a custom mana necklace (to mark a personal milestone) from Josh at Kamoka on its way to me.

    But I have a question about Freshadamas — or maybe FWP in general. First a little background - About 2 years ago I bought a sweet pair of 10.3mm white Freshadama stud earrings. They really are my go-to earrings and I wear them a lot. I really adore these earrings. I’m super careful with all my jewelry and wipe them with a moist cottonball and clean microfiber cloth when I take them off. They are in their own little compartment in my jewelry box too.

    Anyway, just this past week, I took them off before bed one night, wiped them down and had them on a towel in the bathroom…when I noticed that one looked a little more ivory and the luster was a little less defined than the other. I thought I was just tired or something, but I’ve worn them since then and I still see a difference when I look at them side by side. Some things the eye cannot unsee!

    Pearls being pearls and organic and all, little differences wouldn’t normally be something I’d think to question…if they were like that to begin with. But these two pearls were nearly identical in size and the same in color and luster when I bought them 2 years ago — I picked them out from several choices that Erin sent me at the time.

    I don’t wear makeup and don’t smoke, and they haven’t been in any extremes of temperature (unless you count the 5 days we had no power and it was 88F in the house after Hurricane Irma….) I’m stumped. And curious!

    So my question is (haha, after all that rambling! ) : Can FWP pearls change color and luster over time?

    Ella

  2. #2
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member Luvglitz's Avatar
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    Enkeli, there actually was a discussion recently about the longevity of the color on Edison pearls. There was no definitive answer, however a vendor felt that over a few years, there was a color change. The thread was in South Seas pearls and was titled South Sea Pearl vs Edison Pearls (I think). The discussion was not on Freshadama pearls per se.

  3. #3
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    Interesting. I will go find and read that thread. Thanks for the input! (I've got some catching up to do here for sure. )

  4. #4
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    I have a strand of AA/AA+ FWP that have become a bit more cream colored since I got them (luster is unaffected). But we know pearls can change color over time. Akoyas do it; I would expect that FWP can do it also.

  5. #5
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert amti's Avatar
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    I can't comment on the wear factor for FWPs but I don't know if the fibers on cotton balls is soft enough to clean your pearls without scratching them.

  6. #6
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luvglitz View Post
    Enkeli, there actually was a discussion recently about the longevity of the color on Edison pearls. There was no definitive answer, however a vendor felt that over a few years, there was a color change. The thread was in South Seas pearls and was titled South Sea Pearl vs Edison Pearls (I think). The discussion was not on Freshadama pearls per se.
    Just to be clear..this was ONE pearl he was talking about. A Soufflé that apparently, in his recollection, began as a purple/lavender and changed to a pink.

    So, it's one single pearl that was discussed and it was a very very early pearl.

    I would be surprised if my freshwater pearl changed colour in two years. That is worth a call to PP

  7. #7

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    Katbran - for the sake of clarity ... it is not "just one pearl". It is a series of pearls of the early "Edison" production. The darker colours - in my opinion - do become lighter colour over time. As one of the earliest adopters of this product - if not the earliest - I feel it is my responsibility to bring the matter to the fore. Clearly the producers or those with a serious vested interest will take a position that favours those vested interests. I have no axe to grind here ..... as I said in the earlier thread ..... don't shoot the canary in the coal mine. My comments here relate to "Edison" pearls particularly rather than all freshwater pearls.

  8. #8
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    This is simply vague empirical evidence of some pearls a few years ago. Without proper evidence of more than one or two pearls you are making allegations which are simply unfounded. It would need to be pearls matched against international standard colours from then and the same pearls matched against different international standard colours now.
    I'm pretty sure you were not the earliest adopter of bead nucleated pearls from Grace.
    Are you still selling Edisons and if so do you warn every buyer that the pearl colour fades in your opinion?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by pearlescence View Post
    This is simply vague empirical evidence of some pearls a few years ago. Without proper evidence of more than one or two pearls you are making allegations which are simply unfounded. It would need to be pearls matched against international standard colours from then and the same pearls matched against different international standard colours now.
    I'm pretty sure you were not the earliest adopter of bead nucleated pearls from Grace.
    Are you still selling Edisons and if so do you warn every buyer that the pearl colour fades in your opinion?
    Pearlescence - I take it from the tone of your reply that you doubt the veracity of what I am saying. I suppose you either have a vested interest or you feel that your negative tone gets you places in life. I don't particularly care which! I am certain however that I was the earliest customer for these pearls. I did exhibit in Basel with Grace's staff and total Edison stock. I do clearly tell my customers about all the pearls I sell - I wish other suppliers did the same.

  10. #10
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    All pearls can change over time. Some darken, some lighten, some get duller.

    I have a strand of coin pearls that had amazing orient and shine when I first bought them, and I feel they have dulled over time. Sometimes I wonder if some pearls have been given a "coating" to make them shinier and improve the orient. If those pearls, in my case a necklace, rubs against something often enough, that coating wears off or gets roughed up and loses its shine.

  11. #11
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member ericw's Avatar
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    Each pearl is different. Just I have carved two, looking like exactly the same, brightness and white colour, but I have discovered that one had not at all the same nacre building than its sister. And when we consider that colour of conchyoline, cement of this building, is sensitive, as any organic material, to hard cosmic rays that the earth receives everytime, going through the more thick boxes, we can imagine that a different layout of conchyoline between two pearls looking alike, first, will change also colour between them after a long time. Good observing conditions of this phenomenon are rare, due to lake of yardstick, but it can be suggest, about the case of these two pearls. It's not a fiction : for exemple, any oils of compass, even if there are kept in dark, must be changed after a long time, turning to brown because sensitive to this kind of rays.
    BWeaves : maybe this phenomenon would be sometimes responsible of turning dull, also, because organic cement destroyed as I have explained, would let aragonite crystals to come off the pearl's surface.
    Last edited by ericw; 10-09-2017 at 12:37 PM.

  12. #12
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    I question broad and negative statements, yes, absolutely. You made the claim about colour fade first but have provided no evidence for this beyond the statements that you think some have faded.
    I have been a member here for far longer than you and posted far more so I will leave it to those who have known me via this forum for ten years to say whether I have a negative tone. I certainly do not make personal attacks on character or motive - just called for independent verifiable evidence of what you have alleged. This is a serious matter and it needs more than vague comments.
    I will not say any more on this

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by pearlescence View Post
    I question broad and negative statements, yes, absolutely. You made the claim about colour fade first but have provided no evidence for this beyond the statements that you think some have faded.
    I have been a member here for far longer than you and posted far more so I will leave it to those who have known me via this forum for ten years to say whether I have a negative tone. I certainly do not make personal attacks on character or motive - just called for independent verifiable evidence of what you have alleged. This is a serious matter and it needs more than vague comments.
    I will not say any more on this
    I do not "think" that some have faded. The colour HAS changed. I suggest you come up with a verifiable method to show how pearls you purchased years ago have changed colour. Do you really photograph all you buy against a known colour chart? Really? And would that suffice for someone like you who questions each and every part of my original post? I trust that the fact that we are both based in the UK has nothing whatever to do with your comments .....

  14. #14
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    Hm, you know, the cottonballs that I moisten and wipe my jewelry with are made of actual cotton and very soft. I only use one at a time, then toss it. Really, they are as soft as the cloth I use (the nice one PP sends with orders) so I can’t imagine they’d scratch anything. Especially since I am so gentle. And I’ve had no other issue with any of my other pearls, including the other Freshadama stud.

    Pearls are fascinating to me and I know that no two are truly identical no matter how they present to the eye. I have no experience with any color fading or luster decrease on my pink FWP (I don’t have any Edisons, though) and this one stud is the only one I’ve noticed any change in at all. I think I’d expect a gradual increase in ivory tones over time, say…many years. But 2 years made me wonder. To be sure, it’s not a pronounced difference, but it is there. I hope I didn’t come across as complaining because I’m not. (sometimes tone is hard to gauge online…) I am a bit concerned about my favorite earrings, but genuinely curious as I am still learning about pearls.

  15. #15
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    I was thinking about this the other day after looking at my 11-12 mm white metallic studs that i bought two years earlier. They have really dulled in luster! They weren't that expensive anyway but I'm surprised how fast that happened. I didn't even wear them that much and always wiped them down after wearing them.

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