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  1. #1

    Default South sea pearls versus Fresh Water pearls

    Hello I am new to this forum and pearls.
    Can someone please tell me how to tell whether a strand is genuine Southsea or just a good quality Fresh water? I bought a 'Broom Southsea' strand size 9-11 mm, just recently for $7000. It was a closing-down sale . They are very round and very silverish-white in color , with minimal blemishes and extremely high lustre. I have done the tooth test and rub the pearls against one another, they all pass the tests. The strand also feels cold when I put on my neck. So I am sure they are real pearls. Then I found out the jeweler i bought it from has a bad reputation of being dishonest. I also saw some fresh water pearls which look very similar to mine and started to wonder whether my strand is really South sea? Or just fwp ?
    So how can you tell by just looking at them? Is it the weight? Mine is not very heavy. I also got a writtened valuation from the jeweler describing the strand as Broom south
    sea pearls for insurance purpose.
    Sorry for the long post. I'd appreciate any advice and ideas from you all as I am a bit distressed that I may have wasted the $7000 of my saving. The jeweler has closed down already . Thanks in advanced.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    It's difficult to tell you a way to definitively determine whether or not it is freshwater. The bets thing to do would be to post a picture of the strand here.

  3. #3
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Yes, Winnie. Take a pic using your phone or camera (on macro - it's the little flower, if you are the dunce I am) on a white background and show us.

  4. #4
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    There's a thread we have that gives advice on how to do this
    Go to the upper left of this page to FORUMS. Click
    Go to Other stuff. Click
    Then find the thread How to take pictures of pearl jewelry

    Good luck!

  5. #5

    Default Pictures of my south-sea pearls strand.

    Hi all, thanks for your prompt replies. Here are some of the photos I have taken. I hope they are good enough for you to analyse the pearls. Please give me opinion of the quality of these pearls, and more importantly, if they are south seas. I appreciate your help.
    Winnie (from Queensland, Australia)


    Taken indoors with natural lighting (room not very bright)


    Taken in same room, necklace hung upright in white box


    Necklace held up against cream wall (natural daylight in a brighter room) The pearls
    look very silver.


    Necklace held up in natural daylight (no backdrop)


    Necklace laid flat on carpet (dim light was turned on in a room with natural light)

  6. #6
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    It's not possible to tell the surface quality from the pictures, but those are saltwater, not freshwater, so you didn't get ripped off. The luster looks fine, actually.

  7. #7
    Pearl Maven Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Caitlin's Avatar
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    Hi Winnie
    If those are saltwater, there is not much choice of what they would be except South Sea. Akoyas would not be that large and Tahitians would not be that white. The price sounds about right. You are one lucky person! Wear them a lot!
    Caitlin

    How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

    My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

  8. #8
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    I'm going to throw in a spanner here..I have some freshwaters which look incredibly like south sea pearls ....and since Winnie said the seller has a bad reputation....
    http://www.pearlescence.co.uk/produc...oducts_id/3266
    I just looked at those pearls again against some ss earrings and really, apart from the different blemishes it would be hard to call which is which
    what are the blemishes like...that is one way to tell as freshwaters don't tend to have that 'drip into creamy mud' 'moon crater' flaw which SS have?

  9. #9

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    Hi Caitlin
    Sorry did I send my last post to you? I meant to send it to the thread. I did it from my iPhone and had a feeling I just replied to you instead. Can you please check ? Thanks
    Winnie

  10. #10
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    Oh dear, Winnie, we do sympathise. Let this thread run, the experts will be weighing in soon.

  11. #11
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Winnie,

    What a beautiful strand, enjoy!
    Pattye


    PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

    facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

    SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

  12. #12
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    Again ... Those aren't freshwater. The only saltwater pearls they could be are South Sea, so you didn't get ripped off. As someone who deals in South Sea pearls, it's not difficult to tell them apart.

  13. #13
    Pearl Maven Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Caitlin's Avatar
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    Hi Winnie
    No I didn't get a separate reply.

    Just wear those pearls every possible occasion!
    Caitlin

    How to hand-knot pearls without a tool

    My avatar is a Sea of Cortez mabe pearl. One of a pair of Mexican handmade earrings.

  14. #14
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Hi Winnie,
    Love those pearls on you. White with silver overtones are awesome!

  15. #15

    Default

    Hi guys

    Thanks for your input. I am just so confuse now. The strand does look metallic under strong light and look a bit like those pearls that Pearlscence has.
    Jeremey, I know your are an expert here and I am not questioning your credentials, but how can you be so sure they are not fresh water pearls?
    I just started collecting pearls 6 months ago when holidaying in Hawaii where I saw so many beautiful pearls.I bought a Tahitian pendant and a golden ss pendant there and love them so much. I appreciate the pearls beauty and elegance more and more. I indulge myself more with this strand. But I hope I didn't make a mistake

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