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  1. #1
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    Default Newbie - first purchase questions

    Hi all - I've been really enjoying browsing this forum since I came across it a few days ago!

    About me: I'm suddenly struck by pearl-itis, aaargh!!! I currently have a very, VERY cheap necklace and studs set, it's chalky, boring, and so very tiny (about 4-5mm). Bought it more years ago than I care to remember, the clasp broke the first time I tried to wear them, and until now I've not given pearls another thought.

    I'm firmly in my 30s (36), 5'4", small-ish build (wider than I used to be before kids), and around 56kg.

    I'm after a strand of something decent. I'm set on Freshadama, but I need to decide size and length. I really want this to be an investment piece, something I can wear and enjoy now, ten years from now, and keep wearing in much older age.

    I *think* I want an 18" strand of 8.5-9mm..... but would appreciate done guidance. Will these look too large at my current age/weight? If I opt for 7.5-8mm (OMG so much cheaper) will I look silly wearing them when I'm sixty?

    So difficult.....

    Not to mention how to settle on overtones, I can't decide on studs or drop earrings, and part of me wants a bracelet too, aargh!!

    Can anyone help me? I'm obsessed!!

  2. #2
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    You can wear whatever you want - there are no rules.
    For guidance, think about a go-to necklace you already have - what size and length is that - there is your clue (same with the earrings)

  3. #3
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    Thank you Wendy.

    I prefer 16" necklaces, however the roundness of the pearls will make it sit shorter so I think I'll opt for 18".

    I am so split on pearl size. I don't want to look like they are oversized, but at the same time I don't want to look like I'm wearing something childish as I age. I didn't think this would be so tricky!

  4. #4
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Because you are purchasing such high quality, either size will be elegant and beautiful! The larger size will not be too large. The sets offered that include the bracelet are a nice value, too.

    With the smaller size (and the large size, too), although it certainly is not small, enhancers in pearl or gemstone are an option if you get bored with the look.

    Somehow I feel there will be more pearls in your future after this first purchase!
    Pattye


    PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

    facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

    SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

  5. #5
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Sea Urchin's Avatar
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    It is all so individual and subjective, but this would be my preference, since you wanted opinions: I believe "standard" pearl size is 7.0-7.5 mm, so I can't imagine you'd ever feel like the 7.5-8.0 were embarrassingly small. That said, I'd forgo the bracelet and dangly earrings (since the danglies usually cost more than studs), and get the 8.5-9.0 mm strand because I also can't imagine ever regretting that you have larger, showier pearls. That is not a huge size but it's definitely nice and noticeable. Also, I'd get stud earrings a millimeter larger because I like that look better, where the earrings stand out rather than just looking the same as all the other pearls in the strand. I'd ask for the silver and rose overtones if I wasn't sure, because they seem very popular. Please show us what you get!
    Last edited by Sea Urchin; 03-21-2013 at 11:09 PM.

  6. #6
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert dkan 168's Avatar
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    How about trying out necklaces with different pearl sizes from high street jewellers to see what suits and does not suit, before making an online purchase?

    That's what I would do.

    DK
    Treat every life situation like a dog: if you can't play with it, eat it, or hump it, p1$$ on it and walk away

  7. #7
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Amrita's Avatar
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    All good advice there Blossy. Follow your heart - there is no right and wrong size there. Both sizes that you mentioned would look good now and in the future too. But I would get the bigger of the 2 sizes if I could. Welcome to P-G! Show us what you decide on and eventually get.

  8. #8
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Oh yes Blossy. Welcome and can hardly wait to see your new treasures on your neck!

  9. #9
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member
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    I'm with Urchin; I'd get the larger pearls. They won't be huge, but they'll be awesome. :-)
    Welcome to Pearl-Guide. This is a great place to learn, and get even more addicted .... and maybe in debt.
    Linda.

  10. #10
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert KarinK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pattye View Post
    Somehow I feel there will be more pearls in your future after this first purchase!
    Now what makes you say that, Pattye? The word "obsessed"?

    Blossy, I second the larger size too. The most common mistake for your first purchase (or purchases, some take longer to learn) is the 'I really don't need more than this" and "this is much cheaper and good enough." What happens is that we aren't entirely happy because deep inside we wanted the more expensive option and then we end up buying that too, spending much more money in the process.

    - Karin

  11. #11
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    I'm in my 50s and just over 5' 4"-- and not as slender as when I got married.

    My first strand (Freshadamas silver-rose) bought in 2007 were 7-8mm (as they were then being sold; now it's a larger range, 7.5-8mm) but I really wanted 8-9mm. The price difference made the 8-9mm out of my price range at the time.

    Although the 7-8mm look fine, as I age I think they suit my daughter better, size-wise. I finally bought a different 8-8.5 mm strand (the white metallic freshwaters) this past fall and feel that this size definitely looks better on me.

    So-- I vote for the larger strand if you can swing it.

    You can see my silver-rose 7-8mm Freshadamas here (the clasp I had on it at the time made these 18.5 inches long): http://www.pearl-guide.com/forum/att...5&d=1222185178

    ...and here are the 8-9mm dangle earrings: http://www.pearl-guide.com/forum/att...0&d=1276353432

    I agree that the earrings should be at least the same size or a size bigger than the strand. The same size pearl will have a bigger look in a stud than if worn as a dangle, and the dangle also costs more (the gold finding) so to economize and have a classic look, I would get studs 8.5-9mm or larger.

  12. #12
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    Thank you all so much for such helpful replies!

    I think I will have to go and try on some strands in different sizes. I'm really unsure. I wish the Freshadama strand I'm after came in 8-8.5mm, I think that's probably the sweet spot for me - just perfect size.

    I don't want to make the mistake of buying the smaller pearls just to save on costs, but I will admit its tempting as the jump between the 7.5-8 and the 8.5-9 is huge... I'm also unsure if I'll feel too "matronly" in them and end up not wearing them, if you know what I mean.

  13. #13
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    By all means try out different size strands!

    But if you still prefer 8-8.5mm, I think you should call Pearl Paradise and ask if you can have a stand made up in that size. (Realize however that custom orders are not returnable.)

  14. #14
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    You'll only feel matronly if everything you are wearing is matronly..(avoid crimpoline and shell suits perhaps?) and you get a blue rinse in your hair..?

  15. #15
    Natural Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert dkan 168's Avatar
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    Try other styles of necklaces, like a tin cup, while you are at it.

    I find tin cups more fun and informal to wear, whereas a strand would be more formal.

    I made myself a number of tin cups using different types of pearls and colours.

    I do not wear any necklace to work nowadays, as the work uniform is a navy polo shirt, and I don't like to wear anything around my neck with that type of collar.

    Time to change job perhaps, so that I can wear my smart work wardrobe and pearls again!


    DK
    Treat every life situation like a dog: if you can't play with it, eat it, or hump it, p1$$ on it and walk away

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