Or in China? One can always hope..
It would be AMAZING to see China, and all your exotic places.
I loved your photos of Bali, etc, Adeline!
Only downside is we wouldn't get to see Jeremy's vault. ( Well, and mumble, mumble, airfare)
Went to Pearl City (large mall with individual kiosks) to buy some pearls last summer. Was looking for Tahitian-like pearls and was , frankly overwhelmed and had very little time to shop. I bought a few strands of smaller grey pearls-not very expensive-around $30-60 depending upon the quality and size. I know I could have done better but the circumstanes were not optimal and they made great gifts for family and friends. I am returning to Shanghai this summer and will have a day to buy some more. Gold is so high so I am not looking for any set pieces. Any recs as to tips for shopping and negotiating? How can I tell if the pearls have been dyed? Anything that is a great buy? (I do not believe any hype so I look to see what I like.) Are the strands a better buy as opposed to single large pearls? Any help is most appreciated. (This is my first post).
Welcome to Shanghai again. Every pearl has its unique color luster and shape. If you find some pearls are almost the same, you could suspect they are dyed. Attention to blemish and drill hole, is there any difference of color from surface? But as dying skill is promoted, dyed pearl will not easily to fade.
Strands sell in China, if not Gem quality, the matching is not strictly, that is a few of pearls is not as good as seller tell you or others. the reason is not seller cheating you from heart, but the price.
If you don't want dye pearl, you'd better buy pearl with light color. Hope that could be useful to you.
I think Joyful Grows point is interesting - that if you don't get what you think was advertised, then you shouldn't think the dealer is cheating you because the dealer is wicked. The pearl seller is delivering what quality you actually paid for.
I can't think that's a good way to do business, though maybe because it's unfamiliar to me...it leaves too much to the discretion of the seller, not enough to the buyer, especially over the Internet.
Therefore "you get what you pay for". Pay cheap, get cheap. I remember years back when a poster was complaining about a supplier, and GemGeek replied that she'd always gotten fine goods from them, but she always dealt directly with them (phoning?) and was willing to pay more for better quality.
It's a recurring theme on PG. Still no fun, and I'm not excusing selling CFW as Tahitians, or gold plate as 14K, etc...
Last edited by lisa c; 04-28-2012 at 06:19 AM.
I totally agree with this point too...that you get what you pay for (mostly). Too many people think they should be getting top quality for pennies, when in reality they should be asking 'am i really going to receive a 8-9mm AAA FWP strand for only $20?....heck no! I've lost count of the number of people I've met who truly think they should be able to buy AAA 9-9.5mm stud earrings (on 14k gold) for $50 or less.
But then again, it really boils the blood the pay $200 USD for an unfinished strand of what is supposed to be 6.5-7mm AAA Akoya...but receive what cannot be more than AA grade...AND half the pearls in the strand don't even match in color or have easily visible blemishes.
Oh, no! That deserves a screech that could be heard in the next solar system and lots of hands slapping on the table. (Doesn't it? I don't really know prices )
Did that happen to you?
Last edited by lisa c; 05-11-2012 at 11:45 PM.
Is this from your supplier of those gorgeous metallics, or from someone else?
Mostly, My suggestion, it's better that people should buy pearls face to face, check pearls themselves, then negotiation.
Online sale, People should choose seller with good reputation, or you have had brought online from the shop before. you trust them.
And, here again. My warning: If you travel to China to buy pearls-, because of the reason that you maybe come to that shop only once in your life. Many small seller, especially personal vendor, want to cheat you, give you fake or bad pearls, but not all. --also it happen to many Chinese. Don't buy pearl from the street vendor--a person--whatever low of the price . It's better buy pearl from pearl mall--where many sellers shops there, big pearl mall always has good reputation, the management there is stricter, not permit cheating event.
This is my suggestion, I am not sure all shops, even big shop, are honest.
Money is their purpose, not reputation of the country. So sadly. !_!
Thank you for all of your wonderful replies. I love pearls and this forum. I have a few pieces of nice pearl jewelry (two pairs of stud earrings 8mm Aoyka one pair with small diamonds) and a beautiful Akoya strand- 7-7.5 mm 30 inches all bought years ago from a dear friend who was a jeweler closing up her business. I have been fascinated by Tahitian pearls-peacock- and would love a nice big one for a ring or pendant. Alas, the real deal may be out of my budget. So I am on the hunt for a freshwater pearl-9mm+ in Shanghai to match my need. Big, beautiful and great luster-peacock. I don't mind a blemish. What will they try to sell me at Pearl City shops? What should I ask for? How can I tell it is dyed by looking at the drill hole? Other indications of dye if no drill hole? Any help is most appreciated. Thank you.
If you are looking for FW peacock, they can only be dyed. They don't come like that naturally.
Karin, thanks for the post! So the best I can do would be for a beautiful FW grey that presumably was not dyed? By chance do some of these sellers have South Sea pearls? In other words, are Tahitian and South Sea (SS) pearls available at these shops? If so, I bet there is a big risk of passing off dyed FW as SS or Tahitians-especially to a novice like me.