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  • Akoya Pearls

    Akoya Pearls Defined

    Akoya pearls are bead-nucleated cultured pearls produced in the Pinctada fucata martensii and Pinctada fucata chemnitzii primarily in Japan, China, Vietnam, South Korea and Australia, with most production (>95%) taking place in Japan.


    Before Contacting Us
    This page generates a lot of emails to us with questions about various akoya pearl sellers and their grading. Although we are an education website and here to help, we are volunteers and we can't respond to every email, every day.

    If you are looking for advice, before reaching out to us, these are three online companies I can say with certainty import true akoya pearls from Japan and grade fairly: Pearl Paradise, Pearls of Joy and Pure Pearls. There have been hundreds of conversations on our community forum about these companies (and others) if you would like to do more research.

    Caitlin Williams
    Pearl-Guide Admin
    The Classic Pearl

    Renowned for their luster, akoya are considered the classic pearl. When one envisions a perfectly round, shiny white strand of pearls, one is almost certainly envisioning a strand of akoya pearls.

    Akoya pearls were the first cultured pearls to be farmed using a bead and mantle tissue technique patented by Kokichi Mikimoto of Mie Prefecture, Japan, in 1916.


    Akoya Pearl Colors

    Akoya are generally white or cream colored, with overtone colors of rose, silver and cream. Non-white colors such as blue, silver-blue and yellow exist but are considered uncommon colors.

    Treatments

    Treatments that are considered universal in akoya pearls are; maeshori, bleaching and pinking. Because these treatments are permanent and considered universal, they are not typically disclosed at the time of sale.

    Untreated akoya pearls, such as natural white Hanadama pearls and natural color Vietnamese pearls are often described as such and always notated on certifications.


    Akoya Pearls, The Perfect Pearl For Jewelry

    The akoya oyster is the smallest pearl-producing oyster used in pearl culture today, so akoya pearls also tend to be small, ranging in size from about 2 to 11 millimeters. They also tend to be the most consistently round and near-round pearls, making them ideal in terms of matching for multi-pearl jewelry such as strands and bracelets.


    Most Often (but not always) a Round Pearl

    Because the akoya pearl oyster is seeded with a round mother-of-pearl bead, akoya pearls are almost always round. Baroque akoya pearls do exist, however, and many of which are considered extraordinarily rare and valuable, exhibiting striking natural colors and thick nacre.
    Click image for larger version  Name:	rare Vietnamese-akoya-pearls.jpg Views:	1 Size:	14.6 KB ID:	449855
    Rare baroque Vietnamese akoya, image courtesy of PearlParadise.com.

    Related Articles and Forum Threads
    Last edited by CortezPearls; 03-16-2021, 12:31 AM.
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