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Some nice finds from E-Bay

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  • Some nice finds from E-Bay

    After a couple of Pearl Paradise purchases last December I was of course still 'in need' of more pearls, but funds were a little restricted. I was specifically after large freshwaters. And so, I turned to e-Bay. I was pretty shocked by the frankly fraudulant claims of some sellers, but I was relieved to see that the seller who had caught my eye has had a favourable mention on the forum. That was the clincher, so, after a long search for large nice quality black freshwaters, I took the plunge and ordered some pieces from Apex pearl. After testing the water I have been back for more, this seller really does deliver on service and great value for money. I was amazed by the variety of 'black' pearls and I ended up buying three strands in differing hues.

    10-11mm black freshwaters:


    By voley



    10-11mm 'Tahitian grey' freshwaters - these have somehow been dyed to resemble Tahitians, and indeed people assume that is what they are. I've included some dark grey Tahitian earrings in the photo so you can see just how successful this dye job has been. However, my partner has unkindly nicknamed them 'rabbit droppings':





    Here are some 9-10mm natural colour strands, creamy white, 'golden' (but they are actually a delicate champagne peach) and lavendar (these have blemishes, but despite the low price tag they are very pretty). I have failed to capture the lovely overtones on all three strands:





    Lastly, another e-Bay seller caught my eye - Pearl Fashion Trend. This seller tries to adhere to a stricter grading system - his prices and service were excellent, and I love the mauve/bronze 10.5mm freshwaters, they're so colourful:

    Last edited by PGDesign; 04-07-2008, 08:10 PM.

  • #2
    Your pearls are nice, of course, but your pictures! Now those are quite awesome!

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    • #3
      Wow, the pictures are wonderful! You don't have a special setup do you? I want to take pictures like that. Lovely pearls, excellent taste. The dye job in the tahitian greys is almost flawless.
      Aspiring ninja. Go Storm Shadow!

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      • #4
        PG Design,

        beautiful pearls, professionally photographed!

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        • #5
          I think the pearls look great. Its nice to hear you were satisfied with your Ebay purchase. You did a great job with the photos!
          "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did." - Mark Twain

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          • #6
            Hi Everybody

            Your comments on the photos did make me smile - if you could have seen how 'crudely' they were taken you would have laughed! 10 minutes in my lunchbreak, a bit of white paper on my desk (this is curved up against a stack of CDs), my old and quite hopeless little Canon Ixus, no exposure control (with such a glaring white scene I would normally overexpose) ... followed by a LOT of cleaning up last night on Photoshop! It's just perseverence. Hopefully I can replace these pictures with more professional ones when I'm reunited with my full kit.

            I don't use a light box, but some people swear by them, basic ones (and that's all you need really) are cheap and easily sourced on e-Bay. It's important to light the contents as evenly as possible and colour corrected lamps are also available, should you want to go down that route. The next complaint you often hear is that after photographing the 'subject' the scene is a dull, dirty bluish grey. This is because your camera's light meter will read the scene as being very bright, and it will automatically try to reduce this to a more 'acceptable' average value, hence darkening it. The trick is to over-expose by about two thirds of a stop, as I mentioned earlier. If you laid your pearls on a light grey background, all this would be less of an issue. Personally I prefer a white background, even if entails a bit of extra work. It's really nothing more than practice - pearls are very difficult to photograph so a bit of frustration is inevitable.

            I have a fondness for that shell, I found it on the beach in Aden when I was 3 years old, it functions as a soap dish these days.

            Every photographer I have ever known will say the same thing - a good product photo is almost entirely down to post-production. Photoshop has been around longer than most people realise - significantly longer than digital photography.

            PG x
            Last edited by PGDesign; 02-19-2008, 07:21 PM.

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            • #7
              Hi PG - I had mentioned Apex pearls in another thread, and maybe another member did as well. They are the only ebay seller from whom I have received consistent quality, albeit with slightly smaller than stated pearl sizes. Jerry is also very helpful, and will also sometimes take what you may think is a very low offer on some pieces - I have saved quite a lot by offering less than the buy it now price. You have bought similar pieces to what I have bought from him in the past - I have also bought a strand of darker gold FW - more of a dark champagne. I also have a strand of the light ones, but the lavenders are my faves and are consistently well matched. Glad you are happy, and I think I need to investigate photoshop - your photos are fantastic!

              Nerida.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Nerida View Post
                Hi PG - I had mentioned Apex pearls in another thread, and maybe another member did as well. They are the only ebay seller from whom I have received consistent quality, albeit with slightly smaller than stated pearl sizes. Jerry is also very helpful, and will also sometimes take what you may think is a very low offer on some pieces - I have saved quite a lot by offering less than the buy it now price. You have bought similar pieces to what I have bought from him in the past - I have also bought a strand of darker gold FW - more of a dark champagne. I also have a strand of the light ones, but the lavenders are my faves and are consistently well matched. Glad you are happy, and I think I need to investigate photoshop - your photos are fantastic!

                Nerida.
                Hi Nerida

                Indeed it was your comment about Apex which reassured me, and I have to agree that I have also received exactly what has been pictured, and quickly. I did use the 'make offer' facility on one of the strands, I think I saved about 12.5% on the original price. There are quite a few pieces I would still like to buy from him, mostly so I can wear multiple strands of the same thing, something I could not otherwise afford to do. Like you, I adore the lavendar strands I have, they were very cheap but they are so pretty and flattering, and big. I find white pearls quite hard to wear at times.

                PG x

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                • #9
                  Hi PG, I thought I would throw in a couple of photos of a smallish (7-8mm) strand of multicolored rounds from Apex... I think these are just gorgeous! I think these were around $35US at the time - bought last year, I think..

                  I really need to look at photoshop - haven't ever really played with it at all to understand its functions. I usually use Picasa, but don't find it really that helpful.

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                  • #10
                    [QUOTE=Nerida;25592]Hi PG, I thought I would throw in a couple of photos of a smallish (7-8mm) strand of multicolored rounds from Apex... I think these are just gorgeous! I think these were around $35US at the time - bought last year, I think..
                    QUOTE]

                    Hi Nerida

                    Your photos are great and I absolutely love your pearls - in fact I've got the same ones (in the 9-10mm size) and I wear them often. You got a fantastic deal - I think mine were around $149 .... which is a very good deal as well, considering their size. Some of the colours are so bright and metallic.

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                    • #11
                      [QUOTE=PGDesign;25613]
                      Originally posted by Nerida View Post
                      Hi PG, I thought I would throw in a couple of photos of a smallish (7-8mm) strand of multicolored rounds from Apex... I think these are just gorgeous! I think these were around $35US at the time - bought last year, I think..
                      QUOTE]

                      Hi Nerida

                      Your photos are great and I absolutely love your pearls - in fact I've got the same ones (in the 9-10mm size) and I wear them often. You got a fantastic deal - I think mine were around $149 .... which is a very good deal as well, considering their size. Some of the colours are so bright and metallic.
                      Hi PGDesign,

                      can you give me the link to Ebay for Apex Pearls? I tried the name and up came a company with mostly chinese/Japanese/English text and it was impossible to register as a new customer so I emailed them and got the answer that they have no WEBSITE. It was someone called Alice who answered my mail but I don?t understand - do they have a Web-site on EBAY but none other?

                      Thanks for helping.

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                      • #12
                        Apex jewelry

                        PGDesign, Nerida,

                        Is this the one? It says Apex Jewelry when I searched for "Apex" under store names only, but item description and seller = Apex_pearl.

                        http://stores.ebay.com/APEX-JEWELRY
                        Cathy

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                        • #13
                          Wow! I just checked out the Apex store on Ebay and they have some great looking pieces at great prices. I'm still a bit hesitate, but it seems everyone here who has purchased from Apex has had a good experience. Again, this forum is so useful.
                          "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did." - Mark Twain

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                          • #14
                            Yes, it is the apex_pearl - the owner's name is Jerry. He does know of this site - I told him about it before my China trip late Jan. I haven't bought from him since, but will again sometime. I will post a proper link tonight.

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                            • #15
                              PP's quality is exceedingly better. From the reflections in the pearl, luster, shape, consistancy, even dye job seems spotty. You can see the differences viewing the Tahitian pearl earrings. They are a much higher class of pearl. As tempting as it was to buy at lower prices, considering - price vs. quality - I have to say, your money would have went a lot further and for generations - staying with the gems you once before purchased.

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