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How can you tell WSSP from FWP?

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  • How can you tell WSSP from FWP?

    I may be an idiot, but with the new FWPs out there, I'm not really sure how to tell what is a genuine WSSP and a FWP imitation. Are there any tell-tale signs a consumer should look out for?

  • #2
    My best advice for you, given how costly SSP are, is to buy from reputable vendors who will not misrepresent the pearls they are selling.

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    • #3
      Oh, I don't have any plans on buying any in the near future. I have one that I got for a steal from Pearl Society that I made into a beaded choker (will take pictures eventually), I just want to learn since from pictures I can't really see a difference if they FWP are just right.

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      • #4
        Indications - just indications - include the lustre, which has a satin look on a SS pearl, even if the lustre is exceptional. Also the flaws are different. generally you don't get that stone-dropped-in-a-pool-of-mud lunar crater mark on a freshwater. Which of course doesn't help if there are no flaws!
        I've seen some very close white freshwaters, even down to a satin-y lustre. And the golds are close too, until you see a hank of them. Then they have a brown/earwax cast
        Price is also a guide. Except in some locations or on some websites where freshwater should always be the default assumption
        Author:Pearls A Practical Guide published by Crowood Jan 2021
        www.pearlsapractical.guide

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        • #5
          I think I have to see the picture or the pearl IRL. With wssps from Mergui and lustrous nucleated fwps it's going to be a tricky job. Rings are an indication of a genuine wssp. There are ringed fwps out there but they just don't look quite the same as wssps in my eyes.

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          • #6
            One of these days I would love to be able to see a strand of WSSPs in person so I can familiarize myself with them. But it would certainly be unkind to buy some knowing I'm going to return them for this sake. Maybe one day I'll get lucky and find a jewelry store that stocks them. Thanks for the insight! I'm going to keep staring at pictures.

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            • #7
              Look at some of the online websites like Pearl Paradise and Pearls of Joy, as they have good closeups of the different types of pearls. Pearl Paradise may also be able to photograph a good strand of freshwaters next to a strand of SSP's so you can see the difference. Just ask.

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              • #8
                Good sales today too!
                http://www.oceanscovejewelry.com
                Instagram: Ocean's Cove

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                • #9
                  You can always send them back. Or not, cough cough.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by LVLanghanke View Post
                    Oh, I don't have any plans on buying any in the near future. I have one that I got for a steal from Pearl Society that I made into a beaded choker (will take pictures eventually), I just want to learn since from pictures I can't really see a difference if they FWP are just right.
                    If you have a wSS pearl, you should be able to tell when they are side by side with a FWP. I have a wSS that glows in the dark, like the moon. I've never seen a FWP do that.
                    "Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience." ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

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                    • #11
                      Here is my white south sea 12.5mm, Edison fwp 16.9mm and Tahitian strand 14.9mm

                      Click image for larger version

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                      White south sea, white Edison fwp, white with rose overtone metallic fwp 8.5mm and the middle 2 strands is cream metallic fwp strand plus a few rain drops on the pearls.
                      Click image for larger version

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                      • #12
                        Now that's a great collection of white pearls ! Those Edison's TDF ! ! Easy to see how people would be hard pressed to buy WSS over a magnificent strand of Edison's like that! Thanks for posting!
                        https://www.instagram.com/pearlzaustralia/?hl=en
                        https://www.etsy.com/shop/pearlzaustralia

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                        • #13
                          oh newberry....I think I need a glass of wine and a cigarette! Those are magnificent.
                          http://www.oceanscovejewelry.com
                          Instagram: Ocean's Cove

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                          • #14
                            Hahaha, JP. I was thinking the same thing.

                            Newberry's collection is magnificent and those photos are great.

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                            • #15
                              I find the colour of the white can be a bit of a cue too. FWP white is often a tiny bit more yellow or cream based than WSS which are more pure white, blue white, or silver white (even when they have a rose overtone). It's subtle though and more noticeable when they are next to each other.

                              For comparison, here are my two sets of WSS earrings on the Pearl Paradise paper next to my white metallic strand and white metallic earrings (both of which look really white IRL, but have a distinctly creamy quality next to the WSS pearls). And a shot of both sets of drop earrings side by side.
                              Attached Files

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