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Thread: abalone pearl?

  1. #1

    Default abalone pearl?

    Hi! I have found a pendant that I like on Etsy. Is it kosher to share a picture here for corroboration? I have been looking for an abalone pendant but don't have thousands to spend. This piece is quite inexpensive and claims to be an abalone pearl. Thanks for any advice.

    Judy

  2. #2
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Yes, Judy, you can post a photo here and we can discuss it. Just be aware there is the potential for someone else to see the photo here and purchase the piece before you do.
    Pattye


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    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    If it is inexpensive, it might be cut from an abalone shell, as opposed to an actual abalone pearl. Same nacre.

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    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 12wentworth View Post
    Hi! I have found a pendant that I like on Etsy. Is it kosher to share a picture here for corroboration? I have been looking for an abalone pendant but don't have thousands to spend. This piece is quite inexpensive and claims to be an abalone pearl. Thanks for any advice.

    Judy
    Definitely post a link. Abalone pearls are not cheap and incorrectly described pearl auctions on eBay are the rule, not the exception. If it's cheap, it's almost certainly a piece of shell.

  5. #5

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    Hi, Judy here, Okay, here is the piece I mentioned:

    https://www.etsy.com/listing/6752881...pearl?ref=cart

    It looks rough-hewn, so it is probably a blister pearl cut out of the shell? Thanks for any advice!

  6. #6
    Rare Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Marianne's Avatar
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    Hi Judy, I do not believe this is in any way related to an abalone. First impression is that it is a bead nucleated Chinese freshwater pearl that has been drilled and possibly color treated. The wire wrapping is nice, but not an abalone pearl.

  7. #7
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    I agree with Marianne! It's a bead nucleated Chinese freshwater pearl.

  8. #8

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    Hi again, and thank you for your quick replies! I will rely on your expertise from now on. Thanks!

  9. #9
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    It's a beautiful piece with great wire work. I agree with Marianne too. It's a Chinese freshwater pearl.

  10. #10
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert BWeaves's Avatar
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    It has horrible cracks in it and it's not a very pretty color. It doesn't look like any abalone pearl I've every seen, and it doesn't look like abalone shell, either.

  11. #11
    Second-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member ericw's Avatar
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    Not sure is it a real pearl, even a piece of shell? That looks like something enamelled, and maybe cracked during the firing. A bit weird to see such a nice wire work around.
    Last edited by ericw; 04-04-2019 at 08:05 AM.

  12. #12
    First-graft Pearl Senior Guide Member Lugana's Avatar
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    I agree with all said above, the pearl used in the design you shared is not from abalone in any form.

    There are three types of products from abalone mollusk:
    1) natural pearls (rare and very expensive if they are suitable to use in jewelry),
    2) abalone mabe pearls (this is what a human can culture with abalone mollusk, the process is quite tedious and not always successful, but since no-one could yet grow a cultured pearl with abalone - abalone mabe pearls are a good and only alternative for today), and
    3) cut and polished abalone shell parts used in jewelry (cheap product, but has nothing to do with pearls as such, it's more like souvenir material; one can still make beautiful designs with it).

    If you are looking for a pendant with abalone in it - depending on your budget, I would strongly suggest you looking into mabe pearls. They are beautiful and much cheaper than their natural counterparts, more regular in shape (which enables more design opportunities) and if set properly can make a stunning piece of jewelry. Prices per pearl vary depending on the size, but usually you can buy a decent size loose mabe abalone pearl within 150-250 USD.

    If that exceeds what you have thought for the project, I would look for honest sellers who use cut abalone shells but who say and price it accordingly in their designs. Once you are done with your search - make sure to share with us your purchase
    Last edited by Lugana; 04-28-2019 at 02:42 PM. Reason: Autocorrect mis-spelt "mabe" as "made"
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  13. #13
    Pearl Journalist Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Octavia's Mom's Avatar
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    Red abalone can produce pink and red blister pearls, but this coloration is wrong. The pink and red are more monochromatic.

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