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  1. #1

    Default Bought a 32# box of pearls, What do I have

    So, I bought a box of pearls. After spending two days sorting them out, I ended up with a handful of (real) pearls. What would you do with them to maximize return? Are there any you would send to GIA? Any help on identification or value would be appreciated. If you need more pictures or different perspectives let me know.
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  2. #2
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    These are all inexpensive cultured freshwater pearls from China. The green strand is dyed. FWP come naturally in cream, white, lavender and peach but I'm not sure that those strands that are lavender and peach aren't also dyed, for uniformity of color. Also the black ones are dyed.

    Definitely no need to send to GIA.

    Test all gold, as clasps on pearls from China are often gold plated base metal, even if they are stamped 14K.
    Bali spacers (the beaded spacers in the necklace with the blue bead) are often vermeil--gold plated over silver.

    As for price, just look on eBay and see what finished prices were on SOLD, similar items. Be aware that baroque FWP are the most common pearls there are, and only low quality pearls are dyed. These are not going to sell for a lot of money.
    Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 11-17-2019 at 11:35 PM.

  3. #3

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    Thanks for your help. The spacers are bronze, that is one of the few marked pieces. Ebay had the same between $195 and $400 but no one actually stated the type of pearl.

  4. #4
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Did they sell for that much? IMO no way is it worth that. The pearls are low quality.

    Also, eBay is rife with fraud when it comes to pearls. Freshwater pearls are being falsely listed as akoyas, Tahitians and south sea pearls. Caveat emptor.

  5. #5

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    No, I don't think that they're actually selling at those prices, just listed as buy now. They're supposed to be from some designer DM.

  6. #6
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Granted that people may sometimes pay more for a designer item. But who is DM?

    The necklace is not unattractive. But the pearls are circled freshwaters, not high quality, and bronze is a very cheap metal (scrap value is $1.40/lb at present). I don't see anything worth those high prices you are quoting.

    Freshwater pearls were not as round, years ago, as they are now. The Chinese have improved their technique enormously in the past 2 decades, and these older baroque pearls are not as desirable nowadays as they once were.

    At the end of the day, all that matters is what people are actually willing to pay. That is why we encourage people to search for sold items to determine how to set their price.

    You could start an auction with the lowest price you would be satisfied with and see what happens.

  7. #7

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    Not sure who dm is supposed to be, here is one of the listings. https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F323457467439

  8. #8
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    It will be interesting to see if it sells.

  9. #9

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    Sort of surprised if they are all fwc Pearl's. When illuminated, some are striated and others appear to just be shaded in the center or just off center. Doesn't sound feasible for them to all be the same.

  10. #10
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Older FWP are all solid nacre-- no bead inside to make them round. If you see off-round shapes or eggy shapes, they are FWP.

    The cream colored pearls with the marked-14K corrugated round clasp could be akoyas if they are fully round. But here is something you should know: used pearls do not tend to hold their value. Pearls are soft and they are easily damaged by cosmetics, sweat (which is acidic), pollution, perfumes, hair spray, being stored together with jewelry that will scratch them, etc. They tend to yellow with age. All of these things affect resale value.

  11. #11
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    The MOP (mother of pearl) bead used as a nucleus in akoyas is made from shell, so it has layers that appear as striations; that may be what you are seeing if you backlight akoya pearls, which are bead nucleated. I am referring to the strand with the corrugated yellow gold clasp.
    Looking again at them, I believe they are akoyas.

    How about a few more photos of just that necklace? Wipe it first with a damp soft cloth. Let's see what kind of luster it has and how many blemishes. If it's good quality with nice luster it will be worth more than the FWP. But remember, it's still a used strand.
    Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 11-18-2019 at 11:11 PM. Reason: typo

  12. #12

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    Here are more pics of the one with the 14k clasp.
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  13. #13
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Thank you. Those are akoyas. Looking at the surface characteristics and luster, they are neither the best nor the worst.

    Akoyas sell for more than FWP of the same size and quality, but even so, used strands do not hold their value unless they are a prestigious brand like Mikimoto.

    To price them search for sold, used strands of similar quality, size and length. Limit your search to USA to eliminate some of the Chinese freshwaters falsely sold as akoyas.
    For example:
    https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...Sold=1&_sop=13

  14. #14

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    While I can’t tell you much about pearls, I can tell you about the maker in the 5th photo which is Silpalda. They are primarily known for their Sterling jewelry, but I do have a few Pearl pieces from them. They also retire pieces regularly, so they become collectible and can have modest value based on it’s collectibility as Silpalda Pearl necklaces rather the Pearl itself. If you use Silpalda Pearl Necklace as a keyword search I am sure you will find examples of your piece as I cannot see the entire piece.

  15. #15
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Fascinating!

    I found the website: https://www.silpada.com
    Silpada, Honora, Gemvara and Jewelry.com are all in the same "family" of stores, according to the website.

    I did a search for Silpada on eBay-- there are nearly 29,000 items listed. This brand is seemingly ubiquitous, yet I was unaware of it.

    I get the impression this may be a brand one sees in boxed silver jewelry on display tables in department stores,. Must take a closer look next time I'm at Kohl's, Macy's, and even Marshall's.
    Last edited by Pearl Dreams; 11-21-2019 at 02:57 PM.

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