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  1. #1

    Default Mikimoto or hanadama certified?

    Hi, im pretty new to pearls and i am ready to buy a nice strand for my girlfriend. I am trying to stay at $2,500 or less. My girlfriend's mother has a mikimoto strand that was given to het by my girlfriends father and she has always mentioned them and it seems that she is set on the mikioto brand for pearls. Would I bet better off buying some hanadama's form an online website such as pearl oasis or one of the recomended sites on here or getting mikimoto's? Im not sure if there is a big difference in quality but i hear that tha hanadama's are the top pearl of all and i can get hanadamas for the same price as mikimoto's or even a little less. I was thinking about mikimotot's because thats what she has always wanted but if the quality is better for the hanadama is significantly better than the miki's i might buy those. I have found a Mikimoto stand of 7-7.5 16 in. A1 quality for $2300 that i really like and i know mikimoto is a well trusted company but im still a little confused about the hanadama's.

    also would a 16in or 18in be better for a smaller girl about 5'3 115 lbs?
    and is white gold or yellow gold better matched for pearls?

    Thank you in advance for your help and sorry about and stupid questions. Jim.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    Hi Jim,
    The hanadama would be the much, much better deal. The A1 grade Mikimoto sells is 6 grades down from the top. The top grade Mikimoto sells is hanadama. You will get the name Mikimoto with the A1 grade, but for the same grade pearl you can shop online for about 80-90% less. The hanadama top Mikimoto grade will cost you about 10 times what the A1 grades costs. You are paying for the name... a silver bracelet will cost you $250 at Tiffany's, but only $10 to make.
    A 16-inch strand would probably work best for a small girl, especially if she is going to wear it on a regular basis.

  3. #3

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    I figured that i would be paying for the name but both my girlfriend and I are not pearl collectors or know a ton about them so would the difference be huge in term of looks? I know the hanadama are better quality as you say but but she really likes mikimoto and thats what she thinks of everytime i mention pearls. If the difference isnt something that would be really notcieable without really examining, say if you were a foot or two away at least and they were on a table or around someones next together would you be able to pick the hanadama out easily? I guess in the end im trying to make sure its not a bad idea to buy the miki's because as i said in the original post she has always loved her mothers "Mikimoto's" and she has always wanted mikimoto pearls.

    Also thank you for your quick response. Ive been browsing the site for a coupe days now and Ive found a lot of great infomation that i woulve never know.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert jshepherd's Avatar
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    The difference would be night and day. A Mikimoto AA and Hanadama would not be too different. But Mikimoto's highest grade line (hanadama) and their lowest grade line (A1) would be completely different. You would be able to distinguish them across a large room easily.

    What I suggest is going to the Mikimoto store and asking to see their AAA grade. Not a store that sells Mikimoto, but an actual Mikimoto store. Compare their AAA against their A1. If their A1 sells for $2500, their AAA will likely sell for closer to $25,000.

  5. #5
    Pearl Knotting & Wire Expert Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert knotty panda's Avatar
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    It sounds as though you have two people to please with this gift. That's a mighty tall order. Considering your budget, you'd hate to have either of them disappointed. Is this gift a secret? If not, include them in the education and experience so everyone is pleased with the final outcome. Just my thoughts.
    Pretty Panda pic by nlerner on her U.S. excursion last year, San Diego Zoo.[/SIZE][/SIZE]

  6. #6

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    Thanks for all or your help. The only bad thing is that my decision is harder now, I'm goin to have to find out if she would rather have a higher quality pearl or if she really dreams about the mikimoto name due to her mothers miki's. Thank you again for the quick help, Jim

  7. #7

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    Yes the gift is for her birthday. I am very picky when it comes to buying gifts for her and I try to make everything as close to perfect as i can. I have mentioned the hanadama to her but only quickly so i dont hint to her that i have been looking. I dont think she really understood the hanadama when i told her. When i did mention pearls i was joking around saying I should get a $50 strand from jcpenney's she pulled up a $300 strand of sea magic pearls for ww.kay.com. To me it seems tat she has a little sentimental value of Mikimoto pearls from her mother and she wouldnt be expecting a true mikimoto strand. We are young though but have been together for almost 5 years and I would like to really "WOW" her.

    My budget would be good for about $3000 max. I think that would be a good price to get somethiing of good quality and not have me always thinking about the amount of money just spent

  8. #8
    Pearl Collector & Designer Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Sueki's Avatar
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    Hi Jim,
    Just a thought, but why not buy a strand of Hanadama from, say, PearlParadise, and compare them to your girl's mother's pearls ?
    For $2565 you can have a strand of 7.5 - 8mm. Hanadama from PearlParadise.
    They have a generous return policy, so if you are unhappy with your purchase, you will be able to return them.
    Personally, I don't think that you will be returning them...

  9. #9
    GemGeek
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    Don't hesitate. The Hanadamas are the best and you can get a very good deal for them online. Hanadamas are guaranteed to have a decent nacre depth. That's important if your lady is going to enjoy them for a long time.

    The "name" can't give you a strand of pearls so beautiful that strangers will stop to ooh and ahh over them. (Unless you want to take out a mortgage!)

    My two cents! Good Luck

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    Administrator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Kevin Canning's Avatar
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    Go Hanadama hands down. She may want Mikimoto at first but as she learns more about her strand she'll be glad you purchased the finest pearls, not the most expensive name brand.

    Don't be a victim of marketing - especially with when spending that much.
    Kevin Canning
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  11. #11
    Pearl Collector & Designer Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Sueki's Avatar
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    Have to entirely agree with GemGeek re. the strangers oohing and ahhing....
    And just to even things up a little, PearlsOf Joy have Hanadama in the 7.5mm. - 8mm. size too.
    And I can thoroughly recommend both PearlsOfJoy and PearlParadise.

  12. #12
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    Pearls are all about luster. Go for the luster more than the name. Hanadama will give you the luster.

    If she later still seems to be pining after the M name, you could, for her next birthday (or Valentines day or anniversary of your relationship) offer her a strand of Sea Magic (take her to the store to actually see them.) I think once she sees that what she received is so much superior, she will lose her fascination with the name.

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    Administrator Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Kevin Canning's Avatar
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    just have her walk into a mikimoto store with the Hanadama strand you bought her on and ask see something in the $2000 - $3000 range, you'll be glad you went with the Hanadama.
    Kevin Canning
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  14. #14
    Third-graft Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Raisondetre's Avatar
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    I'd get the Hanadama. Can't say I admire the sentimentality for Mikimoto pearls. I had a strand that flaked off completely exposing only the MOP nucleus. Not impressed. That was one of the cheaper ones from eons ago my mom received as a gift. Mikimoto? Don't think so. Get the hanadama and if she's still fussed, get it restrung with a vintage Miki clasp. It's very sweet that you're taking time to research and be a savvy consumer. Bodes well for a long-standing relationship. Shows that you're budget conscious and always want the best for your money. The middle class get way too squashed in the middle. Smart spending is the only way to go.
    Aspiring ninja. Go Storm Shadow!

  15. #15

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    I appreciate all the responses but they're not what i was expecting. I was thinking that the feeling would be mixed but its hanadama all the way.Im going to have to look around to see if i can find some hanadama to see in person. Im not saying that i dont trust you guy and girls but i am just curious about them and would like to see them before any online purchase if possible. I am 21 and she is turning 20 in a few days (late shopper, but i always thought mikimoto pearls were on top)so i was thinking get the mikimoto's first while she really likes the name and then introduce her to the facts and knowedge of pearls and later down the road if she would really like a better strand. I could always get the miki's and after i give them to her i could explain them to her and see what she thinks. It might not be the best idea but hey, im still young and stupid so its always good to hear froom those who know more.

    One more question to add on, i was thinking about buying a cheap strand like $60-100 (thanksgiving day sale) so she could have them to wear often. I know she would only wear the miki' or hanadama's a few times a year max. would i be better off buying the $60-$100 freshwaters from like a jcpenney kind of store or just buying a cheaper $20-$30 fake pearl strand?

    Thanks, Jim