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Thread: Melo melo?

  1. #16
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    Well, gee, we get really excited when folks like you share with us! This is a passion for us, to one degree or another!

    Holy cow, I forgot the older, Related Threads listed at the bottom section of the page! Probably you've already noticed them. I started to read through some of Smetzlers posts... I should probably just head for his Nautilus thread for the light set up...

    Stay with us, ok? I bet you beat me to the answer!

  2. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by lisa c View Post
    Well, gee, we get really excited when folks like you share with us! This is a passion for us, to one degree or another!

    Holy cow, I forgot the older, Related Threads listed at the bottom section of the page! Probably you've already noticed them. I started to read through some of Smetzlers posts... I should probably just head for his Nautilus thread for the light set up...I believe it's somewhere around the middle part of the thread...

    Stay with us, ok? I bet you beat me to the answer!
    Oh I'm not going - what a resource this forum is! like I stated at the start of this thread I've been mucking about gemology and pearls for at least ten years - not much of a leap from geology. In fact my prior research is what lead me to grab this object up as soon as I saw it. One remembered a flame pearl if nothing else.

    And well yes I did review all the postings under melo melo after all one would not want to take folks time and expertise for granted.

    I expect I will have to send this object to GIA for authentication. Unfortunately their pearl lab is in NY and last I checked the phones were still not working. I would hesitate to send it at this point.

  3. #18
    Pearl Scholar Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pattye's Avatar
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    Amazing beauty and sizeable also! Truly a thrill to see and wishing you the best in getting it certified.
    Pattye


    PatriciaSaabDesigns.etsy.com

    facebook.com/PatriciaSaabDesigns

    SO MANY PEARLS, SO LITTLE TIME----

  4. #19
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    I'm glad you'll stick with us!

    The Nautilus pearl thread was started by effisk, and is a sticky. I was cruising through the threads when I got timed out. I started at post 41...I'll go back and forth from there, for the photo set up.

    Of course, though, lab cert is the ultimate follow-through :-). I'm just hoping for more pics from you! Greedy me.

  5. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by lisa c View Post
    I'm glad you'll stick with us!

    The Nautilus pearl thread was started by effisk, and is a sticky. I was cruising through the threads when I got timed out. I started at post 41...I'll go back and forth from there, for the photo set up.

    Of course, though, lab cert is the ultimate follow-through :-). I'm just hoping for more pics from you! Greedy me.
    Hope I do not confuse with images already posted.Name:  IMG_3867.jpg
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  6. #21
    Inactive Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by vroom View Post
    I expect I will have to send this object to GIA for authentication.
    I wouldn't bother. It's expensive, subjective and you run the risk of getting an unfavorable report.

    Certification is generally used to rule out cultured as opposed to natural in questionable nacreous pearls.

    Yours is a foliated structure (non-nacreous), visually distinct and presents with a recognizable flame pattern over a translucent matrix.

    I doubt any pearl expert worth their salt would dispute it's authenticity and I doubt any certificate would provide a significant value add in this case. It's even possible for a certificate to inflate the value beyond what anyone would be willing to pay, hence unsellable. That's been the problem with quahog pearls. As beautiful as they are, there are hundreds, if not thousands of overpriced and undersold quahog pearls.

  7. #22
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    Cool post and perspective, Dave. I'm still going to hope for a candled view, if Vroom is willing.

  8. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by lisa c View Post
    Cool post and perspective, Dave. I'm still going to hope for a candled view, if Vroom is willing.
    OK here is my attempt at candling the melo melo I think I can see the flame pattern in a couple of these images?Name:  IMG_3901.jpg
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  9. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lagoon Island Pearls View Post
    I wouldn't bother. It's expensive, subjective and you run the risk of getting an unfavorable report.

    Certification is generally used to rule out cultured as opposed to natural in questionable nacreous pearls.

    Yours is a foliated structure (non-nacreous), visually distinct and presents with a recognizable flame pattern over a translucent matrix.

    I doubt any pearl expert worth their salt would dispute it's authenticity and I doubt any certificate would provide a significant value add in this case. It's even possible for a certificate to inflate the value beyond what anyone would be willing to pay, hence unsellable. That's been the problem with quahog pearls. As beautiful as they are, there are hundreds, if not thousands of overpriced and undersold quahog pearls.
    Thank you ever so much for the sage advice.

    And I think I understand, the same sort of thing happened to me in my profession - there I was looking for experts to confirm my findings only to eventually and painfully discover I was it - as no one else in the world was doing what I did. It did not help much that no one much liked what I (and my team) had found, and then on top of that were the professional jealousies - people i had thought were real stooped to unbelievable depths. Recall my one in a million ugly thing comment? Very ugly.

    Anytime one enters into that which is out of the ordinary - and what could be more out of the ordinary than a melo melo pearl from a thrift store? - putting said non-ordinary object into the hands of those who perform the same ordinary task day in day out is fraught with hazards. Which me-thinks was your point.

    Apparently this pearl is so rare it fits into these conundrums.

    Any-haps were do I go from here? Obviously this is what it looks like it is - as you so eloquently stated. Wealth to me is holding valuable rare objects of beauty (my wife has a differing view LOL). But even so if kept such things must be valued and insured and when push comes to shove sometimes treasures must be sold.

    If a GIA cert is not the next move what is? Or do I just lock this away? What if it must be sold?

    Of course considering the odds of finding this maybe I should buy a few lottery tickets while I am in the zone - but as I said I live and work in a place where one can expect such things as the abnormal to be well normal.

    Sorry for the rambling reply - I gave a lot of thought to your post before replying and I am not sure it helped.

    Thank you so much for your thoughts and for all the kind folks on this forum who share their knowledge.

  10. #25
    Pearl Enthusiast Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert Pearl Dreams's Avatar
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    The images in post #23 are too out of focus for me to see anything much...any way to get them in better focus?

    Beautiful color, by the way! A thrilling find. I would be loathe to part with it, myself.

  11. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pearl Dreams View Post
    The images in post #23 are too out of focus for me to see anything much...any way to get them in better focus?

    Beautiful color, by the way! A thrilling find. I would be loathe to part with it, myself.
    Thank you - and yes the images are a bit fuzzy but not to much more than the pearl appears itself in transmitted light. Its just a fuzzy orange glowing blob with dark clouds of material.

  12. #27
    Inactive Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by vroom View Post
    Any-haps were do I go from here? Obviously this is what it looks like it is - as you so eloquently stated. Wealth to me is holding valuable rare objects of beauty (my wife has a differing view LOL). But even so if kept such things must be valued and insured and when push comes to shove sometimes treasures must be sold.

    If a GIA cert is not the next move what is? Or do I just lock this away? What if it must be sold?
    A GIA certificate doesn't list value. They allude to specific scientific points which are consistent with other baseline data only.

    It is then where appraisers examine the data and affix monetary value, which is yet another layer of subjectivity, even when deemed genuine.

    Most experts in pearls will say the same thing... it's in the eye of the beholder. You might think one thing, but your underwriter might think something else. You seem to have a good understanding of this already, as your issues are mirrored with mine in many ways. Once a pearl is drilled or otherwise fashioned into something, the value changes. In your case, unless the pearl is mounted into something extraordinary, the chances of it being devalued are higher, afterall much of the scientific value and pristine condition will be lost. As you have alluded, therein lies the conundrum.

    When appraising naturals, one must consider all points, both positive and negative. Melo melo is not uncommon, non-nacreous and larger specimens have been described. One side has a considerable ridge of terminal growth overlapping the previous layers. Each of these points will halve the value, which becomes exponential. For the sake of discussion (only) let us compare it with La Perigrina, afterall they are simillar in size and shape. Despite what Christies auction house sold Elizabeth Taylor's collection for, we are only discussing the pearl itself. It was purchased by Richard Burton for $35,000 in the mid 70's. Unfortunately, natural pearls are not in great demand and if anything, prices per carat are generally lower. Factor in retail exchange, 17-20 is more realistic. Now, subtract non-nacreous 9-10, commonality 4-5 and inclusions 2-3.

    I, like other natural pearl collectors are very wary to appraise value, but if I was to see this pearl listed and sold for $2-3000, I would not be outraged or suprised. I'm sure a decent underwriter would not have any issue with this and would insure it for upwards of $4-5000 of the replacement value. Of course they could never truely replace something as unique as this, but at the very least you'd probably be able to find something similar for that amount, plus a little for your efforts. You would likely need to deliver the pearl for their inspection. Before doing so, I'd suggest an array of professional quality macro shots over basic white including reference to size in millimeters. Explain to them, the cost of certification is not necessarily practical because of it's inherent properties and current market value.

    BTW, check out this link of a previous post, where I posted images of candled natural pearls.

    Candled Natural Pearls

    Basically, all you need to do is make a simple box. Drill a hole in it. Not too big, not too small, just large enough to set the pearl in and allow enough light to pass. Put a bright LED or other light inside the box, place the pearl on the hole and use macro mode.

    Once again, you have a delightful pearl and found a real treasure and I thank you for sharing it with us.
    Last edited by Lagoon Island Pearls; 11-18-2012 at 07:09 PM.

  13. #28
    Perpetual Pearl Student Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert lisa c's Avatar
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    Dave, Thank you for bringing up your candling post, and describing your light set up, and venturing a 'ballpark'. You're a great help!

  14. #29
    Pearlista Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert GemGeek's Avatar
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    It certainly looks great. My only suspicion would be that the surface has been "worked". It might be the lighting, but it looks like there are flat areas where it might have been carved or polished. This would reduce the value, but it would still be very valuable. It looks real and not at all like carved shell, which is used for imitations. In fact, it looks like juicy fruit waiting to be bitten into.

    Getting a report from GIA would not be a waste of time because they can tell you if it has been worked and if it is a natural melo melo. But only get one if you plan to sell it or you're curious. An identification report is $100.

  15. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by GemGeek View Post
    It certainly looks great. My only suspicion would be that the surface has been "worked". It might be the lighting, but it looks like there are flat areas where it might have been carved or polished. This would reduce the value, but it would still be very valuable. It looks real and not at all like carved shell, which is used for imitations. In fact, it looks like juicy fruit waiting to be bitten into.

    Getting a report from GIA would not be a waste of time because they can tell you if it has been worked and if it is a natural melo melo. But only get one if you plan to sell it or you're curious. An identification report is $100.
    Yes the pearl has been polished looks like a buffing wheel, there are flats. The thrift store did however give me a large discount.

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