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Did I pay too much for my Tahitian Baroque Necklace

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
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113
About six months ago, before finding you, I purchase a Tahitian Baroque Necklace from a reputable jeweler in Canada. It is 18' in totoal, pearls diameter 11.00 to 13.5mm with an 18Kt whitegold with diamonds clasp. No mention of grade but appears to be relatively free of blemishes. The pearls are relatively round. What is a reasonable price for this necklace?
 

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pattye

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Dec 26, 2005
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Welcome, Artpearl,

Can't tell much from your photos because they are so small. But if you love this necklace and can afford it, you probably paid the right amount! The composition of every single Tahitian strand is going to be somewhat different. The color and overtones, shape, matching, blemishes, number of pearls and size, wholesale cost of pearls, value of clasp and more, all play a part in determining a selling price. Just what in particular that drew you to this exact necklace might be very difficult to find in another strand at any price. Just my thoughts~

Caitlin, this is under South Sea Pearls, perhaps it could be moved to Tahitian Pearls topic???
 

Caitlin

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You will have to look for comparables in size, then add in the clasp. I can't see much, but if it has overtones, it is a fantastic necklace. If not, it is just a fabulous necklace.
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
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What would I be looking for to determine "overtones" ? I would guess, it has silver, some blue/green overtones. Not sure what to focus on.

You will have to look for comparables in size, then add in the clasp. I can't see much, but if it has overtones, it is a fantastic necklace. If not, it is just a fabulous necklace.
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
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113
Thanks Lilliefuzzysocks. I do see what they are describing in the necklace yiou referenced. My question then becomes, are overtones desirable and if so what colours overtones are desirable? Or this completely a personal preference. As you can see,
I am at the begining of the learning curve on pearls. thanks

http://www.pearlparadise.com/18inch-AA-80-to-105-mm-Tahitian-Round-Pearl-Necklace3830.aspx This necklace has extreme overtones but you will see what they are talking about.
 

jshepherd

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Jun 22, 2004
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The most popular and typically the most valuable is peacock, but it really does come down to personal preference.
 

Caitlin

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I don't see much, but humungous pearls! Wow. I am seeing aqua as well, but the pix are so small. Hard to tell. Dang, those are pretty pearls! And whatever the overtones, they are well matched for color from the little I can see.
 

jshepherd

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How about a large, macro shot of just a few of the pearls. It's too difficult to tell from such small photos.
 

est190

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Dec 21, 2011
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114
Art, like you, I have been looking at Tahitian and SS strands. The ones you have look very nice. In your opening post, you asked if you paid too much, but never mentioned a price. Of course, even if you did, it would be pretty hard to tell from here whether you paid a fair price or not (it's hard to grade from a picture in general--even harder from a small picture). If they are round, big and blemish free as you describe, then they are going to be very pricey indeed.

When I was on a cruise through French Polynesia and the Cook Islands for my honeymoon in 2006. I bought my wife a 17" multi-color baroque strand (off round primarily with a couple of drop pearls thrown in) that was between 9 and 13mm (don't have more specific measurements), clean surface with only a few pin hole size inclusions and very high lustre for around $450. The colors pop on this strand with strong overtones, although they are mostly grey and black pearls with red and copper overtones (not peacock). I thought I got a bad deal at the time because I saw what I thought were similar strands for around a $300 to $400 --and they actually cost around $250-300 for a nice Tahitian strand in Raratonga because of more favorable exchange rates. At the time I was annoyed because I could have gotten a much better deal. Even though they were similar quality strands for less at that time, I know a little more about pearls today than I did then and the less expensive strands may have been less expensive for a reason. On the other hand, maybe I could have done a better job in bargaining. That said, today, I am seeing similar strands going for $800-$1500 through online vendors in the US and I have never seen anything as nice in a B&M's (aside from mikimoto and tiffany). The moral of the story is that if you really like the strand and your satisfied that you got good quality, you'll enjoy it for years to come. If you paid a few more dollars than you had to, it's not that big of a deal in the scheme of things. It's hard to put price tag on beauty. :)
 
Last edited:

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
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113
Hello Jeremy,

I hope this helps, hard to get a good photo that is close up and colour accurate. (backdrop: snow in back yard)

cozumel octopuscozumel raycozumel parrotfishcozumel resting turtlecozumel shy fishcozumel spiney lobster


How about a large, macro shot of just a few of the pearls. It's too difficult to tell from such small photos.
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
Messages
113
Thank you EST190, You are right, in the big scheme of things it hardly matters. I didn't declare the price as I feared that I really did pay too much (too embarassed).

Suffice it to say that I do really love them and wear them very often. Nonetheless in hindsight, I should have done more research on Tahitian baroque pearls prior to purchasing them.



Art, like you, I have been looking at Tahitian and SS strands. The ones you have look very nice. In your opening post, you asked if you paid too much, but never mentioned a price. Of course, even if you did, it would be pretty hard to tell from here whether you paid a fair price or not (it's hard to grade from a picture in general--even harder from a small picture). If they are round, big and blemish free as you describe, then they are going to be very pricey indeed.

When I was on a cruise through French Polynesia and the Cook Islands for my honeymoon in 2006. I bought my wife a 17" multi-color baroque strand (off round primarily with a couple of drop pearls thrown in) that was between 9 and 13mm (don't have more specific measurements), clean surface with only a few pin hole size inclusions and very high lustre for around $450. The colors pop on this strand with strong overtones, although they are mostly grey and black pearls with red and copper overtones (not peacock). I thought I got a bad deal at the time because I saw what I thought were similar strands for around a $300 to $400 --and they actually cost around $250-300 for a nice Tahitian strand in Raratonga because of more favorable exchange rates. At the time I was annoyed because I could have gotten a much better deal. Even though they were similar quality strands for less at that time, I know a little more about pearls today than I did then and the less expensive strands may have been less expensive for a reason. On the other hand, maybe I could have done a better job in bargaining. That said, today, I am seeing similar strands going for $800-$1500 through online vendors in the US and I have never seen anything as nice in a B&M's (aside from mikimoto and tiffany). The moral of the story is that if you really like the strand and your satisfied that you got good quality, you'll enjoy it for years to come. If you paid a few more dollars than you had to, it's not that big of a deal in the scheme of things. It's hard to put price tag on beauty. :)
 

jshepherd

Natural Pearl
Joined
Jun 22, 2004
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5,748
It's still difficult to tell from the photos, but on my monitor it appears to be gray to light green. I can't make out any strong contrasting overtones, but the shape does look good.

The value and cost of a strand is heavily weighted by color and shape, of course luster and surface also play a major factor. But just discussing color and shape, the pearls could be light, dark, or somewhere in between like medium dark. All other factors being equal, the darker pearls will most often be more valuable. Before someone jumps in to bite me, there are exceptions, of course. Shape is also important. Drops are much more valuable than circled pearls, and the more heavily the pearls are circled, the less valuable the strand. Yours seems to be a combination of some drops, and drops with light circling (maybe even a couple of ovals) and some circled pearls. In order to be classified as a circle pearl, the rings need to cover at least 30% of the surface.

I agree that it's not possible to tell you whether or not you overpaid without knowing what you paid, but I can tell you that it is relative. If you paid retail in a retail store, you could have paid more than you would have online, but you paid for a retail store experience and if the strand was priced at normal retail, then you didn't overpay.
 

est190

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Dec 21, 2011
Messages
114
It's hard to tell from the pictures--they look blurry to me and the ones that are clear are small. From what I can see, it looks like a very lovely strand and I like the shapes. Ovals, off rounds and semi-baroques--no weird pointed cones or snouts. If you're are happy with the strand, and price is the only concern (assuming you can't return it), don't let buyer's remorse get you down. It's possible you paid more than you would have from another vendor, but that happens sometimes. No need to stew over it. I pride myself on bargain hunting and getting a good deal. I spend a ton of time doing research before I make a purchase. Even with all the work, I sometimes jump the gun and make a mistake--sometimes a big one, like hiring the wrong contractor to do my kitchen. :( If you feel that you overpaid or would do it differently if you were to do it over again, you just have to chalk it up as a lesson learned. Better to learn it on a baroque tahitian strand than that $6000 round golden SS strand you posted links to on your other thread---assuming of course, you didn't pay $6000 for the tahitian (if you did $6k for a baroque tahitian it better have a 1ct VVS1 diamond in the clasp, or you definitely overpaid). :)
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
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cozumel spotted fishHello Jeremy,

Sorry for the poor quality of photos, most are not true to the strand. Here is my last photo attempt.

I consider this a "lessons learned" and am back to doing better homework.





It's still difficult to tell from the photos, but on my monitor it appears to be gray to light green. I can't make out any strong contrasting overtones, but the shape does look good.

The value and cost of a strand is heavily weighted by color and shape, of course luster and surface also play a major factor. But just discussing color and shape, the pearls could be light, dark, or somewhere in between like medium dark. All other factors being equal, the darker pearls will most often be more valuable. Before someone jumps in to bite me, there are exceptions, of course. Shape is also important. Drops are much more valuable than circled pearls, and the more heavily the pearls are circled, the less valuable the strand. Yours seems to be a combination of some drops, and drops with light circling (maybe even a couple of ovals) and some circled pearls. In order to be classified as a circle pearl, the rings need to cover at least 30% of the surface.

I agree that it's not possible to tell you whether or not you overpaid without knowing what you paid, but I can tell you that it is relative. If you paid retail in a retail store, you could have paid more than you would have online, but you paid for a retail store experience and if the strand was priced at normal retail, then you didn't overpay.
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
Messages
113
Hello est 190,

I too have made far more costly mistakes (also in home repairs) and I'm not losing any sleep over it or even stewing over it. It's a lesson learned and a back to basics in doing homework and more comparative shopping. It give me a good comparative of pricing to quality of in store verus on line. I could be wrong but the range of prices on-line for tahitian baroque pearls appears to be 1-2K. If the quality of my pearls is in the higher range, then I'm still good. If not, well it will be an even bigger lesson. I did purchase the pearls at a very well regarded store and don't regret this either. Thankfully, I did not pay 6K or even close.



It's hard to tell from the pictures--they look blurry to me and the ones that are clear are small. From what I can see, it looks like a very lovely strand and I like the shapes. Ovals, off rounds and semi-baroques--no weird pointed cones or snouts. If you're are happy with the strand, and price is the only concern (assuming you can't return it), don't let buyer's remorse get you down. It's possible you paid more than you would have from another vendor, but that happens sometimes. No need to stew over it. I pride myself on bargain hunting and getting a good deal. I spend a ton of time doing research before I make a purchase. Even with all the work, I sometimes jump the gun and make a mistake--sometimes a big one, like hiring the wrong contractor to do my kitchen. :( If you feel that you overpaid or would do it differently if you were to do it over again, you just have to chalk it up as a lesson learned. Better to learn it on a baroque tahitian strand than that $6000 round golden SS strand you posted links to on your other thread---assuming of course, you didn't pay $6000 for the tahitian (if you did $6k for a baroque tahitian it better have a 1ct VVS1 diamond in the clasp, or you definitely overpaid). :)
 

Caitlin

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Dec 11, 2004
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8,567
Whatever you paid, that strand is huge by average standards and it is very pretty. Maybe you overpaid by online standards, but probably not, by brick and mortar store standards. I haven't seen too many that large. when a strand is that large, the color is often less strongly overtoned. It is the nature of the large pearls. The deep colored ones in that size are far more rare than the silvery ones, which in this size, are rare enough. the deep colored ones that size will fetch top, top, dollar.

Having said that, it seems throughout this thread, you are not enamored with that strand. I hope you can return it.

Personally, I would wear it proudly, as it is a great strand! and I like the way it looks on your skin! If you just can't stand to wear it, send it to me, if you can't return it. I'll wear it for you and when the colors start getting brighter, I will return it to you. I love, love LOVE that circle one just off the center pearl. That pearl tells me that this is a unique strand, unmatched anywhere in its uniqueness. Its largeness is quite out of the ordinary, as well. Wearing it is like wearing a two carat diamond. It says you can afford it!

Now, let me tell you, I have often overpaid for pearls. Compared to underpaying, overpaying is more the norm, but I am soon over it, if I love the pearls. If I don't love the pearls, I scheme to get rid of them in a trade- or as a gift. My son's mother-in-law really respects me for giving her some super-fine pearls that cost me little, but appraised for mucho. I bet your pearls appraise for far more than you paid for them. I have gifted costlier pearls to other relatives who appreciate them after I recover from my first infatuation. Even though I am on a pension in my old age, the expense soon fades, but the gift never does.
 

Artpearl

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Jan 13, 2012
Messages
113
Caitlin,

I wear the pearls almost everyday and do love them and now, after reading your message, I wear them with pride. I am unable to return them and not sure I would after having worn them these past few months. The only misktake I made was to buy them and then do the research.

I will have to waiting until my teenage sons marry and/or have daughters to pass down the pearls, in 10-20 years, hopefully. So plenty of time to enjoy them. I love your offer to wear them for me :).

Thank you for your kind and wise words.


Whatever you paid, that strand is huge by average standards and it is very pretty. Maybe you overpaid by online standards, but probably not, by brick and mortar store standards. I haven't seen too many that large. when a strand is that large, the color is often less strongly overtoned. It is the nature of the large pearls. The deep colored ones in that size are far more rare than the silvery ones, which in this size, are rare enough. the deep colored ones that size will fetch top, top, dollar.

Having said that, it seems throughout this thread, you are not enamored with that strand. I hope you can return it.

Personally, I would wear it proudly, as it is a great strand! and I like the way it looks on your skin! If you just can't stand to wear it, send it to me, if you can't return it. I'll wear it for you and when the colors start getting brighter, I will return it to you. I love, love LOVE that circle one just off the center pearl. That pearl tells me that this is a unique strand, unmatched anywhere in its uniqueness. Its largeness is quite out of the ordinary, as well. Wearing it is like wearing a two carat diamond. It says you can afford it!

Now, let me tell you, I have often overpaid for pearls. Compared to underpaying, overpaying is more the norm, but I am soon over it, if I love the pearls. If I don't love the pearls, I scheme to get rid of them in a trade- or as a gift. My son's mother-in-law really respects me for giving her some super-fine pearls that cost me little, but appraised for mucho. I bet your pearls appraise for far more than you paid for them. I have gifted costlier pearls to other relatives who appreciate them after I recover from my first infatuation. Even though I am on a pension in my old age, the expense soon fades, but the gift never does.
 

Alex

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Oct 25, 2011
Messages
475
WOW - they are ginormous !!

what a lovely photo

they are probably saying "oh please don't return us, we'll shine and shine and shine, and in the dark, we'll still shine"

:)
 
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