Eastern North Atlantic Shellfish Pearls


It looks like this one will require deciding whether it could be detached from the shell and then a skilled hand to proceed, if possible.

The size of the pearl relative to the shell is incredible ! :eek:
I am still waiting to hear from Eric and Arlene. they were going to send me a few samples. They only asked for ($12) postage and I sent them $20.
Hi There,

That is amazing! Maybe you could just put an 18k gold frame around the edge of the shell, drill a hole and wear the whole thing as is on a chain!!! ;)

so many pearls, so little time
:) hmm funny... A little big though... I have to look at it a while.

Caitlin, I haven't heard from them either since June 6, email stating: "...ive finally got the blister pearls (scallop&mussels) to get to kaitlin, hard to find them in scallop got one thats got double round ones stuck to the shell and one other thats just a chunk,,,, have a good one say hi to everyone..."

They live about 1 1/2hr away and I really have only seen them twice. They are fixing an old house and he may be gone scallop fishing. They do go out many many days at a time.

way off topic but it was tonight's episode: Hey, our fellow villager made the Top 10 on Canadian Idol, Dwight. yahoo!! Look up his independant/band stuff. He's good! Plus, we gave him one of my Tahitian Pearl necklaces :D so I guess it's still on topic :cool:
howdy. I'm still trying to get better close-up shots. I'm working with a scanner and a Canon Power Shot A75. We should be getting a new LSR digital shortly and I'll try again.

Meanwhile, Look at my new blue mussel blister pearl. It's HUGE.... 14-15mm huge. Dark navy into white. I don't know what to do with it... I wish a could take a better picture.

Just came across this post from last year, and wondered what you had eventually decided to do with it. I'd be interested to see how it turned out.
I would think that if it's as rare as it seems it might be (are there any others--at all?) Then it might be a rare and valuable specimen just as it is.

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What a fantastic thread!!!

Pierrette, do you know how many years (or weeks, depending) it took Eric to assemble that wonderful collection of natural pearls?

Or, does he just go out and pluck them from the sea like fruit in season?

Thank you thank you for sharing such a plenitude of lovely photos and scans!!!
long time no see

long time no see

Hello guys. I've been "away"... I've gone full tilt into a new product line that has blossomed and is taking up 50-60 hrs/wk. HeartString Baby's Companions... steep learning curve! NOTHING having to do with natural pearls, cultured pearl or jewelry design.


Miriam Reed - Apart from polishing it lightly, I left it alone ;)

J Marcus- Indeed. I have gone over 10s of thousands of shells and have never seen a blister that big and/or that blue.

CarolK- The scallop pearls were assembled over a half decade or so. He did get some from other fishermen that knew he was saving them. The mussel pearls probably took 2-3 years and were found while he held a fishing permit to dig mussels on NS shores. Important to note that some of blue mussel pearls are mine. I've assembled them since 1999. His come from the Bay of Fundy. Mine, come from the Atlantic , on the South-Eastern shore of NS.

There are a few mixed species of blue mussel. M. Edulis being the best known and the one farm-grown. M. trossulus is closely related to M. edulis and sometimes mistaken for it. Then there is Modiolus modiolus, commonly known as the "Horse Mussel". These tend to be in deeper waters and shells can wash up to shore. One can even find important "horse mussel reefs".

Pearls, obviously, occur in all species. Colors seem to dependent on where they grow within the shell and on what mussel species. M. modiolus grows larger (up to 9" long), with larger pearls. They tend to be more cream-light purple. The other species (and hybrids) are smaller, but may occasionally yield beautiful, bright blue/navy pearls.

Give me a shout if you have other question or comments.

Good to hear from you again! :)

Have any new pearls come into your collection since?
Hi, yes I do. Only a few. One very large dark blue and striated white (9mm ish) mussel pearl that is interesting. It isn't "gem" quality but the size of it was surprising. I really think it comes from a M. modiolus. The others are smoother and rounder but all less than 5mm and mostly creamy-lavender in colour. I haven't had time to picture them, but when I do I will post. Certainly my "big blue" ugly ducky ;)

large -very baroque- blue mussel pearl

large -very baroque- blue mussel pearl

here is the big blue ugly duck ;)


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hehe... well, it's very interesting. I'm not sure about "swan"... The blue is great. I'm having a difficult time taking a decent photo. It's very much dark-bright blue and creamy-white. The pearl beside it is a very round, very smooth, light blue-lavender mussel pearl as well. That one is quite "large" at nearly 5.5mm but the big blue is just massive. One can see an attachment spot at the very bottom, almost like it mushroomed out.

It would make an interesting piece. I have a hard time "disrupting" my naturals though. I like looking at them... comparing them...

My question about this one though is why is it so blue? It's the same colouring (yes, I spell Canadian) as the blister pearl in one of my shells, but the bottom is all white...


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Im new here and have a beautiful 9mm/11mm atlantic scallop pearl.
I have found hundreds over the years but this one is beautiful.
Can anyone tell me where I can take it for an appraisel ??