Mary?s Timeless Treasures Scamming Pearl Buyers on Ruby Lane


Well-known member
Feb 13, 2007
As many of you know, we buy and sell Japan Kasumi pearls which we buy directly from the farmers in Japan. I have posted numerous photos on pearl-guide and on our website, have fielded hundreds of inquiries, and mailed out hundreds of packets of information about these very special pearls. All of this, I am happy to do. I am happy because I love these pearls, I love the honor with which they are produced, I love the look of them. I love that they are from ?beyond the mist?.*
Over the course of the last year, I have been contacted by several people world wide asking me questions about pearl strands and necklaces being called Kasumi pearls from Japan on the Mary?s Timeless Treasures site on Ruby Lane.*
Each time, I followed the inquirer to the site and detailed why these pearls could NOT be fresh water pearls FROM JAPAN. In fact just last week, I had a lengthy conversation with a gentleman, who was so happy that he had chosen to first research these pearls before buying from her. We spoke at length about the history of Japanese fresh water pearl farming, about the rise of Chinese fresh water bead nucleated pearls, and about how the market has come to understand the difference. We spoke about my (and Fuji?s) involvement with the farmers, over the course of the last TWO DECADES!*
For many months, I have chosen to ignore the Mary?s Timeless Treasures scam of selling Chinese fresh water pearls as Japanese Kasumi. I have watched as she copied and pasted our descriptions into her own site. I have chosen to ignore it because I hoped that is was as simple as her simply being uneducated about her own products. I hoped that she was simply being fooled by her own supplier. I also ignored it, because I have my hands full running two established pearl businesses, and did not want to involve myself in her sullied waters, especially if she had never contacted me directly for information.*
Now it has come to my attention that not only is she misleading people by writing completely false accounts and descriptions, she is using my company name in her descriptions!

I am now offended. I am offended that she is using the hard work of these farmers at Lake Kasumi ga Ura to her own benefit by lying about the provenance of the pearls she is selling. I am offended that she is using my company name in what I believe to be an obvious attempt to increase her search rankings.*
The farmers at Lake Kasumi ga Ura are people I have known for a long time, through thick and thin. These are people I have great respect for. These are people who continue to raise pearls against all odds (including but not limited to : environmental catastrophe in the body of water where they farm, working so hard to clean up their environment ensuring clean water not just for their mollusks but for the fishermen and animals who thrive there, traveling to many countries to find other species that may work in their lake, finding a way to hybrid a mollusk to ensure strength and pearl farming possibilities, waiting MANY years before they could again farm pearls, working with the Japanese government to secure their own farms and their environs, finally being recognized by a small portion of the market for their hard work and perseverance, enjoying some years of health for themselves and their way of life, then losing their home to a fire, two years later being hit by Japan?s most devastating earthquake and losing a substantial part of their farm to damage, again rebuilding their house, and all the while continuing to honor their craft as*Chinese fresh water bead nucleated pearls grew not only in size but in a quantity unimaginable! The rise of Chinese pearl production does not keep them from continuing to grow pearls in their tiny lake, it does not change how they do business. This is the magic of these pearls, and the people who farm them. We are not getting rich selling their pearls, we buy them because we honor what they are and the people who farm them (and because we think they are beautiful and precious).*
*I am offended that she has not ceased her scam despite many people posting on various forums about the obvious discrepancies in her story. I am sorry that she has not taken the time to learn about pearls.*
Here is a link to a thread on Pearl-guide started about Mary?s timeless treasures and her supposed Japan Kasumi pearls :*
Here are just a few of those discrepancies , at the bottom are links to some of her current listings.*

Mary?s Timeless Treasures of Dallas, Georgia claims:*
That she bought all of these pearls in a lot that had been stored since 1990.*
Fact: When I started working with Japan Kasumi pearls in 1995 their production was SO small, I don?t think making even ONE strand was a possibility. One of the first pearls I drilled (in that same year) was a Japan Kasumi, when Fuji came home to find that I had put a hole straight through it, he was very angry! That?s how special each and every one of them was.. and is!*
The first time we had enough pearls to lay out a strand was approximately 1999, and it was a VERY big deal. It sold, and that was an even BIGGER deal!*
She claims that the pearls in her strands range in size from 16.2mm- 23mm
Fact: These sizes are in such small quantities from this Japan Kasumi even today that we struggle to produce even a few strands per year with only the center pearl reaching such a size. It is simply impossible that these are* ?vintage? Japan Kasumi pearls because prior to 1995 (when I was introduced to them).. even a 12mm fresh water pearl was a very rare occurrence.*
She claims that her pearls are from Japan Lake Kasumi ga Ura, and yet they sell for MUCH less than we can buy them from the farmers directly IN JAPAN.*
Fact: Japan Kasumi pearls are not inexpensive, they are rare. They are not for everyone, and with the sizes and quality being achieved from their Chinese counterparts there is no question, if money is what matters most? but I guarantee that there is NO WAY she paid less that $543 for a strand of Japan Kasumi pearls, and certainly not in the late 1990?s.*
She claims to have sold Prized Colors Kasumi Black Cherry / Pistachio pearls from Japan.*
Fact: Japan Kasumi pearls are NEVER treated. They are rubbed in salt after harvest to clean off the organic material from the host mollusk. No one in their right mind would ever dye them black/cherry/pistachio. Nor do black/pistachio colors EVER come naturally in ANY species of fresh water pearl.*

Mary?s timeless treasures has, at very least, learned to paraphrase, and is no longer quoting Fuji or myself verbatim, but if you read the ?about the pearls? pages on either or* you will see what I mean about the language and the phrasing. She is NOT the only dealer calling Chinese fresh water pearls ?Kasumi pearls?.. the internet is full of that. There are many people who continue to copy and paste our photos and content with out consent.* What bothers me is that she is claiming their provenance and using that name in deceit.
Be warned, stay on Pearl-Guide, be informed, before you make a purchase (of any type of pearl)!!!!
It is one thing to get the name wrong.. In this case I can no longer believe that this is an honest mistake. Mary?s Timeless treasures is not the first to try to scam the pearl buyers of this world, but she has crossed a line, she is hurting our businesses, she is offending the honor of the hard working farmers. She is wasting my time, and the time of the people who contact me to ask if she should be trusted. She is selling Chinese fresh water pearls and it is a scam. *
All of this said : we are not the ONLY people who sell Japan Kasumi pearls, (we do wholesale them to a handful of jewelers and designers world wide) and I am happy to recommend other dealers that I am confident are honest business people. I cannot and will not attempt to try to control the misinformation. I can only try my best to educate people. I try my best to do so. I am happy to share our photographs and experience with almost anyone who asks.*

I would really appreciate it if people would file formal complaints to Ruby Lane in an attempt to stop this in it?s tracks. This has gone too far! *
Here is a link to make a formal complaint :*

Sincerely, Sarah Canizzaro
Wow. I remember this Ruby Lane seller when she was discussed last year and chastised by Pattye for selling misrepresented products. Dyed freshwater as Tahitians and Chinese pearls as Japanese Kasumi if I recall correctly. But using your company name and actually putting you down when SHE is the one cheating people. That's a new level of unethical behavior.

Mary's Timeless Treasures ... thmbs down!
Sarah, I am so sorry to hear what this woman is doing, and how disturbing it is for you. As you said, education is the only answer, and I'm so grateful for you and all the others here willing to share knowledge so generously to the benefit of everyone. I've seen these postings as well and will file complaints whenever I can. Thank You all for the knowledge!
Sarah, I am sick and furious about this.

Each of us can email a link to this thread to the officers of Ruby Lane. Their credibility as a reputable site is at risk, beyond the issues with Mary's Timeless Treasures. (If you have a pearl credential, now's the time to trot it out.)

Some other site violations in addition to the specific items above:
1. unprofessional conduct and practices
2. Lists items as vintage that are less than 20 years old.

What else can we do, ideas please, everyone!
Sarah I am so sorry this is happening to you. I will help any way I can. I have filed a complaint.

Do you think maybe it's time for a cease and desist letter from your attorney?
I don't buy from Rubylane anymore, not for quite a number of years. Is PearlDream's suggestion a better option?
Sarah, I am sick and furious about this.

Each of us can email a link to this thread to the officers of Ruby Lane. Their credibility as a reputable site is at risk, beyond the issues with Mary's Timeless Treasures. (If you have a pearl credential, now's the time to trot it out.)

Some other site violations in addition to the specific items above:
1. unprofessional conduct and practices
2. Lists items as vintage that are less than 20 years old.

What else can we do, ideas please, everyone!

There are a lot of email addresses on that About Us page. Maybe an email to each would make some waves.

I'm sorry you have to go through this Sarah. I can imagine how infuriating it must be.
Thank you all.. SO much. I really appreciate your kind words, family like support... and action!
It's really not my style to go on public "rants"... and while it is disturbing to see our company name used in those false descriptions.. it is much more disturbing to feel it is disrespectful to the farmers of Japan Kasumi pearls who work so hard.

Pearl Dreams : I'll need to consult about that, I have a pretty busy couple of weeks ahead of me. I will work to get through the Tucson exhibition first! :)
Hopefully Ruby Lane higher ups will listen to us and discipline her. Sarah, have a wonderful time in Tucson!
Many times I rail about our very regulated market in Europe where the consumer has all the rights - or so it feels. But in this situation if Mary was anywhere in Europe one email or phone call to Trading Standards would shut her down.
Any duped customers may have recourse to getting their money back in basic contract law in the USA..I assume there are still misrepresentation rules. At least you could suggest this to anyone who contacts you after the event. A few successful legal actions, with damages and costs against might just deter (and you and Fuji as expert witnesses on big expenses also charged to her)
Sarah, I am so sorry that you, your company and the pearl farmers have been subjected to this scam and I hope that all of our efforts will get her off of that site and leave her with a nice stash of fake Kasumis.
I think a consultation with your attorney regarding the unauthorized use of your business name might be a good idea. Sometimes even if you have no intention of pursuing a matter through the courts (which is expensive and time consuming, without any guarantee of success), a cease and desist letter on official letterhead is enough to make people sit up and take notice and stop what they are doing. Especially if what they are doing may constitute defamation and/or fraud.
FYI, I did receive a reply to my email as follows: (It included a link to this thread, of course.)

"Dear Patricia,

Thank you for writing to us about this complex situation. I can see
that you are passionate about pearls, and that they are accurately
presented for sale.

Ruby Lane also considers this to be important. To that end, we are
thoroughly investigating the matter you have presented to us.

For privacy reasons, we cannot share the outcome of our findings
with you, or any actions we may or may not take with the shop owner.

Kindest Regards,
Rob Spear
SVP of Customer Support"
I am so sorry to hear this news, Sarah! I can't believe it. I also will send formal complaints to the links above asap. Best of luck dealing with this duplicitous person.
Thank you Marianne! I adore you.
Thanks Pearlescence and cmd2014 for your advice.
Thank you Pattye, Jeremy and CathyKeshi for taking action and helping me get the word out there.
Pkinnew and Katbran: fingers crossed! I hope she simply stops claiming false provenance.. Better yet that she gets on Pearl-Guide and starts learning and stops feeling like the only way is a dishonest one!
I really appreciate all your kind words and effort with this!
I stayed up way past my bedtime to write everyone on the list, plus the general email. I wrote a really long and blistering letter to the general email first, but I messed up on copying it.

I wrote a shorter, calmer letter to the officers, knowing they were getting more than one:

Dear ----.

My name is Blaire Beavers. I am the managing editor of Pearl Guide News. I am a graduate gemologist and a recognized expert in pearls. You have a seller who has lied outright about what she is selling to make more money -- and -- has stolen the good name of an important pearl industry seller who has worked very hard to achieve her sterling reputation.

Several people have contacted Mary's Timeless Treasures repeatedly to tell her that she is misrepresenting her products. She tells people she will fix it and then goes right back to lying about her products to make higher sales - that is fraud.

I would be happy to go through her inventory and point out all the new (not vintage) strands of pearls that are variously labeled at Tahitian pearls (dyed Chinese freshwaters), South Sea pearls (freshwaters) and Japanese Kasumi pearls (Chinese freshwater ripple pearls that cost 1/20th of what the real Japanese Kasumi pearls sell for.). Making matters worse, she has been using the name of Kojima Pearl Company to sell them.

This can't continue. She hasn't listened to complaints and has continued to cheat people. Do you want Ruby Lane to be associated with someone who is so patently dishonest?

I hope not.

Do you think they have more than one store? Their existing for sale inventory is pretty small at the moment.