Due to the value of this jewel, they have been overexploited to a point of near extinction. But science has found a way to cultivate this jewel without compromising the existence of oysters. Pearl farms have been opened where pearls are harvested in a more sustainable way.
It takes around two and a half years to get a big enough oyster to produce a pearl .When it is ready the grafting starts .
The grafter gets a donor oyster that is usually chosen
for the beauty of it’s colors.
Then he cuts a small piece of mantle to insert in another oyster (The mantel is the organ that produces the splendid iridescence called nacre. It also determines the color of the futur Tahitian Black Pearl)
After that he inserts a nucleus, which is a round shaped bead made out of an oyster from the Mississippi river.
The oysters are then suspended on long lines in the clear water of the lagoon for about a year and a half as the pearls inside them form and grow.
Finally the oysters are removed and their pearls are gently extracted.
The same oyster can be grafted and produce a pearl up to 7 times.
Pearl sizes generally vary from around 8mm to 16mm but
exectionally they can reach 18mm or more
To date,the record diameter for a round pearl is 21mm
and for a baroque pearl is 26,95mm.
Semi round ,
Drop or pear ,
Button shape ,
Semi baroque ,
- Top gemme : Flawless,no imperfections.
- QualityA : Imperfections concentrated on 10% of the pearl surface. The rest(90%) should be flawless.
- QualityB : Flawless on 70% of the pearl surface.
- QualityC : Flawless on at least 40% of the pearl surface.
- QualityD : Flaws on more than 60% of the pearl surface.
Thick: 0.8mm or more;
thin: less than 0.8mm
The thicker the Nacre layer the more durable the pearl will be.
Your skin is a mild abrasive. Over time the rubbing action of your skin with the pearl will decrease it's nacre layer.