Category Archives: Necklaces

Bucasi Freshwater Pearl Jewelry Sets

Distinctive Bucasi pearl jewelry sets under $50; black, grey or classic white, traditional strands and contemporary designer pieces; two, three and fur-piece sets with simulated or genuine freshwater pearls for $29.95 – $34.95, choose necklace and matching pearl earrings, or pendants, earrings and bangle bracelets. Designer quality and affordable prices. Shop online and receive free shipping within the United States on orders of $25.

Contemporary Designer Pearl Jewelry sets

Bucasi’s Swirl Collection incorporates contemporary sterling silver curls with simulated Majorca seashell pearls accented with cubic zirconia diamonds. The Majorca Swirl pearl jewelry sets come with white or black pearls and include a pendant and earrings.

The pendant necklace measures 16 inches in length and has an extra three inch extension for customizing. The matching dangle earrings have a single pearl surrounded by a ribbon-like swirl of sterling silver and CZ gems.

The silver used for both the necklace and earrings is rhodium plated which means these sets have a tarnish-free platinum-like sheen.

The three-piece Majorca pearl jewelry set is priced at just $49.95 and will be shipped free to US addresses (by Watch Material).

Modern Leaf Freshwater Cultured Pearl Sets

Other designer creations, in the same price range, are the Modern Leaf Pearl jewelry sets exclusively made by Bucasi.

For a non-traditional pearl pendant necklace and matching earrings, these pieces offer exceptional value because each set includes freshwater white pearls with a sculpted leaf design in 925 sterling silver with a platinum-like rhodium plating for durability and tarnish resistance.

This freshwater pearl earring and pendant set includes a 16 inch chain / pendant, as well as the dangle earrings which drop 1.5 inches. At the time of writing, this set is on sale for $49.95 – although regularly around $70. Take advantage of free shipping and special interest free financing options when ordering $149 or more.

Classic Pearl Elegance for Less

If you think you can’t afford a genuine strand of pearls and matching earrings, then you need to have a look at the black or white potato freshwater pearl jewelry sets by Bucasi (sold through Match Material) that include a series of 9.5mm – 10mm freshwater pearls and stud earrings for $29.95.

There are special features to this jewelry set like the delicate silver flower clasp and the sturdy way in which the pearls are strung on the 17 inch necklace. Each pearl is matched to the previous – maintaining a uniform 9.5mm or 10mm pearl size throughout. These are genuine black / white potato pearls with sterling silver accents.

The white pearl necklace/earring combo can be a lovely bridal set, for under $30, it’s hard to beat.

Chocolate Pearl Sets

Chocolate pearls can be expensive, which is why Bucasi’s chocolate pearl jewelry sets, in the Majorca Shell Pearl collection are so special – they cost $34.95.

The set includes an 18 inch strand of large 14mm chocolate pearls (in assorted hues) and matching dangle earrings.

The attention to detail on the Bucasi designer sets is remarkable considering the price – notice things like a Swarovski cubic zirconia studded ball clasp on the necklace and delicate silver beads on the earrings. All the metal is nickel free – suitable for sensitive skin.

Four-piece Pearl Necklace, Bracelet and Matching Earring Set

Many affordable pearl sets include three pieces, but this Bucasi freshwater pearl exclusive includes everything: an 8 inch stretchy pearl bracelet, a strand of 7mm – 7.5mm pearls on an 18 inch classic necklace (with a fine gold plated ball clasp), and a pair of dangling grey pearl earrings (1.5 inches long) to match. Everything is presented in a designer jewelry pouch ready to give as a gift. The set costs $39.95!

Since this set is crafted with genuine pearls, the sizes and shapes of each pearl may vary, which is part of what makes them have air of being more expensive than they actually are.

There details that must be seen to be appreciated – little things like the gold ball clasp, the golden chain-link from which the pearls dangle on the earrings, and the bracelet that accommodates a variety of wrist sizes without looking cheap. For other color choices, see the entire collection of Bucasi pearl jewelry sets – affordable; made with attention to detail.

Choose Bucasi sets or select traditional pearl pendants from PearlsOnly, recommended in related posts. You may find pearl and CZ bridal earrings in the article about Jankuo jewelry, or if you’re looking for Tahitian pearl earrings, the recommendations in the post about Amour collections may be helpful. Affordable jewelry is available online, it’s just a question of knowing where to shop.

Bucasi pearl jewelry sets recommended in this post:

1. Majorca Swirl Pearl Jewelry Sets (pendant / earrings) white / black
2. Modern Leaf Pearl Jewelry Set (silver necklace / dangle earrings)
3. Potato Freshwater Pearl Jewelry Sets (black) earrings / necklace
4. Potato Freshwater Pearl Jewelry Sets (white) earrings / necklace
5. Chocolate Majorca Shell Pearl Jewelry Set (necklace / earrings) Price: $34.95
6. Four-piece Freshwater Pearl Necklace, Bracelet and Earring Set

Where to Buy a Quality Antique or Vintage Pearl Necklace

Buying an antique pearl necklace is an investment and an act of love that requires time and patience to find exactly what you’re looking for. If going to antique jewelry dealers, flee markets and auctions, hoping to get a bargain, seems a bit too much effort, then try Adin Antique Jewelry where we have often found what we’re after and can recommend as a good source for jewelry of all types, from Victorian to Art Deco and even unusual Asian pieces.

You can find lots of seed pearl jewelry and even natural pearl creations from the 1800’s and newer items that are created in antique styles. Most of their jewelry is European in origin, but they do have a selection of American pieces as well.

Here are the top pearl necklaces we recommend from Adin. Please remember that with antique and vintage jewelry, each item is unique and one of a kind, and by the time you read this, the pieces we suggest may have sold. This sample of pearl necklace recommendations is just to give you an idea of what is available. You’ll have to go to their website directly to view their latest acquisitions and estate jewelry collections.

  1. An Art Deco 3 string pearl necklace that has delicate diamond closure and was crafted in Belgium circa 1920. The control marks on this piece are not legible so the origin and dates are based on expert analysis but not guaranteed. The piece has 32 old mine diamonds and 3 strands of lustrous pearls. They have been strung in the ‘en chute’ manner which is obvious since the smallest pearls are nearest the back closure and the largest ones are in the front. It has a beautiful closure that rests at the 3 O’clock position and will rest on the upper chest when worn. The setting is 18k white gold and the length of the shortest string is 41cm or just over 16 inches. It costs $3,250.
  2. A gorgeous piece crafted circa 1850, of Belgian origin – called the Leaves and Rose Cut Pearl Necklace has an 18k yellow gold brooch in front with pearl tassel and a rose cut diamond. This piece is unusual because the pearl necklace portion has been added to the brooch. It’s about 16 inches long costs $3,275. (Pictured at the outset of this article).
  3. The third piece we recommend is similar to number 2 above since it’s also a floral necklace with pearls, and is also crafted in the same manner, with a newer pearl necklace having been added to the 18k gold flower brooch. This piece is just over 17 inches in length and sells for $2,350.
  4. This is a delicate bow chain design with rose branch motifs and a rose cut diamond. It is believed to be French or Belgian and is a cross between a late-Victorian style and early Art Nouveau, circa 1870. The piece is 18K yellow gold and has 1 diamond and 4 seed pearls as well as a final pear shaped drop pearl and is over 19 inches long. It costs $1,750.
  5. This is a classic pearl necklace with an 18k white gold closure that is believed to be Belgian circa 1930 and is crafted lustrous white pearls of various sizes. It’s over 21 inches in length and costs just $225. This is the bargain piece of the week!
  6. The picture makes them look rather pinkish, but in fact they are white pearls. This strand is long enough to be worn draped down the front of a suite or an evening dress or even worn with the pearls hanging down the back, preferable with a backless or strapless evening gown. They are not quite opera length pearls so it would be difficult to double them to make a choker, but they could be worn with an antique brooch, or restrung to be the pearls of a choker necklace with a brooch added as a central focal point. For just over $200, use your imagination!

  7. Another good buy is the knotted purple pearl chain necklace that is accented in 18k yellow gold and silver and has 52 purple cultured pearls that have been stained and a delicate diamond closure. The piece is thought to be Belgian circa 1950. It’s over 17 inches in length and sells for just $425. This is another really good bargain for a set of vintage pearls that are 60 years old.
  8. New Vintage Pearl Necklace

  9. Adin sometimes has new pieces that are made in the vintage or antique style and this is true of the American pearl necklace we recommend that is a glorious rope length of over 44 inches and is in the style of the antique pearl scarf designs that was popular in the Americas. It’s not very old, having been made in 2001, but has a certain elegant flair that makes it versatile to be worn with a brooch or clasp or in a knot. The entire piece including the fringe is made of pearl. It costs $1,250.
  10. In a very different style, there’s an antique silver, gold, diamond and pearl creation that dates back to the Victorian days, circa 1870, that has a pearl flower pendant that’s 18k gold with a silver front and a chain necklace in pink gold. It also has just one pearl and 9 rose cut diamonds. It has clear markings of the Eagle’s head so dating it is easy. It costs just $830.

Shopping For Affordable Faux Pearl Necklace Jewelry

If you want a cheap pearl fashion necklace then you’ll want to stay away from genuine antiques and vintage pieces and stick with places like Emitations, Overstock, QVC, and even Heavenly Treasures.

Although we recommend some beautiful designs that these places have in their many pearl costume necklace collections, we must tell our readers that many of the styles are priced between $25 to $100 and for about the same price you can have a genuine freshwater necklace from Shecy Pearls.

The difference will be that buying some of the Emitations pearl faux necklace designs, for example, will offer you longer strands, larger pearls or perhaps a larger range of designer styles, but as far as cost goes you won’t save a lot buying imitations. It will end up being about style and not price in the end because cultured pearls are not expensive if you choose Akoya or freshwater pearls instead of Tahitian or South Sea varieties.

Cheap Fashion, Costume and Faux Pearl Necklace Alternatives

We’re not sure how much cheaper it can get when genuine cultured pieces are selling for under $10, but there are really cheap items at Spiegel, Newport News, Lane Bryant, and even Amazon.

Why A Faux Pearl necklace?

Perhaps the reason you’ll choose costume pearl necklace designs over the real ones is because you can have more elaborate creations for about $20 to $30, whereas that may be a very simple string of real pearls.

A Trendy Spiegal Pearl Special

In order to help you get what YOU want, we suggest Emitations, Heavenly Treasures, JewelBasket and Spiegel as well as the ones mentioned above. As an example, take a look at an elaborate faux pearl necklace from Spiegel for just $39. It has three strands of pearls plus sparkling rhinestones and black gems all intertwined in a contemporary design that can accent eveningwear or semi casual outfits. This is a long ways from a single strand or string of pearls, and is by no means going to make your trendy outfits look classic or traditional.

Emitations Faux Pearl Necklace for $25 to $30

For some drop pearl necklace designs that are ideal as bridal jewelry or suitable for young ladies, try Emitations, an online shop that specializes in costume jewelry and celebrity inspired replicas. They have pearl jewelry that starts at around $20, but the best silver and pearl necklace creations cost between $25 and $30, and there are more elaborate creations for up to $70 and $100.

What can you get for $100?

Well there’s a variety of options, but the necklace we recommend is a stunning piece that you’d be hard pressed to find in genuine pearls even for double or triple the price. The piece is called Mary’s Layered Faux Pearl & Ribbon Necklace and it actually sells for just $90. It’s a designer inspired faux pearl necklace with three strands of pearls and a contrasting black ribbon on either side. This is accented by a rhinestone studded crown and a lobster claw closure. This piece is very versatile, since it made in such a way that it can worn as a necklace or a hair accessory or a belt. It’s 30 inches in length, so the belt option will only work if you have a slender waist.

Black Pearl Necklace Under $20

If white isn’t right, then try a really cheap alternative like the Emitations black Faux pearl necklace that costs just under $20. It’s a rich color with chunky pearls to match this seasons large accessory trend. Accent a suite or dress up a t-shirt and jeans. This is very chic faux jewelry that’s sold as a set with the necklace and matching black pearl earrings. The backside of the necklace is a thick silver chain that comes with an extender so you can adjust the length. The pearls are deep purple-black and they are mostly round except for ten baroque pearls that are the central focal gems.

Pink Pearl Necklace and Bracelets for Flower Girls

A pink pearl necklace is ideal for a flower girl, and for just $22 or less you can have the perfect piece for a child and a matching ensemble for the bride or bridesmaids. And little matching bracelets start at just under $10, and pearl earrings around the same. Don’t worry, we’re not talking about cheap costume jewelry but real pearl necklace and bracelet designs that come direct from where pearls are harvested – China. Freshwater pearls are surprisingly affordable when you cut out the middlemen and buy direct and use online jewelry shops that specialize in these things, like Shecy Pearls.

The Color of Pink

Pink is a color that, when talking about pearls, can be anything from a pinkish-brown to a golden yellow peach or even white with soft pinkish undertones, or deep colors that have reddish pink or even violet irradiance. Pink also touches the champagne and ivory tones , giving them just an extra bit of blush, or may be pearls that are almost golden south sea varieties that have just a little more red than black. So what we’ve tried to do is offer you a variety of choices, but sticking with the lightest tones possible, keeping in mind that flower girl jewelry shouldn’t be too heavy or too dark, and that you may wish to match bridesmaid jewelry in the same color range.

The designs that are choker style are available through Shecy Pearls for about $91, while the strung designs with one strand and a little dangle pearl accents are about $58.

For about $39 you can have a full set of unique baroque pink pearls that look like mini cones and have lots of texture. These may be best for bridesmaids since the necklace is a little heavy for a young girl’s neck, but that depends on the child’s age, naturally.

The next fabulous option we’ve found for you is the single pink pearl floating on a silver or gold chain. This option may be cheap or expensive depending on the size of pearl you choose and if you go with a silver or gold chain.

We also show you some bridal pearl options that range in color from champagne to pink lavender or violet in tone, that go with champagne and ivory gowns.

If the entire bridal party is going to have matching pearl jewelry, then you can select similar yet not identical pink or peach or champagne and ivory tones that will compliment each person best.

Keep the lightest pinks for the flower girl and give the bride a pink that tends toward champagne, and have bridesmaids in lavender pink pearl necklace styles that are each different. There’s no need to have everyone identical. Give the necklaces or bracelets as bridesmaid and flower girl gifts and let them wear your wedding pearls for many years to come.

Drop Pearl, Pearl Pendant Necklace and Single Pearl Necklace Designs

The most contemporary designs for pearl jewelry are drop pearl necklace creations and the styles that are simple with a gold or silver chain and just one pearl.

Another popular option is a pearl pendant necklace that is versatile and can be on a string, ribbon, leather cord or on a delicate chain. These styles are also good for bridal jewelry sets where you want just a touch of a pearl accent but not a whole string to detract from the bridal gown bodice decoration.

The options are varied, from ultra casual leather, to chokers with ribbons in the Victorian style, to simple contemporary pear shaped teardrops for matching with drop pearl earrings.

There are also designs that bring both a string and a pendant together, like the one from Shecy pearls that is a choker or princess length necklace with a subtle drop pendant with 3 small white pearls and touch of sparkling diamond accent. All these designs are very affordable and come in variety of colors.

Believe it or not the gorgeous freshwater pearl design you see pictured here with the 3 pearl drops costs only a little over $50. The black Tahitian pearl designs on the other hand are simple but the one in white gold is over $400 and the one in yellow gold with a large pearl dangle costs about $1,400.

Heavenly Treasures has some unique 14k gold single pearl necklace styles with drop pearls. One is very delicate with pink pearls in a Y necklace design with oval 7mm pearls and costs just $149. It also comes in black and white pearls for a more classic look.

There’s also a classic necklace with one white round pearl that’s strung through a delicate 14k gold chain (the 7mm pearl is stationary not floating) and costs just $99. This piece is a real freshwater pearl, so it’s a good price.

Perhaps the best buy of all is a Shecy Pearl creation. It’s a white cultured freshwater pearl pendant, just one single pearl that’s between 6mm and 7mm, and is AAA quality, on a silver chain, and costs just $18!!!

This is a full round white pearl of the highest quality, high luster, almost 100% blemish free, totally smooth and with a nice thick nacre, send directly from the freshwater pearl farms in China, for under $20. This is one item that can’t be overlooked if you need a simple necklace. Ideal for bridal jewelry, for bridesmaids, even flower girls, or can be a darling little present for any young lady. Drop pearl and single pearl pendant necklace designs with high quality gems and fine craftsmanship are not usually this affordable. But you can pair this with a set of pearl stud earrings and a bracelet and still be well under budget. Have fun shopping for genuine pearl jewelry at Shecy Pearls.

Baroque, Coin and Mother of Pearl Necklace Options

A mother of pearl necklace is a great alternative to round pearls because it can be crafted in so many unique ways. One is to be have multicolored mother of pearl shell as the decorative element that makes for fabulous modern chunky jewelry pieces, but the other option is to have a necklace that looks like round pearls but have been formed from the shell or nacre, which is in fact what coats a pearl and makes it lustrous. Manufactures have perfected the art of imitating round pearl designs that are in fact mother of pearl necklaces. You can often find really unusual shapes as well, like white baroque style mother of pearl jewelry that has more texture and dramatic effect than simple strung pearls with a clasp.

Mother of Pearl Pendant Necklace by Heavenly Treasures

There are also mother of pearl pendant necklaces that are very unusual and come in beautiful colors, some iridescent others soft pinks or greens or blues. One lovely example is found at heavenly Treasures. It’s a pendant pearl design with diamonds and decorative accents strung onto a gold chain. It’s not cheap, but it’s very unique!

Baroque Pearl Necklace

Baroque pearl necklace designs are unique because the pearls are odd shapes and highly textured. If you want pearl without the traditional classic look, then baroque will be your gem of choice. They are often colorful and misshapen in wonderful ways so that even a simple string of them will look like a work of art.

Coin Pearl Necklace

A coin pearl necklace is an unusual option because each piece has a flat pearl that resembles the size and shape of a coin. These necklaces are often really affordable and funky as contemporary wardrobe accents.

If you’re wondering where to buy baroque and coin pearl necklace jewelry, then all you have to do is go to Shecy pearls and enter your choice and view the items. They’re really affordable and easy to buy online, and they come direct from the Chinese cultured pearl farms.

A Mother of Pearl Floral Bouquet Necklace

There’s just one last item we want to show you. It’s an 18k gold mother of pearl necklace with diamonds in a dangling flower pendant design that’s one of a kind. This piece is a full bouquet of white, pink, and golden mother of pearls and is hung from a solid 18kt gold chain that’s 17 inches long. It also has a total of 30 diamond accents and the equivalent to 13 carats of pearl weight in mother of pearl flowers. It’s a finely crafted piec of jewelry that’s not cheap, but is certainly a long way from a simple strand of pearls. It’s for sale at Heavenly Treasures and costs $1,950.

Tahitian Pearl Necklace Price Comparison

Black Tahitian pearl necklace choices are for those who want to invest in quality because they, and the South Sea Golden varieties, are the most expensive pearls in the world. As an example, a single 14mm or 15mm black Tahitian pearl on a delicate gold chain will cost between $1,600 and $1,400 just as a starting point.

Full strings of cultured black Tahitian pearls, even when bought from direct dealers like Shecy Pearls will still cost around $1,800 for a small string of the lowest “A” grade pearls, and the AA grade will cost about $2,600 and the best AAA grade will run you around $4,000.

For around $3,000 you can have a full string of 8mm to 11mm blackish-brown round AA pearls that have very high luster and are between 80% – 90% blemish free with good smoothness and are perfectly matched for size and quality. They will also have a thick nacre and will be strung on a 16 inch necklace with a gold or silver clasp closure.

The other thing to consider when buying a pearl necklace is that you can select a variety of colors even within the same piece of jewelry, and not all Tahitian pearls are black. In fact the range of colors is outstanding, from light silvery grey to green or blue and even yellow and bronze shades that tend toward being brown. Although are no natural chocolate pearls, there are browns that have rich golden undertones that may or may not be enhanced. The cultured ones that have been untreated and are about an AA quality will cost around $3, 500 for a 16 inch string that includes a clasp.

Where to buy a Tahitian Pearl Necklace Online

There are very few discount Tahitian pearl jewelry outlets that offer as good a deals as Shecy Pearls. Although they specialize in Asian Akoya and white freshwater pearls from the pearl farms in China, they have good connections with the Tahitian pearl farmers and offer as good a price as you’ll likely to find.

Even if you’re not interested in a full string of classic pearls, you can select simple necklaces with just one or two pearls on a cord or chain, or choose to have a custom set of pearls crafted just for you by choosing loose Tahitians in the quality you ca afford. However their collections of ready to wear single pearl necklaces are good and if you want to create sets, Shecy is the place to shop because you can buy pearl earrings and matching pearl bracelets that will be the same exact color and quality of pearl.

That is one of the biggest challenges when buying pearl jewelry, having a uniform color and size of gem in the necklace and the earrings and other pieces that are supposed to match. Especially when it comes to black or colored pearls, matching identical shades and tones as well as luster and quality is not easy. Despite that challenge, you can see the uniformity of color even in luminous strings of Shecy’s blue and green and silver black Tahitian pearl necklace designs and the care they take to offer the highest quality for the least price possible.

If you desire to match earrings and bracelets, please go to our other related topics that deal with black Tahitian pearl earrings and other matching jewelry choices.

Affordable Akoya Pearl Necklace Jewelry

We’ve been doing research on Akoya pearl jewelry for quite a while, and although we hate to sound like a broken record, we have to say that we can’t find much better prices on akoya pearl necklace designs than the ones at Shecy Pearls.

Akoya Pearls under 100 dollars

For a beautifully crafted set of akoya pearls that are of fine quality AAA or AA, you need not spend more than $50 or $100 even for really unusual designs. Simple strands can be had for $51 to $93 and elaborate sets from about $125 to over $1,000. The selection is wonderful, the colors natural, the prices low, low, low….

Cheap Pearl Jewelry Alternatives

If you want really cheap costume jewelry you’re still going to spend about $40, even at places like Overstock, Zappos, Buy com and HSN or QVC. You can also get unusual designs at places like Max & Chloe, Forzieri and JewelBasket, even designer pieces, and we recommend taking a look (in fact we really love shopping at JewelBasket and Forzieri), but if you want just pearls and the best quality you can get for the price, along with a simple system to view your jewelry online and order without hassles, just go to Shecy Pearls and do it all easily and quickly. It’s difficult for us to recommend cheaper alternatives that are fake when the real pearls are available to cheap.

Some choices that Shecy Pearl offers in akoya pearl necklace designs:

The pearl necklace we feature at the top of this article is one beautiful option that comes with cubic zirconia and red beaded accents. The strings of pearls are all genuine Akoya and the whole creation costs only $89.

A similar design only with green accents and slightly better quality pearls is just $160 to $180 depending on the length, from 16 inches and up. The pearls are AA quality, round, and are almost perfect in that they are 95% unblemished.

The great thing is that you can also custom order the clasp you desire in silver or gold and there are lots of beautiful carved and sculpted closures to choose from. On an Akoya pearl necklace, no matter how inexpensive it may be, one of the features is always the clasp design, since it is usually visible depending on how the necklace is worn.

Notice that Akoya pearl jewelry is not just white, but blue, black, pink, golden and almost all the shades and tones that pearls come in. Some of the more expensive ones are green and dark tones that somewhat resemble the luster and color of the Tahitian pearls, but for a fraction of the price.

How about a double strand of round Akoya in a deep green tone, AAA top quality lustrous pearls that are almost perfect and flawless for under $700. You could never dream of that if they were Tahitians.

If you’d like something really special, like silver grey Akoya pearls that look similar to the high-end Mikimoto pearls, then try the ones at Shecy that cost just over $1,000. It may sound like an expensive piece of jewelry, but considering that many of the Mikimoto silver pearl necklaces are thousands of dollars, this is a bargain good alternative. Remember these are AAA quality pearls that are virtually flawless.

If you’d like to learn more about Akoya pearl necklace designs or about vintage Mikimoto Pearl necklace creations or antique jewelry or cheap faux pearl necklace alternatives, then please continue exploring our related topics that interest you most.

Cultured Pearl Necklace Guide

Cultured white, pink, brown, grey and black pearl necklace styles, freshwater, akoya, Mikimoto, South Sea and Tahitian gold pearl necklace styles; faux, vintage and antique pearl creations; mother of pearl, baroque and coin pearl designs; pendant necklace ideas; long and short pearl necklace lengths; elegant pearl chokers and single pearls for young ladies and brides; double strand pearl necklace options; simple pearl drop and floating pearl necklaces, bridal sets with matching pearl earrings and bracelets – at Jewelry & Accessories we guide you through the process of buying pearls, giving you all the information you need on quality, the various types and colors, and then showing you where to buy the best pearl necklaces online. We know where to get top real pearls as well the hottest fashion jewelry designs with real and faux colored pearls.

Our Pearl Necklace Guide includes:

In This Article We Will Look At:

  • Pearl Necklace Length
  • Types of Cultured Pearls: Freshwater, Akoya, Golden South Sea and Tahitian
  • The Difference Between Cultured Pearls and Natural Ones
  • Pearl Quality and Grading
  • Colored Pearls – Cultured & Faux
  • A List of Shops Where You Can Buy a Pearl Necklace Online

In Our Related Articles We Will Examine:

  • Black Pearl Necklace Shopping Guide
  • Tahitian Pearl Necklace Price Comparison
  • Buying Freshwater Pearl Necklace Jewelry
  • Where to Buy a Mikimoto Pearl Necklace
  • Affordable Akoya Pearl Necklace Jewelry
  • Where to Buy a Quality Antique or Vintage Pearl Necklace
  • Shopping for affordable Faux Pearl Necklace Jewelry
  • Alternatives to Round Pearls – Baroque, Coin and Mother of Pearl Necklace Options
  • Drop Pearl, Pearl Pendant Necklace and Single Pearl Necklace Designs
  • The Best Pearl Necklace Set Options
  • Choosing The Perfect Bridal Pearl Necklace
  • The Best White Pearl Necklace Designs
  • Pink Pearl Necklace and Bracelets for Flower Girls

Pearl Necklace Length

Choosing the right length necklace is more important when it comes to pearls than with other necklaces since there is in fact a standard guide that you should know when shopping.

The first is the Collar length pearl necklace which is usually about 12 or 13 and may be confused with the term choker necklace which is just a tad longer. The most popular collar length pearl necklace designs are the antique multiple strands that may have a cameo in the center or may be joined in the center, all along each strand or only with a wide closure of chain or ribbon at the back. Many antique Victorian necklaces are fashioned at this length since they are worn high on the neck above a neckline or inside a collar. They are also the classic strands that were worn with off the shoulder and low neckline gowns, and are still very popular as bridal necklaces. A collar necklace has a Victorian look, and often made up of two or more strands wore high on the neck. Pearl collars can be gracefully wore with V-neck or off-shoulder tops and dresses.

The second is the classic pearl Choker which is just a little longer than the collar styles and is usually 14 to 16 inches long. This is usually a single strand of pearls that is worn freely about the neck, to peek through an open blouse or dress collar or to rest just along a rounded neckline or just along the throat when paired with a little sweater set. This length is also the second most common style that is also used to accent an open décolleté of evening dresses and bridal gowns.

The third classic style of pearls is called the Princess length which is quite a bit longer at about 17 to 19 inches. These may be multiple strands or single strands, but lay flat on the upper portion of the chest, best when worn with high neckline outfits like sweater dresses or fitted blouses and tailored dresses and suits.

The forth length is more dramatic but versatile, called the Matinee pearl length and is a single or multiple strand that is at least 20 to 24 inches long. It is fashionable this season to wear these pearls mixed with chains, sparkling rhinestone or cubic zirconia and even diamonds. They can accent a business suit, silk blouse, T-shirt or even a strapless tank top or evening dress. They are most elegant when left to their full length, although some ladies like to double them to create a choker effect. These pearl lengths are elegant and may be worn for semi-formal occasions, weddings and cocktail events.

One of the most dramatic and elegant ways to wear pearls is the fifth choice; the Opera length necklaces, which are between 28 and 34 inches long. These may be worn as a single chic strand or be bunched in clusters with other pearls or chains or sparkling gemstones to create wild fashion statements. However, the classic way to wear an opera length pearl necklace is to leave it as one long strand that is left flowing over an evening gown or suite. It is a very formal way to accent your wardrobe. It also may be doubled, twisted into a knot or clipped at the front with another jewel or brooch. Some opera length necklaces are lovely when wrapped twice around the neck to create a loose double strand choker effect.

The last length is called the Rope which starts at about 45 inches and may be worn as a choker in front with the long strand hanging down the back. It also may be doubled or tripled to create a choker, princess or matinee length. These necklaces are dramatic, sexy and very versatile, however, since they are so long, they are often faux pearls or made from the least expensive freshwater pearls to keep down the cost. They are also available in fun fashion pearl colors that can be bunched together and worn with other bling for parties and clubbing, paired with sexy tees and miniskirts or off the shoulder and strapless summer dresses.

Types of Cultured Pearls

Freshwater, Akoya, Golden South Sea and Tahitian

Freshwater: Freshwater pearls are the most common and least expensive of the cultured varieties. They may come from lakes and ponds or rivers and are not always as round as saltwater varieties. Freshwater pearls are not usually investment quality, but make fun fashion pearl necklace designs that almost anyone can afford to indulge in. The best freshwater pearls have previously come from Biwa Lake in Japan (which is not a high producer of pearls due to pollution issues), but there are lakes in the USA and around the world where these pearls are cultivated. There are a few natural pearls found in rivers, however the most famous are the Asian, Japanese and Chinese cultured varieties that are harvested from pearl farms on inland lakes. A famous freshwater pearl is called the Kasumiga and comes from a lake north of Tokyo of the same name. The Kasumiga pearl necklace and jewelry have only about a 20 year history, however they are prized since they are often very large and come in a wonderful array of colors like pink, purple and even gold. Naturally there are also white ones, but the biggest plus to these freshwater pearls is their size, very unusual for freshwater varieties, being as large as 16 mm.

Saltwater: All other pearl varieties are saltwater. The best saltwater pearl necklace strands will be South Sea or Tahitian and will be large and round, much larger and almost perfectly round, unlike the freshwater varieties. Golden South Sea and Tahitian pearls are investment quality as are the best Japanese Akoya. All varieties also have things known as blister pearls which are pearly shapes that grow on the shell of the mollusk and not in it’s tissue, however these are usually of less value and have unusual shapes or are flat on one side where they have been cut from the shell.

Akoya: Of the least expensive and high quality are the Akoya since they offer such a variety of pearl colors that come in white or slightly pink tones or even the famous yellow Japanese Akoya. The Akoya are smaller than Tahitian and other South Sea varieties, and the smallest and most affordable Akoya come from Asian countries like Hong Kong, China and others. There are however very expensive Akoya vintage pearl necklace designs that have been crafted with natural or cultured gems and are collectors items and very expensive. Mikimoto vintage pieces and new jewelry creations, are some of the most expensive and sought after in the world. Mikimoto pearl necklace designs are primarily Akoya, and they are the best of the best Japanese pearls. There are very expensive lines and more affordable creations like the Blue Lagoon Collection, but all Mikimoto Jewelry is high quality.

Black pearls are both natural, cultured and nowadays sometimes color enhanced to be richer or darker or more lustrous black. They will usually be Tahitian or may also come from a variety of places in the western and central pacific and even in from the eastern waters around California and all the way down to South America. However, since cultured pearl farms are not dependant entirely on nature, there are black cultured pearl farms almost anywhere that saltwater exist. Black, blue, grey, silver, brown and a variety of color ranges are all found labeled as black pearls. Tahitian pearls in particular may have a wide gamut of colors that even tend toward lavender and purple. Absolute black as night pearls are rare although some lighter greenish pearls may be enhanced to be blacker. Genuine Tahitian pearl necklace creations will be expensive, because, if they really come from Tahiti, they must have adhered to the very ridged Tahitian export laws that govern the quality and quantity of pearls that exit their territory.

Pearl Quality and Grading

Pearls are easier to grade than diamond and other gemstones since their quality is often easily visible with the naked eye. They are grades by size, the thickness of their nacre, their luster and color. The best pearls will be large, round, have thick nacre and excellent luster, however there is no international standard that all growers, dealers and sellers adhere to. That said the basic industry terms are as follows:

  1. The top grade will be AAA and should be flawless with maximum luster, will not have defects on the surface, in other words they will be at least 95% perfect.
  2. The next best grade will be AA with at least 75% of the surface being without flaw. They will have a high luster and medium to thick nacre.
  3. The last grade is A and is used for the cheaper jewelry creations and even set in costume or fashion jewelry creations. The pearls will have a low luster and may have substantial surface imperfections, defects and flaws. However, in many cases if you are purchasing a piece of jewelry that is ready made, the jewelers will have taken care to hide these flaws by mounting or setting the pearls in such a way as to hide the worst defects. This may result in having what appears to be a high-end pearl creation that is very affordable. This is true for rings, earrings and brooches, and less true for cultured pearl necklace designs, since pearls in strands are visible all around and do not permit camouflaging of flaws. “A” quality pearls may be used in discount pearl jewelry like pendants and other pieces that have metal findings and mountings.

The Difference Between Cultured Pearls and Natural Ones

The difference between buying a cultured pearl necklace and a natural one is huge and yet not really very different at all. Huh….? We say this because pearls that have been grown inside a mollusk or clam or oyster are real pearls, the basic difference comes down to how difficult they are to find process.

  1. Natural Pearls are wild. They happen by chance or accident and form in the tissue or somewhere inside the mollusk from a small parasite or irritant that causes the crustacean to react by secreting a pearly or nacre substance around the irritant, thereby isolating it. Then, divers go and collect mollusks and retrieve the pearls. These are natural and occur in the wild with no help from man. These pearls are very, very expensive, in part because men and women risk their lives diving and searching for them and the largest and most lustrous ones come along only rarely. A full strand of natural pearls that are all the same size and shape and quality can take years!
  2. Cultured Pearls are also real pearls that grow in a mollusk or oyster. The process is not different for the creature, but the way the process begins is that man intervenes and inserts the irritant and then waits for the mollusk to spin the magic pearl, then the pearl farmer can easily harvest the crop without dangerous dives to search deep waters. The pearls are more uniform in size, shape and color, they are also sorted, they are more abundant due to care and can be delivered much easier to international buyers, therefore less expensive. They are REAL, just with a little help from farmers. This is a simple explanation, but enough to let you go ahead and shop for some pearl jewelry without wondering if the word “cultured” you see on the descriptions means they are fake. So, now go ahead and start shopping for those lustrous beauties you’ve been dreaming about.

Colored Pearls – Cultured & Faux

The best colored pearl necklace will be real. The choices are endless if you have a decent budget, and even quite varied if you have just $50 to spend. Freshwater pearls come in pinks, lavenders, greens and blacks as well as pinks and lots of other tones.

It seems a shame to recommend dyed pearls when you can have real cultured freshwater pearl necklace designs for as little as $22 to $30.

Take a look at the rich purple and lavenders, the lustrous oink, gold, peach and even black tones you can get for the price of cheap faux pearl necklaces but are actually real.

The only exception will be rich chocolate pearls which don’t actually occur in nature so are almost always dyed. But if you want silver, grey, green, yellow, deep gold, pink, purple, luminous blue and a zillion shades of black that lean toward to brown or green or purple, then go for Shecy pearls that come from the sea or the lakes of Asia and are real and beautiful and as natural as you can afford.

A List of Shops Where You Can Buy a Pearl Necklace Online

You want to buy a pearl necklace online with as little effort as possible and with a feeling of trust that you are getting good value for your investment.

Here are the top 12 shops to buy pearl jewelry:

  1. Shecy Pearls – cultured pearls from Asia & South Seas –Akoya & Tahitian
  2. JewelBasket – real and faux pearl necklace designs
  3. Heavenly Treasures – real cultured pearls and fine faux jewelry
  4. Holsted Jewelers – pearl pendant necklace styles for as low as $26
  5. Forzieri –single pearl necklace under $400. Ideal as bridal jewelry. Very Elegant!
  6. Fine Jewelers – designer real pearl necklaces and earrings under $100.
  7. Max & Chloe – pearl bridal jewelry $80 to $180 – designer faux and cultured
  8. HSN – real to high-end faux with pearl and CZ combinations
  9. QVC UK – pearl necklace UK — South Sea Pearls under £300 and over £1,000
  10. Buy com – costume pearl jewelry and affordable cultured pearl styles
  11. Overstock – real and faux pearl necklace designs from €24 to €100
  12. Spiegel – fine costume jewelry at affordable prices – modern pearl creations

Where to Buy a Mikimoto Pearl Necklace

Buying Mikimoto pearl necklace designs that are newly crafted from numerous high-end collections is easy because they have shops worldwide and Mikimoto America that is an online store for their pearl jewelry.

A Little Japanese Pearl History

Mikimoto Japanese pearl jewelry is from the famous cultured pearl pioneer Kokichi Mikimoto who is known for having been one of the first to bring cultured pearls to the world. Kokichi Mikimoto not only devoted his life to the farming and trading of cultured pearls but also to selecting only the finest grades and most lustrous gems to set in the worlds most finely crafted designs.

In the beginning….

The Mikimoto pearl necklace, earring, bracelet and ring designs that are now so famous had their beginnings in the 1800’s when Japan was at it’s peak strength renowned for trading natural pearls. And it was then that Mikimoto, upon seeing that the wild oysters were being over harvested, embarked upon the lifelong pursuit of seeding oysters to create cultured pearls for the world. After many setbacks, Kokichi finally was able to see the results of his efforts in 1893. From the small beings of culturing white pearls, he then undertook growing black and silver pearls, and in 1914, began growing black South Sea pearls on the island of Ishigaki in Okinawa, and in 1931 finally obtained results with a 10mm black pearl. But as Mikamoto experimented, the idea of cultured pearls grew and spread throughout the islands and to all the world.

Kokichi Mikimoto Stores

The first Kokichi Mikimoto store opened in Tokyo’s in 1906, and there he was able to display and sell his high quality cultured pearls set in some of the most unique and elegant designs the world has seen. Over the course of time, Mikimoto pearl necklace, earrings, bracelets and rings have set a high standard in the pearl jewelry world that is not possible to duplicate, only imitate. Many of the pearl jewelers create replicas of what were the original Mikimoto pearl rings and necklaces because they are distinctive, elegant and known around the world. Mikimoto stores are now all around the world, and in keeping with modern times, also sell their exclusive products online.

Mikimoto Vintage Pearl Necklace

For Mikimoto vintage pearl necklace and bracelet designs you will have to browse places like Trocadero and then get links to the specialty antique dealers that have the specific items. There’s no easy solution to finding antiques of this nature. But you can try Antique Jewelry Mall.

We found one beautiful vintage Mikimoto bracelet for sale at through Trocadero, but it actually sells through Tildenwood Antiques for $1,250.

Ruby Lane also has a few pieces of gorgeous Mikimoto Pearl necklace strings, one that’s selling for $1,495, actually a vintage set, circa 1960s, with fifty-six 7.4mm – 7mm pearls in an 18.5 inch strand.

For more information on pearl necklace designs and vintage jewelry options please see our other related topics.