These included the very first cultured pearl
, up to an array of limited-edition pearl creations that have become iconic to the brand.
Since the mid-1970s, it has supported cultured pearl
production in French Polynesia and the Cook Islands, which today is valued at around $170 million per annum.
The sale also features a breathtaking baroque cultured pearl
and diamond dress ring, estimated at between PS1,500 and PS2,000, A Ceylon saphire and diamond pendant could realise more than PS3,500.
Other items being sold in the auction include a mid-20th century 18-carat gold emerald and diamond three-stone ring priced at PS60-90, a Mappin & Webb 18 carat gold diamond heart pendant,PS150-200, and a pair of Boodles 18 carat gold cultured pearl
ear studs, PS60-90.
Several cultured pearl
varieties are used as starting materials, including both freshwater (souffle and drop) and saltwater (Tahitian baroque, drop and keshi; golden and white South Sea baroque, drop and keshi; Sea of Cortez keshi; and Vietnamese blue akoya).
But from the 1930s onwards pearling suffered twin onslaughts: the cultured pearl
, a technique developed by British biologist William Saville-Kent to create a simulated pearl, which was successfully marketed by the Japanese; and the discovery of oil on the island.
During that summer, while the pearling fleet was at sea, a cheap alternative from Japan, the cultured pearl
, poured intothe international markets wiping out the natural pearl industry.
X-rays confirmed one was the real thing, while its pair was a cultured pearl
Mikimoto, the originator of cultured pearls
since 1893, has launched its new love collection - a series of intricate pendants and delicate rings featuring the Japanese Akoya cultured pearl
and designed around the word 'LOVE'.
They comprise a freshwater cultured pearl
, opal and diamond torsade necklace by Van Cleef and Arpels (PS6000-8000); a mid 20th century rock crystal Lily of the Valley spray brooch, also by Van Cleef and Arpels (PS4000-6000) and an Italian aquamarine torsade necklace (PS6000-8000).
RAK Pearls is currently the region's only cultured pearl
producer, and in terms of harvest potential now has some 40,000 oysters maturing
Try the tooth test: when rubbed against the enamel of your tooth the fake is smooth but a real or cultured pearl