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A freshwater pearl necklace is often the beginning of a girl's love affair with real pearls.  These pretty pearls are not to be looked down on just because they don't cost as much as other cultured pearls.  They have several advantages:

  • Freshwater pearls naturally come in several beautiful colors.  Not everyone likes the traditional pearl style.  But Freshwater pearls come in so many colors there is usually something that appeals to everyone's taste.
  • They can be different shapes.  Some prefer classic round pearls whereas others prefer other shapes and Freshwater pearls come in many shapes.
  • They sometimes have extraordinary orient.  This is a rainbow effect that appears on some pearls.  Metallic pearls and baroque pearls are a good place to look for pearls with orient.
  • Freshwater pearl necklaces can easily be obtained in ridiculously long strands that are really fun to wear.
  • A Freshwater pearl necklace is quite durable.  A slight scratch on a saltwater pearl could cause it to begin to peel, because the pearly nacre is relatively thin.  But Freshwater pearls are cultured without any shell nucleus, so the nacre goes right to the centre of the pearl.

So which pearl necklace should you choose?  White pearls in the 6-7mm, 7-8mm or 8-9mm sizes are the classic pearls.  For something a bit artistic and youthful for someone who doesn't want traditional try black pearls, lavender pearls or pink pearls.  These come in a variety of shades.  All but the black are natural colors straight out of the mollusc.  Jewellers will try to choose pearls that match to make a necklace of a uniform color.  But for something different, try requesting a combination of three different shades for a very subtle multicolor look.  Most pearl companies will create a custom made necklace, especially if you request it when they aren't in the middle of a big holiday sale.

Unusual metallic pearls with strong orient are a great find.  A pendant with one of these pearls is a beautiful and unique piece of jewelry.  Keep your eyes open for some of these beauties.