A 5 Step Guide for Beginners

Jump Ahead: Step 1: What types of pearls to buy Step 2 What Quality Pearls to Get Step 3: Decide on the Pearl Size Step 4: What Length Pearl Necklace is Best Step 5: How to Choose Pearls  Read next step on choosing pearls

Step 3: Decide on the Pearl Size

Here are a few tips:

What do the millimetre sizes mean?
6mm is just under a quarter of an inch. That's about the size of the diameter of the eraser on the bottom of a pencil.
13mm is about the size of an old fashioned marble. That's about half an inch.

Does .5mm difference in size really look any bigger? The price difference seems a lot.
Yes, every half a millimetre of size increase does look bigger. This is because the pearls are spherical, so even a small increase in linear size is quite a big increase in volume. The oyster secretes many layers over a long time to make the pearl even fractionally bigger, so time and costs are a lot more.