Please click the play button on the video below to learn about pearls or choose from among the other helpful hyperlinks below to help you narrow your search. American Pearl adheres to The Mikimoto Pearl Grading System where surface perfection or a blemish-free surface found in the AAA quality is the key to the most valuable pearls in the world.
Learn more about Japanese Akoya cultured pearls:
Kokichi Mikimoto was among the first entrepreneurs to create a cultured pearl (using the Pinctada Fucata Martensii oyster known as Akoya), the result of decades of painstaking experimentation and research. Previously, pearls were made by the oyster's defense against natural irritants (a shell fragment, a parasite), releasing layer upon layer of silky "nacre" to wrap the object, hardening to a crystalline shimmer.
Please click the Chinese Akoya cultured pearl strand you are interested in:
Kokichi Mikimoto was among the first entrepreneurs to create a cultured pearl (using the Pinctada Fucata Martensii oyster known as Akoya), the result of decades of painstaking experimentation and research. Previously, pearls were made by the oyster's defense against natural irritants (a shell fragment, a parasite, etc.), releasing layer upon layer of silky "nacre" to wrap the object, eventually hardening to a crystalline shimmer.
Kokichi Mikimoto took this a step further by introducing a foreign object into the oyster to provoke the process. Today, this foreign object is primarily cut from the pig-toe shell as it is the only foreign object that the Akoya oyster won't reject. From here afterwards, Mother Nature can create the gem. Through this process, he created the oyster farm and from this, the seed of the Akoya cultured pearl, and an entire industry, was sown. Japanese Akoya pearls, ranging in sizes from 1mm up to 10mm, are now an essential element in any woman's wardrobe, from the elegant single strand to the power-dressing double and the aristocratic triple. Japanese Akoya cultured pearls are known for their (1) thick cultivation, (2) very high luster (3) perfectly round shapes and (4) investment-grade stature. Until recently, all Akoya pearls originated from Japan as no other country could produce the equivalent quality. Today, Chinese pearl farmers have bred their oyster with the Akoya oyster and are now producing Akoya cultured pearls from China. Fine-quality Chinese pearls are primarily only available in smaller sizes. Even today, the world's finest jewelry stores such as Tiffany & Co. and Mikimoto do not offer Akoya Chinese pearl necklaces yet as the nucleating process is slightly different and the long-term durability is still unknown. However, they look good and the price is right. At American Pearl, we love quality and we want everyone to own quality pearls. After all, beauty is the reason why people treasure pearls. In the world of pearls, beauty equals quality. As such, we felt it is very important to draw a "clear line in the sand" between Chinese Akoya cultured pearls and Japanese Akoya cultured so consumers can understand the value and quality differences for themselves.