Freshwater pearls are a kind of pearl that comes from freshwater mussels. They are produced in Japan and the United States on a limited scale, but are now almost exclusive to China. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission requires that freshwater pearls be referred to as "freshwater cultured pearls" in commerce.
Our best selection of freshwater pearls includes the classic white, natural-color lavender and pink, a mix of natural colors in our multicolor collections, as well as treated black colors, in necklaces, earrings, bracelets, pendants and sets. We offer these in every popular size, from as small as 6.0 mm, to as large as 10.0 mm.
Freshwater pearl harvests are typically bought while still in the shell. After harvest the pearls are delivered to a first-stage factory, which is responsible for cleaning and sorting the pearls by size and shape. After this process has been completed, the pearls are considered ready material for processing factories. The pearls are pre-treated (maeshori) in a warm and cold chemical solution and then bleached. The pearls that exhibit strong coloration will only go through the maeshori.
After the pearls are bleached they are drilled and then polished with a mixture of cornmeal and wax. Finally they are matched into temporary strands, which are then matched again into hanks. Hanks are composed of 5 to 10 temporary strands and are considered wholesale ready.
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