Day Three. I think one of my favourite things to do is finding pairs. It’s a task which can’t be hurried. You have a swathe of pearls before you. From hundreds of pearls you first select the ones you want – by colour and lustre.
You might end up with 20 from 500 which are themselves all AAA grade pearls. Further scrutiny rejects two or three more as not metallic enough (!)
And then I try out matches by eye and trial and error until I’m happy. And I’m fussy about matching and getting fussier. It’s very satisfying (or conversely irritating when you have a great pearl but you can’t find a match for it: is that pearl good enough to be a pendant?)
Matching white drops sounds like a pretty straightforward job, for example, but it isn’t. Shape can be drip, drop of barrel..the white can be white white, or a bit pink or a bit silver, the metallic ‘fish-eye’ can be a different shape or intensity..or simply one pearl will be bigger than the other.
And today I played with fireballs too! You have to allow some degree of laxity in the match – there will be a whole head between the pearls, although some customers still demand a perfect match from such a freeform.
I also fell to temptation from some white and coloured strands – including some incredibly colourful dyed peacock blacks -as well as a routine re-stock with 200 strands of A+ grade white 3mm roundish pearls.
Tomorrow – one 15mm+ white undrilled or half drilled perfect pearl for a ring, three big frilly purple fireballs and a couple of strands of dark, milk and white chocolate Tahitians keep calling me..!