There is a place for shell pearls. Designers love them for their large sizes (up to 18cm for drops) and the vast variety of available colors. Beads made out of shells are fun and should be enjoyed. Several of these steps are the same for making shell nuclei which form the basis for cultured Akoya, Tahitian and South Sea pearls, even some freshwater pearls. For cultured pearls nuclei the best shells are from Mississippi River. Our raw material is also original from Mississippi River.
Here are the steps with photos:
First, we collect good quality American Mississippi River shells as our material.
Shell pearls raw material is first cut into strips.
.Rounding shell pearls mechanically
Shaping shell pearls manually--watch those fingers!
First quality control for shell pearls.
Drilling shell pearls--one by one.
A second shell pearls quality control.
Stringing shell pearls.
Framing shell pearls.
Protecting shell pearls.
Dyeing shell pearls--many colors available.
Baking shell pearls.
Polishing shell pearls.
Final stringing for shell pearls.
Measuring shell pearls.
Final quality control for shell pearls.
Packing shell pearls.
How are shell pearls made? I hope these little photos help explain it.
These are made from shells and are not to be confused with cultured pearls. Beware that a common test for cultured pearls is to feel the friction when rubbing two cultured pearls together and that same friction is also felt when rubbing two shell pearls together. These mother of pearl MOP shell beads can be a nice substitute for cultured pearls.
You can find this shell pearls in our website and we can offer different sizes, shapes and colors according to your demands. For more details please contact firstname.lastname@example.org