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Celebrate June's Birthstone: The Radiant Pearls

Written by
Alyssa Webb
Published on
July 19, 2023 at 5:48:22 AM PDT July 19, 2023 at 5:48:22 AM PDTth, July 19, 2023 at 5:48:22 AM PDT

Pearls have captivated humanity with their timeless beauty for centuries. As one of nature's most exquisite treasures, pearls have adorned royalty, symbolized purity, and enhanced the temptation of jewelry throughout history. Explore the fascinating world of pearls and pearl jewelry through time, the sourcing of pearls, styling tips, and more to help you discover your attraction and inspiration to these exquisite gems in all their glory.

The History of Pearl Jewelry

The history of pearl jewelry stretches back thousands of years, with its origins intertwined with human civilization. Pearls were among the earliest gems to be used for adornment, symbolizing wealth, status, and beauty in many ancient cultures. The fascination with pearls as a fashion trend can be traced back to ancient Egypt, where they were cherished by pharaohs and nobility. Cleopatra herself was known to have a deep love for pearls and often wore them to showcase her power and allure.

In subsequent eras, pearls continued to hold a prominent place in jewelry fashion. The Roman Empire saw pearls as a symbol of wealth and social status, adorning both men and women. During the Renaissance period, pearls reached the peak of their popularity, with European nobility showcasing their opulence by wearing elaborate pearl jewelry. Pearls also held religious significance and were frequently used to adorn religious artifacts and sacred objects.

Today, pearl jewelry remains a timeless and versatile choice. Designers experiment with innovative styles, combining pearls with precious metals and gemstones, appealing to a wide range of tastes. Pearls are cherished for their elegance and sophistication, adorning both formal and casual attire. From classic pearl necklaces to contemporary pearl earrings and bracelets, these lustrous gems continue to captivate and enchant, symbolizing timeless beauty and refined fashion sensibility.

Sourcing Pearls

The sourcing of pearls is a meticulous and fascinating process that requires patience, expertise, and a deep connection with nature. Pearls are primarily sourced from oysters, specifically those belonging to the saltwater and freshwater varieties. Cultured pearls, which make up the majority of pearls available today, are created through a delicate procedure known as pearl farming. Skilled pearl farmers carefully introduce a small irritant, often referred to as a nucleus, into the oyster, triggering a natural defense mechanism. Over time, the oyster coats the irritant with layers of nacre, a luminous substance produced by the mollusk, resulting in the formation of a pearl. The nurturing process involves maintaining the ideal conditions for the oysters to thrive, including water quality, temperature, and feeding routines. This intricate dance between human intervention and the oyster's natural processes yields pearls of exceptional beauty, each one unique in its color, shape, and size.

Akoya Pearls at Washington Diamond

At Washington Diamond, we take pride in showcasing the exquisite beauty of Akoya pearls in our hand-picked pearl jewelry collection. Sourced primarily from the coastal waters of Japan, these pearls are cultivated with meticulous care, a process that involves implanting a nucleus within the Akoya oyster, triggering the formation of layers of luminous nacre. Renowned for their brilliant luster and near-perfect round shape with a pink-warm tint, Akoya pearls embody a timeless elegance that appeals to those seeking sophistication. Our diverse range of Akoya pearl jewelry includes earrings, bracelets, strands, and pendants, each piece graciously designed to highlight the natural beauty and refinement of these pearls. 

Pearl Jewelry Styling Tips

Pearls are versatile gemstones that can complement a wide range of styles and occasions. Here are some styling tips to help you make the most of your pearl jewelry:

Pearl Strands or Pearl Necklace Fashion

For a timeless look, opt for a simple strand of pearls or a pearl pendant necklace. These delicate pieces add a touch of refinement to any outfit, whether it's a little black dress or a crisp white blouse.

Mix & Match

Don't be afraid to experiment with different types of pearls and combine them with other gemstones or metals. Mixing our Akoya pearl jewelry with colorful gemstones can create a contemporary and eye-catching look.


Embrace the trend of layering by combining multiple pearl necklaces of varying lengths. This creates a dynamic and modern effect, adding depth and texture to your ensemble.

Statement Pieces

Make a bold statement by choosing pearl jewelry with unique designs or large, baroque pearls. These striking pieces can elevate a simple outfit and serve as a conversation starter.

Bridal Poise

Pearls have long been associated with bridal jewelry, symbolizing purity and timeless love. Incorporate pearls into your wedding ensemble with pearl drop earrings, or a pearl strand bracelet for a touch of classic elegance.

Inspiring Pearl Fashion

From the regal elegance of royalty to the contemporary flair of red carpet celebrities, pearls have left an indelible mark on fashion across centuries. In iconic artworks to modern-day style icons, discover how these pearls continue to inspire and elevate fashion to new heights.

Eras Ago to Today's Royalty

Pearls have long been associated with royalty, symbolizing wealth and status. Throughout history, monarchs and nobility adorned themselves with lavish pearl jewelry as a display of their power and prestige. From Cleopatra to Queen Elizabeth I, pearls graced the necks, ears, and crowns of legendary figures, captivating the imagination with their refined royalty.

Captured in Art: "Girl with a Pearl Earring"

The iconic painting "Girl with a Pearl Earring" by Johannes Vermeer immortalizes the elegance of pearls. This masterpiece, dating back to the 17th century, showcases a young woman adorned with a single pearl earring, evoking a sense of mystery and sophistication. The painting continues to inspire fashion and cultural references.

On the Red Carpet

Pearls have graced countless red carpets, adorning style icons like Audrey Hepburn and modern-day trendsetters like Harry Styles. Hepburn's timeless elegance was often accentuated by pearl necklaces and earrings, while Styles has embraced pearls as a bold statement in men's fashion, challenging traditional gender norms. Their influence on red carpet fashion highlights the versatility of pearls, transcending generations and genres.

Everyday Fashion

Pearls are no longer reserved for special occasions; they have become a staple in everyday fashion. From pearl-studded denim jackets to delicate pearl bracelets, contemporary fashionistas incorporate pearls into their casual attire, adding a touch of opulence to everyday wardrobe. Additionally, pearls continue to be a beloved choice for brides, symbolizing purity and timeless beauty on their wedding day.

Whether worn in classic or innovative ways, pearls remain a timeless fashion staple, inspiring and captivating fashion enthusiasts around the world.

As we conclude our journey into the world of pearls, we celebrate their illustrious history and the modern resurgence of pearl jewelry as a symbol of self-expression and fashion-forward sensibilities. From the legendary figures of the past to the trailblazing styles of celebrities, pearls continue to captivate and inspire us. By embracing the beauty and versatility of pearls, we invite you to embark on your own exploration of modern pearl jewelry, creating a unique, discerned style statement to your everyday life.