Among the various types of cultivated pearls there is one particular typology, not only for its hemispheric shape but also for its method of cultivation and treatment, which give out as result the so called Mabé pearls.

Differently then “common” cultivated pearls, Mabé ones come to life as bulges of the mussel’s internal layer of mother of pearl, caused by parasites that cause an irritation: the mussel, to protect itself and calm down the irritation, covers the foreign body with many layers of nacre, creating the so called “bubble of mother of pearl”.

Through the insertion of an hemispheric shaped irritating agent, the mussel is stimulated in the production of mother of pearl around it and, after a 8 to 12 months period, the oyster is opened and the internal layer of mother of pearl with the blister pearl – or bubble – is removed and the hemispheric pearl is cut in a circular way.

The blister pearl is not to all intents and purposes a Mabé pearl yet, because it still needs some treatments: once it has been cut, the pearl is deprived by its fictitious nucleus, to be treated afterwards with particular resins and pure mother of pearl and, at last, smoothed.

After all these passages the Mabé pearl is complete. Despite this particular origin and its not entirely natural composition, this type of pearl is very appreciated in jeweller’s craft, especially on rings and earrings, and in the course of time it has earned the identification of “symbol of exclusive and élitist elegance” not only among adult women, but also men and teenagers.


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