5 S’s classification

 

Of all the pearls across the globe, there is one that is rare and revered. In pristine waters where the temperature is gentle and the atmosphere nurturing, there is a pearl with a strange perfection which bears the fingerprint of forever, the South Sea pearl.

The South Sea pearl is a labour of love, spending two silent years within the host oyster – the Pinctada maxima (commonly known as the silver or gold lip) or the Pinctada margaritifera (commonly known as the black lip). The breathtaking gift that is finally delivered into our world is well worth the wait.

AUTORE’s critically acclaimed pearl classification guide, the AUTORE Five S’s™ was launched in 2007 and continues to play an important role as an educational tool to build confidence for consumers and retailers to buy, sell and wear South Sea pearls.

Rosario Autore developed the South Sea Cultured Pearl Classification Guide which has been recognised by the respected Gubelin Gem Laboratories. The guide considers the quality of a South Sea Pearl based on its Shine, Surface, Shade, Shape and Size, and provides an in-depth explanation to understand pearl classification.

Shape

South Sea pearls come in a variety of shapes, making them an incredibly difficult gem to classify without a professionally trained eye. A product of nature, each pearl is individual and unique.

The major categories of South Sea pearl shapes are; round, near round, drop, button, baroque and circle. With the exception of round and near round pearls, there is a variation of different types within each shape category. However, to simplify pearl shapes, some general principles can be applied.

  • Round
  • Near Round
  • Drop
  • Button
  • Baroque
  • Circle
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