Black Pearl & Diamond Rings – Lustre, Contrast, Brilliance

Considering black pearl and diamond rings – Two very different gems.

Black pearl and diamond rings featuring Tahitian pearl with halo of diamonds

Black Pearl & Diamond Rings

Pearls work wonderfully well with diamonds. This is especially true if the pearl is black. The above image taken earlier this week, is ring design R1D018S and features a central Tahitian pearl. Pearl is an organic gem, prized for the luminescent and very subtle appearance. Pearls have many contrasting qualities to diamond. Firstly pearls do not need cutting. Most pearl jewellery works with the natural shape of the pearl. Cultured pearls sold commercially, exist in more plentiful supply compared to rarer natural pearls. Cultured pearls originate from freshwater or seawater. The hardness of pearls ranges from 2.5 – 4 on the Moh’s Scale, making them more fragile than diamonds, having a hardness of 10 by comparison. A general rule of wearing pearls recommends “putting on last, taking off first,” and avoiding contact with perfumes and hairspray. Since pearl is a much more fragile material, you should take care when wearing such rings, especially with a prominent gem at the centre, as in this particular piece.

Black Pearls are typically cultured in Tahitian Oysters. Many other types of shell produce cream colours, but the contrast with diamonds tends is more subtle. The striking effect of the black pearl, with the whiteness of diamonds adds impact by way of contrast to the ring.

The Three Components of Pearl Colour

Pearl colouration includes three aspects. The body colour – this is the primary colour, usually light, dark or coloured. Overtone colour is a tint that appears across the pearl. Orient is a third aspect, associated with some pearls, producing an iridescent rainbow of colours.  The above ring shows a metallic green overtone, considered a desirable trait among black pearls.

Pearl Luster

On a last note, we should really mention luster. This is an important quality of pearls. This is the brightness of the pearl, and represents the measure and quality of light being reflected back from the surface of a pearl. The accumulated layers of a pearl (the nacre) should ideally be fine, thick and fairly uniform, producing a wonderfully lustrous surface, considered a desirable characteristic.

Mark Johnson

About Mark Johnson

Mark attended Liverpool University and went on to pursue a career in the diamond industry. After more than a decade working in polished diamonds, Mark moved to the Isle of Wight where he launched Serendipity Diamonds. He works most days from their busy Ryde showroom, photographing jewellery and writing for the Serendipity Diamonds website. Anyone interested can connect with Mark on Linkedin via the profile link.

Mark Johnson

About Mark Johnson

Mark attended Liverpool University and went on to pursue a career in the diamond industry. After more than a decade working in polished diamonds, Mark moved to the Isle of Wight where he launched Serendipity Diamonds. He works most days from their busy Ryde showroom, photographing jewellery and writing for the Serendipity Diamonds website. Anyone interested can connect with Mark on Linkedin via the profile link.