Jod ie Fot$tert.

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Jod ie Fot$tert.
.Jodie Fot$tert.:-Oscar
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new
this
month
Everywherewe look we see pearls,South
Sea pearls to be specific. While shimmering colors and intriguing
shapes caught our eye, we also knew we were feeling shy about making an investment purchase in pearls. And so our new column, Wise
Buys, was born. This first one gives you the vocabulary, prices and
background you'll need to buy pearls you'll,keep for a lifetime. And if
you aren't ready for the real thing, you'll also learn where to get the
look for less, We hope you enjoy our new buyer's guide to accessories,
housewares and fashion accoutrements that are part of living in style.
IN
STYLE
S H O.P P E R
.l
wlse?uys
Dearl
I'.
luxurxous,
south seasare
the most
couetedpearls
right now
o
lam
Maybe it was ElizabethTaylor, rising out of the waters like Aphrodite
in her Black Pearlsperfume launch.
Maybe it's a lust for luxe. Salesof
South Seapearlssurged23 percent
in t996, and thesemystical gifts
from hardworking South Pacific oysterswill be bigger still in '97. Oscar
de la Renta and Karl l-agerfeld
flaunted jawbreaker South Sea
pearls,which can be twice the size
of the familiarJapanesevariety, all
over their Parisspring/summer'97
runways.Pearlsspeakof
'
classicelegance,but
1. Cynthia Wolfi's keshis,
South Seassayit with
$765 (Barneys, 310-276-
a bit more oomph.
44001.2. South Sea earrings
The rangeof irides-
with diamonds, 92,875nand
cent colors-white,
3. Drops on 14k-gold chain,
silver,gray, blue,
$3,680; both Erica Courtney
pink, gold, pista-
(Artsiphartsi, I 13-348-483e).
chio, peacock
4, Cynthia Bach's South Sea
black and black-
rings: green, $3,500; white,
and the pearls'
$2,800 (Neiman Marcus,
310-550-5900).5. Baroque
natural luminosity
radiandy flatter the face.
South Seas by Wendy
No small perk. So don't be afraid to
Brigode, $5,720 (Bergdorf
buy thesebig babies....Our rip-and-
Goodman, 212-7 53-73OOl.
saveguide.-NancyAngiello D
SouthSeapearls
sAy "Notice me,"
bwt neuer "I Am
tbe screaming
queenof glitz."
Silver South Sea drop
on pinkfreshwater
strand, $250; Bettina
Silver-graySouth
Duncan (sold at
Sea drop on gray
Neiman Marcus,800-
freshwater strand
Light gray South Sea
937-9146)
with 14k gold, $520;
drop on strand of
Baroque South Sea
Bettina Duncan
pale silver baroque
pearl strand in
akoya pearls, $900;
golden pistachio,
Black South Seas
Bettina Duncan
$4,+oo;by Talluleh
with peacock hue;
(at Jennifer Kauf-
$28,300 (Mikimoto,
man, 310-854-1058)
212-664-1800)
low to high
one sensationalsouth seapearl can be attainable
pearltalk
careand handling
How to keep pearlsgorgeous?Treat them
I Don't usecommercialjewelry cleaners
To make the right choice,know
like the little celebritiesthey are:
on them,no paste,nothing.
how to talk the talk.
I Don't let any alcohol-based
products
I To avoid stretching,make sureyour pearls
Gultured:A tiny beadis inserted
touch them-that meansperfume,body
are stmng on silk, not nylon, and that a knot
in an oyster to grow a pearl. Cul-
lotion, shampoo.Absolutelyno spraying
separateseachpearl;this keepsthem from
tured pearlsare today's standard.
anywhere near pearl territory-even if you
rubbing againsteachother. Ifyou wear them
Natural:Very rare pearls
let the perfume dry before claspingon your
a lot, take your strand to be checkedor re-
that grow in the oysterwithout
pearls,it will rub off on them.
strung once ayearby aqualifiedjeweler so it
human intervention
I No swimming-pools or otherwise. "If
doesn't break. It's time when a pearl slips
Luster:The pearl'ssurfaceshine
you do, you're going to trash themr" says
over a knot or if the silk looks frayed.
and the depth of its glow. High-
JenniferKaufman,whoseL.A. jewelry
I How to deal with the fear of leavingyour
er luster meansbetter quality.
store lurespearl loverslike CameronDiaz.
pearlsfor repair? You are entitled to witness
Surface:A smooth surface-no
Somepeopleare under the impressionthat
the jeweler's work. If you do leavethe pearls,
cracks,no holes-is the ideal.
since pearls come from the ocean,a salt-
count them beforehand,but know that the
Shape:Perfectlyround are rare
water swim is OK, Your pearlsmay be
necklacewill be shorterafter restringing.
and the cream of the crop.
homesick,but you've got to be firm-they
\Tearing a strand causesit to stretch, so the
Size:Akoyas can go to ro,5 mm;
are not allowed to go back.
new one will naturally be tighter and smaller.
SouthSeasto 20 mm; r mm can
up a pearl'sprice roo percent.D
THE
IN
STYLE,
SHOPPER
tfl
?eroreyou ?uy ...
theworldof thepearl
I(now that fakesand impostorsabound.
T YP E
DETAIL
cosr
And sinceSouthSeasare a reiativelynew industry,
somesalespeople
aren't that knowledgeable.
South Sea
Blackor Tahitian
Exceptionallylargecultured
Fortunoff earrings
I Ask for a receiptthat statesyou've bought a
peari from oysters,found
start at $350; one
SouthSeaCultured Pearlor SouthSeaNatural
only in the South Seas,in irides-
Tiffany triple-
Pearl(before1899,youcouldn't buy cultured).
cent shadesof white, cream,
strand necklace is
This holds the storelegallyresponsible.
silver-pinkand gold
S1 .85mi l l i on.
I
Also South Seacultured,also
Fortunoff earrings
and "Majorca Pearl" are all terms for fake.
I lWatchout for "pearls" made of ground-up
megasizepotential,from
start at $350;
fish scalesand lacquerbase.How to know? If the
the black-lippedoyster,in shades
Mikimoto neck-
price is unusuallylow, be suspicious.
of silver-gray,green,peacock
laces run $20,000-
I Somepearlsaretinted or irradiatedto enhance
black, and black
$ 1 0 0,000.
color and disguiseflaws.
"South OceanPearl,""SouthPacificPearl"
I Tooth test:Slowlyand gentlyrub the pearl
South SeaKeshi
ff
Akoya
A fluke, theseoftentimes
Cynthia Wolff
againstyour teeth.If it hasa gritty feel,it's real.
flattened,cornflake-shaped
bracelet, $700;
Fakesare smoothand siippery.
pearlsgrow on their own along-
necklace, $2,000
side a cultured pearl within
at Barneys in
the oystershell.
Beverly Hills
thelookfor less
The traditional cultured round
Fortunoff ear
At the Chanel couture show in Paris, designer l(arl
peari;smallerthan the South Seas,
studs start at $35;
Lagerfeld was asked why his model walked the runway
produced in oystersofJapan.
necklaces at
in only one pearl earring. "At $3o,ooo an earring," he
Hillary Clinton often wearsa
$225; a Mikimoto
replied, "you only need one. " Given that a classicstrand
triple strand of akoyas.
n e ckl ace,$1,050
of South Seasand a Mercedes can run about the same
price (say,$6o,ooo),you'll be happy to know that there
Freshutater
Nugget-shapedpearlsgrown in
Fortunoff neck-
are great fakes. The best: Erwin Pearl's European glass
musselsin lakesor rivers.Often
laces start at $40.
necklace (here, in dark gray) is $38, and also comes in
lesspricey than other pearls
Jennifer Aniston
black, cream and white. As the prices go up ($48, $8o,
becausethey are more abundant
has worn fresh-
$165),the clasps get fancier. Carolee (Soc>zz7-
and easierto grow.
waters on Friends.
6533) has small black pearl look-alikes for
$9o and gigantic ones for $r5o. It's
An irregularlyshapedpearl of
Fortunoff South
not easyto tell the real from
any kind, thesecan be a teardrop,
Sea necklaces
the faux, but if someone
bum pyor ri d g e d .Ve ry tre n d y
start at $300;
approachesyou with
now-style mavenslove their
Mikimoto's start
jeweler'sloupe in
earthy,imperfect beauty.
at $23,000.
hand-run.
Erwin Pearl's,
of glass, $38
(800-797-5378)
SowtbSeapearls
sdy "Notice me,"
bwt neuer "I dm
the screaming
queenof glitz."
Silver South Sea droP
on pink freshwater
strand, $250; Bettina
Silver-graySouth
Duncan (sold at
Sea drop on gray
Neiman Marcus,800-
freshwater strand
Light gray South Sea
937-9146)
with 14k gold, $520;
drop on strand of
Baroque South Sea
Bettina Duncan
pale silver baroque
pearl strand in
akoya pearls, $900;
golden pistachio,
Black South Seas
Bettina Duncan
$4,400;by Talluleh
with peacock hue;
(at Jennifer Kauf-
$28,300 (Mikimoto'
man, 310-854-1058)
212-664-1800)
low to high
one sensationalsouth seapearl can be attainable
pearltalk
careand handling
How to keep pearlsgorgeous?Treat them
I Don't usecommercialjewelry cleaners
To make the right choice, know
like the little celebritiesthey are:
on them, no Paste,nothing.
how to talk the talk.
products
I Don't let any alcohol-based
makesureyour pearls
I To avoidstretching,
Cultured:A tiny beadis inserted
touch them-that meansperfume,body
are strung on silk, not nylon, and that a knot
in an oyster to grow a Pearl. Cul-
Iotion, shampoo.Absolutelyno spraying
separateseachpearl;this keepsthem from
tured pearlsare today's standard.
any'wherenear pearl territory-even if you
rubbing againsteachother. If you wear them
Natural:Very rare Pearls
let the perfume dry before claspingon your
that grow in the oysterwithout
pearls,it will rub off on them'
a lot, take your strandto be checkedor restrung once ayeatby aqualified jeweler so it
I No swimming-pools or otherwise."If
doesn'tbreak.[t's time whena pearlslips
Luster:The pearl'ssurfaceshine
you do. you'regoingto trashthem," says
over a knot or if the silk looks frayed.
and the depth of its glow. High-
jewelry
JenniferKaufman,whoseL.A.
storelurespearlloverslike CameronDiaz'
I How to dealwith the fear of leavingyour
er luster meansbetter qualitY.
pearlsfor repair? You are entitled to witness
Surface:A smooth surface-no
Somepeopleare under the impressionthat
the jeweler'swork. If you do leavethe pearls,
cracks,no holes-is the ideal.
sincepearlscome from the ocean,a salt-
count them beforehand,but know that the
Shape:Perfectlyround are rare
water swim is OK, Your PearlsmaYbe
necklacewill be shorter after restringing.
and the cream of the croP'
homesick,but you've got to be firm-they
Vearing a strandcausesit to stretch,so the
Size Akoyas can go to ro.5 mm;
are not allowed to go back.
new one will naturally be tighter and smaller.
South Seasto zo mm; r mm can
human intervention
up a pearl'sprice roo Percent.D