From diamonds to emeralds, a wide range of gorgeous gems are used in jewellery making: there are so many different stones available that everyone surely finds something to their liking. Most of these precious stones are found in nature, forming by themselves in mountainous districts or the coasts.
If we think about the most popular jewels found in Japan, surely the term “pearl” would come up. The Mikimoto Pearl Island is located around 30 minutes from Hotel & Resorts ISE SHIMA. The island has a long history of cultivating pearls. Apart from selling high-quality pearls, the island also has its antique jewellery and pearl artwork collection in its own museum.
In this article, we collected some facts about pearls that you might have not known before!
Pearls in the Past
Ever since the earlier stages of human history, pearls have been admired for their beauty and used in the making of all sorts of jewellery and ornaments.
For their glossy and mysteriously elegant appearance, pearls are also referred to as “the tears of mermaids” or “drops of the moon.” Some believe that the existence of pearls was known to humans since 3200 BC. Anecdotes about Cleopatra melting pearls into vinegar and drinking the end product are widely told all around the world.
Pearls were also used in ancient Rome as ornaments.
Pearls Around the World
Pearls are popular for not only their creamy white colour but their roundness and wearability as well. But there are more types of pearls than the most widely known, white ones. Take Tahiti’s black pearls for example, or the silver pearls found in Australia’s ocean. The producing area heavily influences the colour of pearls.
The Mikimoto Pearl Island is famous for producing pearls near the shore of Ise Shima. Mikimoto Kokichi, the founder of pearl cultivating on the island made it his mission to increase pearl oysters and produce high-quality, beautiful pearls for commerce. The pearls cultivated here are called Akoya Pearls.
Cultivating Pearls with Love
Most of you probably know that pearls are collected from oysters. However, harvesting pearls is not as easy as it first seems: just going underwater and taking what you need to take.
At first, male and female oysters need to be separated and fertilization must be conducted. Which is to say that pearl cultivation begins with bringing up oysters. After paying careful attention to keeping oysters healthy and in good numbers, the pearl harvestation can begin.
It can take around four years for oysters to be reared, and the pearls to be ready for harvest. This way, it is easy to understand why genuine pearls cost so much: it takes a lot of time and care until one is ready.
Pearl as a Power Stone
Pearl can be used as jewellery from formal events such as a wedding ceremony, to accessorizing a more casual, everyday look as well. Pearls have an elegant, sophisticated effect, and can be mixed and matched with a variety of styles and colours as well.
But did you know that pearls are also used as power stones? Many people keep pearls in their pockets, in their bags, or anywhere close to them to achieve a desired effect. It is believed that pearls are connected with luck in love, personal life, and business as well.
Explore the Land of Pearls on Mikimoto Island
There are many sites on the internet where you can order pearl accessories from. However, just like clothes and shoes, pearls are also best bought after having tried them on for yourself. We highly recommend visiting the pearl shop of Mikimoto Island, where everyone can surely find something to their liking.
Pearls come in all sorts of colours and shapes. At Mikimoto Pearl Island, you cannot only buy these pearls but also enter the island’s museum where you can take a look at pearl-made jewellery and other items as well.
1-7-1 Toba, Toba City, Mie Prefecture 517-0011
Approximately 30 minutes by car from the hotel
Please note that the images used in this article are for illustrative purposes only.