Learn about Blue Pearls


As Unique as You

To create unique jewels of everlasting pleasure by combining the rhythms of nature with the art of blue pearl culture.

The blue pearl captures your eye and draws you closer. Movement makes the colours dance like sunlight on crystal clear water.

Sea Tail Pendant by Blue Pearl Gallery with Eyris Pearl

The Iris and the Pearl

The iris is the most colourful part of the human eye. It is made up of layers of smooth, furrowed and radial ridges.

These layers allow the iris to act either like a mirror or a sponge, sometimes absorbing light and sometimes reflecting and refracting light as a spectrum of colours. 

The nacre is the most colourful part of the abalone shell. In paua it is made up of thousands of layers or randomly secreted aragonite and calcite crystals, which are bonded together by conchiolin. The nacre gives the blue pearl its lustre and hardness while the conchiolin acts as a mirror reflecting light back through the nacre to the observer for maximum light return, iridescence and colour. 

Miss World New Zealand 2016 With Koru Pearl

Miss World New Zealand 2016 With Koru Pearl

The Colours

Blue pearls vary in colour - ranging from blues and greens, gold to pinks, some also have splashes of red and violet. There are bright vibrant tones and soft subtle hues.

The pearls have a chameleon quality about them; the colours change in the way they catch the light. Liquid colours that almost have a life of their own. This variation in colour gives each pearl a distinctive character. The number of colour combinations is infinite.

The colours of blue pearls are created by the genetic make up of each individual paua, the colours and iridescence of their shell, their diet and the natural environment in which they live. Paua are grazing animals, feeding on a variety of seaweeds. It is the combination of brown, red and green seaweeds,with their amazing array of nutrients, that gives each blue pearl its wonderful spectrum of colours.

Blue pearl colours are also affected by the composition of the water, the temperature and the water flow. The greater the variation in water temperature, the more defined the layering and therefore the more intense the colour of the pearl.

Blue pearls are made up of thousands of layers of nacre and conchiolin randomly secreted by each individual paua. The nacre is made up of aragonite and calcite crystals. The conchiolin is dark organic matter. The layers are a combination of biological and mineral bonding.

Nacre gives a pearl its lustre and hardness, while the conchiolin “acts as a mirror, reflecting light back through the nacre toward the observer for maximum light return, colour and iridescence.” It is this combination of nacre and conchiolin that gives each pearl its special uniqueness and beauty.
Akaroa Harbour

Akaroa Harbour

Eyris Pearl grading

Eyris Pearl grading

Akaroa Harbour

Akaroa Harbour

Colour Grading

The ‘liquid’ colour appearance that is itself the heart of each blue pearl’s attraction, has led to the development of a specialised grading system. This system enables the jeweller/gemologist to identify each pearl by reference to a grading method that is easy to follow and accurate.

Eyris Pearls colour grading

Eyris Pearls colour grading

Blue Pearl Grading

The grading of blue pearls has become an exacting exercise that is now world recognised. 'The Blue Pearl Grading System' grades not only for size, shape, lustre and surface, but also colour.

There are two brands of blue pearl:

Eyris pearls are graded - 'Select Gem', 'Gem' or 'A' grade. 

Pacific Blue pearls are graded - 'B', 'Mystique' and 'C' grade pearls.

All Eyris brand pearls have a totally traceable history, by way of an individual ID number given to the pearl during cultivation that holds details about the life of the pearl such as the place and date of cultivation.

'Select Gem' and 'Gem' grade pearls are accompanied by a Certificate Brochure recording these details for the owner. This certificate brochure gives the purchaser an understanding of the value of their pearl and it can be used for insurance/valuation purposes. 'A' grades are accompanied by a Certificate of Authenticity and a booklet of information about the blue pearl.

Blue Pearl Size Grading

Blue Pearl Size Grading

Perchance a Dream

"Beneath the waves in silent depths, the seaweeds sway in languid dance, sliding in embrace, entwining neighbours of their kind.
This kingdom of kelp, anchored on scattered rocks, offers itself as food for grazing abalone. Inoffensive, peaceful, slow moving creatures inch their way across the seabed, nibbling the sustaining fronds.
Within their limited world lies a special creative power. The soft body with its large muscular foot, housed within a shell, dark and crusty on the outside, shiny, slippery and multicoloured within. No foreign element is allowed to disturb this pristine inner surface, it is rendered harmless by layers of mother of pearl.
These are the seeds of gentler creation, pearls of wisdom, born in strife, a healing process, a slow struggle for survival and perfection. Bestowing layer upon layer of protective hardness, a colourful encapsulation of limitless moods is formed. Enshrined within its depths of liquid colours, mobile, subtle blends reflect a maternal warmth, peaceful reminders of work well done, dreamy restful companions at the end of the day.”

Reproduced by kind permission of Dr Terence Forster – September 1998

Paul Shell