While her designs are featured in fashion magazines, films, television series, and seen adorning Red Carpet guests, Christianne still retains that essential element of moving with the times; challenging the perceptions of pearls as purely classic with a selection of cutting-edge collections, using leather and ostrich feathers.
Christianne's passion for pearls is infectious, she has been invited to share her knowledge of pearls with audiences such as the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Gemmological Institute of America, a selection of Relais and Chateaux venues, the Royal Automobile Club in Pall Mall, and Young Presidents Organization events around the world. Christianne's Pearl Talks describe how pearls are formed, the difference between imitation beads, cultured pearls and natural pearls. Other topics cover choosing pearls wisely and how to preserve your investment. Berkeley club members will shortly be invited to join Christianne in an exciting pearl discovery adventure, here is a taster on the six factors to consider when choosing pearls.
Always choose the pearls with the deepest lustre within the budget set, if necessary compromising on size and surface perfection, as it is the lustre which will light up the wearer's face and will therefore be most flattering. All the pearls we use in Coleman Douglas Pearls jewellery are individually chosen for their lustre. This is very important, as dull pearls however big will do nothing for their owner's beauty, the dullest pearls can look like a cooked fish eye which as you can imagine will not only be unflattering but will also look heavy to the eye of the beholder.
The thicker the nacre is, the longer the pearls will last, and usually the better their lustre will be. Check that pearls do not have dull sections by rolling them on a flat white surface, if the pearl "blinks" it means that the nacre coating is too thin as what your eye is discerning is the nucleus within.
Always choose the colour that best suits the skin tone of the wearer; also bear in mind the colour of the eyes. Bluish-grey pearls will generally suit someone with blue eyes, while a peacock green Tahitian pearl will suit someone with green eyes. Warm cream to gold pearls will suit a complexion that tans easily. Another factor that affects the overall harmony of the face is hair colour and this should be taken into consideration when selecting pearls.
A rough guideline of pearl colours that suit different skin tones is set out below:
• Olive toned skin - golden pearls
• Dark skin - white or warm cream pearls
• Pinkish rosy complexion - rose to cream pearls
• Pale skin - rose to white pearls
The best cultured and natural pearls have overtones; this effect makes the pearl very attractive and interesting to the eye of the beholder. Warm cream overtones can bring a softness to the final effect, Bright Pink overtones suit people with Blue or Green eyes. Pearls with peacock overtones can be worn with clothes of any colour, as the pearls themselves will echo any tone. The best way to ascertain which colour is the most appropriate is to try on various tonalities within the colour that you are looking to choose from. For example there are four main tonalities within white pearls.
Choose what looks best.
Irregular shaped pearls will best suit someone with prominent or irregular features - in other words an interesting face; however, a classic beauty with very fine or regular features will suit round pearls.
Check the purity of the pearl surface; a few marks give the pearls the hallmark of genuineness, but very blemished pearls will have less value. It is important to steer well clear of pearls that have dull pitting or dull feather markings as they will inevitably catch the eye of the beholder. By dull markings we mean a marking that has the appearance of a cooked fish eye or chalk -these "blind" markings reduce the value of the pearl significantly.
Out of the six factors that we have just looked at, size is of least importance, it is, however, essential to consider the overall build of the wearer. If she were very tall and broad a tiny single strand of seed pearls would look lightweight.
Here are some testimonials which have been given following our talks.
'Thank you for hosting the Members in your studio, and also for the sold-out talk in October. Both were incredibly popular and we were delighted with the response from the Members' - Alex, Victoria and Albert Museum
'It was a pleasure meeting you on Wednesday evening and our guests all loved the event. Your talk was passionate and interesting. Thanks again'- Andy
Berkeley is proud to team up with the very best names in their respective fields - a unique alliance of the finest brands which are integral to the finest lifestyles.
Fine wines, art auctions, iconic automobiles, exquisite jewellery, traditional tailoring, cutting-edge audio, must-have accessories and interior design trends.
Jointly hosted with club partners, a forthcoming series of events will complement this array of premium brands, with personal invitations tailored to specific individual interests.
A hand-picked collection of the Capital's most iconic and sought-after new addresses by The Berkeley Group, all designed to exceed expectations on every level.