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The History of the Pearl

Pearls shall never die.  We feel there is no better time to talk about them than in June; after all the pearl is June's gemstone.   Pearls are a timeless gem fetched and retrieved for over centuries, to be worn by some of the highest people in stature throughout history. Pearls are coming back in a big way, and though they have been a mark of virtuous femininity for decades, they are now being reclaimed and worn in a non-binary way.

A miraculous creation of nature, the natural pearl can be created by the result of damage coming from outside influences, leaving the mollusk to create a pearl. How beautiful is it, that the pearl is claimed to be tears of the Gods.   From 1000 BC, pearls have been excavated from the Arabian Gulf and traded to the highest noblemen in earlier times throughout Europe and China. Many myths and Legends have since surrounded the pearl, claiming to bring purity and good luck. The creation of the pearl is linked to the birth of Aphrodite-the goddess of love and beauty, which brought the gem to symbolize ultimate femininity.

For many years pearls were worn as a way to show stature and political power. It wasn’t until the 19th century when the timeless piece was taken to be worn in a more fashionable way. The modernist movement began using pearls in an array of different ways. Coco Channel and Jackie Kennedy are some of the big names that promoted pearls as a fashionable statement culturing the 20th century.   So many individuals wanted that same status of pearls for a cheaper price, so of course, the ‘cultured’ pearl began, a type of man-made manufactured pearl that was worn by many stars including Marilyn Monroe.
Today, pearls are emerging once again in a different way. Using other beads crystals and colours to create an intricate piece, each one different with lots of personality. Fresh water pearls have also become popular as to each one being an individual, with its own colour and organic shape. The biggest shift throughout all of this through decades of Queens and Ladies of the land as it were, wearing these opulent pieces in their oil canvas portraits is that the woman behind the pearl is fading. Male identified genders are reclaiming this timeless piece and making it their own statement.  No longer does one expect to see femininity attached to these gems but rather the symbolism of love and beauty in each individual.  

Over here at Filthy Rebena, we celebrate self expression, and a great way to express one's self is through jewelry.  You can find many fresh water pearl pieces that are hand crafted by amazing Canadian artisans at both shops. We urge you to pick out that piece that brings you love and joy in your chosen style!

Article written by Danielle Nelson

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