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really a Ruckus to remember

really a Ruckus to remember
Every year at the end of July, 
we gather with our fellow Pearl-Guide friends in Los Angeles for a weekend of true pearl FUN. 
Hosted by the generous power couple ,
Jeremy and Hisano Shepherd of Pearl Paradise and Little h Jewelry
The group of us gathered in a gorgeous mansion in the Beverly Hills to listen to lectures given by : 
Our dear friend Douglas McLaurin of the Sea of Cortez Pearl farm in Guaymas Mexico
(North America's ONLY salt water pearl farm). 
Douglas is a gifted speaker and a BRILLIANT mind. 
His lectures are always fascinating and FUNNY! 
We love the gorgeous color of Sea of Cortez pearls and use them often in our designs. 
Josh Humbert also gave a lecture on how he raises his gorgeous Tahitian pearls in sustainable and environmentally sound ways at his farm on Ahe in French Polynesia. 
Kamoka pearls are true gems, and we have been honored to work with them in the pearl business for many years now. 
Having made visits to the Kamoka pearl farm, I can attest to their commitment to the environment and also the magic that is Ahe. 
Ruth Johnson was the LUCKY winner of a contest sponsored by Pearl Paradise and won a trip to visit the Atlas Pearl farm on Bali Indonesia!
She showed us a wonderful video of her adventure! 
Renee Newman, the author of multiple books on pearls and gemstones..
namely the Pearl Buying Guide gave a lovely talk on advancements in the pearl world. 
The Pearl Buying Guide is available online and it is a fantastic way to educate yourself on up to date information! 
You may recognize the photo we donated to this cover of the latest edition! 
We're delighted it was chosen! 
Blaire Beavers, the moderator of Pearl-Guide.com was honored with a lovely necklace this year, and also gave a talk on the wild adventures of Octavia, the mascot of Pearl-Guide. 
Octavia has spent time at pearl farms and with fellow forum members all over the world. 
This year our gathering was in honor of our dear friend Caitlin Williams, a long time moderator of the forum and a brilliant and loving woman... who is and will be dearly missed.
It was a wonderful blessing to have her daughter, son-in-law and grandson in attendance to carry on her legacy in pearls. 
 
This year was our biggest group yet! 
Smiles were plenty, the food was phenomenal.. and the view was breathtaking. 
Everyone wore their best pearls and traded stories into the wee hours. 
This event is such a joy for me. 
Thank you Jeremy and Hisano and the whole team at Pearl Paradise for graciously keeping this pearl rolling for all these years! 
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PEARL RUCKUS 2015!

PEARL RUCKUS 2015!
One of the highlights of our year is joining fellow pearl professionals and enthusiasts at what we call the “Pearl Ruckus”.
These lavish annual weekends are hosted by the most generous Hisano and Jeremy Shepherd of Pearlparadise.com .

This year we gathered on Friday evening in Pacific Palisades in a mansion that had so many rooms I lost count.

The ceilings must have been 40 feet tall and the arches framed the sky with grandeur.

Friday night was a champagne toast to the moderators of Pearl-Guide.com : Blaire Beavers and Caitlin Williams.. both are experts on pearls and lovely, warm women of MANY talents.

They were both gifted with Finestrino pearl earrings hand made by Hisano ….for their years of work on the world’s largest online forum about pearls.

These amazing designs feature Chinese fresh water souffle pearls artfully carved out, polished and adorned with tiny pearls or gemstones.

These designs are the  brainchild of Hisano and she even won the CPAA Orient Award last year.

We started gathering again early Saturday morning for a full day of presentations. Jeremy and Hisano took us on a video tour of their epic adventure to Flower Island in the Philippines earlier this year. They visited the Jewelmer pearl farms. Jewelmer, famous for their gorgeous South Sea pearls and their tireless pursuit of perfecting the golden pearl. They are culturing thousands of strains of algae in their laboratories to find the perfect diet for their pinctada maxima oysters  to feed on!

Next up was Douglas McLaurin of the Sea of Cortez pearl farm in Guaymas, Mexico (where we visited just over a month ago).

Douglas is a very talented public speaker, and a gifted teacher. He taught us more about the history of the Sea of Cortez, the natural abundance and near extinction of the sea life there.

He outlined data they collected in the first ten years of their work showing the DRAMATIC repopulation of native oysters and how the rest of the sea life in the area benefitted!

By gathering and fostering the remaining oysters in 1996, they were able to stop the extinction of the species!

It was fascinating as always and made it feel so good to be a offering their pearls for sale.          

Watch the trailer for the National Geographic “World’s Funniest Weird Farms” made about the Sea of Cortez pearl farm, and how Douglas became Dr. Mollusk!

After lunch and bit of relaxation, we saw a presentation by Josh Humbert of Kamoka Pearl.. a world famous photographer, and pearl farmer from Ahe, French Polynesia.  I have also travelled to the Kamoka farm on two occasions, so it is always a treat to see Josh’s photos of this magical atoll in the middle of the ocean. It is a place to dear to my heart.

The black pearls they raise, using environmentally sound practices are some of the most colorful and sought after in the world!

Their farm is powered with only solar and wind energy, and they let the fish populations clean the oysters. This is more beneficial to the delicate ecosystem of the atoll than spraying them clean. Another example of sustainable pearl farming!

Celeste Brash, a celebrated travel author and Josh’s wife. She is in charge of Kamoka’s websales .. and keeping him in line 

Douglas McLaurin brought a beautiful array of Sea of Cortez pearls.. and also kept us entertained with his "special human tricks"

Much of the fun of the Ruckus is getting dressed up, showing off your pearls, and admiring those of all the other ladies in attendance. Caitlin and Sheryl Goodspeed of Mauna Kea Moonlight collaborated on her pearl mushroom pendant. Barbara Somlo showed off her metallic Chinese fresh water pearl pendant. Cathy Dassler brought her sweater that she hand embroidered using hundreds of 2mm white round pearls and silk ribbon! Wendy Fairchild in her most color Tahitian pearls.. and a hand forged fine silver pendant with a Sea of Cortez baroque pearl made by Carlos Cabral of Guadalajara Mexico.. and the “line of ladies”.. I love and admire each and every one of them.. it is such a joy to see them each year, hear their stories and meet the new faces in the group!

Sheryl set up a table of her beautiful jewelry, and Saturday was also her birthday! Her husband Tom, played and sung songs to entertain us with Mikey who is a professional diver and deals in the nuclei used to culture pearls all of the world! He is also famous for traveling with a “suitcase” full of pearls!

Sheri Jurnecka brought her famous octopi pendants set with different outrageous pearls,and also a cast mermaid pendant.

We set up a little table to show our latest designs and we were really excited to share the necklace of the top grade of Japan Kasumi pearls from the latest harvest, as well as the “glowing from within” Sea of Cortez mabe necklace.

That’s Patricia Saab in the lavender blouse.. she also makes pearl jewelry and sells the world’s BEST string for knotting pearls and gemstone beads.. Check out her etsy shop!

It was a weekend to remember.. and recover from!

On Sunday everyone met at PearlParadise office in Los Angeles and feasted on the fruits of their pearl vault! Please see more photos on the Pearl-Guide Ruckus 2015 thread!

We are blessed to be a part of this lovely talented group of pearls! Thank you Jeremy and Hisano.. you are generous wonderful people.

My only regret is not taking more photos!

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RUCKUS 2014 - Panel Discussion and Interview with Sarah Canizzaro

 

 

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Pearls from farm to YOU!

Pearls from farm to YOU!
This year’s 5th Annual Pearl-Guide Ruckus was the biggest and best yet! Over 30 pearl enthusiasts came from all over the county. We spent the weekend in a mansion on the cliffs of Palos Verdes, talking about pearls, listening to presentations, eating amazing food, admiring the view, giggling in the pool, and talking more about pearls. All the thanks for this weekend go to Jeremy and Hisano Shepherd of Pearl Paradise, and their amazing team. This year we focused on pearls and the environment… it was a joy both to listen and learn, and to be in the presence of people who genuinely value sustainable in pearl production.

I was honored to be a part of a panel discussion on pearls at this year’s annual Pearl Ruckus, hosted by the generous Pearl Paradise crew. Myself,  Jeremy Shepherd of PearlParadise.com , Josh Humbert of Kamokapearls.com , Douglas McLaurin of www.perlas.com.mx/en/ .

Blaire Beavers, a true pearl expert, gave a wonderful presentation on pearls with a focus on nacre growth and, of course, an amazing array of pearl photos she has taken over her career in the gem industry.
Click the photo below to hear the presentation given by Douglas McLaurin of Mexico’s only pearl farm (the Sea of Cortez pearls we feature in our jewelry) about
“Pearls & the Environment.” IT’S FASCINATING! TRULY A MUST SEE!
From farm to table, to light box, to a Summer afternoon in the park, more than a half kilo of natural color Tahitian keshi pearls are ready to pick! Online now in necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. Parcels like this do not come around very often and I was overjoyed to have the opportunity to work with them.
If you’re going to be in the area, please come visit us at the San Mateo County Event Center for the Gem Show – September 5th-7th.
We will be exhibiting as Pacific Pearls in the Trade Room.
The hours are: Friday 12-6 / Saturday 10-6 / Sunday 11-5
For more information: http://www.intergem.com/shows/upcoming-shows/san-mateo-ca-september-5-7
If you are traveling to the San Francisco Bay Area, please feel free to make an appointment to meet us and view our pearls at our downtown San Rafael studio.

Thank you all for your continued support and appreciation of our ever-evolving world of pearls.

With warmest regards,

Sarah Canizzaro and the Kojimapearl team.

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A WEEKEND OF WONDER..

A WEEKEND OF WONDER..
We were honored to be guests at the most beautiful wedding of Jeremy and Hisano Shepherd of www.pearlparadise.com . The wedding took place on a 2200 acre ranch just north of Santa Barbara. It was the most beautiful and elegant of celebrations I have ever been to. May your lives together be filled with happiness and fun! Thank you for inviting us to witness your marriage and be guests in such a magical place!
With love for the both of you!
Here are a few photos from this incredible time.

As we all gathered on a grassy bluff overlooking the ocean, these beautiful white parasols were instantly a perfect pairing with the deep blue skies and California sun!

Then came the greatest arrival I have seen to a girls own wedding!

I was too far away to photograph the actual ceremony, but I caught this one of the stunning Hisano  in her post ceremony glow.

After the wedding we all drank champagne and feasted on caviar and appetizers at a private beach at the Rancho Dos Pueblos.

The dinner was quite the feast… nestled in this incredible open air barn with chandeliers and pearls on every table for us to take as party gifts! Toasts were made, cupcakes were devoured, dancing ensued and finally the shuttle brought us all safely home with smiles on our faces and a night we’ll never forget.

Thank you pearl people! You celebrate well.. and I am blessed to call you friends!

Congratulations Jeremy and Hisano! 

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the TUCSON SHOW in a pearl shell …..

the TUCSON SHOW in a pearl shell …..

Every  year, the show in Tucson is a buzz of frenzied work and inspiration. It is one of the few times of the year that I am graced with the presence of so many pearl experts and enthusiasts. This year was no exception. Our booth was busier than it has been in years. Many old friends and customers who hadn’t made it for the last few years, returned to our booth … and it was a joy to see them excited about the pearls. Ready to go home and thrill their customers. One of my greatest pleasures is feeling like the special care we pay to choosing both beautiful and unusual pearls echos throughout the world born into one of a kind creations by some of the most talented and kind people in the business.

We flew from San Francisco on a crystal clear morning … looking forward to the fun!

After a quick birthday lunch celebration for Fuji , we settled in and finally finished pricing all the pearls.

 Ready for the great show ahead!

For one golden morning we get to sneak out of the booth and meet with a fantastic group of pearl professionals for a walk and talk around the AGTA show. This walk is organized by the powerhouse appraiser known as Lois Berger. 

Lois Berger the world’s most determined pearl grader!

Cute as a button and stronger than most people I know put together~!

Gina Latendresse of the American Pearl Company  showing us all some of her interesting beauties.   http://www.americanpearlcompany.com/our_company/  Gina is a second generation pearl dealer specializing in American Cultured Pearls as well natural pearls from all over the world. (She can also do handstands and flips) Needless to say , she’s a pearl heroine of mine! The history of their family in the pearl industry is most incredible.

The best night out was spent with new and old friends from Pearl-Guide . Thank you very much to Jeremy and Hisano for organizing and hosting such a lovely dinner. I wish I had better photos of it to share! Such a fantastic group of people. I was blessed to have been there. Thank you to Elizabeth Strack and Lois Berger for keeping me entertained with fantastic stories and hilarious bits of women’s wisdom. True pearls, those two!
The relatively short 6 day show at the GJX  is great! Just before jumping on the plane to fly home. I made the annual stop at the Gem Mall to see the work of my dear friend Lou Zeldis. As many of you know Lou passed away in 2012 and left an incredible collection of original art. His dear friend Liz Marx took the reigns and kept the booth open in his honor. She is a true friend  with a superhuman heart.

If you knew Lou, please visit the facebook page created in his spirit.

Now it’s back to work, details details details… and pearls galore! Thank you for your patience, to all of you who have been waiting for responses and custom orders. I hope this photo montage will help you to see what a pearl whirlwind looks like!

Cheers, Sarah

 

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WHERE IN THE WORLD IS KOJIMAPEARL?

WHERE IN THE WORLD IS KOJIMAPEARL?
After our June Shows
We flew to Japan.

The protective ninjas we always travel with are

handmade by the amazing Aki Morishima.

From Tokyo , we rode the train to see our dear pearl farmer friends at 

Lake Kasumi ga Ura.

Next I spent two wonderful days in Kinugawa with my best friend, such a relaxing and much needed mini vacation.

And then we were off to Hong Kong for more pearl shopping and family time.

Directly following our time in Asia, I was super happy to join my fellow Pearl-Guide members in Malibu for a wonderful weekend of learning, sharing and laughing. As always , in gratitude to Jeremy Shepherd and Hisano Takei and all the people who make this my best pearl weekend each year ! I had so much fun this year, I forgot to take more photos. The pool was just too nice!

 

 

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