It was Aliona Doletskaya who first introduced me to pearl earrings. My mother has pearls. My aunt has always coveted a Mikimoto necklace (she settled for a less expensive strand of "ordinary pearls" that looked anything but ordinary to me). But me, I've always felt that pearls were simply for older women.
Then I saw a photograph of Aliona – something about her look stopped me. She was in a simple, starched white oxford with a navy cashmere wrap casually thrown over her shoulders. Next to her was a black crocodile bag (to die for) and her only jewelry: an enormous set of big, white pearl studs. Aliona Doletskaya is the editor of Vogue Russia. Figures.
Pearls vary hugely in quality. They are graded (AAA, or sometimes just A, being the highest) on shape, luster, size and of course, surface quality. South Sea pearls can grow to be quite large, and let me tell you, they are really expensive. This pair is stunning at $2,600. They are flawless, and very large at 14.0 – 15.0 mm.
I bet that's what Aliona Doletskaya (don't you just love that name!?) was wearing.