Thank Heaven for Little Pearls
Perhaps it’s because Hisano Shepherd is petite (she’s just 5 feet tall). Or maybe it’s that she’s married to PearlParadise.com founder Jeremy Shepherd, whose sourcing skills in the pearl world are legendary. But whatever the reason, Hisano—the chief creative officer of PearlParadise.com and designer behind the Little H line—loves little pearls.
She sets keshi, 2 mm–2.5 mm round freshwaters, and seed pearls into cool, minimalist karat gold and sterling styles, as well as arguably never-before-seen bulbous baroque silhouettes. And the Shepherds have other fresh-pearl lines, too, from collaborations with stylists such as Veronika Borchers and Anthony Dreyer; along with Little H, the collections constitute a newer wholesale division of PearlParadise.com called the Pearl Collective.
That’s where the Shepherds and partnering artists combine youthful motifs like spikes with “fun pearls that PearlParadise.com doesn’t use,” explains Hisano. While the collective kicked off in fall 2012 with consumer-only sales, it is just now wholesaling the pieces to stores. No buy-in currently exists for any of the Pearl Collective lines.
A government passport can take you to any number of destinations, but a Jewelmer passport takes you to just one: the Palawan islands in the Philippines.
The Palawan islands await!
Buyers who spend $250,000+ earn a free trip to its farms, and associates accumulate points toward product or their own island visits. “It’s a thank-you,” says Joe Meli, operations director for the Americas. “Jewelmer can show you where the pearls come from and its commitment to the product and the environment.” (The golden pearler provides jobs and sustainable non-pearling means of employment for thousands of Filipinos.)
Visitors receive a special stamp upon arrival; staffers earn stamps for items sold. Adds Meli: “It’s a way to sell the product faster and increase brand presence.”