Pearls: The 2nd annual Ruckus, Jewelmer Hires Piolo Pascual to Pitch Pearls to Men

Causing a Ruckus

On July 24, hosted its 2nd annual Ruckus in Los Angeles to foster goodwill among pearlers. The Japan-themed affair kicked off with a day of seminars; caviar and sushi were served on Pinctada maxima gold-lipped shells; and revelers sipped champagne, wine, and single-malt scotch.

The idea for the party originated after the 2009 World Pearl Forum in Dubai, says Pearl­ CEO Jeremy Shepherd. users started discussing a gathering, “one thing led to another, and then people were flying in from the U.K. and Australia, all converging on L.A.” A good time was had by all at the first Ruckus—the Breakfast at Tiffany’s–inspired event ended around 1:30 a.m.—but there was one major casualty: Shepherd’s $10,000 private scotch collection was completely consumed by thirsty pearlers. “That’s when I decided to get a sponsor,” he says. (This year, Chieftain’s and Spanish Classical Wines kicked in the drinks.)

Sea-themed hors d’oeuvres

And while the festivities were largely social, never underestimate the power of pearls, plus a little wine, to stimulate some serious business: Dealer Jeremy Norris’ ­Pteria Sternia natural strand—valued at $25,000—went home with a local oenophile. —Jennifer Heebner

King of the Pearl

Filipino model and actor Piolo Pascual

Jewelmer wants more people (particularly men) to notice its pearls, so it’s appointed Filipino model, actor, singer, and all-around national heartthrob Piolo Pascual to serve as its 2010 Pearl Ambassador.

Ten others, including model Grendel Alvarado, have also served as brand ambassadors. All, assistant managing director Pierre Fallourd, tells JCK, “are the embodiment of the spirit of the gold South Sea pearl—of the alchemic process of pearl farming made possible through a symbiotic relationship between man and nature. They are individuals who have made an impact in their community through their talent, ingenuity, responsible business practices as well as their love for the environment.” (Doesn’t hurt that Pascual is easy on the eyes and has instant access to high-profile events like the Cannes Film Festival.)

Piolo Pascual pearl necklace with 18k gold on leather; $1,190; Jewelmer, Makati City, Phillipines; 632-810-0266;

Jewelmer’s cultured South Seas pearls are sold in upscale boutiques the world over, mostly to women. But Pascual, a well-known environmental activist and proponent of organic living, may inspire more men to wear the gems. Pascual’s duties as Pearl Ambassador include positively representing the Philippines, its national gem, environmental conservation efforts, and Jewelmer as a Filipino luxury brand, both locally and abroad. (In essence, he’s pretty much just getting paid to wear pearls.)

Jewelmer unveiled the unisex Piolo Pascual collection of pearl jewelry in July. The collection features two styles of necklaces and bracelets with pearls (gold, white, or black) and 18k gold accents on braided leather cords. Suggested retail prices start at $990. Each piece comes with a certificate of authenticity and Pascual’s signature. A portion of sales benefits Pascual’s Hebreo 12:1 Foundation, which aids Filipino families. —JH

For more new Brazilian-made pearl jewels, see the Feninjer show coverage on the Style 360 blog.

Fresh from Brazil…

An 18k gold bracelet with colorless diamonds, coral, rock crystal quartz, red dolomite, and Chinese freshwater pearls; $28,000; Goldesign, Belo Horizonte, Brazil; 55-31-3271-2636;