The Crystal Cove

Free Memory Locket Shipping

Free Memory Locket Shipping To celebrate the launch of our range of memory lockets, chains and charms we are offering free shipping on these items for a limited time.  This makes it a perfect time to see for yourself just how wonderful these items are.  If you are looking for a special gift then why not take advantage of this opportunity for even better value!

The free shipping includes Royal Mail first class shipping but of course if you need your items in a hurry you can opt for Special Next Day delivery at the regular rates.

The offer includes lockets, chains and charms but excludes charms only.  Offer expires midnight 8th July 2017

Created On  1 Jul 2017 17:24  -  Permalink

Brand New Memory Locket Range!

I was the lucky recipient of a beautiful memory locket last year, it was a gorgeous and sentimental piece of jewellery I didn’t even know I wanted!  This was actually one of the most amazing things about this gift, that I had never really seen one before, that I was not expecting it and couldn’t believe how much sentiment can be placed inside one memory locket.  

Our family is split over both sides of the Atlantic and we do miss each other, to which I am sure many of you reading this can relate.  

When I looked at the contents of the locket, everyone was represented in some way, with some charms representing more than one person.  In my case several of them were birthstones plus some charms to represent family in general.  Some family members are no longer with us, making this all the more poignant in meaning.  Not only do I hold close to my heart those living in another part of the world but I can also hold those no longer with us too.  

There are many ways in which a piece of jewellery can have a powerful meaning to us, such as inheriting a piece and cherishing it or perhaps a special gift from someone who cares for you.  This locket was more of a direct and visual statement making an instant impact in much the same way as my sister who feels a strong attachment to our Grandmother’s engagement ring, which she wears daily as a way of keeping her close in her thoughts.  (You can see beautiful pictures of this ring in our diamond ring blog post

I personally wear my locket quite a lot.  I also have a beautiful silver chain which I wear daily (yes it is a Crystal Cove item!) and so I wear them both which looks very much like a stacking necklace since I wear my locket on a lovely 32 inch chain.        large silver diamante lavish lockets memory locket

I wanted to be able to source such items for my customers for them to be able to give and receive such thoughtful gifts, however, I found so many terrible quality items that I began to think the quality just wasn’t out there.  Yes there were cheap options but they were awful.  This was when I discovered a fantastic company called Lavish Lockets and I soon built up a good relationship with the owner and was so impressed when I received their items.  The quality far exceeded what I had been looking for, and believe me I scrutinise everything when it comes to our products and pretty much expect perfection.  The idea was to repay the favour to the person who had originally given me the gift of my own memory locket.

Lavish Lockets started with a very similar experience, an inability to find the best quality items that don’t cost the earth.  They have not cut any corners with the manufacturing methods, with only the most effective methods and best quality materials used. Their belief that quality should be affordable fits with our own ideals.  Also, both being small family companies, we are both able to serve our customers in a more personal way, ensuring they get just the right piece for them.  And so a partnership was formed.  We are very proud to bring you such a quality and responsible brand to The Crystal Cove and I hope that many of you get the wonderful experience I had of receiving such a meaningful and stunning memory locket 

Why not have a look at our range of lockets, charms and chains and create your perfect memory locket

Created On  30 Jun 2017 20:46  -  Permalink

What are Swarovski® crystal pearls?

Many people are familiar with the brand of Swarovski®, it is now a household name for many reasons, in particular for figurines and jewellery.  Some of our most popular designs are made with Swarovski® crystal pearls and, just like you can find information regarding the crystals on our website, we wanted customers to easily access information about these wonderful pearl creations too.  

Here is a snippet of how Swarovski® describe their pearl innovation:

"CRYSTAL Pearls are a perfect replica of genuine pearls: They are similar in weight and behaviour, adjust to the temperature of the skin and are resistant to rubbing, scratching, perfume, perspiration and UV light. Above all, they are the first pearls in the world with a crystal core and an innovative, silky smooth pearl coating. They are available in a variety of shapes and sizes and in an extensive colour range.”

Of course no one knows their creation better than the company itself but it is amazing how accurate this description really is.  For example, have you ever wanted some pearl jewellery for a one off occasion to match an outfit? You may not have wanted to spend the earth and bought a pearl imitation since it suited your needs and tastes.  You may have noticed how light they felt and how they felt to the touch?  An amazing aspect of the Swarovski® pearls is how remarkably real they feel, that is, they feel so much like real pearls.  Not only that, they look like real pearls in their finish and lustre.  

Natural and cultured pearls are often matched for their similarities before being strung together for sale.  However, Swarovski® crystal pearls are so incredibly uniform and identical that the hassle of this is no longer.  You get perfect pearls for each and every pearl which is a real plus in creating a piece of jewellery since there are no flaws, which are more apparent with pearls due to their shape and finish. 

Swarovski® crystal pearls are not simply imitation pearls.  As you would expect from a company with a reputation for prestige and innovation, these pearls are special in their own right.  They have a unique crystal inner core with special pearl coatings which adds to the overall luxury of these pearls and perhaps has a lot to do with their realistic feel.

With cultured or natural pearls, we are limited by nature regarding the finish, colour and shape of the pearls.  Although many of the colours Swarovski® offer in their pearl selection remain very true to their natural counterparts, Swarovski® pearls also offer delectable colours and finishes which are on trend and generally just totally gorgeous.  In other words, they have been able to add their own flare to something once only worn by royalty and aristocracy due to their high cost and links to social status.  

Swarovski® pearls remain true to tradition with colours such as cream, pink, white and silver but have also broadened the appeal of pearls through ranges such as their neon and pastel ranges and brought the pearl right into the world of on trend fashion with top designer Jean Paul Gaultier designing a pearl colour and finish exclusively for Swarovski®, Scarabaeus Green.  

There is something for everyone in their range including around 50 different colours and finishes plus a variety of shapes, including round and baroque, which is great news if you want something traditional, such as for a wedding or christening, and perfect if you want something in a nice pastel finish to match a spring outfit or something bright and stunning to stand out from the crowd.  Whatever your tastes, now, there is a pearl for that! 

Created On  28 Jun 2017 22:15  -  Permalink

New Shipping cost Feature

Introducing our fantastic new shipping cost feature...

Online shopping has become increasingly popular.  It is convenient, with a wealth of products available to us at just a click.  But have you ever been to a website and it is just too fussy to find out how much the shipping will be for your order.  It is frustrating right?! We have always made our shipping costs as transparent as possible but we have introduced a brand new feature to the website which means you do not have to navigate away from your shopping cart to remind yourself of how much the total will be for what you have chosen as with some websites.  Our shopping cart page will show you the usual suspects such as what is on your cart and the total of the products, as you would expect.  Now you can add in your post code and the shipping cost will be displayed along with other options you may wish to choose.  

Here is a screenshot o give you a visual example

As you can see, the new feature shows you all of the shipping options right there so you do not have to wonder the final cost of your order or look around a website to find out the options and how much they cost.  We offer free Royal Mail Next Day by 1pm delivery for orders of £55 and over (excluding shipping) and the new feature will also remind you of this, taking the effort out of finding the delivery methods and costs of your individual order.     
We are always looking for ways to make online shopping easier and smoother for our customers and hope that this feature enhances the experience our customers have shopping with us.  After all, shouldn't it be fun to choose and order some beautiful jewellery!

We do love to hear your feedback so feel free to get in touch and let us know what you think of our new feature 

Created On  19 Jun 2017 20:30  -  Permalink

An Introduction To Pearls

An Introduction To Pearls

Pearls are an essential element of classical jewellery design. They ooze sophistication, style and are a must for formal occasions such as weddings, balls and graduations as well as a multitude of other occasions and situations where sophistication and expensive jewellery, or at least expensive looking, is a must to create the right impression. Many families pass down items of jewellery such as pearl necklaces and sets down through generations as heirlooms, which hints at how treasured and potentially valuable pearls can be.

However, the term pearl is used too generally and many people have the image of a classic cream round pearl as the embodiment of what a pearl is and means.

There are many types of pearls with specific names to denote where they are from and how they were produced and collected, all of which add even more meaning to your pearl, particularly if you have been given the family pearls. You may be thinking of investing in some pearl jewellery or perhaps you want something that looks great but you don’t want to pay too much. Whatever your needs, it is worth knowing a little more about the different types of pearls so you know you are making the right choice. We will outline some of the most well known types of pearls as well as some of the common terms used when describing them.

Cultured and natural pearlspearl in a mollusc oyster shell

Natural Pearls

A pearl is formed naturally when a molecule, such as a grain of sand, finds it’s way inside a mollusc, such as oyster, causing irritation to which the oyster responds by secreting a substance called nacre. This substance hardens and builds up over time resulting in what we can refer to as a natural pearl.

Cultured Pearls

The term ‘cultured pearl’ is often incorrectly associated with being fake since there is a notion that a pearl is only ‘real’ if it has formed naturally in an oyster. However in truth the term is referring to human intervention in the pearl forming process. Cultured pearls are just as ‘real’ as natural pearls but human intervention, usually by pearl farmers, encourages the process in which pearls are formed naturally to begin within controlled environments, the pearls still form in the same manner.

To start the pearl formation process, a pearl farmer would insert a small shell bead and a small piece of mantle tissue into the mollusc, which act as an irritant to encourage the oyster to secrete a substance, known as nacre, to coat the tiny shell bead. This process is highly skilled and carried out with precision in highly controlled conditions. This process acts in the same way as when a pearl forms naturally. In fact most pearls today are cultured pearls and since the process of the pearl formation is essentially the same, it is difficult to tell apart pearls which have occurred due to a molecule entering the oyster on its own or a pearl which has been encouraged to form with human help.

Akoya Pearls

These pearls are saltwater pearls formed in Akoya oysters, found primarily in China and Japan but also farmed in South Korea and Australia. Due to their popularity, these pearls are usually referred to as the classic pearl. Their uniformity, shape and lustre make them high quality and are very sought after for these reasons. Japanese pearl farmers are known for their superior techniques in cultivating and so today akoya pearls from Japan are generally referred to as Japanese akoya pearls to differentiate them, since their quality is of a higher standard than akoya pearls found in other countries.

The pearls are often put onto strands to be sold and are classified by several aspects. When the best quality of each of these is achieved on a strand of pearls, the term hanadama is used to describe the quality. This is usually reserved for Japanese akoya pearls due to their superior quality.

The aspects considered when examining the quality of akoya pearls includes:





Nacre quality

Freshwater Pearls

Freshwater pearls are known for their wide variety of colours and shapes and are cultured in different mollusc, such as triangle shell muscles. These are found worldwide, with a large section of the market coming from China. Freshwater pearls are much easier to cultivate and in greater numbers, since the mollusc are larger and can create more than a single pearl, making them cheaper than other varieties of pearls.

Tahitian Pearls

These pearls are mainly found in French Polynesia and cultured in a specific mollusc known as a black lip oysters found in the region. These pearls are often referred to as black pearls but their colours are unique and cover a spectrum ranging from grey, green, peacock and black. The pearls produced by this oyster are unlike any other in their appearance and are rarer due to their lesser numbers. Along with the beauty of these pearls, the rarity of the oyster makes it much harder to find similar pearls to string together and this adds to the cost when purchasing.

South Sea Pearls

These are the most expensive and sought after variety of pearl available and are produced by the large white lip pinctada maxima oyster, or the golden lip variety for the golden south sea variety. This oyster, found in the South Seas ranging from Northern Australia to South East Asia, is large and produces a larger pearl than other variety of oyster. South Sea pearls are found in white and gold varieties with a unique lustre that adds to their desirability. In addition to the size of the pearl this mollusc produces and it’s ability to only produce a single pearl at a time, these pearls command a higher price since the oyster must reach a certain maturity before it can be used to culture pearls. Therefore the process of culturing south sea pearls produces fewer pearls at a slower rate than other varieties.

Created On  18 Jun 2017 22:07  -  Permalink

Brand New Referral Scheme

Brand New Referral Scheme Brand new referral scheme

As an online business it can be difficult to forge personal relationships with customers since we are not face to face, we don't have the small talk or conversations which can lead to that personal relationship so easily.  However, we do enjoy a really good relationship with our customers and i like to think this is due to the more personal approach we take to our business.  For example, our email enquiries are carefully read and responded to personally rather than speed reading and giving a generic response (which personally drives me crazy).  We also get to know our customers based on our interaction through our design service which usually leads to exchanges on more friendly and personal terms than some companies.  This is what bridges that gap between having a physical store and being an online store for us and it brings us more joy than simply creating the jewellery and posting it to its new home. We often get to know that someone isn't just ordering a pearl jewellery set but that it is for their bridesmaids at their wedding this summer or that the heart pendant is actually a present for their daughter's special milestone birthday.  These are what makes doing what we do all the more special.   

To make shopping with us even more rewarding, we have launched a referral scheme which does what it says, you refer a friend and when they make a qualifying purchase you get a discount off your next order.  It is simple but makes shopping with us even more fun as you get something back plus can help a friend out by introducing them to our site and getting them money off!  (Making you a GREAT friend, wink wink!) 

Since we are pretty excited at this new feature, we thought we would sweeten the deal and for a special introductory period there will be no minimum purchase for you or your friend in order to get the discount.  Not only that but you will be able to combine 2 referral discounts and get 20% discount off your next purchase.

We know that word of mouth is important and we do benefit from happy customers telling their friends and so we wanted to give a little thanks for spreading the word

Created On  12 May 2017 15:47  -  Permalink