A freshwater mollusk can produce up to 50 pearls but it is common practice to have them produce 24-32 pearls - that is still an awful lot of pearls! After the mollusks have tiny pieces of shell inserted, they, are then returned to their freshwater environment where they are tended for 2-6 years.
The resulting pearls are of solid nacre. Since they do not have a "bead" nucleus, the pearls are rarely perfectly round but are still lovely to use in jewelry!
Laura lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and creates jewelry inspired by ancient and contemporary designs and motifs.