Only the most treasured possessions become heirlooms. Items like diamond or pearl jewelry that could not be replaced due to cost or availability are passed down to fortunate descendants to be treasured and then passed on again.
Until recently, pearls and diamonds were of similar value. In 1917, jeweler Pierre Cartier purchased the Fifth Avenue mansion that is now the New York Cartier store in exchange for a matched, double strand of natural pearls that he had been collecting for years, which was valued then at one million dollars. In the last few years, the process of producing cultured pearls has improved to where they have become a semi-precious stone that is within the reach of many more people. Now pearls are considered a must-have item for many women.
As the production of cultured pearls has increased, mother of pearl has also become much more available. Mother of pearl is produced by the same microscopic layers of secretion that form a pearl. The thickness of each layer is roughly the same as the wavelengths of light, producing its unique depth and iridescence. Different colors of mother of pearl come from different species of mollusk and environmental conditions. As with pearls, color and brilliance determine the value of the material. Mother of pearl is often used for jewelry and decorative inlays in custom furniture and musical instruments.
The Heirloom collection of mosaics is a special collection of decorative mosaics for special areas where unexceptional is unacceptable. They have layers of depth that change with light and viewing angle, almost as if they are alive. Five unique designs that vary from mixed medium to the incomparable Black Swan Pearl, Heirloom mosaics transform ordinary walls into heirlooms to be enjoyed every time you see them.
Heirloom mosaics will remain beautiful for longer than most houses will stand when used for walls not subject to impact or heavy cleaning. They are installed like glass mosaics with a premium white latex-modified thinset and grouted with Ardex, Prism, Tec Powergrout, or Dimensions grout.