Our natural Ohrid pearls

About our tradition

Vane - the founder of Ohrid Pearls 1902-1964

Selling Ohrid pearls in 1935

Queen Elizabeth have on Ohrid Pearls made by Talev family

Father of Kliment, Vane at workroom in 1935

Our long tradition

Ohrid has many sights and it can not be described briefly. One of these sights is the Ohrid pearl, which is widely popular in Europe and the world. It is valued because it is handmade from natural origin. It’s production is an art. Natural pearls last 150 years, but Ohrid pearl lasts forever.

“Talevi” is the most famous family that deals with making the Ohrid pearl -a tradition of 90 years. Talevi surname is a synonym for unique, natural pearls. The business passed from generation to generation, only from father to son.

Kliment Talev (pictured left) inherited the family business in 1964.Currently craft for making Ohrid pearl is teaching his son Vane (pictured right), who will then leave an inheritance to their three sons, Kliment, Michael and Aleksandar.

The family business started Vane and his brother Mihail, (father and uncle of Kliment). They purchaised the formula for making a pearls from a man from Russia for 25 napoleons. Mihail bought materials for making pearls from Bethlehem and they started to work.

Wealthy people began to buy from them, because only rich people could afford pearls. Into the shop came traders, bank owners, young Industrialists and bought pearls for their fiancés and wives. The pearls were named “Ohrid Pearls”. That name was established in 1935. Traders from Bitola and Skopje were common customers and they usually were sayin that they go to Ohrid for pearls, and that is how the name “Ohrid Pearl” was created- tells Talev.

Ohrid pearls are highly appreciated and sought after in the world. They are made of nacre and shells, which Talevi procured from abroad. Each grain of pearl they made by hand, which issue certificates. Before starting work, Thalev put the grains of pearl on toothpicks over wooden meter long table. Each grain is coated with special emulsion, which is a family secret.

We work only with natural materials. Even the brush with which we coat the pearls is made from fibers from squirel tail or horse. An emulsion has the same formula that bought my father and my uncle in 1924 - said KlimentTalev.

Each pearl is cat five to six times, and the time from one to another coating must be at least 45 minutes to an hour, to be well dried . Talev said it is not recommended to string pearls the same day they are made, but it is best to do so the next day.

Many famous people from Macedonia and abroad bought pearls from Talevi. Some of them are: former president of Republic of Macedonia, Branko Crvenkovski, the ambassador of China, the wife of the japanese ambassador, Deputy Prime Minister of Luxembourg, wife of the foreign Minister of Taiwan, foreign Minister of the Republic Bulgaria - N. Mikhailova, Ms. Falk Al Hassadim - the sister of king of Syria, Ms. Eveline Herfkens – Netherlands, Anna Lindh foreign Minister of Sweden, Mary Thiessen - NATO Reeder - Austria and others.

Britain's Queen Elizabeth in her jewelry collection possesses Ohrid Pearl, which in 2001 gave it то her as a gift Vilma Trajkovska.

The working process

The following pictures present how Kliment and Vane made Ohrid pearls by hand. The technology is old more then 90 years.

Golden medal Eureka 2001

In 2001 on the fair for innovations and hand made “Eureka” in Brussel, Ohrid family Talevi win gold medal for hand made of pearl in competition of 45 competitors from whole world.

Bill of debt - Croatia

Certificate Eureka 2001 - Brussel

Certificate of Ministry for economy of Macedonia