IJO plans for fall Seminar/Show

Training will be the focus of seminars at the Independent Jewelers Organization Fall Buying Show and Seminars, set for July 27-Aug. 1 at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tenn.

Convening in America’s music capital, IJO members can enjoy stage productions, rides, shops, museums, a showboat and nine acres of indoor gardens at the hotel complex, while taking advantage of a four-day buying room and seminar program.

Laura Laaman, founder of Executive Training Consultants, will present “Dive Into Success” and “How, When and Why to Hire, Train and Motivate Highly Profitable Salespeople.”

The Jewelers Education Foundation of the American Gem Society will introduce its new Sales Associate Training Program. A title certificate is presented upon completion of the home-study course.

Diane Warga-Arias, education director for the Diamond Promotion Service, will talk about putting romance back into diamond sales. IJO also will present a seminar on free Web sites for members, a promotions seminar, a workshop on natural color diamonds and four Gemological Institute of America workshops.

IJO will announce the winners of its Jewelry Design Contest during the event. Winners in each of three price categories will receive a $50 gift certificate from the Gemological Institute of America Bookstore, a laser-carved gemstone of about 5 carats from Joe Menzie Inc. and a plaque. Registration forms can be obtained from IJO and are due July 7.

Also planned is a Kids’ Program during which IJO members’ children can spend time at Opryland Themepark, Wave Country, Recreation World, Grassmere Wildlife Park, and the Nashville Zoo. The program is available for children age 6 and older.

Meanwhile, a new program providing IJO members with travel rewards highlighted the spring IJO Buying Show and Seminars at the Greenbriar Resort in West Virginia in February. Most members attending the show qualified for four free nights at the Opryland Hotel and one or two airline tickets to Nashville.

Another highlight of the spring show was a keynote address by world-famous diamond cutter Gabi Tolkowsky, who explained the romance and emotion of diamonds.

Also introduced at the show was a window design program, with a consultant on jewelry store design on hand to help members improve the look of their stores. Display expert MariAnn Coutchie created window displays that allow customers to look at jewelry at eye-level and only six to 10 inches from their faces. The displays are available inexpensively and exclusively to IJO members.

Workshops were presented on family businesses, computers, employees, customer service, Ideal Cut diamonds and the Internet, plus three hands-on benchwork presentations by GIA.

IJO staff members also began traveling to visit member stores early this year. The visits are intended to help IJO management gather data and send each store specific suggestions on how to increase sales and profits.

IJO, 2 Railroad Place, Westport, CT 06880-5910; (800) 624-9252, fax (203) 454-4371, Internet http://www.

Appraisers Plan Conference

The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers will hold a conference Aug. 16-20 at the Holiday Inn Central in Dallas, Tex. The first three days of the conference will focus on appraising period jewelry.

Experts Karen Lorene and Christie Romero will address jewelry periods in chronological order, starting with Georgian and ending with mid-20th century jewelry. Also planned is a full-day session on appraisal terminology and theory relating to insurance and fair market value appraisals and a half-day session on using a spectroscope.

The association also announces that NAJA Appraisal Forms are now available in IBM and Macintosh computerized versions or as camera-ready copy. The set consists of 91 diamond and colored stone sheets and 35 appraisal-related forms. The forms are available only to NAJA members and are an update of the 12 original forms developed in the early 1980s.NAJA, P.O. Box 6558, Annapolis, MD 21401-0558; (301) 261-8270.


The Midwest chapter of the Women’s Jewelry Association named Sue Crady as the 1997 recipient of the “Women Making a Difference” award. The annual award was established in 1996 to honor a WJA member demonstrating “outstanding career involvement, volunteerism, activism and attitude.” Six members were nominated for this year’s award.

Crady is a sales representative for Global Diamonds, a wholesaler of loose diamonds in Chicago, Ill. She helped to found the WJA-Chicago chapter eight years ago, served as president from 1988 to 1990, was board adviser and membership chair and is now program committee adviser.


The Watchmakers of Switzerland Information Center Inc., a federation of the Swiss watch industry, has moved to 201 West Passaic St., Suite 103, Rochelle Park, NJ 07662; (201) 291-8811, fax (201) 291-7966.