April 1, 2004

Fashionably Precious

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Spring Shows Bursting with Optimism

like spring itself, it’s a breath of fresh air: most of the spring season’s jewelry trade shows were busy and upbeat, signaling a return to optimism in the industry after several years of relative doldrums. the first show of the 2004 season, vicenzaoro i, held jan. 11-17 in vicenza, italy, reported a boost in overall attendance as well as a significant rise in the number of american visitors re…

Yurman, Alisa Reach Settlement

a long-standing copyright infringement lawsuit between david yurman of yurman design inc., new york, and a new jersey-based wholesaler and an italian manufacturer has been settled. under the agreement, filed in federal district court in new york city, golden treasure imports inc., dba alisa, of manalapan, n.

First Piece Donated to GIA’s American Jewelry Design Council Collection

“yellow orchid,” an extraordinary diamond and yellow sapphire brooch, has been donated to the gemological institute of america’s (gia) american jewelry design council collection. the designer piece, created in 18k gold and platinum by mark patterson from the “intensity” line, features 36 diamonds totaling .

Displaying Jewelry in the Best Light

one of the most important aspects of jewelry store design is display lighting. yet jewelry store owners often treat lighting as a cost rather than a tool to boost sales, say interior designers and lighting manufacturers. “people cannot look at lighting as an expense, but rather as a way to increase sales and profitability,” says mickey minagorri, director of business development for artco grou…

Golden Globe Style

as usual, golden globe fashion this year was dominated by diamond jewelry, though the trends were slightly different from those of the past few years. for one, it seems the chandelier moment has passed: stars still are choosing draping, dropping, and daring designs, but in sleeker and fringier styles.

Fashionably Precious

platinum is perhaps best known as a very popular metal for bridal jewelry, but it is increasingly being used in fashionable styles as well. platinum’s strength makes it a winner when paired with diamonds or other precious gems—giving consumers peace of mind knowing that their stones are safe—while its inherent luster makes it the metal of choice for the jewelry-savvy white-metal cus…

Is the Future of Jewelry Manufacturing Spelled I-S-O?

the three most important letters in jewelry manufacturing soon may be i-s-o. the manufacturing jewelers and suppliers of america (mjsa) is leading a drive to have jewelry manufacturers certified by the international organization of standards, better known as iso. it’s enlisted the new york-based american assay and gemological office to write a handbook for industry iso compliance and to conduct…

Matrix-Based Management, Part III: Training & Education

the “drivers” of productivity are separate measurements that can be used to determine success in the organization. we will look at some of the more common drivers in the jewelry industry, but you may want to consider if there are others more specific to your business. for our purposes, “alignment” is defined as “harmony among all the components of a business.

Call for Curatorial Proposals

the society of north american goldsmiths (snag), an organization for jewelers, designers, and metalsmiths, is soliciting proposals for “exhibition in print 2005,” a special curated issue of the internationally distributed art publication, metalsmith. proposals for this special issue should identify a thematic curatorial approach and include a detailed methodology.

Hollywood Darling Joins LeVian

in a clear-cut case of “classic meets contemporary,” los angeles-based designer charlie lapson has joined levian as the company’s newest designer. lapson, a favorite of hollywood’s red carpet celebrities, was labeled by time magazine as “one of the hippest designers in los angeles,” and entertainment tonight called him “the designer for the new millennium.

Cross-Cultural Bling at the Newark Museum

curators from three different departments of the newark museum in new jersey have created a far-reaching jewelry exhibit, “baubles, bangles and bling bling: a world of jewelry,” that will run through may 9. ulysses grant dietz, curator of decorative arts; valrae reynolds, curator of the asian collection; and christa clarke, curator of africa, the americas, and the pacific, have brought together…

TAG Heuer Named Indy 500 Timekeeper

swiss luxury sports watch tag heuer has been named “official timekeeper and scorer” of the indy racing league (irl) and the indianapolis 500-mile race. the long-term agreement with irl and the indianapolis motor speedway “marks a new milestone in our 144-year history,” as the brand works with irl to take 1/10,000-of-a-second time measurement technology “to new levels in unique and compelling a…

Rolex USA Donates $1 Million to Watchmaker School

rolex usa has donated $1 million to the watchmaker school of saint paul college, saint paul, minn. the funds, which represent the school’s largest-ever contribution, will be allocated over five years, starting this year. the watchmaking program, one of the oldest in the country, is now based on the two-year watchmakers of switzerland training and educational program (wostep) course.

Tucson 2004: A Gemstone Cornucopia

attendance was up and buyers were buying, reports the american gem trade association (agta), host of the most important of the 38 gem and mineral shows held in tucson during the last week of january and first two weeks of february. that news comes as no surprise to anyone who waited in one of the long lines of cars inching toward a parking lot, stood in a crowd at the show entrance before the …

AMR Shows Interest in Colored Diamonds

the december 2003 edition of auction market resource (amr) focuses on colored—as well as colorless—diamonds sold at auction. in his lead article, “diamonds @ auction: an evolving scenario,” howard rubin, one of the leading experts in color diamond nomenclature and a contributor to amr, writes, “colored diamonds are no longer a fad but an increasing sales trend that the auction mar…

Diamonds: They’re Not Just for Jewelry Anymore

antwerp-based diamond manufacturer dali diamond is bringing diamonds to the next level of fashionability, using them to adorn leather handbags. the newly unveiled “diamond delvaux” is a limited-edition high-end luxury handbag designed and crafted by the delvaux leatherwear company. each bag is highlighted by a .

Jewelry Sales Hit $44 Billion in 2003

sales of fine jewelry in the united states totaled approximately $43.6 billion in 2003, according to the latest estimates from the national jewelry study, which was conducted via the internet throughout 2003. over the course of the year, 37,844 women and men completed the 10-minute online questionnaire.

Belgian Bourses Express ‘Real Fear’ About De Beers Policy

the federation of belgian diamond bourses has “real fears” about de beers’ supplier of choice policy, a group statement said recently. “dealers and manufacturers are very worried about the future outlook of the diamond market,” said the statement, signed by the presidents of all four antwerp bourses.

New Group Formed to Promote Colored Diamonds

two diamond companies have formed the natural color diamond association, an organization designed to promote the “other” stones in the diamond family. “we want to get colored diamonds to the forefront of fashion,” says jennifer phelps-montgomery, fine-jewelry manager for michael werdiger, one of the organization’s founders.

Robin Leach to Speak at LUXURY by JCK

luxury by jck will take place in las vegas may 31 to june 3 in the venetian hotel & resort’s newly constructed ballrooms. a welcome reception hosted by jck’s luxury international magazine on may 31 will feature a product preview and let guests see the latest lines from 115 exhibitors. robin leach, host of the tv series lifestyles of the rich and famous, will deliver the keynote address on…

JA Adopts ‘Supplier Code of Conduct’

jewelers of america (ja) has formally adopted a “supplier code of conduct,” the association said in a statement. this new document was adopted by the ja board of directors in january 2004 as part of an ongoing effort to strengthen consumer confidence in jewelers and to support its long-term commitment to developing a framework for social, ethical, and environmental responsibility, the associat…

The CEO Forum

the educational programs at the jck shows have been signal accomplishments. though designed primarily for retail jewelers, some also apply to the manufacturing and wholesale sectors of the industry. regrettably, because the education program comes immediately before the shows, few exhibitors are able to attend.

Big Bucks, Big Risks

one day recently a longtime customer walked into the jc sipe jewelry store in indianapolis to buy a $20,000 piece of jewelry—with an envelope full of cash he had saved. owner sam sipe was taken aback. “i’m used to people using credit cards or checks to buy expensive jewelry” said the 30-year veteran retailer.

Swiss Watch Exports Down 4.4% in 2003

swiss watch exports dropped 4.4% in overall value in 2003, to almost 10.2 billion swiss francs (about us$8.2 billion), because of some serious global problems, says a february report by the federation of the swiss watch industry (fh). still, says the fh, whose members represent over 90% of all swiss watch manufacturers (finished products, watch movements, components, etc.

VIVID Collection Sponsors Vernissage 2004

vivid collection was the grand corporate sponsor of vernissage 2004, the opening night of the palm beach, fla., classic international fine arts and antique fair. the fair benefits the norton museum of art’s educational and exhibition programs and features the finest jewelers, arts, and antiques dealers from around the world.

PGI at 12: Back to the Future

when the platinum guild international (pgi) opened its american office in 1992, it set itself the ambitious task of building widespread desire for the metal among american consumers. platinum jewelry had been popular prior to world war ii, but its use in jewelry was curtailed during the war, and consumers born after the war weren’t accustomed to buying it.

De Beers Promotes Two to Top Titles

de beers has promoted two notable up-and-comers. gareth penny, architect of supplier of choice and jck’s “person of the year” for 2003, was named managing director (president) of the diamond trading company, de beers’ marketing arm. current chairman nicholas oppenheimer’s son jonathan, “regarded by many as the heir apparent to the de beers throne,” according to the south african press, has been…

Congress Must Act Now to Stop Trade War, Says MJSA

manufacturing jewelers and suppliers of america (mjsa) is urging congress to quickly repeal tax breaks for u.s. companies that have been deemed illegal subsidies by the world trade organization (wto). the european union (eu) has said it will impose stiff sanctions on u.s. jewelry if such subsidies are not eliminated.

12 Tips To Keep Staff Happy

in a recent seminar at the jck show in phoenix, david richardson, ceo of richardson resource group, scottsdale, ariz., offered 12 tips for retaining happy and productive staff.

Moti Ganz Elected President of Israeli Group

the israel diamond manufacturers’ association (isdma) has elected moti ganz president. ganz replaces uri schwartz, who was elected president in 2001, after having served two previous terms in this position. ganz, 43, is the owner of moti ganz diamonds ltd., the owner of the elara brand diamond cut and a dtc sightholder.

Suberi Merges With Indian Company

in the latest sightholder initiative, the u.s. branch of the laxmi diamond group, one of india’s largest sightholders, has merged with new york’s suberi brothers. the new company, suberi brothers llc, will be headed by suberi ceo marvin markman and utilize all of the company’s current top management.

A Precious Cocktail

the nation’s most valuable martini debuted recently at a richmond restaurant, thanks to an innovative partnership with local jeweler schwarzschild. the $12,800 schwarzschild engaging martini at bookbinder’s restaurant sparkles with romance. as a special way to propose, customers at bookbinder’s may order the schwarzschild engaging martini, a fiery concoction of ciroc french vodka with a splash …

Steve Forbes to Jewelers: ‘Expect a Good Year’

forbes magazine’s steve forbes told jewelers at a recent panel discussion that they could look forward to a “positive” year of business in 2004. forbes’s optimistic comments came at the end of a diamond jewelry presentation sponsored by couture jewellery collection & conference that took place at the winter jewelers of america new york (jany) show.

Practical Stone Setting, Part VII: Small 3-Prong Side Settings

here is a standard three-stone ring in gold, with settings for a pear-shaped center stone and two small side diamonds in three-prong settings. the ring is a typical commercial mounting from stuller that comes ready for the jeweler to set using either customers’ stones or stock gems. after the ring has been polished, prepare to set the two side stones first, while there is still access, and then…

Gem-A Offers De Beers Video on Treatments

the gemmological association of great britain (gem-a) is marketing a cd-rom from the diamond trading company titled “diamonds: treatments, synthetics, and simulants.” the cd-rom contains animated graphics, videos, and 250 slides to provide details on the latest gemological research on hpht (high pressure, high temperature) treatments and synthetics, cvd (chemical vapor deposition) synthetics, f…

Report: De Beers Close to Deal with U.S.

de beers is not commenting on a recent wall street journal report that it is close to ending its long-running dispute with the u.s. justice department. spokeswoman lynette hori told jck: “there is nothing more to say other than we are hopeful of a resolution with the department of justice. … we cannot comment beyond that.

Soft in the Middle

when virginia jeweler jerry mcbride closed one of his glassner jewelers stores in a mall-based location last year, he told the roanoke times that he just “didn’t figure out what the clientele wanted. we’re in the middle [neither high-end nor low-end],” he said. “that didn’t work here.” mcbride isn’t the first in the industry to experience this polarization.

No Indication of Diffusion?

diffusion has nothing to do with the new enhanced blue sapphires seen recently in the trade. that’s the view of dr. henry hänni of the swiss gemological institute (ssef) in basel, but others aren’t so sure. in a combined press release, directors of the agta gem testing center laboratory (gtc) and gia’s gem trade laboratory (gtl) said, “at present, we cannot state conclusively the role that…

Charles & Colvard Expands International Presence

charles & colvard ltd. has announced the opening of three new international moissanite boutiques in the people’s republic of china, vietnam, and the philippines. the company opened its third retail location in the people’s republic of china in the china hotel at the heart of the city’s business district in the southern chinese city of guangzhou.

NGOs Target Gold

in a press release dated feb. 11, earthworks/mineral policy center and oxfam america announced their intention to target gold in a new consumer ad campaign about the environmental and social impacts of mining. at that time, the two nongovernmental organizations announced plans for “dirty gold” protests outside major jewelry stores and subway stations in new york, boston, and washington during t…

Jewelex Pvt. Ltd. Awarded

jewelex (india) pvt. ltd., mumbai, india, was recently awarded the certificate of merit by the gem and jewelry export promotion council (gjepc) for standing second in the exports of studded precious metal jewelry. jewelex is an offshoot of p.d. kothari & co and has offices in new york, belgium, and tokyo.

WJA Calls for Entries

the women’s jewelry association (wja) has announced its 2004 annual student scholarship program for deserving women students enrolled in fine jewelry and watch design courses in the united states. scholarship awards start at $500 and are based on design renderings. the deadline for receipt of the application is may 1, 2004.

An American Gem[m]ologist in London

u.s. jewelry designer kathryn kinev, jewel creations, atlanta, ga., was one of only a handful of americans who attended the gem-a annual education conference last fall, and she says jeweler/gemologists should consider traveling across the pond for the 2004 conference. the eight members of the u.s. delegation for 2003 included guest speakers william boyajian, president of the gemological institu…

JSA Elects Chairman

walter fischer, president and ceo of rolex watch (usa), has been elected chairman of the board of jewelers’ security alliance (jsa) for a two-year term. fischer, a member of jsa’s board for several years, has supported jsa in lobbying for more fbi and law enforcement assistance for the jewelry industry.

CJA Names Rossana Aguilar Exec Director

rossana aguilar was appointed executive director of the california jewelers association, effective dec. 1, 2003. aguilar had shared executive director duties with noel cheney, who resigned to open her own retail store. during that time aguilar worked out of the los angeles office while cheney established a new office in northern california.

Valentine’s Day Sales ‘Very Strong’

valentine’s day sales at jewelry stores across the united states were strong, following on the heels of a strong 2003 holiday season and further bolstering the sense of renewed optimism expressed at the spring jewelry trade shows. not surprisingly, diamonds led the list of best-selling products, but jewelers reported both high unit sales and high dollar sales.

Recruiting Great Employees

when jon parker and debbie dern recruit employees for their clients, they don’t just place an ad in the newspaper and wait for résumés to pour in. parker and dern, senior vice president and ceo, respectively, of djp executive search inc. in virginia beach, va., get out of the office to observe potential recruits in action.

Sightholders: De Beers Price Increase ‘Across the Board’

the recent de beers price increase affected rough diamonds across the board, but it’s too early to know if it will affect the price of polished, sightholders say. that’s because rough and polished prices aren’t always in sync, as counterintuitive as that seems. de beers recently announced that its rough prices increased an average of 10% over the last year—but polished prices have risen o…

2003 Spending on Jewelry and Watches

according to the most recent results of the mendelsohn media research affluent survey—which queries households with income exceeding $75,000—discretionary spending on jewelry and watches still lags behind several other categories. home furnishings is the biggest winner—ranking no. 1 in expenditures made by consumers—and jewelry and watches ranks no.

A Child’s Eye View

how might our society look to an extraterrestrial? the alien’s report might read something like this: “earth is populated by a species called the automobile. every morning, the automobile goes from its resting place to gather with other automobiles and socialize. every evening, it returns to its resting place.

The American Gem Society: 70 Years and Counting

robert shipley’s two goals—to create an educational institution and develop a national guild of ethical, knowledgeable jewelers—were accomplished simultaneously during the 1930s. first, shipley’s early gemological students founded the gemological society of southern california in january 1931.

Super Bell Moves to Larger Quarters

super bell jewelry has relocated its headquarters to 611 w. sixth st., suite 2288, los angeles, ca 90017. super bell made the move to expand its jewelry club house operation. the new location boasts one of the largest office spaces in the los angeles jewelry district. amenities include an executive bar with a red wine and cigar collection, a 2,000-year-old antique collection, and a recreation r…

WJA Awards $9,700 in Member Grants

the women’s jewelry association (wja) member grant program recently awarded $9,700 to 19 of its members. the program aims to provide a financial contribution for ongoing education that will empower women in the jewelry, watch, and related industries. member grants are available to all female wja members.

MJSA Buyers’ Guide Honored

manufacturing jewelers & suppliers of america (mjsa) has won the gold award in the membership directory category of the 23rd annual media contest. the association received the award—the competition’s highest honor—for its 2003-2004 buyers’ guide, a comprehensive and easy-to-use resource that lists products and services provided by mjsa members.

Bowersox: ‘I Know Where bin Laden Is’

what do shock jock howard stern and the gem business have in common? gary bowersox, owner of geovision and an expert on gems from afghanistan, made a surprise phone call to the howard stern radio show on the morning of jan. 22. bowersox claimed to stern that he knows where osama bin laden is hiding out and offered some specific coordinates.

IDCA Reelects Johari President

basant johari has been unanimously reelected as president of the indian diamond and colorstone association (idca). prakash lahki was elected vice president; shshil goyal, secretary; dr. ashok surana, joint secretary; and anuj jain, treasurer.

Fired-up color

a cornucopia of color, and an introduction to heat-treated gems, our photomontage includes (clockwise, from left) rings set with amethyst and golden citrine, accented by red garnets and near-colorless diamonds; “mint” light green tourmaline, set with spessartite garnets; blue zircon, embellished with contrasting yellow sapphires and rubellite tourmalines; and aquamarine.

Ireland Show This Month

more than 200 manufacturers of irish-, welsh-, scottish-, and british-made merchandise will participate in the ireland show, april 25-27, in secaucus, n.j., at the embassy suites hotel. open to the trade only, product categories include jewelry, apparel, tableware, fine art, holiday merchandise, stationery, music, gourmet, souvenirs, and collectibles.