March 1, 2001

Japan and Switzerland: Two Watchmakers, a World Apart

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Laser Beams, Baggies, and Polymers

since diamonds don’t display chemical “clues” as to where they come from geologically, the other solution is to find a way to track the stones-electronically or otherwise. the industry’s solution is for every rough diamond or parcel to be sealed in a plastic container that would be accompanied by a “certificate of origin” from the government of the exporting country.

Correction

a diamond notes article in the january issue (“diamond i.d. touts online registration,” p. 58) stated that diamond i.d. allows diamonds to be registered “online.” registration also can be made using fax and mail. the story also should have mentioned that the company’s database is protected by and derived from its u.s. patent.

ROCHESTER DIAMONDS ANNOUNCES TRIPLE CERT

rochester diamonds inc. has introduced an exclusive triple certification program. all diamonds above .45 cts. will be accompanied by a gemological institute of america or european gemological certificate, a gemprint scan certificate, and the rdi diamond report, which provides a thorough analysis of cut grades and appraised value and reconfirms the characteristics as represented by gia or egl.

Ramaura Rubies to Join Hope Diamond

judith osmer, ceo and founder of j.o. crystal co., long beach calif., and creator of the ramaura synthetic ruby, has donated a selection of unique ramaura crystals to the gem and mineral collection of the smithsonian institution.

De Beers Renews Two Major Contracts

de beers recently renewed contracts with its two best friends in africa-the governments of namibia and botswana-ensuring that the company will continue to control a sizable chunk of the diamond market for years to come.de beers and the government of botswana, the world’s largest diamond producer by value, recently signed a new contract that lets de beers market the country’s diamonds until 2005.

Casta-Way: Diamond.com Forced to Cover Up Billboard

a racy billboard from web site diamond.com recently proved too much even for new yorkers.the ad featured a shot of the site’s spokesmodel, france’s laetitia casta, clad in nothing more than gems. but publications such as architectural digest and the new york times magazine refused to run the ad until computer-enhanced strands were added to make casta’s image more discreet.

Hometown Stories

there are all sorts of high-profile local and regional events that can provide excellent marketing possibilities for jewelers-as many already realize. a recent jck national poll found that one in five jewelers is involved in some kind of local or regional award event.

Everyone Old Is Young Again

retailers may scoff at new jewelry trends, because the stars who initiate them are generations younger than the average fine jewelry consumer. traditionally, a 50-year-old woman had so-called mature and conservative taste. the 21st century, however, is breaking those fashion rules, as women ignore the candles on their birthday cakes and pay attention to fashions that make them look and feel young.

The Great Akoya Debate

during the past year there have been several articles and letters to the editor of jck magazine on the topic of akoya pearls. a recent article in another publication stated that an executive of a major store was shocked when he learned that the nacre thickness of akoyas purchased for his store was less than 0.5 mm.on its own, this “shocked” reaction is laughable.

‘Value’ and ‘Style’ The New Watchwords of Japan’s Watchmakers

recent years have been tumultuous and sobering for some of the world’s largest watchmakers, leading to significant changes in their international operations to boost business and brand awareness and stay competitive in the 21st century.no, we don’t mean the swiss or other upscale european watchmakers, whose many brands have been coalescing in the past 18 months.

Charles & Colvard Confronts Morion

charles & colvard, formerly known as c3, is telling the morion co. of brighton, mass., to stop selling synthetic moissanite crystals. charles & colvard owns the patent to the synthetic jewel.

EGL Offers Booklet on HPHT Treatment

a new booklet by new york’s european gemological laboratories (egl) is intended to help jewelers learn more about high-pressure, high-temperature (hpht) treated diamonds.gregory e. sherman, the lab’s director of marketing and education and the booklet’s co-author, says the lab has been in touch with the major producers of these diamonds, both in the united states and in russia.

ARTORIA HAS DEAL WITH FORBES COLLECTION

artoria limoges, the largest manufacturer of porcelain giftware in limoges, france, has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with the forbes collection to manufacture reproductions of its priceless objets d’art. the forbes collection has the world’s largest private collection of imperial russian fabergé eggs as well as numerous other treasures.

De Beers Sets Sales Records

de beers set a sales record in 2000, although receipts failed to break the expected $6 billion mark. the company did fulfill its goal for the year by matching its 1999 total of $5.24 billion. overall, sales rose 8%, to $5.67 billion.

BAGUÉS-MASRIERA IS NATIONAL GALLERY REP

the national gallery of art in washington, d.c., recently chose bagués-masriera as the representative of the fine jewelry collection available in the gallery’s gift shop. the appointment coincided with the victoria & albert museum’s nouveau exhibition, which was on view oct. 8, 2000 through jan. 8, 2001. “this is indeed a great honor for masriera,” said joe meli, director of u.s.

Watch vs. Non-Watch

most people know citizen, seiko, and casio as important watch brands. in fact, that is only part of their parent corporations’ operations and business. seiko (through seiko epson) is one of the world’s top computer printer makers, casio’s parent (casio computer co.) is famous for its handheld computers, and citizen watch co.

AGS NAMES CIRCLE OF DISTINCTION INDUCTEES

the american gem society held its inaugural circle of distinction dinner nov. 13, 2000, at the rainbow room at rockefeller plaza in new york city. the event launched ags’s “partnership for excellence” capital campaign for the expansion of the ags campus in las vegas.campaign co-chairs georgie gleim, cg, and marc green, cga, announced initial demonstration gifts amounting to $1.

FOPE OPENS U.S. OFFICE

products of the italian jewelry manufacturer fope, based in vicenza, italy, now are available only from its office in new york city. previously, fope products were distributed in the united states through wholesalers or sold to large stores and chain stores at european trade shows.the company also offers a co-op program to promote its products.fope, 576 fifth ave.

ROBERT S. FISHER COMPANY SOLD

david roth has purchased the robert s. fisher company from schottenstein stores. roth has been employed by fisher since 1979 and succeeds don roth as president. the company, which was established in 1903, is an ags supplier specializing in 14k and 18k earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.fisher recently established a partnership with emblematic jewelry manufacturer wefferling-berry.

Japan and Switzerland: Two Watchmakers, a World Apart

there are two watchmaking powers in the world today: the swiss and the japanese. one might think that the ongoing consolidation of the swiss watch industry through mergers and acquisitions-and the growth of a few watchmaking powerhouses-would concern japanese watchmakers. wrong.

People

the society of north american goldsmiths (snag) has appointed suzanne ramljak as the editor of metalsmith magazine. previously, ramljak was curator of exhibitions at the american federation of arts. she also served as editor of sculpture magazine and glass magazine and as associate editor of american ceramics magazine.

APPOINTMENTS

sharon buntain has been named president of lalique north america. buntain formerly was president at augros inc.mg & g advertising has appointed peg fitchwell-hill as executive vice president. fitchwell-hill is a member of the advertising women of new york and the women’s jewelry association. leo thaler has joined sandberg and sikorski corp.

World Diamond Council Proposes ‘Conflict’ Law

the world diamond council has put its stamp on proposed legislation in the united states that would bar conflict diamonds from entering the country and serve as a model for similar legislation in other diamond-consuming countries. the wdc action, taken at its second full meeting jan.

FBI Gets More Funding To ‘Disrupt’ Jewelry Theft Gangs

the jewelry industry proposal for more fbi help to fight jewelry crimes, especially theft gangs that attack traveling salespeople, was approved by congress on dec. 21, 2000, and signed by president clinton.passage capped a year of lobbying by the industrywide security coalition, led by the jewelers’ security alliance.

Aquamarine

aquamarine is just one member of the beryl family. its siblings include such notables as emerald, heliodor (golden beryl), and morganite (pink beryl). aquamarine is mined on almost every continent, but the most prolific mines historically have been found in brazil and, most recently, in african nations such as nigeria and mozambique.

White House Holds ‘Identification’ Meeting

as a sign of how serious the whole issue of diamond identification has become, the white house office of science and technology policy held a conference on “technologies for [diamond] identification and certification” in january.

Dot-Com Mis-Com

not everything you read on the internet is true, and even some information that’s meant to be true may unintentionally mislead. consider tanzanite.com. martin haske, an appraiser and gemologist in brookline, mass., visited the site after a client challenged him to check out its information page “to see what ‘true’ prices are and what a real dealer sells.”haske found the selling prices.

Basel Fair Will Expand, Add Show

the annual world watch and jewelry show held in basel, switzerland, will expand and divide next year. insufficient space has bedeviled the show during its rise to international prominence over the past 20 years, prompting the fair’s management to implement a radical reorganization. the changes commence with next year’s show, scheduled for march 14-21, 2002.

Junghans, Bedat Get New Owners

two stars of the watch cosmos-one rising, the other long-established-acquired new owners at the end of 2000, capping a year of more mergers and acquisitions in europe’s mid- and luxury-priced watch industry. junghans, the upscale german brand established in 1861, was acquired by eganagoldpfeil ltd., a global marketer of fashion accessories.

Associations

the national cuff link society is offering a free booklet, “the fun of cuff link collecting,” to the general public. according to the society’s president, eugene r. klompus, cufflinks are the fastest growing collectible in the country.the eight-page booklet explains the steps involved in beginning a cufflink collection.

The Bloom Is Off the Boom

the soaring economy has finally landed, and jewelry stores were among the first to touch down. holiday sales were down when compared with the record sales growth of the past couple of years. and economic indicators show that consumers will remain cautious in the new year.

Crimes Against Traveling Salespeople Decreased 47% In 2000, Says JSA

robberies of traveling jewelry salespeople dropped 47% in 2000 to the lowest number since the mid-1980s, says jewelers’ security alliance. the good news was announced jan. 13 at jsa’s annual luncheon in new york city, which was attended by 135 jewelry industry leaders.

Adorning the Stars

two characters on a popular television series get engaged. a celebrity whose career is peaking graces the cover of a fashion magazine. the film, music, and theater industries present their awards as fans the world over watch in awe. and every photograph or video clip that documents the occasion depicts the stars bedecked in breathtaking jewelry.this doesn’t happen by chance, of course.

MICHAEL ANTHONY SIGNS DISTRIBUTION DEAL

michael anthony jewelers, a marketer and manufacturer of gold jewelry, announced that it has entered into a distribution agreement with the almond jewelry group. under the arrangement, michael anthony has acquired the exclusive rights to market and distribute gold jewelry products manufactured by almond to retailers in the united states.

CUFF LINK SOCIETY OFFERS FREE BOOKLET

the national cuff link society is offering a free booklet, “the fun of cuff link collecting,” to the general public. according to the society’s president, eugene r. klompus, cufflinks are the fastest growing collectible in the country.the eight-page booklet explains the steps involved in beginning a cufflink collection.

More Demantoid! Yahoo!

it has been called the jewel of imperial russia, and the “diamond” of colored stones. it’s demantoid garnet, and large quantities are found only in the ural mountains-or so it was thought. it now has a new source, this time in west africa.

Feed ’em and Reap

the fundamental principle of finance in a capitalist market is making sure one’s income exceeds one’s outgo. the measure of success-by wall street, by a small business owner, or by an individual balancing his or her checkbook-is how much the income exceeds the outgo. and when the amount of income decreases, both businesses and individuals respond by reducing the outgo.the principle is sound.

Supplier News

david roth has purchased the robert s. fisher company from schottenstein stores. roth has been employed by fisher since 1979 and succeeds don roth as president. the company, which was established in 1903, is an ags supplier specializing in 14k and 18k earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.fisher recently established a partnership with emblematic jewelry manufacturer wefferling-berry.

Where Do Diamonds Come From?

the industry’s proposed solution to the “conflict diamond” issue will cost millions of dollars, require untold hours of time and effort, and needs the approval of governments around the world-with nongovernmental organizations (ngos) castigating the industry all the while for not acting fast enough.it would be a lot easier if there was a way to determine the origin of diamonds.

QUALITY GOLD OPENS DISTRIBUTION FACILITY

quality gold announces its expansion into a 100,000-square-foot distribution facility. located directly behind quality gold’s corporate offices in fairfield, ohio, the facility is equipped with new security, sorting, and shipping equipment.founded in 1979, quality gold inc. is a national company offering more than 100,000 jewelry products for sale to primarily independent retailers.

Passionate Dates in History: A Thousand Years of Jewelry

1000 a celestial love. pope sylvester ii gives stephan of hungary a crown containing 320 pearls, gems, and icons. stephan was later made a saint.1140 a childhood love. eleanor of aquitaine gives her friend richard animal a sapphire and gold ring with his initials. the two had studied together.1236 a well-tressed love.

New Diamond Mine for Angola

southernera resources ltd., toronto, canada, plans to build a diamond mine in angola. the company said it had the approval of its partners in the camafuca project in northeastern angola, including state-owned diamond company empresa nacional de diamantes de angola (endiama), its affiliate sociedade mineira do lucapa limitada (sml), and welox ltd.

TEXAS JEWELERS WILL MEET

the texas jewelers association’s 2001 annual convention will be held april 21-23 in new braunfels, texas, at the t bar m ranch. both the gemological institute of america and jewelers of america will be offering educational programs.

Way Beyond Bridal: Award-Winning Platinum Designs

when the american gem trade association holds its spectrum awards each year, designers create innovative pieces of jewelry featuring colored stones. the jewelry runs the gamut from the avant garde to the everyday, but it is definitely not what the average person considers to be “bridal jewelry.

Platinum Bids Adieu to a Solely ‘I Do’ Reputation

after a decade of publicity as the sassy new kid on the block, platinum is growing strongly into its own category. firmly established in the bridal sector (at least a quarter of all couples choose platinum for their bands, according to platinum guild international), platinum is using its consumer recognition to pave the way for growth in other sectors.

David Yurman Meets the Next Generation

jewelry design students, the future talent of the industry, often are overlooked by busy designers and manufacturers. designer david yurman, sponsored by retailer neiman marcus, recently met with future jewelry designers at the center for creative studies in detroit.

SNAG ANNOUNCES NEW METALSMITH EDITOR

the society of north american goldsmiths (snag) has appointed suzanne ramljak as the editor of metalsmith magazine. previously, ramljak was curator of exhibitions at the american federation of arts. she also served as editor of sculpture magazine and glass magazine and as associate editor of american ceramics magazine.

Letters

it was interesting to read your article “salary survey: if you catch ’em, can you keep ’em?” (jck, november 2000, p. 130) in which you describe salaries in the jewelry industry as being “appallingly low.

Plumb Wonderful

solder isn’t usually the sort of thing that makes bench jewelers break into paeans of praise. in gold work, the wide selection of colors and melt temperatures available is mostly taken for granted, and in platinum work, the serious limits of traditional platinum solders are normally the source of curses, not compliments.

REMBRANDT CHARMS LAUNCHES MEDIA CAMPAIGN

rembrandt charms has selected consumer magazines martha stewart living and victoria -which have a combined circulation of 3,060,000-to launch a year-long national media campaign to promote retail jewelry stores through rembrandt’s web site.

De Beers Revamps Its Web Site

de beers has re-designed its web site with a new emphasis on explaining the “four cs” to consumers. the move is meant to bring more male visitors to www.adiamondisforever.com, says anne ritchie, senior partner and account director for j. walter thompson, de beers’ u.s. advertising firm.

Fashion Gets in Line

a sure sign of fashion’s farewell to the romantic and sometimes ornate motifs of the past several seasons is the linear look, which is coming on strong for spring and summer, especially line-style bracelets and vertical-bar-like motifs. bars in gold, platinum, or silver-in finished metal or gem-intensive, on the end of a lariat chain or hanging as a pendant-are the trend of the moment.

OBITUARIES

nathan youngman, the owner of n & m youngman co. from 1963 until his retirement in 1980, died recently at the age of 86. the former british army and israeli army soldier was born in poland and left that country at the age of 15 to travel to israel, where he met and married miriam sacks. in 1954, the couple and their two small children emigrated and settled in the united states.

Russian Miner Plans to Open Jewelry Store

another diamond miner is sticking its toes into the waters of retail business. this time, it’s russian miner almazy-rossi-sakha, which plans to open a jewelry store in moscow.this could be the start of a chain of russian jewelry stores, says almazy chief sergei oulin, who is in charge of the country’s mines in the siberian province of yakutia.

Escada Joins Fine Jewelry Brigade

internationally known fashion house escada is the latest in a chain of fashion brands that have launched fine jewelry lines.like christian dior and chanel before it, escada is looking to sell its own fine jewels to its affluent female customers.

Trick VIII: Head and Shanks made easy

soldering just about any type of shank and prong assembly together is routine work for tom weishaar, jar certified master bench jewelert and shop manager of underwood’s fine jewelers in fayetteville, ark. weishaar makes it look easy not only because of his skill level but also because he uses customized head and shank tweezers specially modified for this purpose. weishaar’s invention.

Hooray for Hollywood!

hooray for hollywood! and broadway! and tv and hometown theater! and local film festivals! why? because entertainment award events-like the oscar or mtv awards or even local tv emmy awards-provide jewelers with unique, attention-getting ways to boost business and build community awareness of their stores.