large flame-fusion synthetic rubies are being disguised as naturals by intentionally cracking them and healing the fractures using flux. a gia news release says these gems are being offered as “heat-treated natural rubies.” “basically, it’s the same material that we used to see a lot more of a number of years ago, maybe 15 years ago, or more,” says shane mcclure, d…
September 1, 2005
AGS Adds Trade-Only Cut Grade Guidelines to Web Site
in an effort to meet industry requests for accessible information regarding the new american gem society cut grade system, ags laboratories has launched a “trade only” secure section on its web site, featuring the cutting-chart guidelines for the system and a presentation explaining the methodology behind it.
B&N Jewelry Moves into New Location
b&n jewelry/alisa unger designs has relocated to 4994 lower roswell road, marietta, ga 30068. b&n is the parent company to alisa unger designs and britannia bridal. for information, call (800) 358-6223
Liddicoat Awards Announced
jewelers’ circular keystone senior editor rob bates won a first-place liddicoat award for journalism in the trade reporting category from the american gem society. his winning article, “getting real about synthetic diamonds,” appeared in the june 2004 issue of jck. other winners included: “know the basics before you ring in the holidays with an engagement surprise,”…
Goodkind Launches New Web Site
sandra goodkind, who designs jewelry inspired by the victorian, edwardian, and art deco periods, has launched a web site. the site includes looks from goodkind’s three collections, rita, beatrice, and isabel. goodkind’s new web site is located at www.sandragoodkind.com.
State of the Industry
this year, jck is taking a different approach to our annual state of the industry report. instead of interviewing individuals and then writing an article based on notes from the interviews, we asked some key industry leaders to speak for themselves. we identified critical issues in various sectors and posed a question or two to each leader.
AJM Magazine Wins Award of Distinction
ajm magazine, the flagship publication of manufacturing jewelers and suppliers of america, has received an award of distinction in the 2005 communicator awards print media competition. this is the third consecutive year ajm has earned this honor. the communicator awards is an international awards competition recognizing work that exceeds a high standard of excellence and serves as a benchmark f…
Moscow Jewelry Show Posts 23% Increase in Attendance
the new russian style/international jewellery moscow exhibition, held may 18-21 in moscow, russia, attracted 8,829 visitors. this figure represents a 23% increase over the 2004 fair’s attendance. along with 135 russian jewelry manufacturers, international participation included pavilions from italy, germany, and france, as well as individual exhibitors from china, hong kong, india, jordan, leb…
Sex Over Stones
just 18 percent of women would choose a diamond over great sex, according to results of a recent jewelry.com survey called “what women want” conducted among 3,800 women. the survey reports that fine jewelry paled in comparison to the excitement offered by other categories as well, namely massage, cited by 63.
Shreve, Crump & Low Will Relocate
shreve, crump & low has announced that its flagship store in boston will move from 330 boylston st. to the corner of boylston and berkeley streets in boston’s back bay. the move is scheduled to take place in october. shreve, crump & low was founded in 1796. its flagship store has been at the 330 boylston st.
Dateline NBC Tackles Appraisals
in july, dateline nbc tackled the subject of inflated diamond appraisals, warning viewers that buyers who rely on retail appraisals “may be in for a rude awakening.” the show went to several stores and bought diamonds. at all, clerks pointed to appraisals as evidence we were getting a bargain,” reporter victoria corderi noted.
A Passion For Gems
a lifelong passion for gemology and a desire to train and educate others on the beauty and finer points of gemstones have driven debbie hiss’s multifaceted career. hiss, the director of training for new york–based lazare kaplan international, has served the industry in various capacities for nearly 30 years.
Night at the Opera
rahaminov, caressa, a. link, and shah diamonds are among manufacturers who recently unveiled new lines of opera-length diamond necklaces. even oscar heyman & bros. recently showed off a $1 million model to editors at a jewelry information center luncheon with the hopes of securing a spot in upcoming fashion photo shoots.
the gemological institute of america has announced two promotions. vivian wang was promoted to director of the institute’s taiwan branch. wang, who has served as manager of the location for the past 12 years, will continue to oversee all operations. stella lee, hong kong branch manager, was promoted to director of the branch.
California Battery Bill Excludes Watch Retailers
working with jewelers of america, the american watch association has won an important victory in california, where proponents of a ban on mercury in daily products wanted watch sellers to set up a battery-collection program to recycle mercury-added button cells. specifically, watch retailers would have been a primary target of bill ab 1125, now being considered in the california general assem…
Pirate Promotion Awards Cruise
shari elder, sales representative for elder jewelry, lincoln, neb., was the grand-prize winner in dillon gage metals’ pirate sweepstakes, part of the supplier’s pirate-themed presentation at the jck show ~ las vegas 2005. to carry out the theme, dillon gage inserted a treasure map in the jck show daily and posted an x-marks-the-spot sign in their booth.
Smart Marketing Move
diamond-jewelry manufacturer ses creations is offering a free honeymoon giveaway to every store that sells the vendor’s jewelry. the first annual “win a free honeymoon” sweepstakes begins this month, and every participating store can give away one honeymoon trip—a five-day, four-night carnival cruise and round-trip airline tickets for two.
Bernie Robbins, Leslie Greene Raise Funds for Mommy’s Light
bernie robbins fine jewelry hosted designer leslie greene for a two-day trunk-show event in may at the newtown, pa., and marlton, n.j., stores that raised more than $4,000 for the mommy’s light lives on fund. the fund helps children and teens keep alive traditions and they shared with their mothers.
Identifying Forsterite From Tanzanite
tanzanite is one of the most popular gems of the last 20 years. in its finer qualities, tanzanite resembles blue sapphire. and at the height of production in the early 1990s, a wide range of qualities and sizes was available. the stone gained acceptance in its own right as dealers no longer saw it merely as a less-expensive alternative to fine blue sapphire.
GIA’s New Cut Grade to Go ‘Live’ Next Year
the gemological institute of america’s famed lab will add its first-ever cut grade to its reports jan. 1, 2006. the system will have five overall cut grades: excellent, very good, good, fair, and poor. it will apply to round brilliants only, not fancy shapes, fancy-colored stones, or rounds modified with different facet arrangements—though gia is researching those stones.
The Universal Appeal of Jewelry
as some of you know, prior to joining jck, i was with reed business’s entertainment-industry trade magazine, variety. a perk of the job was visiting family and friends through the year and regaling them with stories of chatting with renée, shaking tom’s hand, standing right next to nicole, and bumping into elton.
Deserving of Mud
some people, after conceding a debate or argument, are thrilled to see their predictions of doom come true. after all, what better validation is there for the rightness of one’s position than to be able to say, “see? i told you so!” last september, jck’s cover story focused on the controversy of jvc’s j-bar appraisal program, and this column, titled “clear as mud” (see j…
The Good Sports of Time
this year’s swiss watch fairs gave new meaning to the term “good sports” as brands fielded stylish watches, some for specific sports and others just sporty. time to dive in citizen’s aqualand eco-drive is the first light-powered diver watch with a depth meter, plus a four-motor, four-hand independent movement.
Franck Muller Seeks $60 Million in Gray-Market Lawsuit
franck muller usa, the american branch of the swiss luxury-watch brand, is seeking $60 million in damages, penalties, and other costs from seven companies it claims are gray-market vendors of its luxury watches. muller filed suit june 1 in new york federal court against the seven new york city companies—six jewelers and a wholesaler—for allegedly selling gray-market franck muller w…
QVC Hosts Italian Gold Week Again
building on the success of its inaugural italian gold week held in july 2004, west chester, pa.–based qvc television shopping network announced that sales of its second italian gold week, held in may, exceeded its goal by 22 percent. qvc dedicated 23 hours to italian gold programming during the week of may 16–21, and premiered two new shows featuring high-end designs from top itali…
Cartier North America Appoints New President and CEO
cartier has appointed frédéric de narp, a longtime employee, as president and chief executive officer of cartier north america. he will replace stanislas de quercize, who left to head van cleef & arpels international in paris. de narp has been with cartier since 1991. he has held various retail positions there and most recently was ceo of cartier italy.
Platinum Sales Training Program Available on DVD
platinum guild international usa has launched its first comprehensive dvd sales training program. titled “delivering the platinum experience,” the program combines platinum education with selling techniques. the dvd consists of an introduction and four modules, based on the four steps of a sales pitch.
Jewel Performs for Jewelers
singer-songwriter and grammy nominee jewel gave an outstanding performance at the u.s. launch of gold expressions: the language of italian design 2005 collection, an all-new collection of gold jewelry. the event was held thursday, june 2, at the wynn las vegas, during the signature salons jewelry show.
Palladium Hot, Platinum Not
a recent report from johnson matthey reveals demand and pricing for two popular jewelry metals: platinum and palladium. demand for the latter rose 22 percent in 2004, with more than half of this growth coming from the jewelry sector; the rapid development of palladium-jewelry manufacturing in china led the way.
Tips to Turn Over a Sale
every sales-driven organization should have a strategic turnover plan. always turn a sale over to another salesperson in a strategic, rather than a pushy or aggressive, way. five reasons to turn sales over: 1 personality or prejudice issues 2 product knowledge or technical reasons 3 bad vibes or sales indicators: the customer isn’t reacting to your presentation 4 can’t close 5 second voice: to…
The Russians Have Come—to DDC
a high-level delegation of the diamond industry, headed by alexander nichiporuk, the newly appointed president of russian diamond producer alrosa, recently visited the diamond dealers club. nichiporuk said he is eager to work with and get to know the new york industry. he noted that, with alrosa’s selling less to de beers by order of the european union, the company will sell its stones th…
IGI Launches Online Store
the international gemological institute has launched an online e-store for industry professionals to purchase gemstone and jewelry-related products. retailers can view items for sale on the e-store web site, including retail-support products such as igi’s educational video “how to buy a diamond,” cut-grade brochures, and diamond flip charts.
Africa Keeps Pressure on Diamond Industry
under pressure to increase the diamond industry’s benefits to africa, the continent is very much on the trade’s mind these days, as evidenced by a string of moves from de beers and the african governments it deals with:
DeBeers’ More Modest ‘Selection’
it is hard to imagine a more dramatic about-face than de beers’ 2005 selection process for its diamond trading company sightholders. the first, in 2003, was a “bloodbath”—32 sightholders were let go, close to one-fifth of the list at that time. this time the company was equally unpredictable: after an arduous application process, it announced that, not only would it not cut any sightholde…
Hasenfeld Makes Gift to GIA Endowment
alexander hasenfeld, founder of diamond manufacturer and supplier hasenfeld-stein in new york, has made a generous contribution to the gemological institute of america in support of the institute’s nonprofit education and research mission. hasenfeld, a longtime gia supporter, will be inducted into the institute’s league of honor sept.
High-End Jewelry Still Leads Demand
market in brief: august 4, 2005 … the new york ja show experienced better-than-expected sales. dealers report that diamond jewelry and high-end colored-stone jewelry continue to lead demand. a notable trend reported by many dealers was that a larger percentage of buyers seemed to be buying for stock.
Anthony Hirsh Establishes First Scholarship for GIA London
anthony hirsh, founder and managing director of hirsh london, has given a $100,000 gift to the gemological institute of america to support student scholarships at the institute’s london branch. this marks the first major financial contribution made to support prospective students who want to attend gia classes in london.
Management Guru to Address Diamond Leadership Conference
business management expert and author jason jennings will be the opening keynote speaker at the second annual couture diamond leadership conference, slated for the new york palace hotel on sept. 20 and 21. the theme of the conference is “the bottom line—increasing diamond profit margins.” jennings spent 20 years leading successful businesses and consulting for other companies.
last week i received an e-mail from an industry colleague concerning the recent decision of the diamond trading company to grant sightholder status to two firms that were not diamond manufacturers—which represents another watershed decision from the dtc. the point of my colleague’s message to me was that, contrary to decreasing control over the diamond market, the decision actually was p…
DiCaprio, Kanye West Keep Spotlight on Conflict Diamonds
the industry may think it’s turned the page on conflict diamonds, but the popular media are maintaining their interest. leonardo dicaprio has reportedly agreed to star in the blood diamond, set to open in 2007. dicaprio will portray a sierra leone diamond smuggler during the country’s civil war in the late 1990s.
The State of Yucatán Opens Office in New York
in an effort to give better service to its jewelry-manufacturing investors, the southeastern state of yucatán in mexico is opening an office in new york. the office, located at 14 e. 60th st., suite 609, will be managed by claudia arjona. for information, call (212) 459-2350.
Fine Jewelry Takes Center Stage at JIC Luncheon
on may 18, 2005, jewelry information center, the nonprofit public-relations arm of the fine jewelry and watch industry, in conjunction with the american gem trade association, perles de tahiti, and world gold council, hosted the annual luncheon and jewelry preview at aquavit restaurant in new york. the event welcomed over 75 consumer and trade magazine editors, newspaper reporters, and stylists.
The CRJP’s Draft Principles
the full list of the crjp’s draft principles is available at the organization’s web site, www.responsiblejewellery.com. among them: business ethics social performance environmental performance
Elderly Jewel Thief in Trouble Again
doris payne, 74, the “grandmother jewel thief” who has been suspected in literally hundreds of jewelry thefts around the world for more than 40 years, has been arrested in conjunction with yet another jewel robbery. police in palo alto, calif., accuse payne of stealing a $31,000 ring from a neiman marcus store there after allegedly distracting a salesperson by asking to see multipl…
It’s Going to Be a Long Time
from simple medallions to layered chains to sautoir-inspired looks, the seductive drop silhouette has moved from earrings to necklines. long necklaces of every style are a key to celebrity styling this season.
High-Tech Tools and Internet Innovations
technology continues to transform the jewelry industry. industries as diverse as medicine, aeronautics, automobiles, and printing have contributed to the most recent spate of technological advancements in the design and manufacture of jewelry. these advancements are fueling the continued growth and acceptance of computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing in the jewelry industry.
Tahitian Pearl—Is It?
identifying a broken pearl, like the tahitian shown here, is usually easy, since 99 percent of all tahitian bead nuclei are composed of shell, which is recognized by its straight growth layers. but the broken bead of this pearl has a random, gritty structure, casting doubt on its origin. another indication that the pearl might be imitation is the lack of a conchiolin layer, the organic layer be…
Pearl Panel Discusses Trends, Prices, Detection
my customers don’t want their mothers’ classic look,” said eve alfillé, an award-winning designer and the owner of eve alfillé gallery & studio in evanston, ill. alfillé, participating in a panel discussion about the pearl market held during the jck show ~ las vegas, said her customers want unique designs, including multicolor black tahitians, south sea gold…
savvy retailers—from fashion to furniture—know that the best way to grow business is to understand the end user of the merchandise. many retail jewelers, however, are completely missing a strong and growing segment of jewelry buyers by ignoring the hip-hop culture that places a powerful emphasis on fine jewelry, especially diamonds.
Killer of Long Island Jeweler Pleads Guilty
christopher dimeo, charged with his girlfriend in three murders and a string of jewelry-store robberies in new york and connecticut, has pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and robbery in conjunction with the killing of thomas renison, 48, owner of j & j jewels of glen cove, n.y. he will likely be sentenced to life in prison without parole, press accounts said.
Jeweler Flies Right With Airport Sales
what started as a booth of jewelry in a flea market in albuquerque, n.m., 27 years ago has grown into a $10.8 million business for kathleen and john avila, managing partners of avila retail development & management. the couple own 14 western and native american gift stores in three airports in the west, and 37 percent of the company’s annual revenues come from jewelry sales.
the american heritage dictionary defines jewelry as “ornaments, such as bracelets, necklaces, or rings, made of precious metals set with gems or imitation gems.” that last part may need some tweaking, especially lately—as the list of jewelry materials grows to include a wider variety of nontraditional items.
I.W. Marks Named BBB Winner of Distinction
i.w. marks jewelers, houston, received the better business bureau education foundation’s winner of distinction in recognition of its excellence and quality in the workplace at the 13th annual bbb awards for excellence luncheon. the jeweler also received the award in 1994, 1996, 1999, 2001, and 2003.
Tecno Display Relocates
tecno display has moved into a new facility located at 2277 national ave., hayward, ca 94545. they can be reached at (510) 782-5600 or (800) 255-3536.
Italian Jewelers Form New Association
members of the italian luxury group celebrated the founding of their new trade consortium in june in las vegas. the founding members of the trade group, funded by the government of piemonte in italy to help promote fine jewelry made in the valenza region, include: bigibi, luca carati, giorgio visconti, piero milano, picchiotti, staurino fratelli, and vendorafa.
Zale, Tiffany Among Top 100 Retailers
zale and tiffany are two of the top 100 retailers in the country, according to a recently released annual survey. zale is ranked 91 and tiffany 95 in the 2005 triversity top 100 retailers. the annual list, which ranks companies by revenue, is published in stores magazine, the monthly publication of the national retail federation.
Silly Joke Turns Into Brilliant Idea
during a goof-off session one slow day at airport plaza jewelers in cheektowaga, n.y., store owner and president don hoffman ripped the arms and legs from a child’s doll, waved them about, and proclaimed: “airport plaza jewelers—where a really great diamond doesn’t cost an arm and a leg!” six months later, the store’s first “arm and leg” ad—in which hoffman h…
Auto-Motivation of Time
the market for car-related watches gets bigger each year as more upscale watchmakers—seeking additional affluent customers—form licensing pacts with fine-car companies or look to the racing world and car design, including interiors and accessories, for inspiration for their own timepieces.
Revere Book Takes Gold Award
alan revere’s 101 bench tips for jewelers, published by mjsa/ajm press, a subsidiary of manufacturing jewelers and suppliers of america, has won a gold award in the 2005 snap excel awards competition. based on the monthly column in ajm magazine, the illustrated book presents revere’s most valuable bench tips and tricks and covers all aspects of bench work, from soldering to stone setting, pie…
Tiffany to Open Store in Atlantic City
tiffany & co. has announced plans to open a store in atlantic city, n.j., in 2006. the approximately 3,000-square-foot store will be situated in the pier at caesars, a new retail and entertainment center developed by gordon group holding llc and located adjacent to caesars atlantic city, on the city’s historic boardwalk.
Florida, Texas Lead in Armed Robberies
jewelers’ security alliance statistics of armed robberies of retail jewelry stores in the united states during the first six months of 2005 show that florida and texas had the most of any of the 31 states where such a crime occurred. jsa’s data lists 116 retail-jewelry-store robberies between jan. 1, 2005, and june 30, 2005.
Jewelmer Hosts 3rd Manila Jazz Festival
the 3rd manila jazz festival opened to a packed house at the expo exchange in makati city, philippines. the event is sponsored in part by jewelmer international, a leading producer of philippine south sea pearls. the event featured performances by five jazz bands: the jewelmer jazz band, subconcept, johnny alegre affinity, satya, and the jamie oehlers quartet.
Image Consultants Honor Jewelry Designer as Rising Star
the association of image consultants international has honored jewelry designer cynthia sliwa with its rising star award for 2005. sliwa received the award may 15 at aici’s gala awards banquet in atlanta. more than 200 image consultants from around the world were in attendance. sliwa, a former corporate attorney who had dabbled in vintage costume jewelry as a hobby, took classes at the gemologi…
Vacation Getaway Giveaway
kevin main of kevin main jewelry in san luis obispo, calif., won an all-expense-paid vacation getaway for two to the cayman islands. the vacation package, courtesy of platinum guild international, is valued at more than $5,000. main’s winning entry was drawn by b.j. williams of johnson-matthey at pgi’s booth at the jck show ~ las vegas.
Corum’s Wunderman Awarded Legion of Honor
france has awarded its highest civilian award, the legion of honor, to severin wunderman, owner of corum, known for its innovative swiss luxury watches (with u.s. offices in irvine, calif.). the honor recognizes wunderman’s numerous cultural and philanthropic acts, according to a dec. 31, 2004, decree by jacques chirac, president of the french republic.
Rio Show Spotlights Rarities
the las vegas antique jewelry and watch show, held june 2–5 at the rio suite hotel and casino, continued to draw crowds. opening one day before the nearby jck show, this year’s show saw a 5 percent jump in attendance as buyers took advantage of the timing. show officials declined to provide attendance numbers.
Yakubov Launches New Interactive Web Site
yakubov brothers ltd., a diamond manufacturing company with factories in israel, bulgaria, and russia, has launched an interactive web site that displays its inventory from each office. inventory is linked directly to the site, allowing information on the site to be displayed in real time. the web site also provides the option of directly printing out a certificate.
JVC Announces ‘Manufacturer’s Legal Handbook’
jewelers vigilance committee has released a new publication called the “manufacturer’s legal handbook,” which jvc describes as “a concise guide to legal compliance [that] covers many of the areas of the law which jewelry manufacturers, suppliers, wholesalers, and designers address on a daily basis.” jvc developed the handbook to educate jewelry manufacturers on ways to avoid problems that may l…
JVC Responds To FinCEN Anti-Money-Laundering Questions
jewelers vigilance committee (jvc) has responded to specific questions about anti-money-laundering (aml) issued by financial crimes enforcement network (fincen). the questions were included in the usa patriot act aml regulations that fincen finalized on june 9, 2005. jvc’s responses represented fine jewelry retailers, manufacturers, wholesalers, distributors, and others.
A Perfect Fit
some might call it the perfect match. bill bash, the owner of bash jewelers in downtown lancaster, pa., was in his mid-60s. he has owned the jewelry boutique for more than 40 years, and he was ready to spend more time on the golf links and less time behind the counter. his daughters and sons-in-law were not interested in taking over the operation.
Swiss Watch Federation Expects Record Year
the federation of the swiss watch industry fh expects 2005 to be another record-breaking year. the total value of swiss watch exports worldwide in 2004 topped 11 billion swiss francs (about $8.5 billion), an all-time record, the federation was told by fh president jean-daniel pasche at its annual meeting june 30, in soleure, switzerland.
Jewelers Executive Conference Announces 2006 Dates
the fifth biannual jewelry executives conference will be held at the doubletree hotel in overland park, kan., april 1–2, 2006. the conference includes displays by 50 premier suppliers, six hours of seminars with topics for store owners and managers, and five meals. the cost is $125. the conference theme is “polishing the facets of success.
Online Tutorial Educates Public About Gemstones
the gemological institute of america has created a free, interactive online gemstone tutorial for the general public. “how to buy a gemstone in 7 simplified steps” introduces the public to gems in a format designed to be educational and entertaining. users learn about the factors that affect gemstone values along with history, lore, and care of 20 popular gemstones.
Maui Divers Jewelry Opens in San Diego
maui divers jewelry has opened a 500-square-foot store in san diego. the new store, the company’s 49th, is located inside the hilo hattie store at 301 fifth ave. maui divers, established in 1959, now has store-within-a-store concessions at 11 hilo hatties throughout hawaii and the u.s. mainland.
Whitehall Gets New Chairman of the Board
steven j. pully has been named the chairman of the board of whitehall jewelers, replacing daniel levy, who remains a director. pully has served as president of newcastle capital management lp since january 2003. levy had served as interim chairman of the chicago-based specialty jeweler since march 30, following the death of hugh m.
New Group Will Target Social Issues
the industry has given birth to yet another association: the council for responsible jewellery practices (crjp), a pipeline-spanning international group that will focus on “ethical, social, and environmental challenges.” the council, backed by heavyweights including the diamond trading company, zale corp.
Did You Know…
that anthony camargo’s entrée into jewelry-making came in 1993 while he was checking out the offerings at a yard sale in miami? he bought some fruit shape glass beads and combined them with old lamp chain and gold wire, making his first neckace.
A New Old Name for Primak
new york city–based primak has announced that the company has changed its name to sasha primak. the name change is in honor of the company’s founder. a new logo began appearing on company products in summer 2005. the company also is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. sasha primak, new york, (212) 398-0287.
Aaron Group Buys Andel Jewelry Assets
the board of directors of the aaron group has agreed to buy selective assets of andel jewelry. andel’s product is focused on diamond, precious, semiprecious, and opaque rings, pendants, necklaces, and earrings. andel’s designs will be incorporated into the aaron group’s library of more than 20,000 designs and are expected to give the aaron group a wider product assortment.
Two Rocks in One
the soulmate collection from sightholder jb diamonds group, los angeles, features an extra element of romance: all the jewelry uses pairs of diamonds cut from the same piece of rough. once identified as suitable to yield a pair, the piece of rough is marked, split by a master craftsman, and the resulting stones are kept together throughout the cutting and polishing process.
Court Awards Merit Diamond an Injunction in Copyright Case
a u.s. court has awarded merit diamond corp. a preliminary injunction prohibiting frederick goldman and retailers bj’s wholesale club and kohl’s from manufacturing and selling an item merit claims infringes on its copyrighted three stones pendant. the court also ordered a recall of existing stocks of the pendant.