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Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight - Part 2

Masters of Marketing - A century of sparkling insight - Part 2

Part II – Siegel Jewelers, Grand Rapids, MI

The tra...

Illinois jeweler has just changed his 60,000th watch battery!

Illinois jeweler has just changed his 60,000th watch battery!

On August 1, 1981, Larry Mollo, owner of Cole &...

Ellis Jewelers Tim Hiatt credits retail success to his genes

Ellis Jewelers Tim Hiatt credits retail success to his genes

They say you can escape your past but not your gen...

Other News

W magazine reviews the most outrageous jewelry from Paris Couture Week

W magazine reviews the most outrageous jewelry from Paris Couture Week

Paris Haute Couture is a special time of year where the top fashion houses put their best pieces forward twice a year with beautiful, handcrafted designs. In July, it seems as though the jewelry houses also get in on the fun, showing their own best o...

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Industry Events

JA to host several events at JA New York Show

JA to host several events at JA New York Show

Designer Preview & Member Meetup, Education Program, Idea Exchange and certification exams

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers of America (JA) is hosting its Designer Preview & Member Meetup on Sunday, July 23 at Clyde Frazier’s Wine & Dine. JA Retail Me...

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On The Move

Pe-Jay Creations partners with heartfelt birthstone line, “MY STORY”

Pe-Jay Creations partners with heartfelt birthstone line, “MY STORY”

A perfect match of creative and business smarts to continue MY STORY growth

(NEW YORK) - Mitchell Feuer of Pe-Jay Creations and  Jackie Cohen from Timeless Fine Jewelry have partnered to create a new company, MY STORY FINE JEWELRY, to breakout the hear...

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What's New

Rio Grande and B9Creations partner to bring 3D Printing to jewelers

Rio Grande and B9Creations partner to bring 3D Printing to jewelers

Rio Grande is pleased to announce a partnership with B9Creations that brings the “best in 3D printing” to professional jewelers. The new B9 Core Series 3D printer, sold by Rio Grande, marries “plug and grow” ease with some of the fastest printing spe...

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Featured Articles

Retailer Roundtable:  What are your biggest hiring challenges?

Retailer Roundtable: What are your biggest hiring challenges?

Q:    What are your biggest hiring challenges?

“I’ve been in business for 30 years and hiring challenges have remained pretty consistent throughout that time - finding a sales associate that has an understanding and love of jewelry. One of the most comm...

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Latest News

W magazine reviews the most outrageous jewelry from Paris Couture Week

1 DAY AGO
W magazine reviews the most outrageous jewelry from Paris Couture Week

Paris Haute Couture is a special time of year where the top fashion houses put their best pieces forward twice a year with beautiful, handcrafted designs. In July, it seems as though the jewelry houses also get in on the fun, showing their own best offerings to both editors and the customers who may...

Readmore

Tennis ball-sized 'diamond in the rough' too big to sell

1 DAY AGO
Tennis ball-sized 'diamond in the rough' too big to sell

TORONTO (Reuters) - In the mysterious world of diamond mining, it turns out that some stones are too big to sell.

Canada's Lucara Diamond Corp will have to cut its tennis ball-sized rough diamond to find a buyer, industry insiders say, following Sotheby's failed auction for the world's largest uncut ...

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JA to host several events at JA New York Show

1 DAY AGO
JA to host several events at JA New York Show

Designer Preview & Member Meetup, Education Program, Idea Exchange and certification exams

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers of America (JA) is hosting its Designer Preview & Member Meetup on Sunday, July 23 at Clyde Frazier’s Wine & Dine. JA Retail Members will have the opportunity to mingle with fel...

Readmore

Atlanta Jewelry Show’s “The Loupe” buying group program to celebrate 2nd anniversary at August show

7 DAYS AGO
Atlanta Jewelry Show’s “The Loupe” buying group program to celebrate 2nd anniversary at August show

(ATLANTA) - The August, 2017 Atlanta Jewelry Show (AJS) will be celebrating a special anniversary when the show floor opens up for business on August 12th.  The AJS Buyer Group program, “The Loupe” is turning 2 years old, and continues to expand with new partners, programs and service offerings.

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Pe-Jay Creations partners with heartfelt birthstone line, “MY STORY”

1 DAY AGO
Pe-Jay Creations partners with heartfelt birthstone line, “MY STORY”

A perfect match of creative and business smarts to continue MY STORY growth

(NEW YORK) - Mitchell Feuer of Pe-Jay Creations and  Jackie Cohen from Timeless Fine Jewelry have partnered to create a new company, MY STORY FINE JEWELRY, to breakout the heartfelt birthstone line, “MY STORY”

Readmore

International Gemological Institute (IGI) - India achieves RJC Certification

7 DAYS AGO
International Gemological Institute (IGI) - India achieves RJC Certification

(MUMBAI) - IGI India has announced it has achieved certification against the Responsible Jewellery Council’s (RJC) 2013 Code of Practices (COP), which signifies the Institute has met the ethical, social and environmental standards as established by the Council.

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Rio Grande and B9Creations partner to bring 3D Printing to jewelers

1 DAY AGO
Rio Grande and B9Creations partner to bring 3D Printing to jewelers

Rio Grande is pleased to announce a partnership with B9Creations that brings the “best in 3D printing” to professional jewelers. The new B9 Core Series 3D printer, sold by Rio Grande, marries “plug and grow” ease with some of the fastest printing speeds and smoothest surface resolution of any 3D pri...

Readmore

New collections spur Alamea Hawaii to successful JCK Las Vegas Show

1 DAY AGO
New collections spur Alamea Hawaii to successful JCK Las Vegas Show

Hawaii-based Alamea, makers of sealife, tropical and nature jewelry as well as hand crafted wood rings, reported a very successful 2017 JCK Las Vegas Show. Owner Jay Wu attributed this success to their launch of new collections of 14kt larimar, two-tone 14kt and sterling with diamonds and abalone, a...

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Furry friends on the job: Bernadette

1 DAY AGO
Furry friends on the job: Bernadette

Meet Bernadette, the first feline sent in for our Furry Friends feature. Bernadette is the Queen of the castle at Creative Jewelers in Florence, AL. “She was without a home, so gladly we shared ours,” says Brandi Hammock. “She now rules here at CJ’s and we and our customers love it!

See all of our Fu...

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Furry friends on the job: Callie, the boxer, and Jewels, the poodle

7 DAYS AGO
Furry friends on the job: Callie, the boxer, and Jewels, the poodle

Callie, the boxer, and Jewels, the poodle, “work” at Scott and Sons Fine Jewelry on Amelia Island in FL. Jewels (gotta love the name and the pink toenails) has been going to the store since she was just a pup and is a greeter extraordinaire. Callie is more bashful, which is hard to believe after see...

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The Retailer’s Perspective: Will it be fine in 2009?

Man, if that's not the question of the day... or the century for that matter. With so much bad news being thrown at us every day it's hard to get a handle on things - until now. Oddly enough, in the middle of all of this craziness I made a startling discovery. I really had no idea how many recessions and economic downturns I've survived. All I can say is apparently I've had a hard life. Let me explain.
There have been 12 major recessions since 1940 and countless economic slowdowns. Only three have lasted more than a year; 1975, 1982, and today. As I look back on some of the significant moments in my life, I realized that times were hard back then too. The media is clamoring for sensationalism and everything has a statistic. So here are some stats of my own:

In 1984 I opened the trade shop I still own to this day. I just found out that the NASDAQ just had it's worst January since 1984. Huh? What was I thinking opening a business during the turmoil back then.

The auto industry just had it's worst year since 1985. That was the year I expanded my new trade shop. What was I thinking?

The unemployment report that just came out said that this was the worst jobs data since 1993. Damn. I bought my current store in 1993. Where was my head?

The DOW just suffered it's worst 12 month period since 1997. I did a major remodeling at my old store in 1997 and just finished remodeling my new one. Oops, missed that one too.

Now I just found out that ‘something or the other' hasn't been this bad since 2001. Huh? The last time I took a luxury vacation to Europe was in 2001. My bad.

In a nutshell, what I'm starting to realize is that it's never been easy to run your own business. It's just one challenge after another... after another... after another. Once this recession/depression cycle corrects itself, I'm going to have to deal with a whole new subset of problems. And then something after that. Me thinks it doesn't end.

Funny thing though, when I think back to when I was starting or expanding my business, I remember it being a struggle at the time, but it doesn't seem so bad now because NOW IS HARD! ‘Now' has always been hard.

Don't feel alone though, because no one alive has ever navigated through anything like this before. During the Great Depression there were no credit cards, no home equity loans, no sub-prime mortgages, and no FDIC to guarantee bank accounts. The FDIC is the very reason why we didn't have any runs on banks this time around which was one of the primary causes of the big one before. Many of the rules and regulations that are in place today were put in place to avoid another Great Depression. The one thing we didn't plan for - obsessive, uncontrolled greed on the financial system. We all know that's getting ready to change. When we all get on the other side of this event, we will have a much more stable system to operate within.

The one thing I'm noticing the most about this tough economic time is the fact I can't really plan anything farther in the future than 30-45 days because things are so crazy. I'm not making any plans for my 3rd and 4th quarter because nobody... and I mean nobody... can predict what the landscape will look like that far out.

There's an old saying that nothing happens until a sale is made. Once I make a sale, I order parts and supplies which in turn causes my suppliers to order more parts and supplies, etc. With the retailers at a literal standstill, the strain on the entire food chain is intense. So here‘s how I sum up this whole thing.

In 1990, during a short break from the jewelry business, I ran a film studio where our bookkeeper stole over a quarter of a million dollars from us. In all reality we should have shut it down, filed bankruptcy, and walked away. I was one of three managers at the studio and it just wasn't in any of our natures to do that. We worked our butts off for over a year to save the company (which is still in business today, thank you very much).

Out of that experience came a strange Friday afternoon ritual. Every Friday at the close of business, the three of us would meet in one of our offices and have a drink and a toast. The toast was always the same:

"Damn. We gotta come back to work on Monday!"

There was absolutely no chance to save the company and every day we thought would be our last, but somehow we managed to keep showing up every Monday. It was one of the hardest years of my life (yet another one mind you). Since then, every Friday, I raise the same toast to myself because since 1984 I've managed to keep my business alive and kicking.

Keep your head up and remember... it never gets any easier... ha ha. And, since today is Friday, I think I'm gonna do it early today:

"Damn... I gotta come back to work on Monday!"
Chuck is the owner of Anthony Jewelers in Nashville, TN. Chuck also owns CMK Co., a wholesale trade shop that specializes in custom jewelry and repair services to the jewelry industry nationwide. You can contact him at 615-354-6361, www.CMKcompany.com or send e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


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