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Padgett elected President of NC Jewelers Association

Padgett elected President of NC Jewelers Association

The North Carolina Jewelers Association (NCJA) ann...

Schnack’s Fine Jewelry turns 150

Schnack’s Fine Jewelry turns 150

Not many jewelry retailers can say their store ope...

From Vicenza with Love: At Oro International, Italian family values shine

From Vicenza with Love: At Oro International, Italian family values shine

Fifty years ago, Qurino Ruzza, with 20 years as a ...

Mason-Kay Jade to make Atlanta Jewelry Show debut

Mason-Kay Jade to make Atlanta Jewelry Show debut

Mason-Kay Jade has been a leading fine jade jewelr...

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Ancient trade route shows gold's enduring power

Ancient trade route shows gold's enduring power

Researchers at the University of Southampton have found a prehistoric gold trade route between Ireland and southwest England. The route gives a glimps...

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Jewelers Mutual presents honors at National Sale Conference

Jewelers Mutual presents honors at National Sale Conference

(NEENAH, Wis.) - Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company recognized its top agencies and agents during the annual awards ceremony held at their National Sale...

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Ancient trade route shows gold's enduring power

7 DAYS AGO
Ancient trade route shows gold's enduring power

Researchers at the University of Southampton have found a prehistoric gold trade route between Ireland and southwest England. The route gives a glimpse into how ancient cultures regarded gold.

A new study has shed more light on how the value of gold has endured – and changed – since ancient times.

Arc...

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Colorado woman finds 8.52 carat diamond in Arkansas state park

7 DAYS AGO
Colorado woman finds 8.52 carat diamond in Arkansas state park

MURFREESBORO, Ark. –  An 8.52 carat diamond has been found by a Colorado woman at Arkansas' Crater of Diamonds State Park at Murfreesboro.

Park officials said Friday that the gem found by Bobbie Oskarson of Longmont, Colorado, is the fifth largest diamond found since the park was established in 1972....

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From Jewels to Tools: Ivan Levi to speak on enhancing business practices at RJO Show in August

7 DAYS AGO
From Jewels to Tools: Ivan Levi to speak on enhancing business practices at RJO Show in August

(HIGHLAND PARK, Ill.) - The jewelry industry has seen changes in the way business is being done since the advent of the Internet, and especially since the economic downturn began in 2007. Ivan Levi’s quest to find answers to questions about these changes led him to discover how one specific, yet easy...

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Rings of Strength collects over $60,000 for JFC

7 DAYS AGO
Rings of Strength collects over $60,000 for JFC

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers for Children (JFC) held the 3rd Annual Rings of Strength Tour on Thursday, May 28, at Mandalay Bay Resort Casino in Las Vegas, NV. More than 125 participants assembled at 5:30 a.m. to either walk or run 5K, or bike one of two courses, a leisurely 15K route or a challenging 50K r...

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Padgett elected President of NC Jewelers Association

7 DAYS AGO
Padgett elected President of NC Jewelers Association

The North Carolina Jewelers Association (NCJA) announced that Brad Padgett, an independent jeweler and native of Jacksonville, North Carolina, is the new president of the statewide association. His two-year term of office as the organization’s president began May 16.

Padgett graduated with a B.S.B.A....

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Two Houston jewelers named Distinction Winners in Houston Better Business Bureau Awards for Excellence

7 DAYS AGO
Two Houston jewelers named Distinction Winners in Houston Better Business Bureau Awards for Excellence

(HOUSTON, Tex.) - Houston Jewelry and Jewelry Judge Ben Gordon were among the businesses recognized at the annual Houston Better Business Bureau Awards of Excellence held in May. Both businesses were named Distinction Winners, a designation awarded to businesses that maintain a superior commitment to...

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In tune with the times? New Unisex Ring Collection keeps the beat

7 DAYS AGO
In tune with the times? New Unisex Ring Collection keeps the beat

Designed by Elaine of Esprit Creations

New to SJTA and the Atlanta Jewelry Show, family business Esprit Creations has been successfully manufacturing and wholesaling fine sterling silver jewelry with genuine gemstones for over 2 decades. Standing apart from the ordinary, their wide selection of exclu...

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Mason-Kay Jade to make Atlanta Jewelry Show debut

7 DAYS AGO
Mason-Kay Jade to make Atlanta Jewelry Show debut

Mason-Kay Jade has been a leading fine jade jewelry wholesaler/supplier/designer in the United States since 1976. The company specializes in all natural (type “A”) jadeite jade fine jewelry, designed in-house by their exclusive designer Kristina and MK design team. Mason-Kay Jade is excited to intro...

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Ugly Asset

I received a call from a client of mine. I could tell that I was on speaker phone so I chose my words carefully. He explained that he had a friend that had a diamond she needed to sell. He wanted to send her over to me to see what I could do for her. I told him that I did not buy diamonds off the street but would do what I could to advise her.

An hour later this stunningly beautiful woman shows up at my door with two very well dressed and groomed boys, approximately 8 and 10 years old. They entered and within seconds she was excusing herself to return the boys to the car. I explained that they were more than welcome to stay but she insisted that they would be fine in the car with the AC on - Warning Bell #1.

She retuned only to pull a diamond out of her purse that was neatly secured in a jeweler's ziploc bag - Warning Bell #2. She explained that she had lost her diamond out of her wedding set (which she was still wearing - Warning Bell #3) and had a CZ put in the ring - Warning Bell #4. She later found the diamond. Now she was planning to leave her husband and wanted to sell the diamond - RED ALERT!!

Remember, I studied gemology not psychology. It is none of my business, nor do I care, what her station of life is or her destiny - I am not trained to understand.

However, there are a few things I do know. I have reared children and I know there are some things they need not know however, those things usually do not take place in a jewelry store. I also know that a man that invests money in his wife to have perfect platinum blond hair, manicured eye brows, hands and feet, enhanced full lips and breasts, a personal trainer and massage therapist (my client provides the last two services) - would NEVER allow his wife to walk around with a CZ as the symbol of their marriage. I understand she said she lost the first one, I understand he may not have had it insured or been able to replace the one she lost with another one - but a CZ - I do not think so.

Yet another thing experience has taught me... people who find a lost diamond seldom bring it to you in a jeweler's bag. I have received lost diamonds from coin compartments of wallets, sandwich bags, pill bottles, old jewelry gift boxes, film containers and my personal favorite - Kleenex tissue paper secured with Scotch tape.

As I sent her out the door with the heart breaking news that she was not going to get the $15,000 - $20,000 she thinks he paid for the ring, I felt as though I had just dodged a bullet. I did not fully understand why or at whom the bullet was shot, but I was relieved to have her out of my office.

Moments later, one of my students, working on her Gem ID class with GIA, emerged from the lab. She came out and asked if that kind of thing happens often and if I understood the potential danger that I had just avoided. Her husband is a divorce attorney and by proxy she is privy to the ugliness of divorce. She enlightened me to the fact that in most divorces of middle class or upper class couples, jewelry - especially wedding rings - is a marital asset that is often the battle ground for an ugly war. Her $15K wedding set, $5K diamond earrings, $7K diamond tennis bracelet, $8K diamond solitaire pendant and her gold watch adds up to a huge hammer that he will use to further pound at her heart. It also can become, so she thinks, a great start to a new future if gotten rid of BEFORE she announces she is leaving.

What danger did I avoid? Depending on who her husband is and how ugly the divorce gets I could have become the jeweler that helped her unfairly liquidate assets before they became fair game. I could have become a party to the fraud of diamond switching that she evoked on her husband. Neither my student nor I are attorneys and are unsure if there is any legal recourse the husband would have if our suspicions were confirmed. None the less, words like fraud, switching, theft, cheating and hiding are not words I want spoken in the same sentence as my store name or even my own name.

If you think this is an isolated case you need only turn on your radio. It was only 5 months ago that a talk show host of a local radio station was discussing women who get engaged and have their new diamond switched with a CZ after selling it to a jeweler. They use the money to pay off debt so that they can maintain the image of being financially responsible and so that they will not carry debt into the marriage. They fully intend on replacing the diamond later when they have the funds, but seldom do.

I thought the incident that the talk show host was referring to was one isolated case, until he opened up the phone lines for discussion. His phone lines were flooded with calls from women promoting the idea, women sharing their twist on the fraud, or women with stories of people they knew who did it. I was left speechless as I sat in my car listening to this.

Marital asset, I never thought of it as an asset to be fought over and I am thrilled I was willing to follow my instincts that told me I did not know the full story, did not want to know the full story and did not need to buy the diamond that had a story.

Tammy L. Williams, Graduate Gemologist of GIA, also prizes her membership in AGTA. She is President of J D Jewelers, a salon private jewelry business located in Suwanee, Georgia and the Southeastern Rep for Global Diamonds. Tammy is very active as a speaker and authority on Gemstones and Diamonds. Whether in her laboratory at J D Jewelers, on the lecture circuit or writing about her experiences in business, her love and passion for gemstones becomes contagious. If you'd like to contact Tammy, please e-mail her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..



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