Paco Underhill Will Be Keynote Speaker at SMART Show Chicago

When you spend 20 years watching people shop, you learn a thing or two about what makes a retail environment successful. 

Best-selling author Paco Underhill and his team did just that, and the resulting book, “Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping,” is a fascinating (and sometimes surprising) look at how companies design in-store experiences to make consumers want to buy more goods, more often. 

If a client list is any indication of Underhill's ability to improve a company's bottom line, Paco clearly knows his stuff. Through his behavioral research firm Envirosell, he helps household names like Microsoft, McDonald's, adidas and Estee Lauder optimize their commercial environments. 

He's also a regular contributor to The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times — and he'll be speaking live at The SMART Show in April.

Paco's bringing his energy and passion to our opening keynote session on Saturday, April 18, at 8:30 a.m. His talk — as entertaining as it will be informative — will give you concrete ideas for creating a physical environment and store personality that fit the needs of your market. It's part art, part science, but get it right and your business will soar. 

 

"Paco has been a huge source of inspiration for INSTORE fans for years," says Cindy Chandler, associate show director. "We're excited to give our audience the chance to learn some valuable ideas directly from the man himself. For jewelers interested in learning new ways to increase their bottom line, this is one event that can't be missed."

 

Learn more about Paco at envirosell.com, and register for the SMART Show <a href="/http://smartjewelryshow.com/retailers/register-now?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Paco+Underhill+to+Speak+at+The+SMART+Jewelry+Show&utm_content=Paco+Underhill+to+Speak+at+The+SMART+Jewelry+Show+CID_e31928effb4fc78821feec6f48c661a6&utm_source=Campaign%20Monitor%20emails&utm_term=REGISTER%20FOR%20THE%20SMART%20SHOW%20TODAY" target="_blank">here</a>.

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Teva CE Website Re-Launches with Diamond Course

Teva CE clarity enhanced diamonds announced the redesign of its website and launch of an online educational system.

The Dallas-based company stated in announcing the re-launch “that retail jewelers and consumers now have a huge educational data base to ensure confidence, disclosure and tools to sell clarity enhanced diamonds.”

The resource center includes the industry’s first online course for jewelers on clarity enhanced diamond sales. The course was organized in collaboration with retailers who built most successful and profitable diamond divisions in the USA. 

With diamond margin decreasing every day, clarity enhanced diamonds offer an alternative and profitability to traditional goods. Most clarity enhanced diamonds command 30% to keystone profits and their sales have become critical to many independent jewelers.

Clarity enhancement disclosure and certification are explained in the online resource. The website also offers real-time inventory selection of both diamonds and jewelry.

Cheryl Kozisek of Nebraska Diamonds said, “The Teva CE staff is the most dependable clarity enhanced diamond team in the country. Having the website lets me instantly select diamonds I need for memo and inventory. The online resource center offers the critical information I need for training both current and new sales associates”

In addition to several sales training courses the resource center includes articles on clarity enhanced diamonds in today’s marketplace, margins and pricing.

 

For more information contact Dora Levaton Manager of Teva diamonds at +1 972-960-6506 or visit them for an online chat at www.tevadiamonds.com.

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RDI Diamonds Takes Honor in Minneapolis

For the second consecutive year RJO members at the RJO show in Minneapolis, MN have voted RDI Diamonds “Loose Goods Vendor of The Year”.

“RDI Diamonds is dedicated to learning and growing our jeweler’s business.  We strive to distinguish ourselves from other vendors by providing access to one of the largest diamond inventories in the world, but also by partnering with retailers on sales training and marketing,” said Michael Indelicato, CEO of RDI Diamonds. “We are thrilled all of our hard work and dedication has been recognized.” 

“We want to thank RJO members for this honor.  We appreciate everybody who took the time over the past year to partner with our team.” said Kelly Gunn, CSMO of RDI Diamonds. “Spending time with our jewelers, learning their business and committing to their success is what’s it’s all about.”

RDI Diamonds Inc. prides itself on quality, attention to detail, honesty and fairness. Taking care of its customers has been a tradition since it started in 1992. With offices in Rochester, New York, it is a leader among diamond distributors nationally. RDI Diamonds has maintained double-digit growth for over 22 years, and was recognized in 2006 as an INC. 500 honoree.

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Ostbye Names RJO Vendor of the Year

Ostbye team gathers for a celebratory selfie.
Ostbye team gathers for a celebratory selfie.

Ostbye has been named the Retail Jewelers Organization 2014 Vendor of the Year for Finished Goods in recognition of their exceptional sales, service and support.  

It is Ostbye’s seventh time winning the award in the past 8 years.  Ostbye has previously won the award in 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2008 and 2007. Ostbye was presented with the award at the recent RJO summer show in Minneapolis, MN.

“We are so honored to be a part of RJO,” states Craig MacBean, president of Ostbye.  “To be recognized by its strong retail jewelers, amongst the outstanding group of RJO vendors is very humbling.  Thank you RJO!”

In addition, Ostbye’s Tim Marr won RJO’s 2014 Sales Representative of the Year.  It is Tim’s third time winning the award.  MacBean added, “No one cares more about his customers than Tim Marr.  His commitment to the retail jeweler and our industry is second to none and Tim winning this prestigious award is well-deserved.” 

 

Ostbye, founded in 1920 in downtown Minneapolis, has cemented its status as one of the leading manufacturers of bridal and fashion jewelry. Through the four generations of family-owned leadership, Ostbye has always stayed true to its mission of exemplary quality, service and value. Ostbye’s comprehensive collections and divisions include bridal jewelry, anniversary bands, fashion jewelry, family jewelry, women’s and men’s diamond jewelry, colored gemstone jewelry, pendants, earrings, and rings.

 

For more information on Ostbye, visit www.Ostbye.com or call 866-553-1515.

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Jewelers for Children Seeks Nominees for $100,000 in Grants

Jewelers for Children has announced the 2014 edition of their Local Grants program.  JFC has set aside $ 100,000 to be used for 10 - $ 10,000 grants to local organizations.  Independent jewelers will have an opportunity to nominate a local organization to receive one of these grants.  Once a final list of nominated charities is compiled, the retailer will be responsible for motivating their constituents to vote for their charity through a Facebook-based campaign on JFC's page. 

It will be up to the jeweler and the nominated charities to generate interest in their organization by securing votes through their own social media outlets, including Facebook, Twitter, email blasts, and any other advertising opportunities available.  JFC provides sample language for use on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, as well as press releases that can be used to promote the nominated charity. 

The nomination period for charities will run between September 1, and September 30, 2014.  The voting process will begin on October 6, and continue for two weeks, concluding on October 19.  The top 10 vote getters will be announced on October 22, and grants will be made prior to December 31, 2014. 

Each of the ten jewelers who nominate the winning charities will be presenting the grant from JFC directly to the charity on behalf of the jewelry industry. JFC will announce the winners and jewelers to the trade and will be supplying a press release template for each jeweler to secure local (and possibly, national) recognition for their success in their own market. 

Jeff Corey, Day's Jewelers and a JFC board member said “Last year Day’s Jewelers participated in JFC’s Local Grants Program. We were able to earn a $10,000 grant for Camp Sunshine, a local charity dedicated to children in need. It was a wonderful opportunity for Day’s, our customers and our community to work together to help kids locally through JFC.” 

 

Details on how to participate in the program and the requirements for nominated charities can be found on JFC's website at www.jewelersforchildren.org, under the Happenings section.  A nomination form to print out, complete and return to JFC to nominate their local charity for consideration is available.

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Peter Smith Publishes Guide to Retail Hiring

Peter Smith, current Executive Vice President of Brand Development for Leo Schachter & Company, has announced the debut of his first publication, “Hiring Squirrels:  12 Essential Interview Questions to Uncover Great Retail Sales Talent.

With over 30 years of firsthand experience and knowledge, Smith shares a comprehensive wealth of tactics and practical advice for identifying, interviewing and hiring great sales talent. 

"Six of every ten people in retail sales should be doing something else for a living. Knowing that is one thing, being able to change that is something else. I felt like I really had something worthwhile to say on this subject as it has been such a passion of mine my whole career," says Smith.

 

“Hiring Squirrels” available now on Amazon.

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Milenyum Mining Gets Csarite Trademarks

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has granted two trademarks to Milenyum Mining Limited for the gemstone Csarite.

Ethically sourced and responsibly mined at its sole known source deep in the mountains of the Anatolia region of Turkey, the Csarite trademark will allow greater consumer recognition for this gemstone, but also help distinguish it from synthetics and simulants entering the market through unscrupulous dealers and retailers.

With the trademark now approved and registered, MML has stepped up its efforts to combat theft and illegal mining at the mine site by working closely with Turkish ministeries and army to monitor illegal activity and take immediate legal action when necessary. The Milas County Courts recently approved the first conviction of an illegal miner who will face 12 months in prison and substantial financial fines. Some 35 other individuals are being sued and more convictions will follow.

“As this lovely gemstone grows in popularity, it’s especially important that the quality and purity of natural Csarite is protected,” states Murat Akgun, president of Milenyum Mining Limited. “With the granting of the name and slogan trademarks, our already transparent supply chain instills even greater confidence for our buyers”.

Akgun urges consumers interested in purchasing Csarite, and especially those traveling to Turkey, to only buy the gem from MML’s authorized retailers and distributors, which can be found on the web site www.csarite.info.

He urges all buyers to check the web site frequently, as MML is constantly monitoring its distributors and the list may change due to their strict screening policy.

Csarite will be available for wholesale purchase at the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair, AWE #10U31. For appointments contact info@courtneycollection.com.

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Date Set for Michigan Retailers Breakfast

The Michigan Retail Committee of the International Council of Shopping Centers is pleased to host the 2014 Michigan Retailers Breakfast on Wed., Sept. 17 in the Regency Room at the Townsend Hotel, 100 Townsend Street in Birmingham, MI.

The event begins with registration, networking and breakfast at 7:30 a.m. followed by two informative sessions featuring special guest speakers Matthew P. Cullen, President & CEO of Rock Ventures LLC and Robert A. Ficano, Wayne County Executive.

"There is a positive vibe and undercurrent of change in Wayne County and the City of Detroit,” said Michael Stozicki, Chairman of the Michigan ICSC Retail Committee. “This year's Retailers Breakfast will highlight this with two speakers, Matt Cullen and Robert Ficano. As leaders in their respective areas, Mr. Cullen and Mr. Ficano will present informative updates on current successes and challenges. This event is sure to be of great interest to commercial real estate professionals, as well as others interested in Southeast Michigan business and politics."

Advanced registration is $60 for ICSC members and $75 for non-members. On-site registration is $75 for members and $90 for non-members. Payments may be faxed to +1 732 694 1800, made online at www.icsc.org/2014B09, or mailed to International Council of Shopping Centers, PO Box 26958, New York, NY 10087-6958. Payments made by check should be made payable to International Council of Shopping Centers, Inc.

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XCEL Buys Judith Ripka Brands

Xcel Brands, Inc. has signed an exclusive licensing agreement with KGK Jewellery Manufacturing Limited to take over the wholesale jewelry business under the Judith Ripka brands. This agreement will give KGK the license to manufacture, source, sell and distribute jewelry, including fine jewelry, diamond jewelry, and bridal jewelry, under the Judith Ripka label. Distribution to include luxury retailers, better departments stores as well as specialty fine jewelers worldwide.

Robert D’Loren, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Xcel Brands, Inc. said, “I am very excited to partner with KGK Jewellery. This is a powerful alliance for Xcel & KGK with strong growth potential for the wholesale jewelry business under the Judith Ripka brands.”

Judith Ripka, Chief Design Officer, Judith Ripka, said “I am delighted that KGK has been chosen as our licensee for the wholesale jewelry component of Judith Ripka businesses. Having worked with KGK for over 30 years, I have tremendous respect for the Kothari family. They have demonstrated loyalty, courtesy and the best business practices while operating a very successful and vertically integrated business. I am pleased to join forces with a company that is not only one of the largest DeBeers site holders but which also has access to the highest quality colored gem stones. I look forward to designing jewelry which will continue to be made by the best craftsmen, using the finest materials and workmanship that my customers have come to expect.”

Mr. Sanjay Kothari, Vice Chairman, KGK Group, said, "We are thrilled to partner with Robert D'Loren and Xcel Brands. The partnership will give us the opportunity to combine Judith's distinctive designs with our unrivaled product development and bring exemplary quality product to the marketplace under the Judith Ripka brand. At KGK, our aim is to make & sell the finest jewelry possible with the best in class manufacturing and the finest, rarest of gemstones. We are currently undergoing a vertical integration, getting closer to consumers with our retail ventures and closer to our supply chain by acquiring mines.”

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GE Capital Changes Name to Synchrony Bank

On June 2, GE Capital Retail Bank changed its name to Synchrony Bank and became part of the Synchrony Financial business, formerly GE Capital Retail Finance. The largest provider of private label credit cards in the United States (based on purchase volume and receivables), Synchrony traces its roots back to 1932. Through more than 300,000 locations across the U.S. and Canada, Synchrony offers customers a variety of credit products to finance the purchase of goods and services. Offerings include private label credit cards, promotional financing and installment lending, loyalty programs and Optimizer+plus branded FDIC-insured savings products.

GIA Sponsors Talk on Planetary Gemology

Gems have held symbolic significance in many cultures for centuries. Richard S. Brown, a leading expert in planetary gemology, will discuss ancient astrological gems and talismans during Gemological Institute of America’s next Gemstone Gathering in Bangkok on Aug. 27.

“Ratna-para-vidya,” or planetary gemology, is an ancient Vedic belief system and practice based on the relationship between nine categories of gems and nine planets recognized as most important in Vedic astrology. Brown will discuss planetary gemology, based on the "Navaratna" or “Nine Gems” philosophy of Vedic birthstones.

Brown, a GIA graduate and founder of Astral Gemstone Talismans and the Planetary Gemologists Association, has more than 30 years of experience studying gems in relation to astrology. While living at a north Indian monastery, he encountered Sanskrit translations that related fine gems and astrology, and has spent the years since studying the topic. Brown is the author of 13 books and more than 240 articles and has appeared in numerous television segments in Thailand.

GIA’s Gemstone Gathering, a free event, begins at 6 p.m. on Aug. 27 in the “Crowne Room 1-3” on the 21st floor of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Lumpini Park in Bangkok.

Due to limited seating, please RSVP to pkosolsu@gia.edu; the GIA laboratory in Bangkok at 02-632-4090; or call the Thailand campus at 02-632-4590. For more information, visit www.giathai.net/news.php.

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Sarine Partners with Tiffany

Sarine Technologies has announced a strategic cooperation with Tiffany & Co. to develop a new automated system for the grading of a polished diamond’s symmetry to new standards to be set by Tiffany.

In 2011 Tiffany challenged Sarine to measure the facet symmetry features of a polished diamond with unprecedented high accuracy. Previously these features could not be determined by any existing device and were manually evaluated by gemologists using

microscopes.

Following extensive research, a new concept, based on advanced video imagery analysis using microscopic magnification, culminated in Sarine's DiaMension Axiom. It is a totally new solution for ascertaining a polished diamond’s proportions and symmetry and sets a new bar for polished diamond analysis and grading.

The DiaMension Axiom measures the most minute diamond features, including facet junctions, facet misalignment and facet distortions, key to the symmetry grade.

The patent pending technology is applicable to round and fancy shaped polished diamonds. It is anticipated that the resulting high accuracy microscope-level qualification of the stone will enable manufacturers to attain, and gemological institutes to verify, new levels of quality.

Andy Hart, Tiffany’s Senior Vice President of Manufacturing, Diamonds & Gemstones, said, “This new technology developed by Sarine will enable the Tiffany Gemological Laboratory to enhance its abilities to objectively, consistently, and efficiently measure and uphold our demanding symmetry standard which is critical to ensuring Tiffany presents only the most beautiful diamonds to our customers.”

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AGS Expands Take-In Windows to LA

The American Gem Society Laboratories is expanding its take-in window operations to Los Angeles. The window will be located in the Brinks offices at 550 South Hill Street, Room 805, and will launch on August 29th. Additionally, AGS Laboratories will offer free shipping and insurance for LA take-in window clients through October 31.

The AGS Laboratories offers turnaround time on grading results in five to seven business days to all its clients.

On August 28, at 1:30pm, the Diamond Club West Coast (DCWC) will feature Peter Yantzer, CG, Executive Director of the AGS Laboratories, and Ash Shah, CGA, Director of Membership at the American Gem Society, at their monthly lunch. The gentlemen will give a presentation on AGS Laboratories and answer questions from members of DCWC.

“It’s a natural move for AGS Laboratories to open a window in Los Angeles, as Las Vegas is in its backyard,” says Ruth Batson, RJ, CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories. “With the shortest turnaround time of any of the major laboratories, along with the name recognition of the American Gem Society, and grading reports that provide consistency and accuracy based on science, our laboratory services are in high demand. We are very excited about this opportunity and look forward to serving members of the jewelry industry in Los Angeles.”

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Worthmore Jewelers Event Benefits Make-a-Wish Georgia

Worthmore Jewelers will celebrate 21 years of serving the Atlanta community with a shopping event at their Midtown location (Amsterdam Walk, 500-L3 Amsterdam Ave.) Aug. 20-24.

The event, benefitting Make-A-Wish Georgia, will be presented in partnership with the W.I.S.H. (Women Inspiring Strength and Hope) Society, the women’s philanthropic leadership group of the Make-A-Wish Georgia organization.

Make-A-Wish Georgia will receive 10 percent of purchases made over the course of the anniversary shopping event. (Offer excludes loose diamonds and diamond engagement rings and applies to in-stock items only.)

Additionally, a special "Wish Grantors Piece" — an 18-karat white gold bracelet made up of 744 round diamonds and six blue sapphires — will be available for purchase at the jeweler’s Midtown location.

Worthmore will donate $8,000 — the amount needed to grant one wish for a local child with a life threatening illness — from the sale of this piece, and its purchaser will gain the opportunity to be involved with selecting the wish recipient.

The celebration continues with special, in-store events on Friday, Aug. 22 and Saturday, Aug. 23. On both days, guests can enjoy bellini cocktails while they listen to designer Vincent Peach showcasing his award-winning Tahitian, South Sea, and Freshwater pearl, diamond, and leather jewelry combinations.  

On Saturday, patrons can also preview Hamilton Watch Company’s newest styles; have the accuracy of their own watches tested by Worthmore’s watch technicians; and participate in raffle drawings for jewelry and prizes including a $500 Worthmore Jewelers shopping spree and a Skywatch chronograph valued at $395. All proceeds from raffle ticket purchases will be donated to Make-A-Wish Georgia. 

Also on Saturday, the first 21 guests will receive 21 percent off their purchase and the first 100 guests to arrive between noon and 2 p.m. will receive complimentary lunch from the Toasted Cheese Food Truck.

Harris Botnick, Worthmore founder and owner, says these types of events have become a store tradition and are a festive way to recognize their company history. “Since our founding, we have been committed to a unique, fun approach to jewelry retailing and giving back to our community,” says Botnick. “We are excited to work with the W.I.S.H. Society to make dreams come true as we celebrate our 21st anniversary.” 

The event’s presenting partner, the W.I.S.H. Society, was developed to provide a unique opportunity for women in philanthropy to unite in support of Make-A-Wish Georgia. The group is committed to making the wishes of its community’s children suffering from life-threatening illnesses come true. 

For more information and a schedule of anniversary events, visit www.WorthmoreJewelers.com.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for August 14

Far more changes in prices across a range of categories of round diamonds that was heavily negative, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

There was less activity in fancy shape diamonds than has been seen in recent weeks, with a bias to the positive.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts many declines in better colors and clarities

  • 0.23-0.29 cts F / VS2 +2.8% to $1,850 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts unchanged

  • 0.40-0.44 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.45-0.49 cts several declines in lower colors and clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts no changes

  • 0.70-0.79 cts N / VVS1-VS2 declines of 2-3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts N / VVS1-SI1 falls of 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts M / IF-VS1 falls of 3-4%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many falls in better colors and clarities

  • 1.25-1.49 cts several declines

  • 2 cts several falls

  • 3 cts just three changes, two downwards and one riser

  • 4 cts H / VVS2 +3.1% to $33,000 p/c

  • 5 cts unchanged



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / VS2 +3.9% to $1,350 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts F / SI1 +4.4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E / VS2 -2.8% to $1,750 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts several risers

  • 0.45-0.49 cts I / SI2 +4.4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts several decliners

  • 0.70-0.79 cts J-K / SI2-I1 rises of 2-5%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts a range of risers

  • 0.90-0.99 cts H / VVS1 -2.2% to $4,500 p/c

  • 1.00-1.24 cts several declines in better colors and clarities

  • 1.50-1.99 cts just three changes, two downwards and one riser

  • 2 cts E-F / I2 rises of 3%

  • 3 cts two declines in high clarity, lower colors

  • 4 cts several falls in mid-colors and clarity

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Corinne Jewelers Reopens with Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony

Corinne Jewelers officially reopened their doors with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on July 31 at their newly remodeled location, 917 North Main Street, Route 166, Toms River, NJ. 

“This marks a vibrant new era for us,” said Ryan Blumenthal, third-generation owner of Corinne Jewelers. “We’ve doubled our showroom, renovated our décor, and have a more functional layout which allows us to present more of what our customers want: quality jewelry – particularly engagement rings, fashion, and custom design which are our primary focus.”

Walls have been pushed back to make way for a more spacious display area designed to hold hundreds of engagement rings. Sleek glass-fronted cabinets will showcase the jewelry, and a table has been added to feature jewelry, which customers can touch and try on. A new repair take-in desk supports a plasma screen that shows large-scale photos of pieces undergoing repair or sketches of custom designs. The expanded bridal area hosts a large sitting area, a new coffee bar, and an entertainment area outfitted with a large-screen TV. In addition, the store has added a PANDORA® boutique and a diamond and appraising room. One nod to Corinne’s past, however, remains. The raised ceilings are covered in oak beadboard, paying homage to the former store’s décor. 

“We’ve re-imagined everything, including adding ‘The Diamond Source’ to our name,” Blumenthal said. “What does that mean to our customers? Among other things, it means we now have the area’s largest selection of diamonds suitable for any budget, thanks to our new policy of directly importing and hand selecting each and every diamond.” 

Corinne Jewelers embarked on its renovation and expanded inventory in celebration of its 50th year in business. The store was founded by Ryan’s late grandfather, Mel Blumenthal, in 1964 in honor of his wife, Corinne. Mel had promised to one day put her name up in bright lights, and he was a man of his word. The Blumenthal family remains committed to honoring his promise by creating an even brighter location that will continue to offer exceptional selection, quality, and service to the shoppers of Ocean and Monmouth Counties. 

In appreciation of Corinne’s service to the community, Toms River Mayor Thomas F. Kelaher officially proclaimed July 31, 2014, as “Corinne Jewelers Day.” In his proclamation, Mayor Kelaher noted the business’s longtime support of regional and national groups, including the United Way of Ocean County, the Community Medical Center, and the American Cancer Society. 

Special 50th anniversary events are in the works for the newly remodeled store. “You can’t stay a success for half a century all on your own,” Blumenthal said. “It takes support from the community. So we’ve made them an important part of this year’s anniversary celebration.” Among the events planned are:

  • The “Faces of Corinne,” a social media promotion that will solicit photos and stories from families that have been Corinne customers for generations.
  • “Stick-to-It Students,” a scholarship program that will honor high school students with cash awards during Corinne’s 50th anniversary year.
  • A “Customer Appreciation” event that will award a $50 gift certificate to the first person to walk through the door each day during a specified 50-day period.

Details about these and other events will follow in future months.

A Corinne History Wall is already in place in the newly designed facility, displaying photos from the store’s past. A coffee-table book featuring historic photos from around the country and the region taken during the 1960s when Corinne first opened is being compiled.

Corinne Jewelers, The Diamond Source, is open Monday – Wednesday 10 am – 6 pm, Thursday 10 am – 8 pm, Friday 10 am – 6 pm, Saturday 10 am – 5 pm, closed Sunday. Customers old and new are invited to stop in and see the remarkable transformation.

“They will find a new luxurious atmosphere,” Blumenthal said, “and a lot of new rings, diamonds, and beautiful jewelry. But the same warm people are still here, prepared to deliver the friendly ‘Corinne Experience’ they’ve come to expect from us.”

Corinne Jewelers’ status as a member of the American Gem Society also remains unchanged. Only the top five percent of jewelers in the United States and Canada meet the qualifications for membership in the American Gem Society. 

 

Corinne Jewelers, The Diamond Source, is recognized locally for its diverse selection of engagement and wedding rings, loose diamonds, modern timepieces, and jewelry from some of today’s most sought after designers, as well as its knowledgeable staff and superior service. For more information about their products or services, please call 732.244.4664 or visit online at corinnejewelers.com.

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Mark Snyder Elected Bank Corporator

Mark Snyder, owner of Snyder Jewelers in South Weymouth, has joined Weymouth Bank as a newly elected corporator. He was welcomed by the bank’s board of directors and officially was inducted to the Weymouth Bank’s Board of Corporators at their May 28 annual meeting.

The role of a corporator is a unique opportunity offered to respectable leaders of the community who become advisors to the bank for a designated period of time. 

As an ambassador for Weymouth Bank and a liaison between the bank and the community, Snyder will play an important role, acting as Weymouth Bank’s “eyes and ears” and by promoting various products and services.

“Mark is perfect for this role and will be a resourceful corporator. He is a successful business owner in Weymouth and a leader in the communities we serve, and his wealth of knowledge of the local business and social environment along with his extensive list of contacts will certainly help increase community awareness of Weymouth Bank,” said Robert W. Terravecchia Jr., President & CEO of Weymouth Bank. “We look forward to his advice and networking contributions as we continue to engage in the communities we serve.”

Snyder, 45, is owner/operator of Snyder Jewelers, a leading jewelry store in Columbian Square, Weymouth, voted Best Jeweler in Weymouth for the past 9 consecutive years and Best Jeweler in Region for the last two years.

The Plymouth resident (originally from Whitman) opened Snyder Jewelers with his father Gary in 1992 and has worked in the jewelry industry since 1983, is a Curry College Graduate,  a Certified Senior Management Professional (C.S.M.P.) and has achieved a GIA Graduate Diamond Degree along with numerous certifications.

An active member of the community and member of many local associations, Mark Snyder proudly gives back, sponsoring schools, teams and many civic fundraising events throughout the local region and also volunteers as an assistant coach of the Whitman-Hanson Regional High School wrestling team.

 

Addressing the importance of his new role with Weymouth Bank, Snyder noted, “I am thrilled to become part of the Weymouth Bank team and look forward to assisting the bank in increasing its visibility, credibility and importance in the community and welcome the opportunity to represent the bank as a center of influence.” 

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Centurion Show Announces Education Lineup for September

The Select By Centurion Shows have announced their September 2014 Educational line-up for retail jewelry store attendees.

In addition, the show guides are on their way to stores now and will be given out at the two shows.

To see the show guides on-line, visit the following three links:

The Education schedule, in date order, is as follows: 

Dallas, TX, Ritz Carlton, Sunday, September 7, 2014, 9-10 AM
TITLE: From Zero to $10 Million in 20 Years: Our Story
SPEAKERS: Ellen and Charles Lacy, Lacy & Co.
DESCRIPTION: Listen in as recently retired high-end jewelers Ellen and Charles Lacy share their secrets to a successful career. Their fascinating journey will inspire as well as educate you!


Dallas, TX Ritz Carlton, Monday, September 8, 2014, 9-10 AM
TITLE: Managing Your Estate and Antique Jewelry and In Store Special Events
SPEAKERS: Patti Geolat, Geolat, Inc. and Kate Peterson, Performance Concepts
DESCRIPTION: Join Patti and Kate for an hour of smart strategies. Patti tackles managing your estate and antique business and Kate will discuss in store special events. What a great way to start your fourth quarter!

Nashville, TN, Loews Vanderbilt, Sunday, September 21, 2014, 9-10 AM 
TITLE: Remarks from Chuck Koehler, Anthony Jewelers, Nashville, TN and Southern Jewelry News ColumnisT
Foxtown at Foxwoods, Sunday September 28 and Monday September 29 at Foxwoods, Mashantucket CT

 

For information, see www.selectjewelryshow.com.

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JJ Number 8 Launches Equal Collection

JJ Number 8 jewelry has launched the new Equal collection, which features JJ’s signature use of the marquise gemstone and her symmetrical, orderly design aesthetic.  It is designed in diamonds and sterling silver.  It is sold at select Neiman Marcus stores and Zadok jewelers in Houston.  

Marquise-shaped gemstones are signature to the JJ Number 8 collection and a key design inspiration.  “The marquise shape has a flow and kinetic energy to it that moves me as a designer,” says JJ.  

In 2014, JJ Number 8 jewelry was recipient of the Tory Burch Foundation scholarship honoring female entrepreneurs through the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program.  The JJ Number 8 short film entitled, “Freedom” was named one of the top three best jewelry films of 2013 by JCK Magazine along with Cartier. JJ was also named one of the 2014 Top 40 Young Professonals Under 40 by OC Metro. 

JJ Number 8 features gracefully stylish rings, earrings, necklaces and bracelets designed in fine 18kt. gold and sterling silver with diamonds and exquisite colored gemstones. 

The vision of JJ Number 8 jewelry is to create fresh, imaginative jewelry that inspires and nurtures.

 

For more information, see www.jjnumber8.com.

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Erica Bello Wins Halstead Design Grant

Erica Bello of Rochester, NY has won as the winner of the 9th annual national Halstead Grant competition for new silver jewelry designers.

She will receive $5,000 in cash and $1,000 in jewelry supplies in addition to other prize package benefits.

“I was extremely honored to be chosen as the 2014 Halstead Grant recipient. Writing the grant allowed me to focus my ideas into a cohesive goal. It is an incredible opportunity to be able to put my ideas into motion; I cannot thank them enough.”

Bello finished her Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2011 at The Rochester Institute of Technology with high honors. After college she worked as a bench jeweler while she continued to strengthen her customer base for Erica Bello Jewelry. Working for one of the largest national retailers of fine jewelry enhanced her technique, skill, and business knowledge.

Bello’s geometric silver jewelry with an oxidized finish can be described as industrial, bold and edgy with a three-dimensional dynamic. This unique metalsmithing work creates contrast with acute angles and semi-precious stones. Her collection is influenced by architecture and traditional jewelry archetypes.

Each design is shaped, soldered, or casted out of silver then given an antique oxidized finish. Her metalsmithing technique also includes built up fabrication of rings with stone settings. Prices range from $105 to $ 445 and you can purchase pieces at www.ericabellojewelry.com.

Bello will also exhibit at the Philadelphia Museum of Art Contemporary Craft Show in November and the American Craft Council Baltimore Show in February.

The Halstead Grant competition recognizes jewelry artists who excel in both design and business preparation. Applicants are required to submit a portfolio and elements of a business plan including marketing, production capacity and financial planning information. The program is designed to encourage sound professional practices in the jewelry arts community. The application process guides candidates through several critical business issues. Analyzing those challenges helps new jewelers lay the groundwork to become successful, independent studio owners.

 

The grant sponsor, Halstead, provides wholesale jewelry making supplies to artists around the globe. The company recently celebrated its 40th anniversary and looks forward to many more years under the second generation of leadership.

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Rio Grande Calls for Entries in Saul Bell Design Competition

Rio Grande has issued the call for entries for the 2015 Saul Bell Design Award competition. Now in its 15th year, the competition encourages designers to push the limits of their imaginations as they create a piece of original jewelry art. This year the competition challenges jewelers to define what design is to them through the piece they create.

“We want jewelers to enter a piece that defines their vision as an artist,” says Jamie Gros, Creative Director at Rio Grande, which hosts of the annual competition. “In the past, we’ve asked many of the winners what design is to them, and their responses offered fresh insight into their work.”

There are seven categories in the 2015 competition: gold/platinum, silver/Argentium silver, metal clay, enamel, hollowware/art objects, alternative metals/materials, and emerging jewelry artist. The emerging jewelry artist category of the competition is now open to designers who are 21 years of age and younger.

One of the jewelry industry’s foremost design events, the competition is judged by jewelers and industry leaders who are masters of their craft. They look for originality of design, successful incorporation of materials, wearability (except in the hollowware category) and quality of workmanship as they examine each finalist piece both by hand and on a model.

“I have been fortunate enough to win many of the jewelry industry’s top design awards, and I can say that the Saul Bell Award is the most important to me,” says Ryan Roberts, the winner of the 2013 award in the gold/platinum category. “No other competition covers so many aspects of what it takes to make a great piece of jewelry. Winning a Saul Bell truly means that you’ve had your work scrutinized by the industry’s top designers, jewelers, and jewelry media professionals. I feel it is the most important design competition in the business.” 

Winning the award helps propel jewelers to new heights in their careers and new levels of recognition and acclaim within the industry.  The winning pieces will be promoted throughout the industry and displayed in the exclusive Plumb Club during the 2015 JCK, Las Vegas show. 

“I encourage every jeweler I know to enter,” says Robin Waynee, the 2012 winner in the gold/platinum category. “My award has been very beneficial within the industry. It has opened so many doors for me that wouldn't be available otherwise.” 

 

Entries are due October 3, 2014. Emerging jewelry artists must submit their entries by November 28, 2014. All finalist pieces are due by January 30, 2015. The entry form and detailed information about the competition, including submission guidelines and information about each of the categories, are available at saulbellaward.com.

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Stuller Gets DeBeers Automatic Melee Screening Device

De Beers Sightholder, Stuller is one of the first two jewelry companies in the United States to install and utilize De Beers’ long-awaited Automated Melee Screening Device.   

This device serves as the only of its kind available to the jewelry industry and is designed to detect all synthetics and simulants, verifying the authenticity of natural, melee diamonds ranging in size from 1.3mm (1pt) to 3.8mm (20pts). The instrument is fully automated handling up to 360 stones per hour or 500cts at any given time.

“This innovative machine offers us yet another way to give our customers trust, confidence and security when buying diamonds from Stuller,” says Stanley Zale, Stuller’s vice president of diamonds and gemstones. “We’re proud to be among the first in our industry to use this technology and operate within the guidelines and best practices set forth by De Beers.”

“Accurate detection and responsible disclosure of synthetics is vitally important today,” says Jonathan Kendall, president of the International Institute of Diamond Grading and Research. “The De Beers Group International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR) is delighted to be working with Stuller to provide the detection equipment to screen for undisclosed synthetics, in the pursuit of maintaining trust and confidence in the diamond supply chain through to the consumer.”

In addition to the new melee-scanning device, Stuller is also using the HRD D-screening process on any stones larger than 20 points to scan for synthetics.

 

For more information regarding the new machine, contact Stanley Zale at (800) 877-7777 ext. 4510.

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GIA New York Campus Named School of Excellence

Gemological Institute of America’s New York campus will be recognized with the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges School of Excellence Award for 2013-2014, the organization’s highest honor, during a special reception on Sept. 17.

“The ACCSC examines student achievement based on graduation and employment rates, and this honor is truly a testament to the passion and drive of our students and instructors,” said Susan Jacques, GIA’s president and CEO. “We’re proud that when our graduates enter the workforce, they will help advance GIA’s mission to ensure the public trust.” 

The ACCSC School of Excellence Award recognizes schools for their commitment to the expectations and rigors of ACCSC accreditation, as well as efforts in helping their students maintain high levels of achievement. In order to be eligible for the award, a school must successfully complete the renewal of accreditation process, satisfy all requirements necessary to be in good standing with the Commission and demonstrate that a majority of the graduation and employment rates from all programs offered meet or exceed the average rates of graduation and employment among all ACCSC-accredited institutions.

“ACCSC congratulates GIA’s New York campus on their commitment to delivering quality educational programs to the students, graduates and employers that deserve our best work,” said Christopher Lambert, ACCSC’s associate executive director.

GIA is a nonprofit, private, postsecondary educational institute incorporated for the purpose of promoting education and research in gemology, jewelry manufacturing arts and related subjects.  A comprehensive GIA education is regarded as the pinnacle of training and professional development in gems and jewelry. GIA’s New York campus is located at the International Gem Tower in the heart of the Diamond District, where students enjoy access to industry leaders and a world-class learning environment. 

GIA will be recognized as a 2014 School of Excellence at the eighth annual ACCSC Professional Development Conference on September 17-19, 2014 at The Westin Denver Downtown in Denver, Colo.

 

GIA’s campus in Carlsbad, Calif. was awarded the School of Excellence Award in 2012.

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JIS Adds The 18K Club to October Show

JIS, the Miami Beach Jewelry Trade Show, has announced an addition to the October show: The 18K Club.   

Through listening to our show buyers and exhibitors it became apparent to JIS that the demand for 18K finished jewelry and other high end merchandise is once again on the rise!  Exhibitors are transitioning their lines in order to meet the renewed demand for higher end luxury designs. 

In order to assist the JIS Trade Buyers in navigating the massive 1250 booth show and making it effortless for them to locate these higher end exhibitors and designers we created the 18K Club Designation.   

The current list of 18K Club members is available on the JIS website.  The list of 18K club members continues to growing as the JIS October show continues to grow.  We suggests checking back frequently to see who else has joined the ranks of the 18K club and the full exhibitor list, which is always available on our website, www.jisshow.com.

Although this is only one segment of the expansive merchandise from around the world found at JIS shows, finished diamond jewelry is the single largest product category at the October 11-14, 2014 JIS show.   

The show is always held at the Miami Beach Convention Center in the heart of the world famous South Beach. And this year the show promises to be as exciting as South Beach itself.    

 

For additional information please contact the JIS Show Office at: 561-998-0205 or info@jisshow.com

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Dates Set for Portland Jewelry Show

The Seventh Annual Portland (OR)Jewelry Symposium will take place at the Sentinel Hotel on October 5th & 6th, 2014.

The event kicks off with a Sunday evening dinner and keynote address at the Portland Art Museum, featuring Mark Hanna from the Richline group sharing insights on Trustability — The New 3 C's: Consumer, Compliance, Conscience. 

The full-day educational conference takes place Monday, with presentation topics to include Design, CAD, 3D Printing, Casting, Branding, Precious Metals Market Outlook, Live Bench, and more.

The Symposium content emphasizes technology and is tailored to the needs of custom retailers, designers, and small manufacturers.

“This is a unique opportunity to learn and network in a very intimate setting with some of the best talent in our industry” says founder Teresa Frye. 

“This year also offers an expanded presence for sponsors that will include table-top equipment and product samples in order to bring technology to the forefront of the event.” 

 

For registration and a complete list of speakers and program details visit www.portlandjewelrysymposium.com.

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Juergens & Andersen Celebrates 160 Years

Juergens & Andersen , one of Chicago’s oldest businesses, is celebrating its 160th anniversary this year.

But that’s not the only milestone for this third-generation family-owned business. After 70 years in one space, they are  moving their offices.  The new space is bigger and brighter  to accommodate the ongoing growth of the company’s well-known trademarked Add-A-Pearl program, which continues to be popular ever since its inception back in 1915.

 

The new address is: Juergens & Andersen Co., 29 E. Madison St, Suite 1650 Chicago, Il. 60602   For more information please call 1-800-621-8333 or email patti@addapearl.com.

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Jewelers Mutual Offers Tips for Safety while Traveling

Summer is coming to a close which means people are squeezing in their final getaways of the season. This makes it an opportune time to extend your service beyond the sale and provide your customers with essential tips for safe travels with their jewelry.

Many travel experts, as well as the jewelry insurance experts at Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, recommend leaving expensive jewelry in a secure place at home, like a safe deposit box. Jewelers Mutual also suggests taking advantage of vacation time to bring jewelry in for a professional cleaning and inspection. The pieces will be kept safe and sparkling like new when travelers return. 

If leaving jewelry behind is not an option for your customers, remind them to take extra precautions when traveling with their precious gems:

  • If a two-key control safety deposit box is available at the hotel, use it. It’s more secure than using a safe in the room. But, if the in-room safe is the only option, it’s better to use it rather than leaving your jewelry out in the open. 
  • Be selective about who you let into your room. Use the privacy sign if you do not want hotel staff in your room when you’re not there.
  • Be aware of your surroundings and use discretion when you bring valuables outside your room. Don’t “advertise” your valuables or wear items that will attract attention. Keep rings turned inward and pendants tucked under your shirt if you’re in a crowd.
  • Remove your jewelry (and keep it safely locked away in the hotel safety deposit box) before going into chlorinated pools and hot tubs or the ocean. Chlorine and saltwater can damage precious metals and some gemstones.
  • Remember, cool water makes it easy for jewelry to slide off as fingers constrict. If you have to wear jewelry when you swim, check it often.

And most importantly, remind customers about the importance of insurance for their jewelry whether or not they take it on vacation. “Insuring their jewelry is one more way customers can have peace of mind before they head out the door,” said Michael Calabresa, director of business development for Jewelers Mutual. “But choosing the right insurance is important.” 

Jewelers Mutual’s Perfect Circle Jewelry Insurance provides worldwide, comprehensive coverage against loss, theft, damage, and mysterious disappearance (or unexplained loss). “With a Jewelers Mutual policy,” said Calabresa, “no matter whether customers’ travels keep them in the country or abroad, their jewelry is covered—it’s a distinction that matters to the on-the-go customer.”

And while it is an important resource for your customers, it can be an even more important tool for your business. 

“Jewelers Mutual sends insured customers back for regular inspections, cleanings, and reassessments,” Calabresa added. “Plus, customers with a Jewelers Mutual policy have the flexibility to choose you – their preferred jeweler – for claim-related repairs and replacements should the worst happen. No need for multiple estimates from competing jewelers. Your customers remain exactly that…yours.

 

For more information about jewelry insurance for your customers and how you can earn rewards, contact a Jewelers Mutual sales manager at 800-558-6411, ext. 2118 or Marketing-PJ@jminsure.com.

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Mastoloni Adds to Sales Force

Mastoloni Pearls has named Chuck Zopfi as Sales Associate for the brand's TOLA states, New Mexico, Colorado and Western Kansas regions.

Zopfi joins Mastoloni bringing a wealth of knowledge from years of experience in both the pearl and fine jewelry industries.

"Chuck is a wonderful addition to our rapidly expanding team,” said Ray Mastoloni. “We are confident his contributions will make a significant impact and be of incredible benefit to our retail partners."

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Anna Martin is GIA’s New Senior VP for Global Development

The Gemological Institute of America has appointed Anna Martin, previously managing director and head of global marketing, diamonds and jewelry, at Standard Chartered Bank, to the position of Senior Vice President of Global Development.

Building on a career of more than four decades in banking serving the gem and jewelry industry, Martin will be responsible for broadening and deepening GIA’s relationships with clients and stakeholders and overseeing the Institute’s global beneficiation efforts.

“Anna Martin brings invaluable and unique expertise and experience that will help us continue to focus on ensuring consumer trust in gems and jewelry,” said Susan Jacques, GIA’s president and CEO. “Anna will help build our capabilities as a global organization as we work to deepen our research program, expand laboratory capacity and bring gemological education to more people around the world.”

“I am very excited to join GIA to help build on its history of excellence in research, education and laboratory services,” said Martin. “There are so many opportunities for the gem and jewelry industry to do good in the world; I look forward to working with my new colleagues at GIA to seize these opportunities.”

Martin, who served on the GIA Board of Governors from 1997 to 2011, is one of the most well-known and recognized figures in the gem and jewelry industry. At Standard Chartered Bank and previously at ABN AMRO bank, she significantly expanded the availability and delivery of financial products and services to the global trade. Her work has been recognized with numerous industry awards and she has served on the boards of many industry organizations. She will begin her new position at GIA, based in New York, o nSept. 2 and will report to Jacques.

The global nonprofit institute also announced the appointment of Rohit Tandon as GIA’s chief human resources officer.

Tandon joins GIA from the nonprofit AIDS Healthcare Foundation where, as a member of senior management, he oversaw programs in 34 countries with an annual budget of $1 billion to treat more than 300,000 patients. He has extensive experience in global human resources, spanning 25 years in the manufacturing, insurance, logistics and software industries. Tandon will report to GIA’s Corporate Counsel Jennifer Wilson and will be based at the Institute’s Carlsbad, Calif. headquarters, beginning Aug. 18.

In addition, key senior GIA executives received promotions reflecting their expanded responsibilities. Chief Learning Officer Bev Hori, Chief Marketing Officer Kathryn Kimmel and Chief Financial Officer David Tearle have all been named senior vice presidents. Corporate Counsel Jennifer Wilson has been promoted to vice president and was elected corporate secretary at the May 2014 Board of Governors meeting.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for August 7

Evidence of the summer vacation was abundant with low levels of activity in most categories of round diamonds, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

In fancy shape diamonds, there was also a decline in activity although more than seen for round goods, with price changes evenly balanced.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D / SI2 -4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts just two changes, one up and one down

  • 0.30-0.39 cts unchanged

  • 0.40-0.44 cts no changes

  • 0.45-0.49 cts D / VVS1 -3.5% to $4,100 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts M-N / SI2-SI3 declining by 3-5%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts N / SI2-SI3 declines of 3-4%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts no changes

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just one change, downwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many declines in lower colors and good clarities

  • 1.25-1.49 cts declines in lesser colors, higher clarities

  • 2 cts H / VVS1 -2.9% to $16,500 p/c

  • 3 cts unchanged

  • 4 cts no changes

  • 5 cts unchanged



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / VVS2-VS2 rises of 3-4%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts E / VS1-SI2 increasing by 3-5%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts a range of declines in better colors, mid-clarities

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts G / SI3-I1 rises of 4%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts M-N / VVS1 rising by more than 4%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts K / SI1-SI3 declines of 3-4%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.90-0.99 cts H / I1 -3.5% to $2,800 p/c

  • 1.00-1.24 cts two changes, both downwards

  • 1.50-1.99 cts D-F / IF declines of 3%

  • 2 cts E-F / I1-I2 declines of 2-4%

  • 3 cts H / VVS2 -3.1% to $18,500 p/c

  • 4 cts K-M / VS2-SI1 declines of 2-3%

  • 5 cts two changes, one up and one down

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Houston Jewelry Honored in Congress

Houston Jewelry was recently honored in Congress as being a true "Texas Treasure." The Honorable John Abbey Culberson made the statement into the Congressional Record on July 3, in Washington, DC.

Houston Jewelry, the family owned and operated business since 1866, has specialized in fine jewelry since 1953. A true "Texas Treasure," the history of this jewelry store mirrors that of Texas itself.

What started out as a frontier general store in the young,burgeoning town of Houston, grew and matured to what it is today: one of "America's Best Couture Jewelers" and multiple winner of the Better Business Bureau of Houston's Award for Excellence, Winner of Distinction award. 

Like the city of Houston, from humble beginnings, the store owned by the Donsky-Solomon family has now earned national and international recognition. Houston Jewelry is now in its fifth generation of active management of this family owned business.

From the sale of staple and fancy dry goods to fine jewelry, through catalog and online sales, each generation has enhanced the business it inherited, following the latest trends and technology of a major metropolitan city.

Houston Jewelry has become a steadfast testament to the power of determination, innovation, and family bonds through the storms it has weathered, economic busts and national depressions.

Houston Jewelry represents one of the oldest family businesses in Houston, and among the oldest in Texas, and has been a leader in the jewelry and fine gift industry for generations. 

 

Rex Solomon, president of Houston Jewelry, states that "It is a great honor to be recognized in the Congress of the United States and we thank Congressman John Culberson for the recognition."

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Town & Country Salutes Walters & Hogsett

Walters & Hogsett Fine Jewelers of Boulder, CO has been named one of America’s Leading Independent Jewelers by Town & Country magazine.

The June/July issue of the publication, which features information and articles focused toward the luxury goods and service industries, added Walters & Hogsett to its 2014 list of leading independent jewelers in recognition of the business’s “distinguished service and fine collections.”

“As (an) authority on fine jewelry and timepieces, Town & Country is dedicated to bringing readers the absolute best resources in this all-important category,” said Jennifer Levene Bruno, Publisher/Chief Revenue Officer of Town & Country. “T&C’s Leading Independent Jewelers are synonymous with the impeccable style and service that our audience demands. We are proud to welcome Walters & Hogsett to the country’s top tier of jewelry and watch retailers.”

Walters & Hogsett opened its doors in 1983. Over the years, the family-owned business has grown significantly, requiring relocations and renovations to accommodate its growing collections and clientele. Yet, the staff at Walters & Hogsett have always remained faithful to their original intent: providing the best selections from top jewelry designers with the personal service of a hometown jeweler. 

“We are thrilled to receive this honor from Town & Country,” said Mark Vieregg, Owner of Walters & Hogsett. “It has always been a pleasure to serve our clients and our community - Boulder is such a vibrant, exciting venue for jewelry design and sales. But to be recognized for doing what we love to do is extraordinary.”

The Town & Country honors are not the first accolade received by Walters & Hogsett.  For the past 12 years, the jeweler has been named “Best In Boulder” by Boulder’s Daily Camera.

 

Walters & Hogsett Fine Jewelers collections offer a wide selection of bridal and fashion jewelry, gifts, and fine watches. They also specialize in custom design and are the area’s premier broker of estate jewelry. The store is located at 2425 Canyon Boulevard in Boulder. They can also be found online at www.waltersandhogsett.com.

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GIA Career Day Draws More than 800 Job-Seekers


Susan Jacques (far left), GIA’s president and CEO, moderated the opening panel discussion “Job Success in Today’s Market” at GIA’s Jewelry Career Fair on July 28 in New York.

More than 800 hundred ambitious and aspiring professionals packed the Javits Center on Monday, July 28, where 44 companies were looking to fill hundreds of positions at the Gemological Institute of America Jewelry Career Fair. 

The jewelry industry’s largest recruiting event drew crowds for job opportunities ranging from an on-air television host to design, manufacturing and sales positions. The program also featured one-on-one career coaching with industry veterans and a panel discussion led by top names in the jewelry business.

“Jewelry has been an important part of cultures throughout the world for centuries, and the success of this year’s GIA Jewelry Career Fair is a good indication that the jewelry industry not only continues to thrive, but is evolving tremendously. At this year’s event, we saw openings for traditional careers in manufacturing and retail sales, and also in a plethora of growing fields such as rental jewelry,” said Susan Jacques, GIA’s president and CEO.

The five-hour event kicked off with “Job Success in Today’s Market,” a panel discussion moderated by Jacques. Speakers Mercedes Abramo, president and CEO of Cartier North America; Ashley Chan of Leslie Hindman Auctioneers; Andrea Hansen, partner of Luxe Intelligence and president of the Women’s Jewelry Association; Douglas K. Hucker, CEO of AGTA; and Steven Lagos, founder and chief creative director of LAGOS Jewelry; gave attendees exclusive insight into their personal journeys to success.

“It’s an honor and a privilege to hear from such illustrious professionals,” said Kathryn Kimmel, GIA vice-president, chief marketing officer and co-founder of the GIA Career Fair. “Each of our panelists has inspired countless individuals through their unique and storied journeys to success. The next generation of gem and jewelry professionals has big shoes to fill, but with the mentorship and guidance of these pioneers, I can’t wait to see what they accomplish.” 

David Yurman, Helzberg Diamonds, GIA, Jewelry Television,  London Jewelers, Rent the Runway, and Zale Corporation were among the 44 companies recruiting for hundreds of positions from retail sales and jewelry design to diamond grading and production. Job seekers had the opportunity to interact directly with hiring managers and learn first-hand what kind of skills each company sought.

GIA hosted its first Jewelry Career Fair in 1991 in Santa Monica, Calif. Since then, the event has expanded and linked gem and jewelry companies with future employees at more than 50 events in India, and a handful of cities throughout the U.S. The next GIA Jewelry Career Fair will take place on Friday, Oct. 10 at the Institute’s world headquarters in Carlsbad, Calif. 

 

For more details about GIA’s Jewelry Career Fair, visit www.careerfair.gia.edu. For job opportunities in the gem and jewelry industry, visit GIA’s career database at http://www.gia.edu/gem-job.  

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Color Merchants Adds Rick Morris to Sales Team

Color Merchants, a top supplier of diamond and gemstone jewelry for almost 30 years, is growing. The newest member of the team is Rick Morris, who will be representing the Southeast region of the United States. With many years of road experience and extensive knowledge, Rick is ready to showcase Color Merchants’ beautiful line of diamond and gemstone jewelry.

To learn more about Color Merchants call 1-800-356-3851 and visit www.ColorMerchants.com to view their full catalog.

 

Retailers are encouraged to call Rick at 205-531-4901, or email him at rick@colormerchants.com for an appointment.

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Estenza Jewelry Lines Come to the U.S.

Fashion-forward gold, diamond and colored gemstone jewelry from Estenza is now available to the U.S. market.

The Estenza collection features modern classic styles and easy-to-appreciate geometric forms, including the frequently occurring navette seen in stone shapes, silhouettes with negative space and subtle effects in metal work.

Estenza’s jewelry is made in 14k and 18k gold with bold cuts of gems like blue topaz and purple amethyst, with most offset by healthy accents of colorless diamond pavé.

Estenza’s bridal jewelry includes American favorites like halo settings, split shanks, modified three-stone looks and more. All engagement rings have complimentary bands, as well as unique stackables to add onto existing sets or create entirely new statements.

A Smart Luxe bridal line made in 14k gold offers entry price points starting at $1,050. Suggested retail prices for 14k gold fashion looks start at $2,500, while 18k gold bridal pieces start at $3,000. 

The recently created fine jewelry firm brings 45 years of custom design and manufacturing experience in India to the U.S. thanks to the Kedia family. Founder, jeweler and designer Vijay Kedia lends his seasoned vision to the fresh perspective of the next generation—his son and daughter-in-law Vinay and Priyanka Kedia, respectively. Vinay heads up business development while Priyanka aids on the design side. 

Priyanka designs pieces for wear everyday that still offer the look and feel of high jewelry. “I just don’t want to keep waiting for an occasion to wear my jewelry,” she explains. “I want to be able to wear it every day. Now other women can, too, with Estenza’s meticulously crafted jewelry made through the art of wax casting, with hand-set diamonds and gemstones that give each piece the quality and detail of one-of-a-kind high jewel.” 

Retailers love the collection for its standout styling and color stories, quality of manufacture, quick turns, variety of inventory and the Kedia’s eagerness to work closely with stores to provide merchandise that moves. Fashion editors, meanwhile, will appreciate the line’s on-trend colors and oversize gemstone proportions ideal for big statements in photo shoots and on product pages. 

As part of Estenza’s re-branding process for the U.S. market, the company unveiled Estenza.com, a beautifully executed website with magazine-quality professional model photography and still life product shots. The site is easy to navigate, has drop-down menus for styles, collections, gift suggestions and categories like stacking rings. Links to Estenza’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+ accounts are also accessible, as is a blog. 

Estenza has 70 U.S. accounts to date, and the firm’s fine jewelry is available for wholesale purchase only to the trade.

 

Log onto www.estenza.com to see the full range of jewelry offerings. 

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JA Adds Goracke, Abramo to Board of Directors

Jewelers of America elected two new industry leaders to its Board of Directors at its semi-annual Board meeting on July 26, in New York. The new directors are Karen Goracke, of Borsheims Fine Jewelry and Gifts; and Mercedes Abramo, of Cartier North America. The new Directors will serve through 2017.

“It is a pleasure to welcome these two jewelry executives to our Board. Their depth of industry knowledge will provide Jewelers of America with valuable insights as we continue with our mission to maintain consumer confidence in the fine jewelry marketplace,” says JA Board Chairman Bill Farmer Jr., Partner of Farmers Jewelry in Lexington, KY.

Together, Goracke and Abramo have more than 45 years of experience in the fine jewelry and luxury goods industry.

Karen Goracke is President & CEO of Borsheims Fine Jewelry and Gifts. She began her long tenured career with Borsheims in 1988 and was most recently appointed President & CEO in 2013 by Warren Buffett, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.

Holding different roles across the company gives her an extremely broad retail background and depth of knowledge of the worldwide jewelry industry. Ms. Goracke is also active with the Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC), Jewelers for Children (JFC) and the Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA).

Mercedes Abramo was appointed President & CEO of Cartier North America in June 2014, having joined the company in 2008. Ms. Abramo oversees the strategy and operations for Cartier in North America including 35 boutiques, an e-commerce boutique and over 150 specialty retailers. Prior to joining Cartier, she held management positions with Tiffany & Co., Ritz Carlton Hotels and Loews Miami Beach. She also serves on the advisory board of the Luxury Education Foundation.

JA’s Board of Directors is led by an Executive Committee comprised of Chairman Bill Farmer Jr., Farmer’s Jewelry; Chairman-Elect Ryan Berg, Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry; Vice Chairman Scot Congress, Congress Jewelers; Vice Chairman Mark Light, Sterling Jewelers Inc.; Treasurer John Henne, Henne Jewelers; and Secretary Holly Wesche, Wesche Jewelers.

For the complete list of JA’s 2014-2015 Board of Directors, visit www.jewelers.org/aboutJA/board.

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NAJA Awards Two Howard Rubin Scholarships

The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers has announced the winners of the 2014 Howard Rubin Educational Foundation Scholarship to attend the World of Gems Conference IV on September 20-21 in Rosemont, IL.

Heidi Harders, GG, Chicago, IL and Kathleen Marino, GG, Rochester, MN are the 2014 winners of the first annual scholarship.

Harders is accomplished appraiser and member of NAJA since 1996 and shares her thought that "the World of Gems Conference goes above and beyond."

Marino is a novice appraiser and joined NAJA in 2013 and feels that "continual education is integral to growing as a gemologist and an appraiser."

The HREF Scholarship is awarded to only NAJA members - one new appraiser and one experienced appraiser - for continuing education, other than NAJA conferences, relating to gem and jewelry personal property appraising.

The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers is the largest membership association specializing exclusively in gem and jewelry appraising and related appraisal issues. It offers education and networking opportunities with knowledgeable appraisal professionals.

For further information on becoming a member of NAJA, attending NAJA’s 2014 Conference, contact naja.appraisers@netzero.net, www.NAJAappraisers.com.

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AGS Honors Berg, Hucker and Schechter

The American Gem Society recognized three well-known leaders in the jewelry industry July 29 at the historic Plaza Hotel in New York City, during the prestigious Circle of Distinction dinner.

Lee Berg, CEO of Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry, received the Society’s Lifetime Achievement Award. The honor is given to individuals who have made significant contributions to the industry throughout their careers.

Doug Hucker, CEO of the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA), and Joel Schechter, CEO, HONORA, a Division of Richline Group, both received the Triple Zero Award, which is presented to members of the industry for their accomplishments and contributions.

“This amazing hotel had a tagline for many years, ‘nothing unimportant ever happens at the Plaza,’” said Ruth Batson, CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories. “This event is no exception, because tonight is a celebration of excellence.”

Batson added that the work and efforts of the three honorees has “left an indelible mark that will endure for years to come.”

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for July 31

There was significant activity in prices of very small round diamonds and also in those in the 1-2 carat range with relatively few rises, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

 

In fancy shape diamonds, there was also considerable activity in a broad range of items, with the majority being negative.

 

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

 

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

 

Rounds

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D-I / SI2 dropping by 3-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts I-K / VVS1 declining by 3-4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts just one change, upwards

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts no changes

  • 0.50-0.69 cts D / IF +3.3% to $7,800 p/c

  • 0.70-0.79 cts L-N / SI1 declining by 3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts K / VVS1-VVS2 declining by 3-4%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts no changes

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many declines in better colors and clarities

  • 1.25-1.49 cts three changes, all decliners

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts L-M / SI1 rises of 2-3%

  • 4 cts unchanged

  • 5 cts J / VS2 +2.4% to $21,700 p/c

 



 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / VVS2-VS2 rising by 3-4%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts F-H / SI1 up 4-5%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts many declines in better colors and clarities

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts no changes

  • 0.50-0.69 cts some rises in lower colors, higher clarities

  • 0.70-0.79 cts just two changes, bothdecliners

  • 0.80-0.89 cts mostly declining

  • 0.90-0.99 cts F-J / I1 declining by 3-4%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts a range of declines

  • 1.50-1.99 cts two changes, bothdownwards

  • 2 cts three decliners

  • 3 cts a wide range of activity, both risers and decliners

  • 4 cts K-N / VS2-SI1 declines of 2-3%

  • 5 cts two changes, one up and one down

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Todd Reed Opens New Store in Venice, CA

Fine jewelry designer Todd Reed will open a retail shop in the Venice neighborhood of Los Angeles. 

Scheduled to open in September 2014, the retail store and production facility was designed by Tres Birds, a celebrated architecture firm based in Denver, CO which conceptualized the first Todd Reed store in Boulder in 2010. 

“The design and construction of our flagship location in Los Angeles has been an enormous – yet thrilling - labor of love for me personally,” explains Todd Reed, Founder & CEO of Todd Reed Jewelry. “We wanted an environment that reflected our artisan roots but with a nod to this incredible Venice lifestyle that combines fashion and design with authentic beach living. I believe we found the perfect balance between these elements, and can’t wait to open our doors this fall.”

The 6,000-square-foot space will include a retail environment on the first floor along with a jewelry design and production facility to mirror the company’s existing operation in Boulder. The second floor will include a dedicated bridal salon, administrative offices and an outdoor atrium with seating.  The top floor has been designed as living quarters for the artist in residence, and will include a private elevator and separate staircase.  This allows for VIP clients to visit the store with absolute discretion. 

The steel reinforced structure is softened by the use of 1,000 plants, designed to create a vegetative screen that extends from the exterior of the store to the interior space, reaching heights of 20 feet. This not only brings dramatic color, a hint of fragrance and bursts of oxygen to the space, but it naturally dampens the sounds from the bustling street outside. In addition, all of the spaces throughout the store were designed to maximize the natural light, so all of the individual jewelry environments are self-illuminated.

 

For more information on the Todd Reed fine jewelry collection, visit www.toddreed.com.

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Todd Pownell Named New Designer of the Year

Todd Pownell of TAP by Todd Pownell was named the JA Mort Abelson New Designer of the Year at the JA New York Show on July 29th in New York City.

Todd is the 37th inductee in this hallowed group, which began in 1977 by the late Mort Abelson of Jewelers of America. Abelson blazed the trail of inviting artists to participate in trade events and encouraging them to be a part of the greater jewelry industry from their corner in the fine craft, fine art or even fine fashion worlds.

The award is given to one designer from the New Designer Gallery -- an annual debut pavilion that showcases new talent -- who impresses a secret judging panel (comprised of editors, retailers and industry experts) with both their design talent and business acumen. 

"While it's challenging to select just one from this collective of great new talents the judges took into consideration the designs as well as the designer," said Cindy Edelstein, JA's designer business consultant, "they are looking for the designer who has a distinctive design point-of-view that will have a lasting impression on the jewelry industry. A particular design DNA that will impress retailers and consumers and inspire fellow designers for years to come."

 

"We are proud of our 37 year old tradition of supporting designers and creating this hallowed New Designer of the Year tradition. Previous winners  include such luminaries as David Yurman, Penny Preville, Mark Schneider, Diana Vincent, Gregory Morin and so many more," said Show Director Drew Lawsky. "We are proud to be the launching pad for countless designer businesses over the past three decades. It's a vital part of our history."

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Providence Jewelers Set Date for Golf Tourney

The Providence (RI) Jewelers Club will host its annual golf tournament on September 15 at the Rhode Island Country Club in Barrington.

All proceeds will benefit the MJSA Education Foundation.

Since 1997, the Foundation has been providing scholarships to up-and-coming student designers, ensuring they'll have the chance to further their talents and skills. It has supported training and educational programs for the industry's existing workforce, enabling it to hone its competitive edge. In short, it's been helping to maintain the industry's workforce--now and for the future. 

Tickets are $195 per person to play and include lunch at 11:30 a.m., shotgun start at 1 p.m., and dinner to follow.

 

For information on how to play, click here.

 

For more information on sponsorships and raffle prizes, contact Kristin.Kopaz@mjsa.org, or call 1-508-316-2140.

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INSTORE’s Annual Big Survey is Underway

INSTORE’s Big Survey, our annual attempt to really understand what makes the American jeweler tick, is back. This year we've gone a little bit Forbes(What are you worth?), a little bit Psychology Today (What's your greatest fear?) and a lot good old nosey INSTORE (What was the best bad idea you ever had?). The survey's got the issues you asked for -- margins, best-performing brands, and even an inkblot test. (OK, you didn't ask for that but we thought it would help us understand you at a level that perhaps even you haven't dared go! ) The survey, which we’ve designed for store owners and managers, will probably take about 20 minutes to complete, so go grab a cup of coffee and a pencil to chew on. We're eager to read your thoughts, hear your opinions and sift through the results of the industry's single biggest data-gathering exercise. 

Start survey here. Thanks for participating!

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Diamond Council Launches High School Training Program

The Diamond Council of America has launched a new program for high school students, the DCA Jewelry Career Readiness Initiative. The initiative involves licensing high schools to offer classes that incorporate DCA courses, and establishing a referral service that links program graduates with DCA members.

A total of 52 students have graduated from the pilot program of the JCR Initiative, which took place in the 2013/2014 school year. With their permission, these students will be entered into the JCR Initiative Graduate Database. As a permanent referral service, this database can be used by JCR Initiative graduates to seek out employers, or it can be used by DCA members to seek out qualified job candidates.

The JCR Initiative has been the perfect opportunity to open the students’ eyes to the magnitude of opportunities within the jewelry industry. As one JCR Initiative graduate expressed after completing the course, “I never thought about getting into the jewelry industry, but now I am definitely interested.” 

The program has proven to be the perfect way to revitalize interest within young people to begin careers within the jewelry industry. By completing the initiative, they have a newfound passion for the jewelry industry and career opportunities no matter what path they choose to pursue after high school.

The DCA is confident of the JCR Initiative’s positive impact on the future of the jewelry industry. The JCR Initiative is an innovative program that eliminates the barrier to entry for young jewelry consumers. The program introduces the participants to multiple aspects of the jewelry industry; from the DCA courses in diamonds, colored gemstones, and jewelry sales; to jewelry industry guest speakers and hands-on projects and experiences. All of these contribute to more educated consumers who are now less intimidated by the jewelry store experience. They now have an interest in the product and are excited about their new knowledge of the industry.

The JCR Initiative has also proven to be a new way to get jewelers involved within their community’s high schools. Incorporating local jewelers into the program through guest speaking opportunities allows the students to develop a relationship with their local jeweler much earlier than the traditional first point of contact, shopping for engagement rings.

The JCR Initiative is a groundbreaking way to increase interest for the jewelry industry within young people. Terry W. Chandler, DCA President and CEO, stated he feels the JCR Initiative “will help to ensure the future of our industry” due to its ability to spark interest in young people, creating a fresh and new flow of sales professionals.

 

For more about DCA and its education program, visit www.diamondcouncil.org

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Worthmore and Shinola Team for Charity Event

On Saturday, June 28, Atlanta’s Worthmore Jewelers and watch and leather goods brand Shinola teamed up to host the Made in America Bash, an all-day public entertainment and shopping event held at Worthmore’s Midtown location.

All proceeds from raffle ticket purchases, as well as 10 percent of all other sales made that day, amounted to a donation of $2,879 presented to Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta.

The Made in America Bash featured the largest selection of Shinola watches outside of their flagship store in Detroit, complimentary leather embossing for all Shinola purchases, raffle prizes worth up to $550, a food truck, complimentary drinks, music, and face painting.

Worthmore Jewelers founder and owner, Harris Botnick, said Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta was the perfect beneficiary fit for the Made in America Bash. 

 

“As a small local retailer, we at Worthmore rely on the idea of shopping locally and investing in one’s own community — and even as an international brand, Shinola promotes these same values by keeping jobs in its home city of Detroit to help the local economy and to bring back quality manufacturing to the U.S. Ultimately, this is the same idea surrounding the Boys & Girls Clubs,” asserts Botnick. “They actually do some of the most important community investment work by investing in the children of metro Atlanta.”

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Honors and Awards Announced at WJA Gala

The Women's Jewelry Association bestowed Hall of Fame honors and Awards for Excellence in 10 categories at the association's 2014 Awards for Excellence gala, held on Monday, July 28 in New York City.

The annual event is the largest fundraiser of the year for the association's scholarship and grant programs. Guests were given the chance to bid on a spectacular array of donated gifts to Broadway shows, restaurants, hotels, museums, beauty salons, and spas. There were also cigar and golf packages upon which to bid, as well as jewelry, watch, gift, and clothing prizes from well-known brands.

Among the headlined honorees: Ruth Batson, executive director and CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories, received the Lifetime Achievement Award; David J. Bonaparte, president & CEO of Jewelers of America, received the Ben Kaiser Lifetime Achievement Award; and Richline Group was given the Corporate Award.

The association also named Awards for Excellence winners for 2014 in 10 categories. For the first time, the nominees for these awards didn't know if they'd won until the Gala event, adding excitement to the evening. Winners included: 

  • Design - Heather B. Moore of Heather Moore Jewelry
  • Manufacturer/Dealer/Supplier - Chana Regev of Carelle
  • Retail 15+ Doors - Kim Adams of Reeds
  • Retail <15 Doors - Cathy Calhoun of Calhoun Jewelers
  • Retail Non-Traditional - Jennifer (Peck) Arthur of Amazon
  • Sales - Amy Jackson of Fragments
  • Marketing & Communications- Fran Pennella of Benali Consulting
  • Editorial Media - Michelle Graff of National Jeweler
  • Special Services - Desiree Hanson of JCK
  • Watches - Rosanna Sarcona-Doherty of Cartier

"WJA congratulates our distinguished 2014 honorees, and celebrates the winners of our Awards for Excellence," says Andrea Hansen, president of the Women's Jewelry Association. "We also extend our heartfelt thanks to all of the attendees and sponsors who supported our signature event by their attendance and donations to the gala, silent auction, and raffle. Because of you, many more women will receive WJA grants and scholarships to enter or further their careers in the jewelry industry."  

The WJA Awards for Excellence Transformation Sponsor was Sterling Jewelers, and Richline Group was the event's Premier sponsor. Rio Tinto served as the evening's "Paparazzi" Sponsor, hosting a photo booth where attendees could pose for photos with friends and colleagues. The World Gold Council's Love Gold initiative sponsored the Gala's After Party, with music and dancing. Sponsors of Distinction included JA New York Show, Couture, Jewelers of America, and Forevermark. Sponsors of Honor included Hearts on Fire, Eurostar Diamond Traders, and Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company. 

 

The WJA Awards for Excellence gala has been a part of the industry's social calendar since 1984. In 2014, WJA once again awarded more than $30,000 in scholarships and grants to deserving recipients.

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Employee’s Move Marks Time for a Change at Kassov

When Bill Belpanno, veteran salesperson of Kassoy, expressed his intent to move to Greenville, SC, company president Joanne Slawitsky saw it as a sign to move ahead with her long-planned vision of Kassoy’s expansion, making Belpanno’s initial reluctant departure a fortuitous transition.

Belpanno has worked for the prestigious jewelry supplier for 15 years, serving the industry as one of its top salespeople. He began his career in the company’s Hicksville, Long Island, office on December 1, 1998, taking charge of its fledgling barcode and labeling division. Belpanno’s expertise in the area, which was still in its infancy, proved a tremendous boon, and soon Kassoy was a leader in the burgeoning field, a position it still holds today.

Belpanno’s sales and service skills quickly became apparent in Kassoy’s other divisions, and in no time his barcode and labeling reputation among customers and jewelry personnel grew to one of a facility in all aspects and products of the jewelry industry.

But it wasn’t just his knowledge and deft-handling of customers. Belpanno was also known for his amiable nature, good humor and deep caring. As such, he is the perfect candidate for heading up Kassoy’s first satellite location. 

“Although technically Bill is not leaving us,” explained Slawitsky, “I will still miss him terribly. “He’s been a big part of the company’s success during his time here, not only in sales, but also in leadership, service and morale. I’m quite happy, however, to be able to keep him within the Kassoy fold and at the same time move confidently toward the company’s nationwide growth. 

“For a few years, I’ve wanted to expand Kassoy’s quality personal service to other parts of the country,” Slawitsky further explained. “What better way to begin with one of the company’s best salespeople leading the way?” 

 

Belpanno’s new home will now serve as a service hub for the Southeast with Belpanno assisting his Kassoy clientele, visiting area retailers and taking part in industry trade shows as a company representative. He will also retain his role as part of the major account team, traveling with Slawitsky nationwide to Kassoy’s major accounts.

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Pure Grown Diamonds Sets Record with 3-Carat Stone

Pure Grown Diamonds has announced a new milestone in the creation of a 3.00 ct., K color, SI1 clarity, round brilliant-cut grown diamond.

“We are ecstatic to once again celebrate technology and innovation in grown diamonds” said Lisa Bissell, new President and CEO, adding, “It is very gratifying to break our own records and reach the three carat milestone”.

Previous records set by the company include a 1.29-carat E color, VVS2 emerald-cut diamond, followed by a 1.78-carat G color, SI1 clarity princess-cut stone announced in November of 2013.

Since April 2013, Pure Grown Diamonds (formerly Gemesis Inc.) has made steady advancements in the field of grown diamonds, in size, color, and clarity.

 

In the nearly 60 years since the first diamonds were grown, the technology used to create diamonds has seen significant and positive growth. Pure Grown Diamonds is proud to share this newest achievement with their customers and the gemstone industry.

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INSTORE Names Ten Coolest Jewelry Stores

Ten jewelry stores have been chosen “America’s Coolest” by INSTORE, “The Magazine for the American Jewelry Store Owner,” in its 13th annual contest. 

The America’s Coolest Stores Contest highlights the best examples of independent jewelry retailers in North America. They are judged by a panel of retail experts on the basis of business practices, history, online presence, interior decor and curb appeal. This year saw a total of 126 entries.

“Every year we feel privileged to bring our readers the best of the best in our industry,” said Ralf Kircher, INSTORE’s executive editor. “Winning stores often have amazing product lineups and are impressive to look at. But a store wouldn’t really fit our ‘cool’ criteria if it weren’t for such aspects as innovative marketing, creative retail environment and a unique work culture.”

The top five winners in two divisions split by the number of full-time employees are given trophies and featured in the August issue of INSTORE and at instoremag.com. Honorable Mention stores are featured as monthly Cool Stores in issues of INSTORE from September 2014 through June 2015. 

This year's list of winning stores includes: 

Big Cool

  • Grogan Jewelers, Florence, AL
  • G. Thrapp Jewelers, Indianapolis, IN
  • Mervis Diamond Importers, Washington, DC
  • Feldmar Watch Company, Los Angeles, CA
  • The Wedding Ring Shop, Honolulu, HI

Small Cool

  • Alchemy, Portland, OR
  • Kelly Mitchell, Dallas, TX
  • Bruno Fine Jewelers; Diamonds by the Waterfall, Mercer, PA
  • Gem Jewelry Boutique, Oak Park, IL
  • Artful Eye, Jewelry Design Center, Prescott, AZ 

Previous No. 1 Winners in the America’s Coolest Stores Contest:

  • 2013 Silverado Jewelry Gallery, Bend OR (Big); T Lee Custom Designer Jewelry, Minneapolis, MN (Small)
  • 2012 Green Lake Jewelry Works, Seattle, WA (Big); R. Grey Gallery, Boise, ID (Small)
  • 2011 Tiny Jewel Box, Washington, DC (Big); Max’s, St. Louis Park, MN (Small)
  • 2010 O.C. Tanner, Salt Lake City, UT (Big); Don Muller Gallery, Northampton, MA (Small)
  • 2009 London Jewelers, Manhasset, NY (Big); Zoltan David, Bee Cave, TX (Small)
  • 2008 Lee Read Jewelers, Meridian, ID (Big); Zachary’s Jewelers, Annapolis, MD (Small)
  • 2007 Traditional Jewelers, Newport Beach, CA
  • 2006 Underwoods Jewelers, Fayetteville, AR
  • 2005 Bigham Jewelers, Naples, FL
  • 2004 Wattson & Wattson Jewelers, Marquette, MI
  • 2003 Clodius & Co., Rockford, IL
  • 2002 Decatur City Jewelers, Decatur, GA
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GJEPC collaborates with DDC to present India Diamond Week in NYC

Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council, India and Diamond Dealers Club, New York will presents India Diamond Week at DDC, New York, from 11th to 14th August.

Around 100 diamantaires both from DDC and GJEPC are expected to participate in the meet.

A GJEPC and DDC joint initiative, India Diamond Week will provide a platform for Indian Diamantaires in USA to fortify the business relationship at one of the largest buying hub of diamonds.

This meet will see networking between major Diamond wholesalers/ manufacturers from New York and India; Diamond Dealers who are the members of DDC and trade diamonds at NY and Buyers from other states.

Vipul Shah, Chairman, GJEPC said: “The gem and jewellery industry strongly believes that USA will continue to be a strong global trading partner as US has already shown early signs of positive economic growth. GJEPC in its effort to promote the Indian gems and jewellery industry is continuously looking for opportunities to create a distinctive platform and has collaborated with Diamond Dealer Club to organise a unique and first time ever India Diamond Week (Buyer Seller Meet) in New York.”

This is the first time that such a diamond week is done by Indian diamantaires in any part of the world. It is expected that India Diamond weeks may be organized in future with other diamond exchanges in the world.

The list of leading Indian manufacturers participating at this significant event will include D. Navinchandra Exports Pvt.Ltd.; J. B. Brothers; KamaSchacther; Kiran Gems; H. K Designs; Rosy Blue; Mohit Diamonds; Interjewels; and M. Tarun.

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Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair Concludes On a High Note

The June Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair ended successfully on 22 June at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre.

The Fair, which celebrates its 27th anniversary this year, featured 1,894 exhibitors from 40 countries and regions. They showcased a wide range of quality fine jewellery and jewellery-related materials in over 70,000 square metres of exhibition space.

The Fair welcomed 26,103 visitors from 117 countries and regions over its four-day run. Both exhibitor and visitor numbers are new records for the Fair.

A number of the theme pavilions, including the Gemstone, Diamond and Pearl Pavilions, were re-located this year to respond to the demand for more exhibition space.

“The growth in exhibition space is a milestone of the June Fair. By accommodating more exhibitors, the June Fair’s position as a diverse mid-year marketplace is further strengthened. The encouraging visitor figures further confirm the popularity of the Fair in international markets,” said Celine Lau, Director of Jewellery Fairs, UBM Asia.

“The roughly 10-percent growth in the number of visitors from Asia compared to last year’s edition shows that the region continues to be the engine of growth for the luxury jewellery market,” she said. “The growth in the number of visitors from mainland China and India remained at double-digits this year. This proves these two markets are still robust and growing. We also noticed an increase in the number of buyers from markets outside Asia; Mexico, Tanzania and Colombia were among these markets. This illustrates development of jewellery markets in various regions.”

Below is a detailed account of the visitor numbers at the Fair from 19 to 22 June:

  • The total number of unique visitors over four days reached 26,103. These visitors, from 117 countries and regions, made 48,248 visits during the Fair period.
  • Hong Kong-based visitors totaled 9,332, accounting for 36 percent of the total number of visitors. The rest of the visitors, 16,771 or 64 percent of the overall total, were from overseas.
  • The largest group of visitors from outside Hong Kong came from mainland China, the number recorded being 9,362. The mainland was followed by India, with 1,037; Taiwan, with 805; the Philippines, with 624; Thailand, with 608; Japan, with 511; the United States, with 440; Korea, with 421; Indonesia, with 291 and Australia, with 274.

For more information, see exhibitions.jewellerynetasia.com.

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Eisenhower Rolex Headlines September Auction

Valued at an estimated $1 million, the gold Rolex given to President Dwight D. Eisenhower for his heroic role in the planning of the D-Day invasion is being auctioned for the first time in its history.

The wristwatch is among items from the Raleigh DeGeer Amyx collection that will be offered during a live auction event to be held later this year by Boston, MA-based auction house RR Auction.

The 18-carat timepiece, the firm's 150,000th, was presented to the five-star general in 1951 for his service in the Second World War, after the 100,000th was given to Winston Churchill.

He wore it regularly throughout his two-term presidency and in official portraits including on the cover of Life magazine in 1952.

When Eisenhower died in 1969, he bequeathed it to a faithful Army colleague,  who had followed him all the way to the White House. Sgt. John Moaney had served alongside the future president in Europe and became one of his closest allies, serving as his personal valet—and was considered one of his closest friends, following him in his later years to his farm in Gettysburg, PA.

About 30 years ago, the Raleigh DeGeer Amyx’s Collection acquired the historical piece from Sgt. Moaney's widow, Delores Moaney, who served as the personal cook for Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower from their time at the White House through the end of their lives; she and her husband, John Moaney, were so close to the family that they lived at the Eisenhowers' private residence in Gettysburg with Ike and Mamie during all post-presidential years. 

As a young man, Raleigh DeGeer Amyx developed an avid interest in history and politics led him to employment with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1957, at first serving as a messenger to FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, while also attending night school at American University. It was in this FBI position that he began to come into contact with the news-makers themselves—Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon B. Johnson, and a young senator named John F. Kennedy were among his personal encounters.  

It was these important brushes with greatness while in Washington that inspired his realization that there were hundreds—if not thousands—of firsthand witnesses to history milling about nation's capital, each with their own fragment of history.

Raleigh DeGeer Amyx, possessing a major background in American history, made it his quest to become acquainted with these folks—Mr. Amyx met the valets, housekeepers, cooks, secretaries, butlers, Secret Service agents, groundskeepers, upholsterers, and other career up-stairs assistants who had served presidents, many of whom worked at the White House for decades. Through these close personal connections, Mr. Amyx assembled the story of America, piece by piece, a project that took decades of diligence and continual contact with key career assistants.

Among other Museum quality pieces to be featured in the live auction event:

President Eisenhower's World War II brown leather flight jacket — which features four-star epaulettes on the shoulders.

President Roosevelt’s personally-owned and -worn top hat, worn for his first presidential inauguration on March 4, 1933.

President Roosevelt’s remarkable personally-owned and -worn blue-black cape custom made of the highest quality manufacture and material by Lewis & Thos. Saltz of Washington, constructed of a fine heavyweight wool with a satin lining and velvet-trimmed collar.

FDR’s personally-owned and -used walnut cane with a white bone handle and tip.

 

All items are part of the internationally renowned collection of Raleigh DeGeer Amyx, and will be included in a live auction event to be held in Boston, MA on September 2014.

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Leading Jewelers Guild Maps Digital Strategies

Leading Jewelers Guild Executive Director, James “Jimmy” West, left, and Leading Jewelers Guild President, Michael Simmons (Simmons & Clark Jewelers, Detroit, MI), right, present the 2013 Leader of the Year Award. Chase Morgan (center) accepted on behalf of his father, Nate Morgan (Morgan Jewelers, Salt Lake City, UT) who was traveling abroad.

Members of Leading Jewelers Guild, a member-owned jewelry organization of independent retailers, assembled at the newly reconfigured Island Hotel in Newport Beach, California for their 56th annual July Meeting and Show from July 12 to 16.

“A huge shift has taken place in advertising and how it reaches the customer,” said Leading Jewelers Guild President Michael Simmons (Simmons & Clark Jewelers, Detroit, MI). “Connecting with millennials involves a whole new set of skills and media. Our goal is to bring our members up to speed so they can compete effectively and profitably in an ever-changing marketplace.”

“We realized we had a problem,” said Jenny Caro (Jewelry by Design, Woodbridge, VA), “so we did a nationwide search for the best coaches in social media, website metrics, search engine optimization and internet marketing.” 

The hands-on two-day seminar in digital strategy involved social media in the morning and website-related issues in the afternoon. Nearly all Leading Jewelers Guild members brought representatives to the seminar, which ran parallel to the traditional CEO-oriented program.

“We were very careful to select presenters that would be relevant on a beginning-to-advanced level,” said Caro. Both trainer/presenters were available for individual consultations during the two-day vendor show and gave a CEO wrap-up on the final day. 

The highlight of the CEO sessions was the culmination of the first group-wide financial benchmarking study. “Leading Jewelers Guild members are learning from each other all the time,” said Chris Coleman (Nelson Coleman Jewelers, Towson MD), “but we wanted to take that spirit to another level by comparing financial numbers for different type, size, and volume stores while still maintaining complete confidentiality.”

A CPA firm expert in industry benchmarking was selected to compile members’ information and prepare the study. Members’ received a confidential analysis of their own numbers in the areas of productivity, profit, cash flow, and financial strength as well as common-sized income statements, balance sheets, and detailed sales mix and margin analysis, plus a similar composite report on the entire group. The presenter highlighted how to use the information to improve company bottom lines. “We’re working towards making this an ongoing benefit of membership,” said Coleman.

Other presentations included a re-launch of the group’s own brand: Love Story Diamonds, several company introductions, and sharing of promotion and special events ideas. “The more we share our strengths, the better we can help one another develop as individual businesses,” said Leading Jewelers Guild Chairman, Joshua Halpern (Albert’s Jewelers, Shererville, IN), “and our group becomes stronger in the process!”

Embedded in the five day meeting was a two‐day vendor show where 58 select vendors were invited to exhibit their lines and services.

These included key Leading Jewelers Guild suppliers for the group’s upcoming fall catalog program, as well as a number of new vendors: AV Diamonds, Box Brokers, CJ Jewels, Endless Jewelry, Exclusif/Luxury Displays, Fana Jewelry, Gabriel & Co., House of Baguettes, Idor Diamonds, Imagine Designs, Paramount Gems, Royal Jewelry, Seiko, Select Jewelry and Varsha Diamonds. “With great fanfare we’re reintroducing our Preferred Vendor designation,” said Leading Jewelers Guild Executive Director James “Jimmy” West, “this clearly identifies our top-tier vendors, highlights their discount and stock balancing offers and removes exclusions and fine print.”

 

Members, vendors, staff and their families relaxed together at the annual Member/Vendor Party, held at Island Hotel’s Cabana Terrace. Included were Leading Jewelers Guild’s annual awards presentation. Isaac Gad of True Romance (NYC) received the 2013 Vendor of the Year award for outstanding product selection and customer service. Nate Morgan (Morgan’s Jewelers, Salt Lake City, UT) received the 2013 Leader of the Year, for outstanding leadership in several terms as President, Chairman of the Board and a member of the Operations Committee.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for July 24

Even fewer changes were sees this week in round diamond prices, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report. Most changes were seen in the very smallest sizes and were mostly negative.

 

Moving on to fancy shape diamonds, and the majority of movement was seen in mid-size diamonds, with most changes being negative.

 

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

 

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

 

Rounds

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D-I / SI2 declining by 3-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts three changes, two up, one down

  • 0.30-0.39 cts unchanged

  • 0.40-0.44 cts G / IF -3.2% to $3,050 p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts no changes

  • 0.50-0.69 cts two changes, one up and down

  • 0.70-0.79 cts M / VVS2 -2.4% to $2,050 p/c

  • 0.80-0.89 cts unchanged

  • 0.90-0.99 cts H / IF -2.6% to $7,500 p/c

  • 1.00-1.24 cts N / SI2 +4.6% to $2,300 p/c

  • 1.25-1.49 cts two changes, one riser and one decliner

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts D / SI1 +3.1% to $26,400 p/c

  • 4 cts E-F / SI1 declines of 3%

  • 5 cts F / VVS2 -3.0% to $67,600 p/c

 



 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D-E / VS2 rising by 3-4%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / SI2 rising by 4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E-F / VVS1 declining by 2%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts mostly declining

  • 0.45-0.49 cts many declines in better colors, lower clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts D / I1-I2 declining by 2-3%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts declines in medium colors and clarities

  • 0.80-0.89 cts J / SI1-I1 rising by 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just one change, downwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many decliners in better colors and clarities

  • 1.50-1.99 cts H / IF -3.3% to $8,800 p/c

  • 2 cts two risers and two decliners

  • 3 cts D / SI2-I1 rising by 2-3%

  • 4 cts D / VS1-SI1 declining by 2-3%

  • 5 cts two changes, one up and one down

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Govind Dholakia Honored for Lifetime of Achievements

Govind Dholakia, second from left, accepts congratulations for his Lifetime Achievement award.

Diamond merchant Govind Dholakia has won the 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award from Retail Jeweller India.

Dholakia started his career in 1964, at age 13, working as a diamond cutter. Seven years later he founded Shree Ramkrishna Exports, now one of the largest privately owned diamond companies in the Industry.

In addition to his commitment to the diamond industry, Dholakia is a philanthropist who is keen to contribute to the region where he has spent most of his career.

On the Occasion of his 50-year celebration, Dholakia announced his gift to Surat City -- a world-class diamond education center called the S.R.K. Knowledge Foundation.

Speaking on the occasion, Shreyans Dholakia, Director, SRK Export, said, "I have always seen my father as an extraordinary range of talent and experience with a united commitment to drive the company to unprecedented levels of accomplishment. We could not be in better hands. He is a visionary and pioneer as well as indigenous personality taking the lead and developing home grown solutions to all our problems”.

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GJEPC Hosts “Jewellers for Hope” Dinner

India’s Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council, in association with Gemological Science International, recently organised a “Jewellers for Hope” charity dinner in Mumbai. Leading Bollywood celebrities Kajol, Boman Irani, Siddharth Roy Kapur attended the evening, hosted by Raageshwari Sachdeva-Badola. The “Jewellers for Hope” annual charity dinner is the first edition of GJEPC's commitment towards the betterment of the society. Through this initiative, GJEPC would like to spread the message that for businesses to be successful, society around it cannot fail. An industry built on trust, an industry involved in numerous social activities, now comes together to create awareness about GJEPC’s philanthropic initiatives in India. More than 30 leading manufacturers and 260 leading Indian retailers were present at the gala dinner. Some of the retailers present at the charity dinner were TBZ, Titan, PC Chandra, Reliance, Joyalukkas, Orra, PN Gadgill, Senco, GRT, PGI, ForeverMark, GIA, Anmol, Hazoorilal and Khurana. Vipul Shah, Chairman, GJEPC, said, “We are delighted to host this prestigious charity dinner. In doing, so we will, hopefully, raise awareness, with our first of many charity events and we hope to raise as much for worthwhile causes and also create awareness about the gems and jewellery industry's philanthropic initiatives. This dinner provides an opportunity for all of us to talk business and also work together for the enhancement of the society.” Colin Shah, Convener of the Jewellery Panel, GJEPC, said, “GJEPC have put together an outstanding evening. We are very grateful that the funds raised were donated to the foundation to enable us to continue the good work. At GJEPC, we know that most of our trade members are extremely generous and have been associated with various CSR activities at an individual and at a company level. Although the reasons and recipients of their generosity may vary we applaud the ‘act of giving’. Our association with Make-A-Wish is a step in that direction, the objective is to brighten a few moments in the life of incurably ill children in India.” Mr. Mark Gershburg, CEO, GSI. said, “We have a long tradition of social responsibility and it is reflected by its long-term commitment with “Jewelers For Children”. We believe that we require little time and effort to make a big difference. There is a need for corporations, individual donors and all like-minded people to come forth with generous contributions for such noble causes and I am grateful and glad to be a part of this.” Add a comment

Steven Singer Shows “Celebrity-Worthy” Diamond

Steven Singer Jewelers will display a celebrity-worthy 10-carat radiant-cut diamond during a very special VIP event on Sunday July 27th from 10am – 5pm. Valued at over $300,000, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the brilliance and sparkle of a rare diamond up close and personal. A diamond of this caliber is sophisticated enough to have graced the finger of Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, or Elizabeth Taylor. This high quality radiant cut diamond will be on display for one day only during Steven Singer Jewelers VIP event. Visitors can see the diamond on display at the showroom located at the Other Corner of 8th and Walnut in Center City Philadelphia. Founded in 1980, Steven Singer Jewelers is located in the heart of Philadelphia’s Jewelers Row. Add a comment

JA Lists New Dates for Winter Show

JA New York will host its annual winter jewelry show from January 18 to 20, several weeks earlier than previous winter shows in an effort to meet industry demands for a stand-alone show that won’t overlap with any other trade event. Show organizers also felt that the new date would benefit retailers following the Christmas season. “As always, we remain committed to doing what’s best for the industry as a whole and, more specifically, for our customers,” said Drew Lawsky, the group show director for JA New York. “With other trade events competing with our original March dates, we adjusted our dates to accommodate our customers’ schedules and quell any concerns they may have about making a difficult decision regarding what show(s) to participate in or trying to be in two places at once.” Additionally, by maintaining a three day show, the JA New York Winter Show will remain convenient for both exhibitors and retailers who are allowed limited time away from their stores and offices, organizers contended. Add a comment

ArtCarved Unveils Autumn Campaign

ArtCarved has announced its Fall 2014 “Live for the Moments” multi-channel campaign that celebrates authenticity and features real couples, true emotions and special moments that the millennial consumer can relate to. The integrated campaign kicks off this week with an interactive social media campaign featuring a series of video episodes that capture the love and life moments of real couples. The social-media campaign is a series of video episodes that share the big and small moments of the brand’s two real couples. The videos will be released and promoted on the ArtCarved Facebook page on Monday and Wednesday afternoons every other week through the end of the year. To further engage the consumer, the brand will launch a two-month “Put a Ring On It” promotion from September 1st through October 31st, which will offer a drawing for an engagement ring or a pair of wedding bands valued at $5,000. For more information, visit www.artcarvedbridal.com. Add a comment

Paco Underhill to Speak at The SMART Jewelry Show

Best-selling author and retail environment expert Paco Underhill will deliver the keynote address at The SMART Jewelry Show on Saturday, April 18, at 8:30 a.m. Drawing on his 20 years of experience studying the buying habits of shoppers around the world, Underhill will give retail jewelers ideas for creating a physical environment and store personality that fits the needs of their market’s demographics. "Paco has been a huge source of inspiration for INSTORE fans for years," said Cindy Chandler, associate show director. "We're excited to give our audience the chance to learn some valuable ideas directly from the man himself. For jewelers interested in learning new ways to increase their bottom line, this is one event that can't be missed." Underhill's first book, “Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping,” was an internationally recognized bestseller. His most recent book, “what Women Want,” addresses the power of the female shopper, and his editorials have appeared in The New York Times, Money Magazine and The Wall Street Journal. As the founding president of Envirosell, a behavioral research and consultancy firm, Underhill helps optimize commercial environments for companies like Microsoft, McDonald’s, adidas and Estee Lauder. The SMART Jewelry Show, now in its seventh year, gives retail jewelers the opportunity to shop 500 booths of products in every key category while also learning techniques to improve their marketing, sales, inventory management and more. The 2015 show takes place April 18-20, with a full day of education sessions on Friday, April 17. Add a comment

Zenith Hosts LA Party with Russell Westbrook


Aldo Magada- CEO of Zenith Watches and Russell Westbrook

Zenith Timepieces CEO Aldo Magada recently premiered the latest Zenith timepieces and celebrated the opening of the new Zenith shop-in-shop at the Westime Boutique in West Hollywood.

NBA All-Star and Zenith Brand Ambassador Russell Westbrook was there for the debut of the Russell Westbrook Limited Edition Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar. The watch is available exclusively at Westime.


Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar Tribute to Russell Westbrook, $11,900

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SmartWork Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards

SmartWork Media won seven Tabbie Awards in the 2014 competition, bringing its 11-year total of editorial and design awards to 66.

In addition to recognition for the editorial and design work in individual articles, SmartWork Media also claimed two top-25 spots for the best single issue, including wins for the May 2013 edition of INDESIGN magazine and the Sep./Oct. edition of INVISION, a magazine for eyecare professionals that launched last year.

"Our first goal is always to provide American businesses with the most useful, most interesting publications possible," says SmartWork Media's group editorial director David Squires. "But recognition for our terrific staff is always welcome. I think this year's TABPI success is a pretty good sign that we're doing the right things to get our readers a publication they will continue to value."

SmartWork Media's magazines have also been recognized by the Folio Awards, min's Editorial & Design Awards, Jewelry Information Center, and the Jesse H. Neal Awards.

SmartWork Media won the following 2014 Tabbie Awards:

  • Best Single Issue - Top 25 (16th): INVISION, Sep/Oct 2013
  • Best Single Issue - Top 25 (22nd): INDESIGN, May 2013
  • Feature Article - Top 25 (8th): INSTORE, February 2013, "Pay Day" by Eileen McClelland
  • Focus/Profile - Honorable Mention: INSTORE, April 2013, "Fun on the Plains" by Eileen McClelland
  • How-To Article - Honorable Mention: INSTORE, July 2013, "100 Things a Jewelry Salesperson Should Never Do" by Josh Wimmer
  • Feature Design - Bronze: INSTORE, July 2013, "100 Things a Jewelry Salesperson Should Never Do" by Karla Durangparang & Victor Cantal
  • Opening Page or Spread - Silver: INSTORE, November 2013, "Many Thanks" by Victor Cantal

The 2014 Tabbie Awards featured more than 450 entries, with nominations coming from the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and South Africa.

Presented by Trade, Association and Business Publications International (TABPI), this editorial and design competition was open to English-language B2B publications worldwide, published at least quarterly.

Complete results, along with selected comments from the judges and samples of the winning entries, are available at www.tabpi.org.

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Indian Institute Graduates Show Designs

The opening show on Day Three at the India International Jewellery Week 2014 presented by Nazraana in association with P C Jeweller, featured talented graduates from the Indian Institute of Gems and Jewellery, Jaipur, presented by Derewala World Jewellery, Jaipur.

The “Astitva” collection, presented by the 21 designers who showed one ornament each from the Indian Institute of Gems and Jewellery, Jaipur, was in two segments.

The first was a tribute to architecture from the various regions of the country.

Side-ribbed cuff with gold chains, the modern question mark design for earrings, South Indian motifs for pendants and the pink silk tassel edged in gold caps hanging on a thread were interpretations of the theme.

A peacock-inspired pendant had a contemporary touch, and the 3D flower creation, as well as the coral and gold necklace, revealed how creatively the students had given vent to their ideas.

The second sequence was an ode to the beauty of City Palace Jaipur and its architecture.

Minarets appeared on armlets, and danglers had intricate shields. Kadas had a raised dome structure, while necklaces had palace carvings. Pearl trellis earrings, lacy kada, chandbalis with streamers of pearls and a kandeel pendant on a string of beads all recreated the grandeur of the palace.

The Indian and fusion outfits seen during the show were designed by Muni and Girija.

 

Walking the ramp after the show were Mr Pramod Derewala, Chairman, IIGJ Jaipur; Mr Rajiv Jain, Vice Chairman, IIGJ Jaipur; Mr Vijay Choradia, Secretary, IIGJ Jaipur, Mr Anish Kappil, Asst Prof, IIGJ Jaipur; and the designers of the lovely garments Muni and Girija.

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Kama Schachter Shows Diamond Collection at Mumbai Show

Kama Schachter, one of Asia’s leading diamond exporters and jewelry manufacturers, unveiled a diamond jewelry collection at the 31st edition of the India International Jewelry Show in Mumbai.

This new selection of exceptional fine jewelry is meticulously designed by talented designers at Kama and is adorned with vibrant colored gemstones and natural white diamonds. Each jewel from this collection unfolds a story and the collection is trendy, classy and versatile.

The modern rendition of Haath Phool, or hand flower, set in diamonds, is assembled to suit modern buyers. Dramatic dangler earrings feature rubies and emeralds.

This new collection by Kama Jewellery offers a variety of spectacular designs in variety of settings, metal colors and diamond sizes.  

 

Each piece in this collection showcases white and yellow gold. Modern, traditional and contemporary designs are encrusted with GSI-certified brilliant diamonds and sparkling colored stones and are backed by lifetime guarantee. 

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Industry’s Largest Recruiting Event Coming to NYC This Month

The jewelry industry’s largest recruiting event – with opportunities ranging from design and manufacturing to marketing and sales – will take place On Monday, July 28, at the Javits Center in New York. 

Nearly 50 world-renowned gem and jewelry companies, including David Yurman, Helzberg Diamonds, New York Loan Company, Paolo Costagli Inc. and Sterling Jewelers Inc., will be looking to fill hundreds of professional positions at every career stage during the GIA New York Jewelry Career Fair. 

GIA’s New York Jewelry Career Fair will take place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 28 at the Javits Center. 

Recruiters will be available from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. This leading industry event is free and open to the public; anyone interested in attending is encouraged to RSVP at www.eventbrite.com.

JA New York is a major sponsor of the event.

“Career Fair is an excellent opportunity not only to connect with recruiters looking to fill hundreds of positions, but to network with some of the most successful and entrepreneurial personalities in the gem and jewelry industry,” said Kathryn Kimmel, GIA vice president and chief marketing officer, and founder of the GIA Jewelry Career Fair.

“You may even discover a career path you hadn’t thought of previously. This is a once-a-year opportunity in New York and I encourage everyone with a passion for jewelry to stop by and see what it’s about.”

In addition to meeting with recruiters and receiving one-on-one career coaching, attendees will hear from prominent industry figures during the opening panel discussion “Job Success in Today’s Market,” which begins at 8:30 a.m. 

Mercedes Abramo, president and CEO of Cartier North America; Ashley Chan of Leslie Hindman Auctioneers; Andrea Hansen, partner of Luxe Intelligence and president of the Women’s Jewelry Association; Douglas K. Hucker, CEO of AGTA; and Steven Lagos, founder and chief creative director of LAGOS Jewelry, will tell the stories of their unique journeys to success and offer practical advice for aspiring gem and jewelry professionals.

For a full list of companies participating, visit GIA’s website at www.gia.edu/career-fair.     

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for July 17

Round diamond prices again saw relatively few changes this week, with a tendency to the negative, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

There was widespread activity in fancy shapes, in a range of sizes, with most changes being negative.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts two changes, both upwards

  • 0.23-0.29 cts E-G / SI2 rising by 3-4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts one change, upwards

  • 0.40-0.44 cts I-J / I1 rising by more than 4%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts E-F / IF rising by 3%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts M-N / IF-VVS1 declines of 2%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts one change, a decliner

  • 0.90-0.99 cts I / IF -3.0% to $6,400 p/c

  • 1.00-1.24 cts M-N / SI3 declining by 3-5%

  • 1.25-1.49 cts mostly declining

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts K-L / IF declining by 1-2%

  • 4 cts many declines

  • 5 cts unchanged



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts many declines in higher colors and clarities

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / SI2 +4.6% to $1,150 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts D-E / SI1-SI2 rises of 2-3%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts just one change, upwards

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.70-0.79 cts D / SI3-I2 rising by 3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts J / SI1-SI2 rising by 2%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just one change, downwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many decreases in top colors and clarities

  • 1.50-1.99 cts mostly declining

  • 2 cts just three changes, two up and one down

  • 3 cts a range of declines

  • 4 cts F / VS1-SI1 declines of 1-3%

  • 5 cts D-E / IF declines of 3%

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Surya Golds Teams with Swarovski for India Show

Mr. Rajendra Jain, Ameesha Patel, Ramesh and Sudesh Shoor for Surya Gold

Surya Golds presented a unique collection of jewelry in association with Swarovski at the India International Jewellery Week 2014, presented by Nazraana in association with PCJ.

Flawless designs and finish have been the hallmark of Surya Golds, with each piece carrying the high quality tag for fastidious buyers. Displaying a rare exciting blend of Indo-western styling for the New Age woman, Surya Golds has shown a wide range of unique jewelry for the past two decades.

Presenting an unconventional mélange of styles with hints of contemporary touches, the jewelry in 18K and 22K white and yellow gold dazzled with the beauty of Swarovski Zirconia.

Surya Golds’ latest presentation was the very stylish, patterned jewelryy collection called “Nature Inception”. Reflecting the modern lifestyle around the world, the range offered luxurious traditional jewelryy in its contemporary new found avatar. 

The show opened with pretty Kavita Verma, who performed in the film “Policegiri” wearing a dazzling set to create a feel of the lovely jewelry that followed. 

The stunning range of necklaces, rings, earrings and pendants crafted with impeccable precision in gold and the best Swarovski Zirconia were a breath-taking vision on the ramp. 

Square pendants edged with pearl drops, woven patterns in diamonds and rubies for necklaces, angular pendants on a diamond bed created an impact on the ramp. Florets were clasped together for a tantalising neckpiece edged with pearls; while sparkling bracelets and statement rings were eye-catchers. A choker with pear shaped diamond pendant with rubies was the highlight of the show.

Bollywood star Ameesha Patel, the lovely show stopper. looked gorgeous modelling a flat wide scalloped collar studded with rubies, emeralds and edged with pearls, lacy cuff and imposing earrings.

The clothes for the collection were a beautiful line-up of sorbet-coloured garments designed by Mitali Jagtap.

Taking a bow on the stage at the end of a stunning show were Ramesh Shoor and Sudesh Shoor, Directors Surya Golds, along with Rajendra Jain, Managing Director, Swarovski.

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India Jewelry Week Opens with Bridal Show

Featuring glittering collections from Gili, Asmi, Parineeta, Nakshatra and Nizam, “The Bridal Collection” was the sensational opening show at the fifth edition of the India International Jewellery Week 2014 presented by Nazraana in association with PCJ.

Paying tribute to the Indian woman and cause of the girl child, the show featured a dazzling array of glittering jewelry from five brands. To match the theme of the show Queenie Singh, the well-known j designer of “Jewels by Queenie”, introduced daughter Tiara Dhody , who read a passage from her soon to be released book “Unmask”.

A lively performance form very energetic dancers from Seva Sadan set the mood.  

Adding to the show was the performance by the child-duo “Bad Salsa” of “India’s Got Talent Fame.”

The “Gili Collection” aimed at the young fashion-conscious lady revealed the beauty of the gorgeous diamonds and precious stones crafted into amazing neckpieces, earrings and sparkling bracelets 

The “Asmi Collection” is for the super-efficient working women who desire to reach the pinnacle of success. Swirls of necklaces, tiered leaf earrings and pretty pendants at the end of necklaces dazzled under the ramp lights.

Wearing jewelry from the “Gili and Asmi Collections” Ankita Shorey, Miss India International 2011, looked gorgeous in a stunning Maang Tikka and diamond danglers as she gracefully walked down the ramp.

For the blushing bride during the most important day of her life, the “Parineeta Collection” of wedding jewellery glistened with jadau, gold, diamonds and precious stones. Rubies and diamonds played on a gold base for the necklaces, a trio of large coloured stones linked for a neckpiece was amazing; while pear shaped prongs with coloured diamonds for collars were teamed with paisley earrings. 

The “Nakshatra Collection” had a mélange of beautiful gems with precious metal. Cascading diamonds with sapphires twinkled under the arc lights on the catwalk; while emeralds nestled in a bed of diamonds for rich neckpieces. Rows of diamonds twinkled for earrings and lacy designs enhanced the sparkling collars.

Looking lovely in a gorgeous Nakshatra set, Konkana Bakshi, former Miss India, displayed a luxurious emerald tipped diamond prong necklace with matching earrings. 

Finally it was the magnificent “Nizam Collection” in all its royal grandeur that added to the matriarchal beauty of a woman. The glorious antique jewelry recreated the glory of a golden era long gone by as Raani Haars with polkis set in gold, chokers with ruby centres and elaborate textured gold bridal necklaces ended in pear shaped pendants. 

Stopping the show was beautiful Bollywood star Neha Dhupia, wearing a splendid diamond and ruby set, Maang Tikka and shoulder dusters designed by Queenie Singh for the “Parineeta Collection”.

The creations worn by the models to complement the jewelry were provided by top designerd Ashima and Leena. The show was conceptualised and visualised by Queenie Singh, along with Raell Padamsee’s ACE production and the Create Foundation in memory of late Pearl Padamsee.

 

Walking down the ramp to thunderous applause at the end of the fabulous show were Mehul Choksi (Chairman, Gitanjali Group), Queenie Singh, Tiara Dhody, Ankita Shorey, Konkana Bakshi, Neha Dhupia, Leena Singh and Raell Padamsee.

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JA and NRF Will Co-Host Discussion of Gold-Sourcing

Jewelers of America and National Retail Federation will co-host a discussion of the importance and value of responsible sourcing of gold from areas such as the Great Lakes region of Central Africa.

The roundtable discussion will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on  Sunday, July 27,  during the JA New York Show at the Javits Convention Center, Room ID104. Online event registration is now available; please register early as space is limited. A light breakfast will be served. 

RESOLVE Senior Mediator Jennifer Peyser will be facilitating the discussion. Signet Jewelers Ltd. is sponsoring the event. The Jewelers Vigilance Committee and MJSA, the Association for Jewelry Makers and Designers also support the event. 

"Gold and other minerals have been known to fuel unspeakable violence in Congo and the surrounding region, when mined and traded illegally by armed groups who use them to finance their activities." says Holly Dranginis, Policy Associate at the Enough Project, a Washington-based nonprofit. "Jewelry companies have a major role to play in curbing that violence and improving the conditions for peace by developing responsible sourcing practices."

“The success of the US jewelry industry depends on consumer confidence in the products our members sell,” said JA President & CEO David J. Bonaparte.

“Jewelers of America believes one way for the jewelry industry to inspire consumer confidence is through the responsible sourcing of gold.”

“Responsible sourcing is an important process for retailers to satisfy their customers’ expectations,” said Jon Gold, NRF Supply Chain and Customs Policy Vice President. “NRF believes this discussion is a great way to further educate retailers on engagement in responsible sourcing.”

Guest speaker Holly Dranginis of the EWnough Project will talk about opportunities to further build up responsible sourcing, tools for jewelers and suppliers, and how partnerships can make a positive impact on this important issue. 

The meeting aims to provide an opportunity for policymakers, human rights advocates, and the jewelry industry to share progress and learn lessons about supply chains, supplier engagement, and in-region clean sourcing initiatives from the first year of conflict minerals reporting.

For more information on the meeting contact: 

Susan Posnock, Jewelers of America
sposnock@jewelers.org

Jon Gold, National Retail Federation
GoldJ@NRF.com

Holly Dranginis, Enough Project
hdranginis@enoughproject.org

David Bouffard, Signet Jewelers Ltd.
dbouffard@jewels.com.

 

 

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Contemporary Jewelry Design Group Names Officers

The Executive Board of the Contemporary Jewelry Design Group has selected Malak Atut of ZAIKEN Jewelry as incoming president and Julie Romanenko of Just Jules as the new vice president for the 2014-2016 term.

Outgoing president Vicente Agor of Vicente Agor Fine Jewelry has been widely praised for his dedication to the association; "during his term, the CJDG experienced dramatic growth in visibility and in membership," said Ms. Atut. Agor will continue to serve as the CJDG Couture committee chair. 

Atut looks forward to continuing the growth and visibility of the organization, she says, as well as strengthening the relationships with retailer members.  "The retailers are key to the success of all of our members, and I hope to enhance their experience with the CJDG by introducing new benefits, and enhanced interaction with our designers," said Atut.

Romanenko brings to the position twenty years of experience running her eponymous jewelry company and is thrilled to be able to use her two decades of experience and contacts for the benefit of all members.

Atut adds her marketing and management mastery from her previous career and the combination gives a unique point-of-view to the group. "Julie and Malak offer a perfect complement of experience and knowledge to our group," said past president Agor, "and I'm thrilled to see where they will take the CJDG in the next two years."

Rebecca Overmann, of Rebecca Overmann Jewelry, and Elizabeth & Jack Gualtieri of Zaffiro Jewelry remain in their previous Executive Board positions of secretary and treasurer, respectively. Monica Stephensonalso continues in her role as Website Editor.

 

For more information about the Contemporary Jewelry Design Group see www.cjdgjewelers.org.

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Manfra, Tordella & Brookes Taps Michael Barlerin Associates

Manfra, Tordella & Brookes has appointed Michael Barlerin Associates to provide sales and marketing services for its line of bullion-based jewelry and promotional products.

The diverse product line is produced by the Swiss-based refinery and fabricator, PAMP. The line includes gold and silver ingot pendants, packaged precious metal ingots able to be customized, and a silver calendar ideally suited for corporate gift giving.

Commenting on the appointment, Scott Spitzer, COO of MTB said: “We are very pleased to be working with Michael and the MBA team. His extensive experience in jewelry marketing and the precious metals industry makes this an ideal partnership.”

Barlerin added, “The PAMP products are unique. Whether for the corporate gifts sector or consumers wanting bullion based jewelry and gift items, matching the product, distribution channel, and target customer will be an exceptional opportunity.”

Manfra, Tordella & Brookes was founded in 1957 and is a full-service precious metals product distributor. The Company is the sister company for PAMP and is headquartered in the International Gem Tower in New York City. 

PAMP is the world’s leading bullion brand. The company holds a dominant position in many of the world’s major precious metals markets and utilizes a state-of-the-art precious metals refinery and fabrication facility in Switzerland. PAMP distinguishes itself from all other leading refiners by maintaining its identity as, above all, the industry’s leading innovator. As the first precious metals fabricator to employ decorative designs on the reverse side of its bars, PAMP introduced the world to the art of precious metal transformation.  

 

Michael Barlerin Associates, LLC was formed in 2005 to provide marketing and management services to the jewelry industry. Prior to forming MBA, Barlerin had been CEO, Americas for World Gold Council, a position he held for 15 years. He previously was Senior Vice President, Marketing at Zale Corporation. He currently serves as Director of The Silver Institute’s Silver Promotion Service which MBA formed in 2008.

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Jewelers Mutual Again Named Top Performer

Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company has been named to the 2014 list of Ward's 50 top performing insurance companies for the fourth consecutive year.

The award recognizes outstanding financial results in the areas of safety, consistency and performance over a five-year period from 2009-2013.

"This recognition by the Ward Group means so much to our company, and we look forward to sharing the news with our policyholder members," said Darwin Copeman, president and CEO of Jewelers Mutual.

"Achieving this honor four years in a row is no easy task, and we are proud of our ongoing work to further fortify a strong, financially secure mutual company ready to protect the jewelry businesses and jewelry owners we serve."

Ward Group is an Aon Hewitt company and the leading provider of operational and compensation benchmarking and best practices services for insurance companies.  

The firm analyzes the financial performance of over 3,000 property-casualty insurance companies and identifies the top performers based on objective data and subjective quality measures of the previous five years (2009-2013). Each Ward's 50 company has passed a rigorous set of safety and consistency screens and achieved superior performance based on the five years analyzed. This is the 24th consecutive year Ward Group has conducted the analysis.

The Ward's 50 property-casualty group of insurance companies produced a 10.6 percent statutory return on average equity from 2009 to 2013 compared to 6.9 percent for the property-casualty industry overall. 

"Most insurers saw improvements in both financial returns and overall premium levels," explained Jeff Rieder, partner and head of Ward Group.

"In clear signs of continued optimism, our research shows considerable investments are being made in technology, product enhancements and identifying ways to deliver a better customer experience. Companies will be challenged to manage the costs of these initiatives, but have strong financial positions to support the investments. Total policyholder surplus continues to grow and overall financial stability for the industry remains very strong. In selecting the Ward's 50, we identified companies that pass financial stability requirements and measure their ability to grow while maintaining strong capital positions and underwriting results."

Insurance companies are evaluated and must pass minimum thresholds to be considered for the Ward's 50 list. Each company must also pass primary safety and consistency tests, including: 

  • Surplus and premiums of at least $50 million for each of the five years analyzed 
  • Net income in at least four of the last five years (property-casualty)
  • Compound annual growth in premiums between -10% and +40%

Companies that pass the safety and consistency tests are measured and scored on the following elements:

  • Five-year average return on average equity 
  • Five-year average return on average Assets 
  • Five-year average return on total revenue 
  • Five-year growth in revenue 
  • Five-year improvement in surplus to written premium (property-casualty)
  • Five-year average combined ratio (property-casualty)

An important objective of the Ward's 50 is to compare their performance as a group with the rest of the industry. In addition to achieving greater levels of income returns, the Ward's 50 benchmarks also outperformed in other key performance benchmarks. The Ward's 50 property-casualty group compared 7.6 points lower for the five year combined ratio (94.7 percent compared to 102.3 percent) and grew policyholder surplus by 28.0 percent compared to 20.0 percent for the industry since 2009.  

 

 

In addition to achieving higher financial returns, the Ward's 50 benchmark continues to achieve lower expense ratios. In 2013, expenses relative to revenue were 9.2 percent lower for the Ward's 50 property-casualty group of companies.

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Jewelers unBLOCKed Hires Jeff Mills to Expand Its Network

Jewelers unBLOCKedhas named Jeff Mills as relationship executive, responsible for expanding the company network in the luxury jewelry marketplace.

In addition, he will focus the firm’s association with premier insurance brokers serving the jewelers block and personal collector space.

 

Mills joins Jewelers unBLOCKed with 20 years experience in management, underwriting and claims roles. Mills was vice president - commercial pperations for Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, and before that held a series of management positions including vice president - claims.

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Platinum Guild Partners with Emmy Winner

Platinum Guild International USA will partner with two-time Emmy-winning costume designer Lyn Paolo.  

The new Platinum Brand Ambassador will serve to increase awareness of the value, benefits and fashion appeal of the world's most precious metal and spread the message throughout her various networks and events. 

Paolo is currently working on the hit ABC series “Scandal” starring Kerry Washington as the impeccably dressed Olivia Pope.  

"I am so excited to be teaming up with the Platinum Guild,” says Paolo. “I love all things platinum: from my own personal jewelry to the pieces I choose for my private clientele, films and television shows that I design. Platinum, for me, is about glamour, style and enduring quality. You really cannot beat those three qualities in one amazing product.”

“Through her years of design and most recently through her work on Scandal, a show that influences the purchases of thousands of millennial consumers, Ms. Paolo has been a defining figure in fashion,” says PGI USA President Huw Daniel. “Her personal affinity for platinum jewelry, natural eye for timeless style and connection to those savvy women who choose platinum for their jewelry purchases all deem Lyn a natural messenger for platinum.”

 

Paolo’s additional credits include “ER,” “The West Wing,” “LA Confidential” and “Homefront,” for which she won two Emmy awards. She is also currently costume designing the John Wells directed film “Adam Jones” starring Bradley Cooper, Emma Thompson and Sienna Miller.

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GIA Conducts Class in Namibia

Pictured above left to right are Kennedy Hamutenya, diamond commissioner of Namibia; Christian Merkling, director of Africa for Lazare Kaplan International; Vallerie Aron, mayor of Okahandja, Namibia; Isak Katali, minister of Mines and Energy of Namibia; Yoav Lavee, general manager of NamGem Diamond Manufacturing Company; and Crystall Nel, GIA business development manager.

Expanding on the Gemological Institute of America’s beneficiation and education efforts in Africa, the Institute held its first-ever class in Namibia, the Rough Diamond Evaluation course, from June 30 through July 4.

The class, offered in the Afrikaans language and taught by instructor Koos Rademeyer, was very successful, with all students passing the course.

“Bringing practical education about diamonds closer to producing regions helps those communities develop more economic value,” said Crystall Nel, GIA business development manager. “The course – our first of its kind in Namibia – is part of our effort to bring more of the value of the global gem and jewelry industry to producing communities.”

Since 2008, GIA has expanded its activities and presence in sub-Saharan Africa, opening two full-time laboratories and offering classes in Gaborone, Botswana and Johannesburg, South Africa; establishing partnerships with government agencies and universities throughout the continent; and maintaining a network of active alumni. Today, there are more than 900 alumni and two GIA Alumni Chapters in Africa.

The classroom in Okahandja, Namibia, was held at the NamGem diamond cutting and polishing factory, and several notable industry members attended the Rough Diamond Evaluation graduation.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for July 10

Again this week, a low number of changes in round diamond prices, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

In fancy shapes, most changes were seen in mid-size diamonds, with the balance of activity pointing to a tendency to declines.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts K / VVS1-VVS2 declining by 4-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts H-I / SI1 rising by 3-4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts one change, upwards

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts K / SI2-I1 declining by 3-5%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts one change, downwards

  • 0.70-0.79 cts two changes, one up, one down

  • 0.80-0.89 cts two decliners

  • 0.90-0.99 cts H-J / VVS1 declining by 1-3%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts L-N / SI3 declining by 3-5%

  • 1.25-1.49 cts just two decliners

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts F / SI2 -3.1% to $15,400 p/c

  • 4 cts H-I / I1 rises of 1-3%

  • 5 cts F / SI1 +2.9% to $31,700 p/c



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D / IF-VVS2 rising by 2%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D-E / SI1 rising by 3-4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts F / IF +2.1% to $2,450 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts I / SI2 +4.4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts K / SI1 -3.9% to $1,250 p/c

  • 0.70-0.79 cts risers and fallers even, especially in lower colors/clarity

  • 0.80-0.89 cts F-I / I1 rising by 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts unchanged

  • 1.00-1.24 cts many decliners in top colors and clarity

  • 1.50-1.99 cts D / IF -3.1% to $21,600 p/c

  • 2 cts mostly declining

  • 3 cts D-E / SI3 rising by 2%

  • 4 cts mostly declining

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Advertising Exec Reflects on a Life in Jewelry

Eric Cygiel, founder and creative director of Luxury & Hammer Jewelry Advertising was introduced to the bridal industry at the age of six. Working side-by-side with his grandmother in her downtown Los Angeles bridal and jewelry shop gave Cygiel a truly unique perspective on the bridal industry, which he flourishes in to this day.

“Ever since I was a kid, I knew that an engagement ring was far more than diamonds and metal. It symbolized an emotional bond that would last forever. It’s that very emotion that I try to capture with every campaign my team and I create,” said Cygiel.

“Once we shoot a campaign for a designer/manufacturer, our goal is to emotionally engage their retailers' customers. It’s the end consumer that my campaigns speak to, yet some designer/manufacturers feel that they have to sell to the retail buyer, when in fact, their campaign should be focused on the retailer’s customer.”

Cygiel believes that the days of selling at a trade show and waiting for the retailer to unload the vendor’s inventory are over. His award-winning jewelry advertising, marketing and branding agency aims to help designer/manufacturers partner with their retailers to get their brand in front of their customers.

Eric has had the good fortune to create content for manufacturers that include Rolex, Forevermark, Kwiat, Oscar Heyman, Rahaminov Diamonds, Jack Kelége and retail giants such as Neiman Marcus, Borsheims and Tivol.

For more information, visit www.luxuryhammer.com.

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White Pine Names Mainella to Head Sales Force

White Pine Trading has announced that industry veteran Dominic A. Mainella has joined the company to aid the expansion of its diamond, branded, fashion, antique and estate jewelry, and fine watch selling services.

Mainella, formerly Lead Sales Professional and Corporate Sales Trainer with Boston-based GBC, Inc./Gordon Brothers, comes to White Pine with over 25 years  industry experience. 

He will focus on developing and mentoring a national sales force, in addition to having responsibilities in the research and development of product acquisitions.

“We are very pleased to be working with Dominic after observing his career over the past 25 years,” said White Pine CEO Benjamin Burne.

 

“We look forward to working much more deeply in estate and fine jewelry, and establishing new long-term relationships in this sector. To further those goals, we will be combining Dominic's expertise with White Pine's proven marketing and processing skills.  White Pine is assembling a world class team and investing considerably in the support infrastructure to enable us to achieve our objectives.”

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AJF Accepting Applications for Artist Award

Art Jewelry Forum is accepting applications for its 2014 Artist Award.

This is the fifteenth year that AJF will be providing a cash award to a contemporary jewelry artist. The amount of the 2014 award will remain at $7, 500 this year thanks to the generous support of Susan Kempin and Susan Beech, both long-time collectors and supporters of AJF.

Jurors for this year's competition are Sooyeon Kim, jewelry artist and winner of the 2013 award, Carin Reinders, Director of the CODA Museum, Apeldoorn, Netherlands, and Karen Rotenberg, Founder and Director of Alianza Contemporary Craft and a collector of contemporary jewelry.

The purpose of the award is to acknowledge promise, innovation, and individuality in the work of an emerging jewelry artist and to help to advance the artist's career.

The competition is open to makers of wearable art jewelry who are not currently enrolled in a professional training program. Work submitted in the application must have been unsupervised, and not previously submitted for a BFA or MFA show. What has changed this year is:

  • Applicants must be 35 years of age or younger at the time of the application deadline (September 30, 2014)
  • Work must have been made between 2012 and 2014
  • Applicants who have applied previously must submit new work, i.e. work submitted in a prior AJF Artist Award application may not be resubmitted in the current application
  • Applicants may have had, or be scheduled to have, a solo exhibition

Deadline for submission is September 30, 2014. 

 

Applications may be submitted at www.callforentry.org.

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GIA Team Explores Colored Stone Mines in Brazil

The GIA team prepares to interview Paraíba tourmaline legend, Heitor Dimas Barbosa, in the original Batalha mine entrance. Photo by Duncan Pay; © GIA.

From Mar. 31 to Apr. 17, a team of field researchers from Gemological Institute of America journeyed to the most important gemstone mining areas in Brazil to gather information and document the current state of colored stone mines, particularly emerald and tourmaline.

The researchers visited the states of Minas Gerais, Rio Grande do Norte and Paraíba, and had the rare opportunity to interview Heitor Dimas Barbosa, the first discoverer of Paraíba tourmaline, in the original mine tunnel in Batalha where he first encountered the now famous gem.    

The GIA team of Field Gemologist Andrew Lucas, Director of West Coast Identification Shane McClure, Video Producer Pedro Padua, and Gems & Gemology Editor-in-Chief Duncan Pay spent 18 days traveling to various mines to interview, photograph and film important sources.

Brian Cook, geologist and co-owner of Nature’s Geometry, and Sergio Martins, president of the Brazilian gemstone cutting and marketing firm Stone World, also participated in the expedition.

The researchers found the Belmont mine in Minas Gerais moving to new open pits while continuing to develop their underground mining and building a new state of the art rough processing and sorting facility; they are also cutting around 60 percent of their own production, focusing on higher quality stones. In Nova Era, production at mines like the Monte Belo mine yield high quality emeralds from pockets.

The Cruzeiro tourmaline mine has prolific production from huge pegmatites, and all of its rubellite tourmaline goes to Shenzhen, China for cutting and then sale. “We’ve never seen a mine produce the amount and quality of material as the tourmaline we saw coming from the massive pegmatites at the Cruzeiro mine,” added Lucas.

Meanwhile, “the value of Paraíba tourmaline has risen unbelievably and the passion to find more material at the mines was contagious,” said Lucas. Mining and prospecting remains very strong in the sates of Paraíiba and Rio Grande do Norte for highly-valuable Paraíba tourmaline.

“I’ve wanted to go to Brazil for 20 years … and this trip far exceeded my expectations,” said McClure. “For me, one of the highlights was our interview with Heitor Barbosa, original discoverer of Paraíba tourmaline. He believes there’s still much more of this fabulous gem to be found deeper in the mine,” added Pay.

The Cruzeiro tourmaline mine produces massive amounts of tourmaline. These crystals transition from rubellite color to green and terminate in black. Photo by Andrew Lucas; © GIA.

 

In keeping with its mission to ensure the public trust in gems and jewelry, GIA regularly conducts research field trips to important gem and jewelry centers around the globe, incorporating findings into research practices and education programs and relaying information to the trade and public through a series of channels. Findings from the Brazil field trip will be featured in an upcoming Gems & Gemology article, as well as field reports and video documentaries on www.gia.edu

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Jewelers Mutual Hosts Robbery Webinar, Adds Robbery Checklist

Jewelers Mutual is hosting a webinar for the jewelry industry titled "Robbery: Before, During and After," with recommendations on how to reduce the likelihood of being targeted, survive the threat if you are targeted and recover from an attack.

Along with the webinar which can be accessed at JewelersMutual.com, Jewelers Mutual also introduced a new robbery checklist for jewelers.

If an armed robber enters your store, what will you do? Jewelers Mutual's loss prevention specialists, Carrie Volp and Tim O'Conner, began with tips to know when your store is being cased.

"To prevent a crime, you have to assume that you are being cased and always be aware of the threat,” said Volp. “That's the first step to making your store as safe as possible."

But even with the best preventative measures in place, preparing yourself and your staff mentally for an attack can mean me the difference between life and death. "The game changes the second someone comes into your store with a weapon," said Volp. "The most important thing you can do is stay calm and comply. The sooner you can give the robbers what they want and they leave, the better." 

It may sound counterintuitive, but Jewelers Mutual recommends not activating a panic button or alarm until the robbers have left the store. Doing so too early could lead to the police's arrival on the scene while the robbery is occurring, which could precipitate a dangerous hostage situation.

After a robbery, it can be difficult to know what to do first. To help jewelers during these crisis moments, Jewelers Mutual has developed a robbery checklist jewelers can refer to immediately following an attack. It includes tips like

  • Lock the doors immediately after the perpetrators leave
  • Call 9-1-1 and tend to anyone you may be injured
  • Try to keep all witnesses at the scene and collect contact information
  • Ask your staff and witnesses to make notes as soon as possible about the robber and the incident
  • Share these details with the police, and allow them to conduct a full investigation
  • Contact your Jewelers Mutual agent or the company's 24/7 emergency line to report the loss

Once the immediate threat is past, the initial shock of a robbery can leave jewelers and employees feeling anxious and overwhelmed. Flashbacks are common, and talking about the experience and your feelings with a trusted support system of friends and family members can help you recover emotionally. You should also consider professional counseling if the stress or flashbacks interfere with your home life or work.

In fact, Jewelers Mutual takes the extra step of helping its policyholders deal with the trauma of an armed robbery by offering a free benefit that contributes to the costs of professional counseling services. "We are here to serve the jewelry industry, and part of that service is helping our members recover and move forward with their lives and their businesses," said Volp. "This benefit is just one small way we can help you recover when you face a loss."  

 

In addition to the webinar and new robbery checklist, jewelers can find time-tested strategies to help protect their businesses at JewelersMutual.com

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JA Summer Show Announces Improvements

The 2014 JA New York Summer Show, to be held at the Jacob K. Javits Center July 27-29, is experiencing a renaissance in energy and the overall aesthetics of the show floor.

With an improved show layout boasting a relaxed, boutique-like environment that caters to a buyer’s needs, long-time exhibitors will be joined by notable returning designers, and designers who will be exhibiting at the show for the first time.

Serving to enhance this renewed energy, in recent weeks, the JA New York team has taken a grassroots approach to strengthening relationships between retailers and show management by making in-person visits to retailers throughout the tri-state area, which has resulted in an increase in pre-show registration.

“As a group, we recognize the importance of having face-to-face contact with our retailers,” noted Drew Lawsky, Show Director for JA New York. “Visiting stores in person, touting the ‘new and improved show layout that has been reconfigured with buyers’ needs in mind, and talking about all of the exceptional exhibitors at our show, has been very rewarding. We’re thrilled to make these connections and we look forward to nurturing these relationships moving forward.”

Some of the notable additions and returning brands to the 2014 Summer Show are Adel Chefridi, A. Jaffe, Boxco, De Hago, Gregg Ruth, Syna, Tanya Farah and Yoko by Euro Pearls. Also returning to the show is one of the world’s most recognizable and well respected jewelry supply companies, Kassoy.

“We are a born and bred New York City company,” explains Joanne Slawitsky, President of Kassoy. “We have so many new product offerings that we’re debuting and we felt that it was high time we return to the JA New York Show, the New York show for jewelry, to offer a hands-on showcase of our products.”

 

Kassoy has long been a go-to resource for the fine jewelry industry, featuring a broad range of products, from bench tools to inventory management systems to testing and measuring equipment to 3D printing technology. The return of this prestigious company will help to make JA New York a one-stop shop for all categories in the industry.

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Ercolana Names Orbita U.S. Distributor

Orbita is now the exclusive U.S. distributor for Ercolano luxury watch winders.

Launching this fall, the all-new Ercolano watch winder collection will feature five distinctive designs, ranging in price from $1,595 (single), $2,495 (double) and $3,995 (triple) at retail.

“We will incorporate our distinguished watch winders in this fine line of luxury cases created by master Italian artisans who have beautifully blended tradition and modernity using the art of Intarsia,” said Orbita’s CFO, Mark Lampkin. 

“Based on the tremendous excitement and positive response from buyers who visited the Orbita-Ercolano booth at Luxury in Las Vegas, we agreed to partner with the renowned Italian casemaker.”

The new Ercolano cases, with their eye-catching geometrical designs, refined combination of colors and intricate handcrafted wooden inlays make them totally unique in the global marketplace. Orbita is currently taking orders for these exquisite Italian-made watch winders fully outfitted with its patented modules, and will start shipping product in late October in time for the holidays. 

“We are thrilled to join forces with Orbita and see this exciting arrangement as a rare opportunity to expand our sales, distribution and retail base in the U.S. and beyond,” said Brett Levin, Director, Ercolano USA, Inc. “Given Orbita’s excellent track record, superb technology and solid relationships with fine, independent jewelers and luxury watch stores, we look forward to growing our business with such a distinguished company.”

 

For more information, visit www.orbita.com.

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GIA Hosts GemFest Seminar in Tokyo

Audiences in Japan, the third largest consumer market in the world for gems and jewelry, will have the opportunity to hear from Gemological Institute of America experts during a free GemFest seminar on July 11 in Tokyo. 

Dino De Ghionno, GIA laboratory manager, will discuss gem identification challenges and offer a laboratory update. Dr. Ahmadjan Abduriyim, GIA senior research scientist, will present on identification services at GIA’s Tokyo gem identification and grading laboratory.

De Ghionno, GIA’s senior manager of West Coast identification services, will provide an update on the Institute’s laboratory services and discuss challenges in gem identification. He will highlight stones of gemological interest submitted to the laboratory, new gem materials and treatments, as well as gemological updates. Topics will range from black opaque stones and change-of-color amber to diffusion-treated corundum.

Abduriyim, GIA’s senior research scientist and senior manager of colored stone services in Tokyo, will discuss recently introduced colored stone services – including identification reports and origin determinations – offered at the Tokyo lab. Several new services were introduced in GIA’s laboratories in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Carlsbad and New York on June 30. These services include red spinel origin services, ruby and sapphire inscription services for faceted stones weighing 0.50 carats or more, the Portrait Report and the Notable Letter. 

De Ghionno has more than 35 years of experience specializing in the research and identification of a wide range of gem materials, colored diamonds and related treatments. He began his career with GIA in 1978 as a colored stone and gem identification instructor, becoming manager of the program, and after 14 years transitioned to the identification department of the laboratory. De Ghionno has co-authored several articles in scientific and gemological journals, including GIA’s award-winning quarterly research journal Gems & Gemology, and has lectured in the U.S., Europe and Asia.  

Abduriyim received his doctorate in mineralogy from the Division of Earth and Planetary Science at Kyoto University in Japan. He has authored numerous gemological articles, including work on geographic origin determination of major gemstones and the applications of LA-ICP-MS in the gemological field, which have been published in major gemological periodicals including Gems & Gemology.

 

GIA’s Tokyo GemFest will be held on July 11 beginning at 5:00 p.m. at Aurum, Higashi Ueno 1-26-2, Taito-ku, Tokyo. Seats are limited and on a first-come, first-served basis; doors will open at 4:30 p.m. For questions about the GemFest, contact GIA’s laboratory in Tokyo at giatokyolab@gia.edu.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for July 3

A relatively small number of changes in smaller round diamond prices, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report, however larger stones saw strong increases.

In fancy shapes, changes were balanced between risers and decliners.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts just two changes, both decliners

  • 0.23-0.29 cts no changes

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E / VVS2 +2.0% to $2,500 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts E / VVS2 -2.7% to $3,650 p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts one change, downwards

  • 0.70-0.79 cts K / IF -3.6% to $2,650 p/c

  • 0.80-0.89 cts three changes, one up, two down

  • 0.90-0.99 cts L / IF-VS2 declining by 3%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts unchanged

  • 1.25-1.49 cts J / VVS1 -3.0% to $6,500 p/c

  • 2 cts two decliners

  • 3 cts F / IF +3.0% to $54,900 p/c

  • 4 cts H / SI3-I1 rises of 1%

  • 5 cts many increases in better colors, lower clarities



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts two risers

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D-E / SI1 rising by 4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E / SI1 / SI2 increasing by 3%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts just one change, an increase

  • 0.45-0.49 cts just two rises, both upwards in mid-color and clarity

  • 0.50-0.69 cts F / IF +2.6% to $3,900 p/c

  • 0.70-0.79 cts several increases in lower colors and clarity

  • 0.80-0.89 cts F-I / I1 rising by 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just two changes, both upwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts several decliners

  • 1.50-1.99 cts L-N / SI3 declines of 4-6%

  • 2 cts mostly declining

  • 3 cts just three changes, one up and two down

  • 4 cts J / SI3 +3.6% to $5,700 p/c

  • 5 cts H-I / VS2 rising by 1-3%

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Uneek Brand Names Michael Bungert Senior VP

Bridal and fashion fine jewelry brand Uneek by Benjamin Javaheri, based in Los Angeles, has appointed Michael Bungert as senior vice president.

"Michael's history within the industry spans over 40 years and yields a wealth of invaluable experience in strategy and management," says the company.

Bungert spent 29 years as the vice president of Kattan Diamonds & Jewelry Inc., where his responsibilities were significant in building the business' sales and merchandising strategy and planning.

At Uneek, Bungert will spearhead the development of all sales, marketing and merchandising initiatives, will assume the management of the external sales force and will also be responsible for key retail accounts.

"I am pleased to welcome Michael to the Uneek family,” said Benjamin Javaheri, owner and designer of Uneek. “I am confident that his business acumen, rich and long standing relationships and unbridled passion will be an incredible addition to the company.”

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GIA Adds On-Site Colored Stone Services in Hong Kong and Tokyo

Beginning June 30, GIA’s laboratories in Hong Kong and Tokyo will expand on-site offerings to include the same colored stone services currently offered by GIA in Bangkok, Carlsbad and New York.

Highly-trained staff with extensive scientific backgrounds has been added at both locations, in addition to a full range of analytical instrumentation, to support the additional services.

“Both Hong Kong and Tokyo are significant global centers for colored stones, and by increasing our offerings in these locations we can better serve our clients and the trade,” said Kenneth Scarratt, GIA’s managing director of South East Asia. “GIA is committed to expanding our capacity to meet the demand for our services, and this is one of the many initiatives we are taking to further ensure the public trust in gems and jewelry.” 

GIA’s colored stone services offered in Hong Kong and Tokyo will include identification reports as well as origin determinations, for which the GIA Gem Passbook™ provides an affordable alternative.

In addition to adding laboratories that perform colored stone services, several new services will also be introduced in all five locations. These services include red spinel origin services; ruby and sapphire inscription services for faceted stones weighing 0.50 carats or more; the Portrait Report, which sets out all of the supporting data that underlies the conclusions reached in an Identification or Identification & Origin Report; and the Notable Letter, which accompanies a GIA report and details the attributes of especially noteworthy or unique gemstones vetted by senior gemological staff.

 

For more information, visit www.gia.edu.

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UPS Adds Three Cities to Jeweler Elite Program

UPS has expanded its Jeweler’s Elite Program to San Francisco, Philadelphia, and Providence. 

Designed specifically to help jewelers protect their high-value shipments, the service delivers time and cost savings by combining UPS shipping with insurance offered through UPS Capital Insurance Agency, Inc.

The UPS Capital Jeweler’s Elite Program offers several advantages, including:

  • Protection against loss or damage to goods in transit up to the sale price, limited to a $150,000 maximum.
  • One-stop claims processing and fast payment.
  • Availability across all UPS service levels, including ground shipments.
  • Streamlined billing on the customer’s UPS invoice with no extra invoices.
  • Coverage for loose stones.
  • Protection for international shipments destined for 60 plus countries. 

Adam Krief, a UPS Capital Jeweler’s Elite Program customer and president of Accuratime, a Los Angeles international watch seller and manufacturer of mid to luxury watches, said: “We’ve worked with other shipping companies that provided insurance solutions, but because of their limitations, we had to separate shipments into smaller value amounts, leading to more paperwork, logistics and time. This program made sense for us and for our customers, and it has also reduced the amount of time filing claims.”

“After launching successful programs in Los Angeles and New York, these cities seemed a natural stepping stones for our next expansion. With its Jewelry Center, JewelryMart and Diamond Exchange, San Francisco is in the top ten U.S. jewelry markets,” said Dave Zamsky, UPS vice president of marketing, UPS Capital.  “Philadelphia’s Jewelers' Row is located in the Center City section and has more than 300 jewelry retailers, wholesalers, and craftsmen; and Providence has been a major center for jewelry manufacturing since the founding of the American Jewelry industry in Providence back in 1798.”

Another solution created to protect high value shipments includes UPS Proactive Response Secure.  This unique service combines proactive monitoring of packages, and, if necessary intervention and remediation, plus insurance through UPS Capital Insurance Agency, Inc.  

 

According to Tarek Saab, Chief Operating Officer and co-founder of Texas Precious Metals, “this service is helping to transform the precious metals industry.”

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for June 26

There were few changes in smaller round diamond prices, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report, although larger stones saw strong increases.

In fancy shapes, changes were overwhelmingly upwards although larger diamonds were unchanged.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts unchanged

  • 0.23-0.29 cts no changes

  • 0.30-0.39 cts F / IF -3.6% to $2,700 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts unchanged

  • 0.45-0.49 cts G / VS1 +3.4% to $3,050 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts two changes, one up and one down

  • 0.70-0.79 cts mostly declining

  • 0.80-0.89 cts just two changes, both down

  • 0.90-0.99 cts K / SI1-SI2 declining by 3%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts L / I1 -4.0% to $2,400 p/c

  • 1.25-1.49 cts L-M / I1 declining by 4%

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts F / IF +3.0% to $54,900 p/c

  • 4 cts many increases

  • 5 cts F-H / SI1-SI2 rises of 2-3%



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D / SI1 +4.4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / SI1 +4.2% to $1,250 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E / IF +3.7% to $2,800 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts several increases

  • 0.45-0.49 cts just two rises, both upwards, mid-color and clarity

  • 0.50-0.69 cts just two changes, one up and one down

  • 0.70-0.79 cts many increases in lower colors and clarity

  • 0.80-0.89 cts several declines in middling colors and clarity

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just two changes, one up and one down

  • 1.00-1.24 cts J / I1 -3.7% to $2,600 p/c

  • 1.50-1.99 cts L-N / SI2 declines of 3-5%

  • 2 cts E-F / I1-I2 rises of 2-4%

  • 3 cts several rises in lower colors and clarity

  • 4 cts unchanged

  • 5 cts no changes

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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AGS Videos from San Diego Conclave Available for Free

Following the success of the 2014 Conclave in San Diego, the American Gem Society has made videos of its popular keynote and featured sessions available to not only its members, but to the industry, for free, with its new Conclave On Demand, located at www.ags.org/ConclaveonDemand.

The site features full-length videos of the keynote presentations from Magic Johnson, Peter Sheahan, Erik Wahl and Bryan Dodge. Additionally, sessions from Dr. Philip Martineau (De Beers), and sales expert Adam Markel and social media guru James Spellos are also available.

The presentations touch on a range of topics from motivational to hard-core business tactics, as well as industry-related gemological issues. 

Some of the Conclave On Demand videos featured include: 

  • “The Magic of Winning,” Magic Johnson
  • “The Art of Vision,” Erik Wahl
  • “The Social Tsunami: How to drink from the Information Fire hose with only a straw,” James Spellos
  • “Creating the Ultimate Sales Team,” Adam Markel
  • “Undisclosed Synthetics: What you need to know,” Dr. Philip Martineau
  • “Building a Team Without You,” Bryan Dodge

“After the huge success of this year’s Conclave, we’re thrilled we can share glimpses of it with our members who could not attend, and give non-members a peek into the premier educational event in the industry,” said Ruth Batson, CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories.

 

“By providing access to a limited part of our education, we can help better the industry.”

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Hilarious Blog Series Offers Inside Look at the Las Vegas Shows

Jewelry industry veteran and blogger Barbara Palumbo has released a five-part blog series on what really happens during the trade shows in Vegas.

Her blog, Adornmentality.com, is best known for its humor, and the series – entitled “Tales from the Strip,” – was written mainly for those in attendance at both the JCK and Couture jewelry shows.

“These installments were scribed with those who don’t take themselves too seriously in mind” said Palumbo. “A lot of good clean (and, not so clean) fun is had at the shows during Jewelry Week, but often what we read about afterward is how many brands are using opal and how stack rings are still a ‘thing.’ There’s more to Vegas than that. There’s a human side to it that’s too often missed.”

At the end of the fourth installment, subtitled “Happy People Are Spendy People,” Palumbo dedicates the series to a longtime industry colleague who passed away suddenly on June 17th at the age of 38.

“Stephanie Harris was my first friend in this field. She started working for a major manufacturer on Sansom Street in Philadelphia when she was just sixteen years old. We shared so many years, memories, and laughs together, and it seemed only fitting that all of the laughs that came from this series were dedicated to her memory.”

 

To read Adornmentality’s “Tales from the Strip” series in its entirety, visit the blog and click “Trade Show Shenanigans.”

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JA Spends the Day on Capitol Hill

The Jewelers of America Political Action Committee led a delegation of jewelers to Washington, D.C., for the fourth consecutive year.

The day of meetings on June 18 offered jewelers the unique opportunity to share their views with key decision makers on the Hill including House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), who made an unscheduled visit with the group, and Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), a member of the U.S. Senate Committees on Appropriations; Armed Services; and Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs; who joined the group for dinner. The meetings connected jewelers with approximately 60 lawmakers and legislative staff.

Discussion centered on sales tax fairness legislation, which would level the playing field between online and brick-and-mortar businesses. The group met with key supporters, including Reed, a co-sponsor of the Marketplace Fairness Act – which passed the Senate last year.

During a lunch with House Republicans – including Rep. Pete Sessions (TX-32), Chairman of the House Rules Committee, and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT-03), a member of the House Judiciary Committee – the tone was decidedly in favor of pushing through a House sales tax fairness bill. Jewelers were encouraged that Chaffetz, along with House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (VA-6), is leading the House’s work on sales tax fairness legislation.

“I think there’s a chance we can get it done,” Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15), a staunch supporter of the Marketplace Fairness Act, told the group. While that bill stalled in the House, Goodlatte and Chaffetz are expected to introduce a modified version of the legislation later this year.

The discussion underlined the need for jewelers to stay proactive on sales tax fairness and other key issues, which they can do through JA’s online Advocacy Center at www.jewelers.org. 

“With the midterm elections approaching, this is a key moment for jewelers to be heard,” says JA President & CEO David J. Bonaparte. “Jewelers of America is actively engaged with lawmakers regarding the needs of jewelers, and bringing our members to Capitol Hill for these face-to-face meetings with their representatives truly gets the message across.”

In addition to Bonaparte, the group consisted of JA Director of Public Affairs & Education Susan Thea Posnock, and Jewelers of America Members – including members of the JAPAC Board and JA’s Board of Directors – representing a variety of jewelry retail firms.

Besides e-fairnesss, discussions also centered on the protection of LIFO – the last-in, first-out accounting method.  LIFO repeal is an attractive revenue raising option for some legislators and the Obama administration, which has repeatedly sought repeal. 

Jewelers also discussed extension of the 15-year leasehold improvement depreciation. Currently improvements made to retail stores must be depreciated over 39 years. Jewelers of America supports inclusion of the 15-year depreciation provision in a retroactive tax extenders package, expected to be taken up by Congress after the November midterm elections. In the long-term, the association believes the provision should be made permanent as part of overall tax reform.  

The meetings were part of a daylong agenda that included morning presentations from political strategists from both sides of the aisle. Two JAPAC fundraising events were also organized by JA’s D.C.-based legislative counsel, Haake & Associates. 

The following JA Members took part in the trip:

  • Ryan Berg, Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry; San Antonio, TX (JAPAC Board, JA Board Vice Chair)
  • Jon Bridge, Ben Bridge Jeweler; Seattle, WA (JAPAC Board, Past JA Board Director)
  • Jenny Caro, Jewelry by Design; Woodbridge, VA (JA Board)
  • Scot Congress, Congress Jewelers; Sanibel, FL (JAPAC Board Chair, JA Board)
  • Jeff Corey, Day’s Jewelers; Waterville, ME (JAPAC Board Vice Chair)
  • Joe Corey, Day’s Jewelers; Manchester, NH (JA member)
  • Bill Farmer Jr., Farmer’s Jewelers; Lexington, KY (JAPAC Board, JA Board Chairman)
  • Missy Krause, Signet Jewelers Ltd.; Akron, OH (JA member)
  • Brian Mann, David Mann Jewelers; Potomac, MD (JA Board)
  • Robert F. Moeller II, R.F. Moeller Jeweler; St. Paul, MN (JA Board)

To learn more, visit www.jewelers.org/japac/.

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JA Reveals Designer Lineup for Summer Show Gallery

JA New York has announced the designers who have been selected to participate in this year’s New Designer Gallery.

An annual tradition at the Summer Show, this year saw an increased number of applicants for these coveted spaces on the show floor, reflecting a renewed interest in the JA New York Show.

We’re delighted to welcome these talented designers to the show,” said Drew Lawsky, Show Director for the JA New York Shows. “Our show has a long-standing tradition of supporting emerging designers, many of whom have gone on to great success in our industry. We hope that our support of these artists will be instrumental to their future success.”

The New Designer Gallery is open to any designer who has not yet exhibited at a fine jewelry trade show. JA New York underwrites the cost of these spaces, and provides the participating designers with various promotional opportunities. This year’s designers are: Anita Sandore, Betsy Frost, Charles Sherman Infinity Designs, Cynthia Jones,Garden of Silver, Judi Powers, Marcia Budet, Goldhenn Jewelry, Myrto Anastasopoulou, and TAP by Todd Pownell.

One of the New Designer Gallery participants will be awarded the Mort Abelson New Designer of the Year Award, which will be presented during a special ceremony on Monday, July 28th at 3:00 pm in the New Designer Gallery area on the show floor.

Since 1977 the New Designer Gallery has been the launching pad for some of today’s most prominent jewelry designers. The New Designer Gallery has been instrumental in assisting designers in developing and furthering their careers while gaining recognition for their talents.

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ImaGem Announces New Grading Technology for Colored Diamonds

ImaGem has announced advanced diamond color grading technology to achieve accurate and repeatable grading of diamonds with a secondary hue.

This is a major breakthrough achieved recently by Dr. Lalit K. Aggarwal, who has worked on this problem for the last 20 years.

ImaGem can now grade diamonds with secondary hues such as brown, gray and other hues, two-toned diamonds, and colored diamonds. This can be done on-site with the newest version of ImaGem’s integrated diamond grading machine GL3200.

The GL3200 is part of ImaGem's strategy to provide latest technology to the diamond industry for on-site grading. The Grader machine has a footprint of 12 inches x 24 inches and a capacity of grading 2,400 diamonds a month.

The GL3200 Grader machine grades color, fluorescence, light behavior, proportion analysis, symmetry and alignment for round as well as fancy shapes. The loading in the machine is done by a robotic arm and the entire grading process is automated.

The GL3200 is made available as part of Lab Express Service offered by ImaGem. GL3200 is based on digital imaging technology and color science. You can now get accurate grading results not in months, or weeks or days but in minutes.

For additional information on GL3200, email info@imageminc.com.

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Ritani Takes Honor in Seattle

Seattle Business magazine has named Ritani one of Washington’s 100 best companies to work for. Headquartered in White Plains NY, Ritani’s e-commerce operations are located in Downtown Seattle.

The company’s Seattle team attended the magazine’s event at the Westin Hotel in Seattle. Other winners included Zillow, Redfin, and Dry Soda Co

Ritani placed 10th in the category for brands headquartered outside of Washington State. Peers on the list included GoDaddy, Edward Jones and PwC.

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Tourneau Names Two Execs

Leading luxury watch retailer Tourneau has announced two executive hires: Craig Miller, Senior Vice President of CPO (Certified Pre-Owned watches), and Gretchen Mathews, Senior Vice President of Human Resources.

As Torneau’s SVP of CPO, Miller will be responsible for analyzing CPO inventory pricing, optimizing efficiencies and growth opportunities for the department, and supporting store staff through training and education.

Miller joins Tourneau from CIRCA, where as the Managing Director of Retail, he established and oversaw the day-to-day operations of the company’s retail division, which included developing strong relationships with independent retailers nationwide to expand the company’s watch and jewelry buying capabilities.

Prior to CIRCA, Miller had extensive experience with fine jewelry brands including GRAFF, Cartier, Bulgari, and Van Cleef & Arpels, in addition to his extensive watch and jewelry training in Paris and Geneva.  He began his career at the American Design Group, a wholesale firm for jewelry retailers.

As SVP of Human Resources at Tourneau, Mathews will develop, implement and support programs and processes to enhance the culture and talent at Tourneau. 

This will be achieved through comprehensive understanding, strategic planning and innovative ideas regarding best practices, as well as a proactive approach to talent acquisition in order to recruit the best talent in the industry. 

Matthews joins Tourneau from Vince Camuto, where she served as the SVP of Talent Management. Prior to Vince Camuto, Mathews gained extensive experience in recruiting and talent acquisition in the luxury retail space, working with fashion brands including Michael Kors, Sam Edelman, Kenneth Cole and Brown Shoe.

 

“These new executives illustrate Tourneau’s dedication to acquiring superior talent that will strengthen the entire organization,” said Ira Melnitsky, CEO of Tourneau. “We are confident that their extensive experiences will lead to great success at Tourneau.”

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GIA Sets Panel for July Career Fair

On the heels of last year’s successful GIA New York Jewelry Career Fair, which connected 44 gem and jewelry companies with more than 800 aspiring professionals, the Institute has announced a not-to-miss opening panel for its July 28 event at the Jacob Javits Center.

The leading industry event is free for job seekers and open to the public; anyone interested in attending is urged to RSVP prior to the event.

The career fair will begin with a panel of industry leaders discussing “Job Success in Today’s Market” moderated by Susan Jacques, president and CEO of GIA and featuring Mercedes Abramo, president and CEO of Cartier North America; Ashley Chan of Leslie Hindman Auctioneers; Andrea Hansen, partner of Luxe Intelligence and president of the Women’s Jewelry Association; Douglas K. Hucker, CEO of AGTA; and Steven Lagos, founder and chief creative director of LAGOS Jewelry. The panelists tell the stories of their unique journeys to success and offer practical advice for aspiring gem and jewelry professionals.

“GIA’s New York Jewelry Career Fair is a singular opportunity to hear from some of the most distinguished and successful luminaries in our industry right in the heart of one of the world’s leading gem and jewelry centers,” said Kathryn Kimmel, GIA vice president and chief marketing officer, and co-founder of the GIA Jewelry Career Fair. “We encourage everyone with an interest in jewelry – whether you’re a seasoned pro, a newcomer to the trade or a jewelry lover – to come out and see firsthand how vast the opportunities in our industry really are.”

Aspiring jewelry professionals – including those in retail, design and manufacturing – will be able to meet with dozens of job recruiters and spend one-on-one time with volunteer career-coaches.

GIA’s New York Jewelry Career Fair will take place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, July 28 at the Javits Center during the JA New York show. Recruiting will occur from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is sponsored by JA New York.

 

For more information, visit www.gia.edu/career-fair or call (800) 421-7250, ext. 4100, or email careerfair@gia.edu.  

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for June 19

There were again few changes overall in round diamond prices, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report, with a bias to declines rather than increases.

 

Fancy shape diamonds posted a range of changes price rises as they have done for the past several weeks.

 

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

 

Rounds

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts just one changes, downward

  • 0.23-0.29 cts I / VS1 -3.0% to $1,600 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts K / IF -2.9% to $1,700 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts I / I1 -4.2% to $1,150 p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts K-L / I1 declines of around 4%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts unchanged

  • 0.80-0.89 cts no changes

  • 0.90-0.99 cts L-M / IF rising by 3-4%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts several declines

  • 1.25-1.49 cts L-M / I1 declining by 3-4%

  • 2 cts two declines

  • 3 cts unchanged

  • 4 cts just two increases

  • 5 cts F-G / SI1-SI2 rises of 1-3%

 



 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D / VS1 +3.1% to $1,650 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts F / VS2 +3.7% to $1,400 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts many increases

  • 0.40-0.44 cts H-I / VS2 rises of 3-4

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts mostly rising

  • 0.70-0.79 cts just two changes, both increases

  • 0.80-0.89 cts G-H / I1 declines of 2%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts unchanged

  • 1.00-1.24 cts no changes

  • 1.50-1.99 cts I-J / I1 rises of 2-3%

  • 2 cts two changes, one up and one down

  • 3 cts a wide range of increases

  • 4 cts G / SI1 -3.3% to $17,800 p/c

  • 5 cts no changes

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Group Asks for Legal Advisory on “Made in America”

Four trade associations, along with the Richline Group, have asked the Federal Trade Commission for an advisory opinion stating that jewelry composed of metals recycled in this country could be advertised as “Made in the USA.” 

The four associations are the Jewelers Vigilance Committee, the Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America, Jewelers of America and the American Gem Trade Association. 

The FTC’s standard for advertising a product as “made in the USA” is that the product must be “all or virtually all” made in the United States. 

“All or virtually all” means that all significant parts and processing that go into the product must be of U.S. origin.  Marketers advertising a product as “Made in the USA” must be able to substantiate the claim.  For products made of metal this can be very difficult. 

One reason is that much of the metal used in jewelry manufacturing was originally mined in foreign countries, not here in the U.S.  Second, it is generally impossible to determine the original source of a metal after it has been refined or smelted. 

The trade associations and Richline asked the FTC to focus on products made from metal recycled in this country, and to allow those products to be advertised as “Made in the USA.”  Many of the jewelry items produced in the United States, particularly gold items, are made of recycled material.  Recycling starts with the collection of used jewelry, electronic components, investment bars and manufacturing by-products.  The items are melted, then undergo the same chemical refining process as would newly mined metal to produce the nearly pure material that is used by manufacturers.

The request for an advisory opinion was based on the fact that significant time and resources go into collecting recyclable material, delivering it to refiners in the United States, and then processing the items to a purity level of almost 100%.  The associations and Richline argued that upon recycling, metal begins a new life cycle, with a new origin in this country - regardless of where it was originally mined.  For this reason, according to the request, products composed of metals recycled in this country should qualify for a “Made in the USA” claim.  If the request is granted by the FTC, sellers would be able to make the claim – as long as they could substantiate that the metal was recycled at a domestic refinery.

The request for an advisory opinion will be considered by the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. 

 

Any questions can be directed to Karen Kovach at karen@jvclegal.org. To keep up to date with JVC updates and events, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter @jvclegal and visit our website, www.jvclegal.org.

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WR Cobb Now Offers Financing on E-Commerce Platform

WR Cobb recently announced that they will offer financing to qualified consumers shopping online. Offering this additional feature is an enormous perk for both WR Cobb, and their numerous retailers.

Jay Gerber, WR Cobb’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing states, “We have added this feature to help our retailers with conversions, as we have discovered that financing in the world of e-commerce is a significant driver of sales.”

Gerber is correct; sales will organically increase with the implementation of an up-to-date payment service. Stores that offer consumer financing are more enticing when purchasing large-ticket items, avoiding the immediate depletion of your bankroll. The financing option attracts new customers, but may also lead to an additional purchase, or upgrades. Today, customers are becoming more accustomed to the availability of financing, so this forward-thinking move affords WR Cobb an essential role in an extremely competitive marketplace.

WR Cobb’s improved financing service is via PayPal’s secure Bill Me Later program. The program’s main advantage is the ease of use, and streamlining the checkout process for consumers and retailers alike, by allowing consumers the opportunity to buy now, and remit payment later (six months).

WR Cobb Online develops e-commerce solutions, and specializes in diamond configurator platforms for independent retailers.

 

For more information, see www.wrcobbonline.com.

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Frederick Goldman Unveils Mobile Price Checker

Frederick Goldman Inc. has launched an innovative mobile Price Checker, developed with state-of-the-art technology and enhanced retailer insights.  The mobile Price Checker is the latest digital point-of-sale tool to be added to their growing technology suite.

“Frederick Goldman Inc. has developed an innovative tool that will allow our sales staff to sell more effectively, while also providing enhanced visibility into our business management and profitability within all of the Frederick Goldman brands,” says Brad Gross, Vice President of H.L. Gross & Bro. Jewelers in Garden City, NY.

The new mobile Price Checker is an easy-to-use POS sales tool that is accessible via any smart phone for “on the spot” pricing and style information for all Frederick Goldman Inc. brands. The mobile Price Checker enables retailers to maintain full contact with consumers without ever having to step away from the counter to look up pricing and/or product information.  This advanced technology will make it easier for retailers to stay engaged with consumers and heighten the overall customer experience allowing them to close more sales.  The mobile Price Checker is an extension of the newly designed B2B website, providing retailers with the same pricing and product information.

“Our company has always been committed to long-term growth and industry leadership by providing our retail customers with high-quality fine jewelry and superior service through creativity and innovation,” says Jonathan Goldman, CEO of Frederick Goldman, Inc. 

In addition, Frederick Goldman Inc. has recently refreshed their B2B website to provide retailers with an enriched branded environment making it the go-to resource for retail customers. The site is easy to navigate and designed to simplify the ordering process by allowing retailers to quickly identify the item(s) they need, place orders, lookup prices, and check order status quickly. 

 

Retailers may access and sign up for the B2B site at b2b.fgoldman.com.

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GIA Now Accepting Scholarship Applications

Gemological Institute of America began accepting scholarship applications online on Sunday, June 15 for its 2015 Gemology and Jewelry Manufacturing Arts programs, courses and lab classes. Applications will be available through Oct. 31on the Institute’s website, scholarship@gia.edu.

Scholarships are available for distance education eLearning courses and for classes at the Institute’s campuses in Bangkok, Carlsbad, Hong Kong, London, Mumbai, New York and Taiwan; and at the GIA branch in Dubai.

A number of awards for international eLearning courses (up to $1,500) and awards for U.S.-based lab classes (up to $1,400) are available. The scholarships, sponsored by private donors and the GIA endowment fund, supplement GIA’s wider scope of offerings. Scholarship highlights include:

The inaugural Tawfic Farah Memorial Scholarship will award full tuition for an on-campus student in Mumbai to pursue their Graduate Gemologist (GG) diploma, including the required Diamond Grading, Colored Stone Grading and Gem Identification lab classes

To recognize the many important contributions by Bert Krashes and Eunice Miles to further gemological knowledge during their careers at GIA, full scholarships for the U.S on-campus and eLearning Graduate Gemologist (GG) diploma program have been created in their names

 

In Jan. 2014 the Institute awarded its Fall 2013 scholarships to 151 students in 29 countries. The scholarships, totaling more than $500,000, align with GIA’s goals of providing quality education in gemology and jewelry to the trade and aspiring professionals.

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GIA Exhibits at African Career Event

A student meets with Joseph Mecuur, regional business development manager for GIA in Africa, at GIA’s booth at Career Indaba in Johannesburg, May 19-20. Photo courtesy Tim Phillips and Zara Eckles,

More than 6,000 students, graduates and job seekers attending the Career Indaba trade show in Johannesburg, May 19-20, were introduced to the exciting world of gemology and opportunities in the global gem and jewelry industry.

Gemological Institute of America exhibited at the leading South African career resource event for the second time, building on its commitment to bring industry-leading gemological and jewelry design education to the nations that produce diamonds and other gems. 

Representatives from GIA, a global independent organization dedicated to ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry through research, education and laboratory services, met with prospective students, handing out education materials and discussing gemology and jewelry program options. 

“Many attendees were amazed at the variety of programs GIA offers in gemology and were excited to learn more,” said Elizabeth Bokaba, GIA’s manager of alumni and client relations in South Africa. “We’re happy to exhibit at Career Indaba – a show that offers great opportunities to aspiring professionals – and look forward to returning again in the future." 

Many students, teachers and schools expressed interested in GIA’s Junior Gemologist Program, which gives students from ages of 10-15 the opportunity to discover the world of gemology through hands-on, practical training.

Since 2008, GIA has expanded its presence in Africa, opening two full-time laboratories and offering classes in Gaborone and Johannesburg, establishing partnerships with government agencies and universities throughout the continent, and maintaining a global network of active alumni. Today, there are more than 900 alumni and two GIA Alumni Chapters in Africa.    

 

For more information about GIA education in Africa, visit www.gia.edu.

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Aurora Butterfly on Exhibit at LA History Museum

The Aurora Butterfly of Peace, a world-famous private collection of colored diamonds arranged in the shape of a butterfly, has extended its stay at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County.

The art piece, rarely seen in public viewings, will stay on exhibit in the Gem and Mineral Hall’s Gem Vault until January 2015.

The one-of-a-kind piece, which contains 240 natural colored diamonds, is a stunning collection assembled by Harry Rodman and curated by Alan Bronstein over a period of 12 years. The piece was arranged to display their exceptional range of color. Colored diamonds have since become popular, recording the highest value for gemstones at public auctions. 

Natural colored diamonds are extremely rare and this collection, weighing a total of 167 carats, is a rainbow of hues. The spectrum includes purple diamonds from Russia, blues and oranges from South Africa, lime greens from Brazil, violets, and dozens of pink diamonds from the Argyle mine in Australia.

“I am interested in a diamond’s flaws and impurities, which offer clues into the geological conditions that have dubbed diamonds ‘messengers of the deep Earth’,” said NHM’s Dr. Eloïse Gaillou, Associate Curator of the Gems and Mineral Collection.

 

The unique art piece was most recently displayed at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and has also been shown at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.

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Calgaro Signs Distribution Deal with Abbiamo

Abbiamo Group today announced they have signed a distribution agreement with Chimera Glamour for their newly acquired Calgaro Italian fine jewelry brand, with its various patented manufacturing processes in silver and gold.

Known for the revolutionary marriage between the worlds of jewelry and fabrics, Calgaro chains are made from thin strands of gold and silver woven into durable threads, which are pliant feather light. 

Effective immediately, the agreement entitles Abbiamo the rights to distribute Calgaro in North America, Canada, Caribbean and Mexico through Abbiamo's network of prestigious jewelry and upscale department stores. 

Abbiamo presently distributes and markets many prestigious watch, fine and fashion jewelry brands in the western hemisphere.

“Abbiamo’s network will definitely provide us with the market penetration needed to reach our prestigious distribution channels. Chimera Glamour has considered many distribution partners and we are confident that Abbiamo’s past relationship with Calgaro and its consistent reputation for launching successful brands through unique marketing concepts will leverage our position in the North American market,” said Pina Pannone, Export Manager for Chimera Glamour.

"Made in Italy, Calgaro will rise back to its rightful position as one of Italy's most prestigious handmade silver jewelry brands in the USA." said Michael Pucci, President and CEO of Abbiamo LLC.

 

"We are ecstatic that Chimera Glamour chose us to re-introduce the brand in the market. Retailers will understand, once again, there is nothing like their silver processes when they rediscover Calgaro.

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Overnight Highlights New Halo Heads Collection

With all of the most popular diamond shapes, in virtually all center sizes, Overnight has the halo head you’re looking for.

Overnight's Halo heads are made to fit any setting that takes a peg head, giving you the ability to create new looks easily and instantly.  

Overnight stocks all of the heads as semi-mounts in 14k for immediate delivery.  Alloy sample displays are also available for only $199. 

All halo heads are available in 10k, 14k, 18k, Platinum and Palladium and can be set with any one of our Nine diamond qualities. 

 

To view, price, and order any of the Halo heads (or the Halo Head display), go to www.overnightmountings.com.  All prices are listed retail at daily metal market.

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Tennenbaum Will Write About LGBT Jewelry in New Magazine



Jewelry designer Rony Tennenbaum is teaming up with EQL, a brand new print magazine committed to the celebration of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender weddings and destinations.

Tennenbaum is set to premiere his column on wedding jewelry etiquette in the first issue of EQL Magazine due out on newsstands this month providing readers with a fresh take on jewelry news, fashion, protocol, wedding and engagement themes, tips and advice.

The burgeoning same-sex wedding industry is fast-steadily attracting a wide range of not only businesses looking to expand into the “untapped" booming LGBT market; but is also attracting a new group of consumers. As more and more visionary companies are taking the leap, they seek to do so by calling upon Tennenbaum’s expert understanding in the culture, tastes and needs of the LGBT community, as well as the jewelry and diamond worlds.

Tennenbaum’s outreach to both community and retailers in his public appearances called, “Rony Talks”, has been sending a strong message of inclusiveness to the LGBT community for almost a decade. More than just a designer, Tennenbaum understands the need in educating a generation of retailers as well as consumers who are facing new traditions and etiquettes.

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IGI Offers Jewelry Training Services

The International Gemological Institute has collaborated with the Gems and Jewelry Skill Council of India, an affiliate of the Indian government, to address the vital need for professional jewelry training services throughout the country.

Under the alliance, the Institute will offer its expertise – including the IGI School of Gemology’s Polished Diamond and Jewelry Design courses – for a marginal fee to manufacturers and retailers in Mumbai and Surat.

Internationally renowned for its quality and regulation standards, IGI holds its curriculum to the same model. The Institute’s instructors have been accredited through a stringent government assessment procedure, assuring a well-qualified, dedicated team that adheres to the highest criteria.

The Polished Diamond Grading curriculum, specifically, will include an in-depth study of diamonds, taking students through an all-inclusive journey from mines to market. Integrating the latest industry research, the course will include training to identify imitations and treatments, incorporate hands-on learning along with visual tools, as well as cover market trends and grading processes for different types of diamonds. The workshop will also place special focus on the 4Cs, along with identification of laboratory-grown and treated diamonds.

The hand-sketch jewelry design course will build student confidence in drawing ideas as designs, as well as provide an overview of gold calculations and budgeting.

“There is no doubt the Indian jewelry industry is growing at a rapid rate. With such progression, it is only fair to encourage an environment of increased professional education and know-how among trade members and applicable staff,” said IGI India Managing Director Tehmasp Printer. “Together with GJSCI, IGI will strive to maintain its high international standards while working to develop a skilled workforce, ultimately strengthening the growth and efficiency of this sector.”

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MJSA Announces 2014 Vision Award Winners

MJSA has announced the winners of its 2014 MJSA Vision Awards. This year, the annual contest added awards for jewelers making good use of CAD/CAM technology and digital marketing, along with awards for the creative use of laser welders. The contest also still celebrates outstanding overall design excellence, future of design entries (students), and custom design prowess.

Categories were open to independent or company-employed U.S. and international jewelry designers. The Future of the Industry Award was open to any student enrolled in an art, design, or jewelry-related program at a college, university, or a proprietary technical school.

Winners were selected by a distinguished panel of jewelry designers, manufacturers, and editors of leading jewelry trade publications. Judges considered originality, presentation quality, effective use of materials, wearability, and the design's perceived manufacturing and marketing potential.

The contest winners will be celebrated throughout 2014 in digital and print media, and at the 2015 MJSA Expo New York. A complete list of winners follows:

2014 MJSA Vision Award Winners

1st Place Professional Excellence (4+ Years in Business)
Moonstone Ring
Leon Mege
Leon Mege Inc.
New York City

2nd Place Professional Excellence (4+ Years in Business)
1st Place CAD/CAM Distinction
Reversible Palladium Pendant
Robin Waynee
Ryan Roberts Ltd.
Santa Fe, NM

1st Place Professional Excellence (1-3 Years in Business)
"Flowing Colors" Pendant
Evan deJonghe
Evan Maxwell Design
Saratoga Springs, NY

2nd Place Professional Excellence (1-3 Years in Business)
"Arachnophobia" Ring
Nghi Nguyen
NGHI Design
Brooklyn, NY

1st Place Laser Distinction
Garnet Ring
Ryan Roberts
Ryan Roberts Ltd.
Santa Fe, NM

1st Place Custom Design Distinction
Siamese Cat Pendant
Chelsea Knights
Mark Schneider Design
Long Beach, CA

1st Place Digital Marketing Distinction
Danielle Ginsberg
Mark Schneider Design
Long Beach, CA

1st Place Future of the Industry (Student)
"Cacophony of Harmony" Neckpiece
Jinbee Park
Fashion Institute of Technology New York New York City

2nd Place Future of the Industry (Student)
"Primavera" Dissymmetrical Ring
Dora Kovacs
Studio Jewelers
New York City

To see photos and full descriptions of the jewelry and marketing that won 2014 MJSA Vision Awards, go to http://mjsa.org/events_and_programs/mjsa_vision_awards/2014_vision_award_winners/.

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ASA Offers Appraisal Course

ASA's new offering, GJ202 - Appraising Gems and Jewelry for Insurance Coverage course will be held July 21-24 in McLean VA.

This course is open to both ASA and non-ASA members. It is required for those seeking ASA accreditation. Although intended to teach the basics, it will also appeal to practicing gems and jewelry appraisers, offering the most current information regarding terminology and USPAP requirements, and the opportunity to network with top-level appraisers from across the country, in a small group of highly motivated learners whose interaction will enhance one another's understanding of the material.

Upon completion of this course, the student will possess the tools and confidence necessary to write gem and jewelry appraisal reports for insurance coverage in compliance with USPAP and ASA report writing requirements.

To register or for more information visit www.appraisers.org or call (800) 272-8258.

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IGI Launches Young Gemologist Program in India

The International Gemological Institute recently launched its "Young Gemologist" summer workshop, an introductory half-day session designed for students 10-15 years of age, in Mumbai.

After receiving overwhelming initial interest, and enrolling 30 participants in its first course on May 21, the IGI School of Gemology has expanded the program into a regular, ongoing weekend offering.

Serving as an introduction to the basics of gemology, the program's coursework guides participants through important questions related to the origin, value and construction of gemstones. Specific curriculum includes:

  • Gemstone color ranges and varieties
  • Twelve zodiac stars/signs and related gemstone

"The 'Young Gemologist' workshop is very close to my heart, as it is an experience I would have loved as a kid," said IGI India Managing Director Tehmasp Printer. "Gemstones are a fascinating subject, and we should introduce youngsters to the thrills of this industry at an early age. IGI instructors are tailoring the subject matter with young people in mind and are very confident the kids will find it enriching."

Printer continued, "IGI's hope is that this initiative will help aspiring gemologists explore and learn about gemstones in detail - something that is not covered in standard educational curriculum. The initial response has been outstanding, and we look forward to continued success as we broaden the program into a regularly occurring workshop."

Parents interested in course details can contact IGI at indiaeducation@igiworldwide.com.

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Kama Schachter Boosts Launches Bridal Collection in US

Kama Schachter of Asia has launched a new collection of bridal jewelry, Chimera, in Las Vegas at the recently concluded JCK show.

The collection features stunning new designs of engagement rings. Each piece features special-cut diamonds that are set to create the look of a large solitaire.

Chimera Bridal Collection is designed with multiple special cut stones that are seamlessly set to diffuse the outlines and create an illusion of a single large diamond. The illusory single-stone-look, makes the ring center appear twice as large. The diamonds are set one against the other, creating an illusion of unbroken brilliance. This bridal jewelry collection offers a "large look" at unbeatable pricing.

Speaking about the show and the new collection, Colin Shah, MD Kama Schachter said: "This was our first year at Luxury by JCK and we are very happy with the response received at the show. Kama Schachter has successfully launched three private label brands in the US and works with the top best retailers in US.

"In order to increase our presence & offerings in the US market, we launched a stunning new bridal collection of special cut diamond jewelry called Chimera. We also enhanced product offerings in our existing brands. The collection was well received by the retailers who visited the show.

"At Kama we have always worked towards offering innovative designs and trendsetting jewelry to every discerning customer & our offering at the show was only a reiteration of the same."

The mosaic-like setting in every Chimera bridal ring is crafted with outstanding artistry, using multiple diamonds cut to exacting standards to recreate the magic of a massive solitaire. Each piece of this exquisite line uses special cut diamonds set closely making the center look twice as large.

The expertly crafted centers that recreate the magic of a solitaire are available at nearly half the price of the equivalent single stone making the collection appealing to customers who are looking for value in diamond intensive designs.

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Conference Will Focus on Asian Jewelry

The Rubin Museum of Art and the Association for the Study of Jewelry & Related Arts will partner to offer a one-day conference, Asian Jewelry & Related Arts. The conference will take place on September 20 at the Rubin Museum during New York’s Fall Asia Week.

This is the first time a conference on jewelry has been offered during Asia Week New York. The conference will offer a wide range of topics from experts in their field ranging from cutting edge technology in dating ancient gold jewelry from China to jewel-like fabrics traditionally used in Asian countries.

The array of speakers will offer an opportunity to learn about diverse aspects of the history and beauty of ancient and antique jewelry, materials and techniques, and other related subjects pertaining to a number of Asian countries.

Conference speakers include: 

  • Keynote Speaker: Katherine Anne Paul, PhD,Curator, The Newark Museum, Asian Arts Department: Material and Spiritual Riches: Jewels and Jewelry in Himalayan Arts 
  • Eric Hoffman, Jade Researcher and Writer: Jade, The Precious Stone of Heaven 
  • Michael Teller/Melanie Roy, TK Antiques: Scientifically Documenting Asian Antiquities: The Dating of Gold
  • Robert Mintz, Ph.D,Chief Curator, Walters Art Museum: Use and Re-Use of Japanese Lacquer for Decorative Arts
  • Cecilia Levin, Ph.D, Researcher: Glittering Emblems, The Design Schema and Significance of Ancient Javanese Gold
  • Margaret Duda, Author and Researcher: Chinese Silver Adornment in the Qing Dynasty and After
  • Susan Ollemans, Susan Ollemans Oriental Art: 18th and 19th Century Indian Mughal Jewelry 
  • Emily Banis Stoehrer, Ph.D candidate, Assistant Professor at Fisher College, Boston: All That Glitters: Precious and Jewel-like Materials from Bengal to Bali

The conference will take place on Saturday, September 20, from 9 a.m.–5 p.m. at the Rubin Museum of Art, 150 West 17th Street, New York City. An optional Study Day will be offered on September 21, which will include brunch, a tour of the Rubin Museum, a tour of the Asian Galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and afternoon tea. 

Tickets for each day are $350 and are available at rubinmuseum.org/asianjewelry.

 

Details for both the conference and Study Day, and information on how to register can also be found at www.jewelryconference.com or by emailing elyse@jewelryandrelatedarts.com.

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India Forms Diamond Monitoring Committee

In the recent past, a few cases of undisclosed mixing of synthetic diamonds with natural diamonds were reported. In view of India’s position as a leading diamond hub and in order to eliminate this undisclosed mixing and ensure confidence of the international trade in the Indian industry, the Natural Diamond Monitoring Committee was formed. 

NDMC consists of representatives from the GJEPC, BDB, GJF, GIA and other Trade Bodies in the Gems & Jewellery sector. NDMC has in the past few months undertaken a study to effectively address the issue of undisclosed mixing.

This has been one of the most comprehensive studies ever undertaken in the sector – spanning eight countries across three continents over a period of nearly four months and incorporating inputs from a wide variety of players including manufacturers, retailers, equipment firms, testing laboratories, global trade bodies, legal firms, consultants and industry experts. 

Based on this study, NDMC has developed solutions that will ensure fair trade practices to curb the issue of undisclosed mixing and ensure full and fair disclosure to the purchaser.

Contrary to some previous publications, our research shows that the current production technology, gem-quality synthetic diamond rough production is less than 350,000 Carats compared to over 125 Mn Carats of natural gem-quality rough. With this production quantity, we find that undisclosed mixing today has a fairly small scale.

Today, several firms including De Beers, GIA, and HRD etc. make different models of machines ranging from portable standalone desktop machines to large spectroscopy-based machinery to segregate diamonds. All these machines are highly effective and have been in use for several years within the Trade – though not on a systematic basis.

Given this landscape, we have developed solutions to safeguard against accidental or intentional mixing. Our solutions have covered four key solution areas – Regulatory, Commercial, Process and Technology.

Regulatory: These solutions will target greater traceability of goods in the value chain and penalties for those found to be indulging in undisclosed mixing. The two most significant solutions we have proposed are to firstly have a more granular HS Code system to track the global flow of synthetic diamonds and secondly, to empower and encourage Trade bodies to make modifications in their Articles and Constitutions to clearly outline undisclosed mixing as an unfair practice and to outline and implement strict penal measures against players found to be indulging in such activities. Apart from these measures, we also propose a change to the Consumer Protection Act to give greater protection to purchasers.

Commercial: These solutions have been designed to ensure greater accountability and trust within Trade. We have worked with WFDB on these mechanisms and already put in place suggested standard declarations to accompany Trade invoices globally, which would provide clarity to buyers on the nature of the goods being purchased.

Process: We have designed solutions for players to minimize potential for undisclosed mixing. These include rigorous testing protocols for goods as well as a thorough KYC process in line with the Prevention of Money-Laundering Rules. These measures will be supported by putting in place adequate machines for testing and systems for tracking and storing all transaction data – including test logs and invoices – and accompanying declarations.

Technology: NDMC will take the lead in driving more sophisticated, rapid and scalable technology to assist players in segregation of diamonds. To this end, a centralized testing laboratory has already been set up within the BDB premises which can be utilized by any player wishing to test parcels or individual diamonds. More such laboratories will be setup soon. In parallel, NDMC will drive technology symposiums, seminars and interactions with technology players at an individual and group level to rapidly drive forward scalable and affordable solutions for the industry.

We are confident that these measures will go a long way in safeguarding the interests of all value-chain participants, each of whom has a large stake in ensuring a transparent ecosystem. Moving forward, the NDMC will also continuously monitor solution implementation. 

We have involved Trade bodies and players at a global level in all our efforts and have outlined key actions that each stakeholder will undertake in implementing these solutions. The final report containing details of these solutions can be found on the GJEPC website.

 

We would like to thank all those players who have cooperated in this study – including GJEPC, BDB, WFDB, AWDC, GIA, GJF, MDMA and also several players in the natural and synthetic diamonds ecosystems that have been forthcoming, cooperative and supportive of our initiative.

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Recruiter Registration Now Open for GIA’s New York Fair Now Open

Gem and jewelry companies seeking skilled and motivated talent are invited to participate in the Gemological Institute of America New York Jewelry Career Fair on Monday, July 28 at the Javits Center.

The acclaimed recruiting event will feature a panel discussion, one-on-one career coaching, and hiring opportunities for various careers within the field. Recruiter registration is available online now at www.gia.edu/career-fair-employer-registration-form.

 

Employers interested in recruiting at this year’s Career Fair can sign up by using the registration form, contacting GIA’s Career Services office at (800) 421-7250 ext. 4100, or emailing kimberly.overlin@gia.edu.

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Las Vegas Antigue Jewelry and watch Show Boosts Attendance

The Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show has reported a 25 percent increase in opening day attendance, 11 percent cumulatively, at the May 29-June 1 event.

Held at the Paris Hotel & Casino during Las Vegas’ Jewelry Week, the four day tradeshow featured the largest selection of antique jewelry and watches from nearly 400 dealers. The event is hosted by U.S. Antique Shows, the world’s leading producer of indoor antique shows.

“The improvements made to this year’s show was largely based on feedback we received from our exhibitors,” says Dan Darby, Emerald Expositions vice president and U.S. Antique Shows general manager.

“The redesign of the show floor, attendee badging system and thoroughly vetting attendees who can access the show proved successful. We received an overwhelming amount of positive remarks from both dealers and attendees who felt that the new show floor design was easier to navigate and shop. As a result of these incredibly successful changes, we had more than 90 percent of dealers renew their booths for 2015.”

Maurice Moradof, owner of Yafa Signed Jewels, has participated in U.S. Antique Shows events for 25 years. “This year, in Las Vegas, we sold many significant pieces to interested buyers. The Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show continues to improve year after year demonstrating that the antique jewelry market is very strong.”

Another highlight this year was J.A.B.W.C.J. LTD London’s 1658 antique silk on wood jewelry box, the oldest item on the 2014 show floor. Acquired from a private family in Italy, there are only two known jewelry boxes dated from this period in the United Kingdom. 

In its 18th year, the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show has consistently hosted not only incredible merchandise from all eras of jewelry history, but also industry recognized dealers who attract clientele from across the globe. The increased attendance was a standout feature at this year’s show as many dealers commented on the strong buying power that was ongoing each day of the show.

“We haven’t stopped the whole time and sold everything from one carat to 3.5 carat diamonds!” exclaims owner of National Estate Jewelers Barry Blank.

National Estate Jewelers has been family owned and operated for four generations and Blank has always actively participated in U.S. Antique Shows events. “We’ve worked with U.S. Antique Shows for more than 29 years. The Las Vegas show has been an excellent opportunity for us to showcase our pieces and we have a great location on the show floor.” 

Charterhouse & Sons Vice President John Greiner has also had great success this year in Las Vegas. “It has been very busy for us and there has been lots of trading, selling and buying. U.S. Antique Shows always produces reputable shows and attracts established dealers and serious buyers to each of their events. It makes it very easy for us to conduct sales and develop new client relationships.”

 

U.S. Antique Shows now produces nine shows nationally. The next show scheduled is the New York Antique Jewelry & Watch Show, July 25-28, 2014 at the Metropolitan Pavilion.

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TracTech Wins First JCK Shark Tank Event

TracTech Systems won the first-ever JCK Shark Tank, based on the hit ABC television series. 

JCK chose TracTech, along with five other innovative jewelry industry companies, as finalists to deliver a seven-minute presentation introducing their products. 

The event took place as JCK Las Vegas kicked off on May 29th at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. A full audience was in attendance, who then voted for the winner based on the presentations. 

The exhibition was performed by TracTech CEO Keven Peck and Chief IT Officer Meir Strobel.

Both Keven and Meir are beyond excited they won, but more importantly, happy to deliver the message about TracTech’s revolutionary RFID system to the jewelry industry.

“We truly believe our system will change the way the industry runs”, explained Keven via a celebratory phone call to his excited staff, “TracTech will save people time, money, and a lot of frustration, and it’s my pleasure to showcase this to my peers.”

TracTech Systems is the leader in RFID inventory management technology with an array of jewelry tags, printers, and readers. 

TracTech is the first system of its kind within the industry, and was created in close partnership with jewelry veterans.

 

To learn more about TracTech, visit www.TracTechSystems.com.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for June 5

Price changes were again relatively few and far between in round diamonds, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report, with rises and declines fairly evenly balanced.

Meanwhile, in fancy shape diamonds, there were again many changes, for the most part positive.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.23-0.29 cts J / VS1 -3.2% to $1,500 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts J / VVS2-SI1 rises of 2-3%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts K / I1 -5% to $950 p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.50-0.69 cts F / IF +3% to $5,200 p/c

  • 0.70-0.79 cts a wide range of changes

  • 0.80-0.89 cts many declines

  • 0.90-0.99 cts mostly rising

  • 1.00-1.24 cts M / I1 +4.6% to $2,300 p/c

  • 1.25-1.49 cts four changes, two rising and two declining

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts H / IF-2.9% to $29,800 p/c

  • 4 cts unchanged

  • 5 cts G / VS1 -3% to $42,700 p/c



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / IF +3.1% to $1,650 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / VS2 +3.2% to $1,600 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.40-0.44 cts two changes, both upwards

  • 0.45-0.49 cts I / SI1 +3.7% to $1,400 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts many rises in better colors and clarities

  • 0.70-0.79 cts a range of increases

  • 0.80-0.89 cts F-I / I1 declines of 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts three changes, all upwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts F / I1-I2 rises of 3-5%

  • 1.50-1.99 cts D / SI2-I2 rises of 2-3%

  • 2 cts G / SI1 +2.8% to $11,000 p/c

  • 3 cts J / SI1 +2.6% to $7,800 p/c

  • 4 cts G-I / SI2 rises of 2-3%

  • 5 cts L-N / VS1 rising by 2-3%

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for June 12

There were relatively few changes again in round diamonds, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report, with slightly more rises than declines.

Fancy shape diamonds again posted many price rises as they have done for the past several weeks.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts just two changes, both downwards

  • 0.23-0.29 cts I / SI1 -4.0% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts J / VS1 +2.7% to $1,900 p/c

  • 0.40-0.44 cts M-N / SI1 rising by 4.0%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts unchanged

  • 0.50-0.69 cts J / I2 +5% to $1,050 p/c

  • 0.70-0.79 cts unchanged

  • 0.80-0.89 cts no changes

  • 0.90-0.99 cts unchanged

  • 1.00-1.24 cts L-M / I1 declines of 3-4%

  • 1.25-1.49 cts L-M / I1 rising by 3-4%

  • 2 cts just one change, downwards

  • 3 cts two changes, one up, one down

  • 4 cts D / SI1 +3.1% to $29,700 p/c

  • 5 cts E-H / SI1 rises of 3%

 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / VVS1 +3.2% to $1,600 p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts F / VS2-SI1 rises of 3-5%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts G-I / SI1 increases of 3-4%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts two changes, both rising

  • 0.45-0.49 cts J / SI1 +4.4% to $1,200 p/c

  • 0.50-0.69 cts mostly rising

  • 0.70-0.79 cts just one change, an increase

  • 0.80-0.89 cts two rising, two falling

  • 0.90-0.99 cts G-H / I1 rises of 3%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts G-H / I1 increases of 3%

  • 1.50-1.99 cts unchanged

  • 2 cts no changes

  • 3 cts J-N / SI1 rises of 2-3%

  • 4 cts unchanged

  • 5 cts no changes

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Albert Robinson is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Albert has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Diamond Empowerment Fund Hosts Gala


Phyllis Bergman – D.E.F. Board President and CEO Mercury Ring; Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis Jr. - D.E.F. Co-Founder and Senior Strategic Advisor; Chaka Khan; Russell Simmons – D.E.F. Co-Founder and Chairman

The Diamond Empowerment Fund brought together a unique mix of the international diamond jewelry industry, government officials from diamond producing nations, government dignitaries and celebrities on May 29.  

In D.E.F’s first U.S. based gala event, the organization raised over $1 million dollars to benefit its global mission. D.E.F supports initiatives and programs that help diamond communities throughout the world.

Guests were treated to an intimate performance by music icon Chaka Khan while mingling with celebrities including Jaime King, Otis Williams of the Temptations, Denise Nicholas and pop music artist Mair.

The emcee for the evening was Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., civil rights leader and D.E.F. advisor. 

D.E.F. presented the 2014 Global Diamond Industry Achievement Award to His Excellency, the Honorable President Ian Khama and the Government of the Republic of Botswana, the largest producer of diamonds by value in the World.

Accepting on behalf of the Republic of Botswana, the Honorable Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources Kitso Mokaila stated, “Our mineral wealth is a catalyst for improving the lives of our people. We will always associate with the Diamond Empowerment Fund for the many initiatives they take to ensure countries like ours are able to do what is necessary for its people”.   

While presenting the award to Minister Mokaila, Michael Barnes, CEO of Signet Jewelers Limited stated “Signet has been a supporter of D.E.F. since its inception in 2007 and we are committed to engaging our peers and our suppliers in D.E.F’s industry-wide initiative of corporate social responsibility. Our customers expect this of us. Our employees and others expect this of us. But quite frankly, we expect this of ourselves. We need to do this because it is the right thing to do.”

The program was opened with welcoming remarks s by D.E.F’s co-founders, Russell Simmons and Philippe Mellier, CEO The De Beers Group of Companies.  “I am pleased to welcome the industry leaders to Diamonds in the Sky Las Vegas. Former President Nelson Mandela encouraged us to establish D.E.F to empower people in diamond communities throughout the world. We are here tonight to celebrate that a diamond equals love”, said Russell Simmons. 

Philippe Mellier reaffirmed this emotional connection, “the diamond moment when a man makes a commitment to a woman that will last a lifetime, drives everything we do. De Beers and Forevermark believe deeply in the power of diamonds to transform communities and build countries and through our five decades of partnership with Botswana we know first hand how diamonds can be harnessed to strengthen a democracy, elevate a people and secure a country’s future.  D.E.F. was founded on this premise and as a founding member we continue this legacy of support and partnership through the Forevermark Promise Scholars Program”. 

Phyllis Bergman, D.E.F’s President of the Board stated, “Tonight, the monies that we raise will be used not only to enable D.E.F to support our existing beneficiaries, to add new ones & to insure D.E.F's growth, but to continue to be a progressive and socially conscious organization focused on supporting the good initiatives carried on in all the countries in the world that benefit from the diamond and diamond jewelry business. We will bring this message to consumers globally under our new ‘Diamonds Do Good’ platform”. 

Bruno Sané, Global Marketing Director for Rio Tinto Diamonds, introduced D.E.F’s new Global Diamonds Do Good video. Bruno Sané highlighted the importance of D.E.F’s new initiative in communicating to consumers how diamonds have a positive legacy. “We are also here as a sign of commitment that together we will communicate to consumers that diamonds are a global force for good that make a lasting difference for the communities in which we mine, in which we manufacture and sell diamonds.”

Premier Presenting Sponsors of Diamonds in the Sky Las Vegas included Rio Tinto, Signet Jewelers Limited (Kay Jewelers, Jared the Galleria of Jewelry, Zales Jewelers), and The De Beers Group of Companies.  

Joining them were Premier Partner Sponsor Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited, and Premier Patron Sponsors KGK Group, Le Vian Group and Tiffany & Co. Special guests included Alrosa, represented by Vice-President Andrey Polyakov and Dominion Diamonds represented by CEO Robert Gannicott. D.E.F’s Empowerment Circle Partners include; Forevermark, Dalumi Group, Malca-Amit, Brilliant Earth, Exelco (Tolkowsky Diamonds), Leo Schachter Diamonds (The Leo Diamond), Sarine, and Tiffany & Co.

For more information, see www.diamondempowerment.org.

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Breitling Contest Offers Trip to Europe with Jet Team

Breitling has announced an online video contest for Breitling enthusiasts with a grand prize of a ride of a lifetime – a trip to Europe to fly with the Breitling Jet Team in Breitling L-39C Albatros.

The winner will fly with the Jet Team in their home base of Dijon, France and take an exclusive private tour of the Breitling Chronométrie in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland.

The Breitling Jet Team is the largest aerobatic display team of its kind; comprised of seven L-39C Albatros jets that can reach speeds of up to 565 mph. The Team has flown across 36 countries all over the world, and will be coming to the US for the first time in 2015. 

To enter, fans can submit an original video that best captures the spirit of aviation via the Breitling Facebook page by June 12. The winner will be chosen by the Breitling Facebook Community. 

To view a video on the contest, please click here.

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Simon G. Soiree Brings Out the Stars


Brittny Gastineau and Heather McDonald (wearing David¹s Bridal) at Simon G Soiree

Simon G. Jewelry celebrated style and design with their annual Simon G. Soiree at the Four Seasons Hotel in Las Vegas on Saturday, May 31. 

Celebrity attendees included Jaime King, Chris Noth, Cheryl Burke, Mark Ballas, Brittny & Lisa Gastineau, Melissa Rycroft and Tye Strickland, Heather McDonald, and Gilles Marini, who were all seen wearing their favorite Simon G. Jewelry pieces, mingled with the crowd and sipped on specialty drinks before watching a special poolside stage performance by Michael McDonald.

The night of festivities kicked off with comedian and host Heather McDonald, who looked gorgeous in her David's Bridal dress and Simon G. jewelry, taking the stage to welcome the guests. Heather roused the crowd with her hilarious impressions and sketches, which can be seen through new show, Lipshtick at The Venetian Hotel in Vegas on Friday, July 18th. Guests were treated to delicious cocktails and bites while viewing a poolside showcase of Simon G.'s latest pieces.  

Dancing with the Stars co-stars Cheryl Burke and Mark Ballas danced up a storm to the tunes of Michael McDonald classics like "What a Fool Believes" and "Minute by Minute". Cheryl looked radiant in a David's Bridal peplum little-black-dress and Simon G Jewels.

 

New parents Melissa Rycroft & Tye Strickand enjoyed a night out while gushing about their kids and newest addition, one-month-old Thomas.

 

 

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AGA Seeks Nominations for Bonanno Excellence Awards

The Accredited Gemologists Association is seeking nominations for the 2015 Antonio C. Bonanno Excellence in Gemology Award. This prestigious award recognizes major contributions made in the field of gemology.

Nominees for the Antonio C. Bonanno Award must have made a significant contribution to the gemological field, i.e., in research, education, etc., or defended and upheld gemological standards in a way that has benefited the larger gem and jewelry community. Past winners include leading research gemologists from world renowned laboratories, educators, market analysts, and developers of innovative software solutions for the gemological field.

The call for nominations is open to the international gem trade. Membership in the AGA is not required to nominate, or be nominated for the Bonanno Award.

A valid nomination will explain why the proposed nominee should receive the award. The nomination should describe the current or past contribution(s) or accomplishment(s) that have inspired the nomination. Please provide specific examples in support of your candidate. Nominations should be made in 250 words or less.

Nominations may be submitted using the forms on the AGA website, accreditedgemologists.org/award.

The deadline to submit a nomination is July 15, 2014.

The winner is selected by the members of the AGA in the fall. The award consists of a specially commissioned bronze plaque, along with a specially commissioned medallion and check for $2,000 US.

Winners are honored each year in Tucson, Arizona, at the Gala Awards Ceremony and Dinner-Dance held at the conclusion of the AGA Gemological Conference. The 2015 AGA Tucson Conference will be held Wednesday February 4, 2015 at the Marriott University Park Hotel.

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Jewelers for Children Raises $2.9 Million

On June 1, Jewelers for Children held the 16th Annual Facets of Hope event in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.

The charity announced that $ 2.9 million had been raised to support their charity partners in the year ahead and that since 1999, more than $45 million had been donated on behalf of the industry to help children in need.

“JFC is the industry’s charity and by being involved, you are helping us make a difference in the lives of children and their families,” said Ruth Batson, JFC board chair. “Over the past 16 years, we have touched the lives of so many children and their families.”

The evening began with a cocktail reception, followed by dinner and the program.

During the program, the organization recognized Mike Barnes, CEO of Sterling, Inc. and Glenn and Susan Rothman of Hearts On Fire. Guests heard from St. Jude patient Ellen and her mom Ann, as well as Judy Tudor, representing the National CASA Association.

Batson announced that the charity was pledging $750,000 to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, $725,000 to Make-A-Wish America, $600,000 to the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, $600,000 to the National CASA Association, $ 100,000 to Make-A-Wish India and $ 25,000 to the Santa-America Fund. The organization is also setting aside $ 100,000 to reward in a local grant, social media voting campaign to be held later this year.

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Day’s Jewelers Appoints Dorcas Riley New VP of Finance

Dorcas (Benner) Riley has joined Day’s Jewelers as its Vice President of Finance.

After graduating from Colby College and completing her accounting education at Thomas College, Riley began her career with the public accounting firm Ernst & Young in Portland ME.

She later moved back to central Maine and served as chief financial officer for several central Maine companies, including PFG NorthCenter Foodservice and Kennebec Savings Bank, before joining the Day’s Jewelers team.

“Bringing Dorcas Riley onto the Day’s Jewelers team, as our new VP of Finance, was a critical decision for us,” said Day’s owner Kathy Corey. “She brings a wealth of financial talent and

experience in addition to her strong logic and strategic mindset.

 

“Dorcas embraces the values that have guided our company for 100 years. We appreciate her enthusiasm and her ability to bring positive approaches to problem solving.”

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GIA Board Focuses on Certifications, Synthetics

Gemological Institute of America’s Board of Governors met May 18 and 19 in New York City for the first of its two scheduled 2014 meetings and formally inaugurated the Institute’s new laboratory and education facility in the International Gem Tower.

In addition to discussing regular business, the board focused on the challenges posed by unprecedented demand for GIA’s identification and grading services, and growing industry concerns about synthetic and treated gemstones.

To address the elevated service time resulting from high demand for GIA laboratory services, the governing body of the public-benefit institute directed GIA’s management to examine the potential for adding a diamond grading facility in Surat, the center of India’s globally-important diamond manufacturing industry, as well as affirming its support for GIA’s expanded hiring program and other measures.

The board also increased funding for continued research into the detection of synthetic and treated gems, and for further innovation to speed the diamond grading process. 

The Board identified three factors contributing to the exceptionally high demand for GIA grading reports:

  • Many banks appear to be requesting grading reports to substantiate loans
  • Concerns about undisclosed synthetic diamonds have made effective screening, especially of smaller stones, much more important
  • An increase in consumer demand in developing markets for smaller stones with GIA grading reports

Speaking after the meeting, Chair of the GIA Board of Governors John Green said, “Over the past 18 months, GIA has seen a dramatic increase in demand for laboratory services, especially for diamonds weighing less than one-half carat. To address the demand-driven longer service times, particularly in the increasingly important Indian manufacturing sector, GIA will study the feasibility of expanding our laboratory presence to Surat, bringing grading services that much closer to our clients.” 

The board increased funding for GIA’s research programs. The Institute’s team of 38 full-time research scientists, including 20 with doctoral degrees, focuses its efforts on developing the tools and techniques to identify synthetic and treated diamonds, colored stones and pearls. The research team is working to expand the capability of GIA’s DiamondCheck system and to develop technology and processes to further accelerate the grading process.

 

Addressing representatives of the New York gem and jewelry industry gathered to mark the opening of GIA’s new facility in the city’s Diamond District on Monday, May 19, Green said, “This fantastic new space brings together the three pillars of GIA – our comprehensive, long-term research efforts, our industry-leading laboratory services, and the most recognized gem and jewelry education programs in the world – all in one fabulous location.” GIA moved its laboratory into the 80,000 square foot, three-floor facility in mid-March; gemology and jewelry design classes started in the new location on May 27.

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India’s Gem & Jewellery Council Targets the Americas

India’s Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council has announced a major, new, multi-level business development campaign focused on the U.S., Canadian and South American markets.

The purpose of the campaign is to reinvogorate, strengthen and expand GJEPC’s business development efforts and build trusted relationships between India’s key jewelry industry companies and individuals and their counterparts in these American markets.

India’s gem & jewellery exports to USA stood at US$ 4.79 bn in 2013 as compared to US$ 4.03 bn in 2012 indicating an increase year on year from 11 percent in 2012 to 13 percent in 2013. What is noteworthy is majority of the US leading traders are serviced by Indian manufacturers reinstating India’s commitment to produce the one of the most exquisite and desired jewellery pieces.

First, the Council is setting up a series of in-depth Business Development Conferences so the GJEPC-India and its colleagues in the Americas will have opportunities to meet in person, discuss issues and find solutions.

Next, the groups will work on developing “best practices” directed towards today’s rapidly changing business landscape. The third step is to create an atmosphere that is continually replenishing and reinvigorating vendor/client relations with face-to-face meetings and social events designed to create new ideas and engender even stronger business partnerships and personal ties. 

Fourth, the BDCs will let both groups listen to important and relevant keynote topics presented for thoughtful discussions between the global colleagues as they work to build new and profitable economic bridges and enhance personal relationships. 

Additionally, the Council plans to sponsor additional activities that will support and boltster this work as the campaign goes forward.

According to GJEPC–India Chairman Vipul Shah,“We know that the U.S., Canadian and South American markets are uniquely important to our Indian gem and jewelry industry. India is one of the leading and preferred importing and sourcing destination for these regions when it comes to gems and jewelry. We look forward to meeting our colleagues from the Americas face-to-face to talk about all aspects of the gem and jewelry trade and how we can better work together to the greater success of all.”

The Council plans to hold several face-to-face business development meetings in Phase One of a three-year-long campaign. Besides these key meetings, the Council will host ancillary events to support campaign activities. 

According to Shah, the first meeting will be a four-day event called the “2014 Indo/U.S. Business Development Conference” (BDC), to be held in Chicago on Sept. 5-8. 

Participants will hammer out new and better ways to work together in all aspects of the gem and jewelry trade, including manufacturing, design, production, gem and jewelry material acquisition and retail marketing .

Shah said, “This September BDC is the first such event held in the USA. For us, this is a significant outreach program to the Western Hemisphere, not only looking at our important markets, but including our colleagues, clients and competitors. In today’s world, change is constant, and we hope BDCs, such as the one upcoming in Chicago, and the many supporting activities we have planned, will make sure India’s gem and jewellery industry is tied firmly into the world’s trends, technologies and capabilities.”

“Indian business community are one of the frontrunners in following ethical business practices through various CSR activities they carry out to support social causes including adopting ‘No Child Labour’ Policy. GJEPC through its strong nework and being a responsible KP member has propogated and ensured that the Diamonds engaged in the trade are conflict free”, Mr. Shah added

GJEPC Vice Chairman Pankaj Parekh added, “We are looking forward to developing close business and personal ties with people throughout the Americans. Traveling to our important markets will help us learn more about the people there, and how to strengthen and grow many wide-ranging business interests together.”

Parekh said that the BDC will “share information into the Council’s ‘Buyer/Seller Matching Initiative’, and showcase the beauty, artistry and production values of gorgeous Indian jewelry.” 

 

Parekh added that they expect to see 15 manufacturer/exporters from India with 15 to 20 companies from North America participating at the Chicago event. 

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New Gumuchian Collection Highlights Bees

Debuting in Las Vegas this year at the JCK show on May 30th is Gumuchian’s “B” Collection, a suite of apis-inspired jewels created to support the world’s declining honeybee population.

A portion of the proceeds from the collection, the amount of which has not yet been determined, will be donated to support HoneyLove.org, a non-profit which supports urban beekeeping and home gardens. 

According to recent studies, including those by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, one in every three bites of food consumed in the United States is either directly or indirectly pollinated by bees.

“I have never been afraid of bees. I think they’re wonderful” said Patricia Gumuchian, who was inspired to design the collection after reading numerous articles about the effects that a declining honeybee population would have on the environment.

“I look around our office of women and think about the worker bees – who are the female bees – and how valuable they are to our livelihood. Our family gatherings and holidays largely center on all types of foods. What would happen if these things just went away? The effects could be detrimental. We need to change what’s going on.”

 

The capsule collection, offered in 18k gold, includes both link and cuff bracelets, earrings, pendants, rings and five different bee-related charms, and suggested retail prices start at $1,400. “Many of our collections are inspired by nature,” said Vice President of Sales, Myriam Gumuchian, “but this aspect of nature didn’t just inspire the designs, it also inspired us to be part of something bigger.”

 The “B” collection by Gumuchian will be available at booth P-23 in the Prestige Promenade at the JCK show. 

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Jewelry Coach Taps David Peters

The Jewelry Coach has appointed David Peters to the position of chief learning officer. Peters will manage all content development and delivery efforts as well as work directly with jewelry retailers to develop customized business improvement and performance management programs.

Most recently, Peters served as director of education and industry relations for Jewelers of America, where his areas of responsibility included education development and delivery, member benefit development and jewelry trade relations.  Prior to his over 14 years at JA, Peters spent seven years as an instructor at the Gemological Institute of America and more than 16 years in the retail jewelry industry.

Peters holds a Master of Science in education administration with a concentration in educational technology, a Bachelor of Arts in music, and is a Graduate Gemologist.

Peters comments, “I am thrilled to be a part of The Jewelry Coach team, and I look forward to helping develop and grow their outstanding education and training offerings. I am very fortunate to be joining such a progressive organization – a company completely in sync with the training needs of today’s professional jewelry retailer.”

 

“David’s wealth of experience and industry knowledge has already made him a key addition to The Jewelry Coach family”, says The Jewelry Coach CEO and founder, Pat Henneberry. “He shares our values and our focus on innovation, and he places the same strong emphasis as we do on the customer experience. He has shown himself to be an extraordinary leader throughout his career, and we are very fortunate to find someone of David’s caliber to fulfill this role.”

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Designer Ahluwalia Unveils Expanded Forevermark Collection

 Forevermark US President Charles Stanley, Forevermark CEO Stephen Lussier, Waris Ahluwalia, and De Beers group of companies CEO Phillipe Mellier

Designer Waris Ahluwalia attended a private cocktail reception hosted by the De Beers group of companies at THE Hotel at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas Wednesday to announce his expanded Forevermark Diamond Collection.

Launched in October 2013, the Hour of Waris for Forevermark Diamond Collection has expanded to 20 pieces, featuring four design collections: Drop, Lantern, Compass, and Southern Star.

All designs in the collection are inspired by Ahluwalia's recent trip to De Beers group locations in South Africa and Botswana to explore the journey of a Forevermark diamond and to experience the way these responsibly sourced diamonds benefit the communities from which they originate.

 

The House of WARIS for Forevermark Collection with be sold and manufactured exclusively by Forevermark Manufacturer H. J. Namdar (Booth LUX1303).

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Sarine Partners with RapNet

Sarine Technologies has announced cooperation with Rapaport's RapNet Diamond Trading Network to provide Sarine Loupe imagery on polished diamonds showcased for sale on their industry-standard website.

Rapaport's RapNet web-based platform has been enhanced to optionally provide Sarine Loupe imagery (along with GIA’s inclusion plotting and proportions sketch) in an integrative and seamless manner, providing unique visual information that will empower online trade.

The new Sarine Loupe imagery allows potential buyers to visually inspect a polished diamond offered for sale, as never possible before. As an embedded new feature of RapNet's upgraded user interface, the Sarine Loupe may be viewed subsequent to the diamond being scanned at a Sarine service center, or on-site by the seller, on a pay-per-stone basis.

The imagery provides various levels of visualization, setting a new standard of information, transparency, enabling more confident and informed trade. The different visualization levels are:

  • Table view image – a static image of a diamond table-up, to readily decide if the diamond is of interest.
  • Impression Mode – simulated video imagery of the diamond as it rotates and tilts on the screen, allowing an understanding of the diamond's appearance and its main characteristics
  • Inspection Mode – the diamond can be manually rotated and viewed from different angles and axes from virtually any angle top to bottom and rotated 360 degrees for detailed inspection. This capability, not provided by any other available imagery system, provides the ability to fully garnish an understanding of the stone's imperfections, their reflections throughout the stone, the details of the faceting, the girdle, naturals, etc. The inspection also allows an additional magnification ability of the polished diamond to nearly microscopic inspection levels.

We are also working to further enhance the system so that additional layers of impression will be provided.

Martin Rapaport, Chairman of the Rapaport Group commented, "This integration of Sarine's new imaging technology on the RapNet Diamond Trading Network will make it possible for buyers to see diamonds over the internet. It will significantly improve transparency and efficiency in the diamond trade as it enables buyers and sellers across the world to transact diamonds online with greater assurance of quality. We congratulate Sarine on this initiative and are delighted to be working with them implementing new technology that improves the diamond trade."

Uzi Levami, Sarine Group's CEO, commented, "The cooperation with RapNet will significantly increase the exposure of Sarine Loupe to buyers around the world on the most popular online network for polished diamonds. We are, as we have previously commented, striving in different ways to support the diamond trade, especially online, as we strongly believe in its potential for advancing the industry and empowering its various players.

“We are excited by the endorsement by Rapaport, and their decision to be the launch platform to adopt this essential innovation, and to seamlessly provide this information to their customers. We believe that this will create an objective means by which to make informed decisions online about buying the stones, without being encumbered by the inefficiencies that are currently part and parcel of the trading process."

To see an example of Sarine Loupe imaging of a GIA certified 2.5 carat round brilliant diamond, with Color H, Clarity VS1 and Excellent Cut, go to http://www.sarine.com/m2.php.

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GIA Names Brad Brooks-Rubin to New Post

Strengthening its commitment to bring benefits of the global gem and jewelry industry to producing communities, Gemological Institute of America has appointed Brad Brooks-Rubin to the newly-created position of global director of Development and Beneficiation.

Brooks-Rubin, the former Special Advisor for Conflict Diamonds in the U.S. Department of State, has extensive international experience working with industry, government and civil society on matters relating to conflict minerals and gems. He joins GIA’s development team and will work with nongovernmental organizations, trade groups and government agencies to further GIA’s beneficiation initiatives in gem producing regions.

“Brad’s extensive experience in international law, government and compliance combined with his commitment to promoting transparency in the gem and jewelry industry will contribute significantly to GIA’s beneficiation and economic development efforts in the nations and communities that are so important to the global trade. I’m very pleased to welcome Brad to GIA,” said Susan Jacques, the Institute’s president and CEO.

“As an independent, global public-benefit organization, GIA is in a unique position to foster sustainable development of local economic value in gem producing regions. I look forward to working with GIA’s stakeholders for the benefit of the ultimate consumer, and the people and communities who are such an important part of this industry,” said Brooks-Rubin.

Brooks-Rubin joins GIA from Holland & Hart LLP, where he counseled international clients on trade sanctions, export controls, and international trade laws and regulations.

He previously served as Special Advisor for Conflict Diamonds in the U.S. Department of State and as an Attorney Advisor for the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Brooks-Rubin is a recipient of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee’s Stanley Schechter Award and is a published author. He holds a Doctor of Law (JD) degree from Georgetown University Law Center and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington University in St. Louis.

For more information about GIA, visit the website at www.gia.edu.

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LUXURY Show Opens in Las Vegas

LUXURY, JCK Events' by-invitation-only show, has opened its doors to an exclusive group of retailers.

Celebrating its 15th year, the show boasts 230 exhibitors, including the designer brands of Elite Enclave, in an upscale, relaxed environment allowing for increased networking and maximized business. LUXURY takes place at Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, Four Seasons, and THE hotel through Monday, June 2nd.

The day began with a keynote address by The Jewelry Activist, Diane Warga-Arias, who spoke of bridging the gap between Fine and Fashion jewelry. "The way the consumer thinks of and shops for jewelry is evolving, and with that comes a new approach to how we present collections to the end consumer," noted Ms. Warga-Arias. "It's critical for retailers to push beyond their existing boundaries to meet the demands of this 'new' consumer in their stores."

John Tierney, Vice President for LUXURY, took the stage to announce the finalists of the inaugural Retailer of the Year Award. Following the theme of the morning, the nominated retailers exemplified the best and brightest of the jewelry community, elevating jewelry's profile in their individual markets.

The five finalists are: Deville Fine Jewelry, Houston, TX; Harold Stevens Diamond and Jewelry Studio, San Diego, CA; Nettle's Fine Jewelry, Saint Augustine, FL; Occasions Fine Jewelry, Midland, TX; and Schmitt Jewelers, Phoenix, AZ. The industry now has until Wednesday evening to cast its vote via text messaging for the winner. The Retailer of the Year will be announced on Thursday morning at the LUXURY breakfast.

"The number of applications for consideration of Retailer of the Year were tremendous with over 50 stores submitting," explained Mr. Tierney. "It gave us an amazing, in-depth look at how extraordinary a job retailers across the country are doing to create the best experience for their consumers."

The event will focus on networking between exhibitors and retailers, highlighted during a series of events for all-access badge holders, to include daily breakfast presentations with speakers Diane Warga-Arias and Darcy Miller of Martha Stewart Weddings, catered luncheons, this evening's poolside gala and Michael Jackson ONE by Cirque du Soleil, Wednesday evening's 'Dine Out,' and nightly Late Night Lounge.

LUXURY exhibitors and retailers shared their thoughts at the close of Day 1. "After a successful first day, we're looking forward to a great week. The organization and new floor layout at LUXURY is superb," shared Shant Hovsepian, Danhov.

"Today consisted of a lot of meetings, a lot of writing and a lot of business being done on the show floor today," shared Lucien Lee, of Hale's Fine Jewelry, of South Carolina. "We spent a lot of money and look forward to coming back tomorrow to do it all over again."

LUXURY opens to all retailers on Friday and continues through June 2nd.

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Jewelers Mutual Honors Bob Carroll, Four Others

For more than 35 years, Bob Carroll of Robert G Carroll & Associates has been an independent agent of Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, and, last week he was recognized with the Legacy Award.

The award was presented for the very first time by Jewelers Mutual, before an audience of his agent peers, by Patrick Drummond, chief sales officer, and Darwin Copeman, president and CEO, at Jewelers Mutual's National Sales Conference.

"When people think of Jewelers Mutual, they think of people like Bob Carroll - agents who are passionate about the jewelry industry, know the business inside and out and understand the risks jewelers face every day," said Copeman. "He stands out among his peers for his commitment to loss prevention, his service to the jewelers in his area and his commitment to representing Jewelers Mutual."

Accepting the award, Carroll stated, "I'm stunned. Thank you to Jewelers Mutual and the support staff. I learned from all of you. I'm thankful that Jewelers Mutual has given me a grand opportunity to do something that I love and make a living at it at the same time. It's a great combination. I'm stunned."

Carroll has been a long-time advocate for jeweler safety and security, sharing loss prevention information with jewelers through "CrimeFax," a crime alert and loss prevention bulletin sent to a network of jewelers throughout the Southwest, as well as writing "The Best Policy" column in Southern Jewelry News and Mid-America Jewelry News on topics related to security, loss prevention, and jewelry insurance.

Carroll also serves on the board of the Oklahoma Jewelers Association, Arkansas Jewelers Association and Jewelers Executive Conference. In a related endeavor, Carroll serves on the Oklahoma Alarm and Locksmith Licensing Board, a gubernatorial appointment, and is the current Chair of that body. In 2009, Carroll was inducted into the Oklahoma Jewelers Hall of Fame. He began working with Jewelers Mutual in 1980 with the Thad Farmer Agency. In 1986, he set up his own independent agency.

Carroll lives in Edmond, Oklahoma with his wife Jean and is active in his local community serving on the board of YMCA Camp Classen, playing as principle cellist in the Oklahoma Community Orchestra, and volunteering for his church and other charities.

In other news from Jewelers Mutual, Bob Carroll joined Rick Franchi, Kent McClenahan, Karen Signorino and Rhea Van Hook as the first inductees to the new Agent Hall of Fame.

These five agents were selected because they demonstrate extensive experience in jewelers block insurance and long-term partnerships with Jewelers Mutual. The inaugural presentation was held among a group of agent peers during Jewelers Mutual's National Sales Conference, which draws together jewelers block agents from around the country and Canada.

"Jewelers Mutual agents are the leading jewelers block insurance experts, and our Hall of Fame inductees represent the best of the best," said Darwin Copeman, president and CEO of Jewelers Mutual.

"All five of our Agent Hall of Fame inductees have built incredible careers serving the jewelry industry and partnering with Jewelers Mutual. They are experienced, knowledgeable, passionate and loyal, and they should be proud of their success with Jewelers Mutual. We look forward to many more years of working together to help protect jewelers and the jewelry industry from the unexpected."

Members of the Agent Hall of Fame are recognized for their commitment to excellence in serving the jewelry industry and Jewelers Mutual's commercial policyholders. They are regarded by the company as trusted advisors, demonstrating outstanding expertise in the areas of underwriting and loss prevention. Many have also served as mentors to fellow agents.

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Kingswood’s Shows New Product, Gets Couture Show Recognition

The Kingswood Company, the world’s leading supplier of high-quality, private-label jewelry care products, has announced the addition of a new cleaning formula to their line.

The Kingswood Company’s Natural Jewelry Cleaner is an all-biological cleaner, which offers customers an eco-friendly jewelry cleaning option.

The product will be debuted at JCK Las Vegas at the end of the month and has been chosen as a competing product in the inaugural JCK Shark Tank Program.

In the company’s 55-year history, this is only the fourth formula to be introduced, joining Kingswood’s trade-secret Fine Jewelry Cleaner, Gentle Jewelry Cleaner and Silver Jewelry Cleaner jewelry cleaning formulas.

Sensing a demand in the Market, the company embarked on a research and development process which culminated in this innovative, all-biological, non-chemical jewelry cleaning formula, the only jewelry cleaner to be EPA listed. Like its predecessors, The Kingswood Company’s Natural Jewelry Cleaner will be available as a private-label product.

JCK Shark Tank pits six chosen products in a competition designed after the popular ABC TV program of the same name. The competition will be held on May 29 from 1 – 2 p.m., with participants offering a seven-minute presentation on the value of their product. The winner will be announced during the JCK Opening Ceremony on May 30 at 9 a.m.

The JCK Shark Tank judges chose The Kingswood Company to be a finalist “because its organic, non-toxic jewelry cleaner is a simple, on-trend and very important product for retailers who are more focused on running a sustainable business.”

“We believe that this formula fills a gap in the jewelry cleaner market,” explained Kristie Nicolosi, President and CEO of The Kingswood Company. “Other eco-friendly cleaners on the market quite frankly do not work well. Our Natural Jewelry Cleaner is not only ‘green’ but makes jewelry sparkle as well as the other fabulous cleaning formulas we offer.”

In other news from Kingswood, the company has been chosen by The Couture Show as its exclusive jewelry cleaner and the sponsor of the new Sparkle + Shine Lounge.

“We searched the world for the finest jewelry cleaning products to best represent the Couture brand,” said Gannon Brousseau, Show Director. “It is very exciting to share these outstanding jewelry care products with our exhibitors, knowing that they meet the same high standards as the jewelry and timepiece brands exhibited at Couture.”

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for May 22

There was a wide range of activity in smaller and medium-size goods with approximately even levels of rises and declines, but thin action among larger diamonds, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

Fancy shape diamonds again posted a large variety of changes which were mostly upwards, but with considerable numbers of decreases.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts just two changes, both downwards

  • 0.23-0.29 cts J / VS2 +3.6% to $1,450 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts E / VS1-VS2 rises of 2%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts E-G / IF rises of 2-3%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts many rises in lower colors and mid-clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts mostly rising

  • 0.70-0.79 cts E-H / I3 declines of 3-4%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts mostly declining

  • 0.90-0.99 cts D / IF +2.9% to $1,440 p/c

  • 1.00-1.24 cts F-G / SI1 rising by2%

  • 1.25-1.49 cts just two changes, one rising and one declining

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts no changes

  • 4 cts unchanged

  • 5 cts no changes



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts I-J / IF-VVS1 rises of 4-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts E-G / -SI1 declines of 4-5%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts manyrises

  • 0.40-0.44 cts K / IF +3.7% to $1,400 p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts many increases in top colors and clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts J / VS1-VS2 rising by 3%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts just one change, downwards

  • 0.80-0.89 cts I / SI3-I2 declines of 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts just one change, downwards

  • 1.00-1.24 cts unchanged

  • 1.50-1.99 cts two changes, both upwards

  • 2 cts I / VS1 +3.6% to $8,700 p/c

  • 3 cts justtwo changes, one up and one down

  • 4 cts F / I1 +3.3% to $6,200 p/c

  • 5 cts justtwo changes, one rising and one declining

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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GIA Announces JCK Show Schedule

Gemological Institute of America will host a series of special presentations, demos and much more at the JCK gem and jewelry show May 30 – June 2 at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.

From free in-booth presentations to education seminars to an exclusive sneak peek at the Institute’s Carlsbad museum exhibit, GIA’s booth at L99 is a not-to-miss stop at the 2014 JCK Las Vegas show. More details are available on the website at http://www.gia.edu/. Show highlights include:

 

GIA In-Booth Briefings

For the third consecutive year, GIA will host a series of free 20-minute in-booth briefings, where Institute experts shed light on some of the industry’s most relevant topics. The briefings will take place from Friday, May 30 through Monday, June 2 at booth L99. Topics include:   

•           Field Gemology in Sri Lanka, Brazil and China

•           The Latest on Synthetic Diamonds

•           Enhancing Your Online Presence

•           Jewelry Quality Assurance Benchmarks

 

Show Service Laboratory

Show attendees will have convenient access to gem identification and country-of-origin services through the GIA Show Service Laboratory. Expert GIA gemologists will accept gemstones at Palm G (Level 3 of Mandalay Bay Convention Center) Thursday through Sunday, May 29 – June 1 from 9 a.m. to 5p.m.; and Monday, June 2 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

 

The Beauty of Science: Museum Displays

For an exclusive taste of GIA’s Carlsbad exhibit “The Beauty of Science: Gems & Gemology Celebrates 80 Years, Featuring the Artistry of Harold and Erica Van Pelt,” show attendees can stop by booth L99 from May 30 – June 2. Stunning pieces of historic and gemological significance featured on three different covers of the Institute’s award-winning scientific journal will be displayed side-by-side with their iconic Van Pelt 

 

Education Seminars

Andy Lucas, GIA’s manager of field gemology and course development, will present two seminars at Banyan B. Tuition for each is $175. Previous gemological training and/or experience is recommended and pre-registration is required. To register, call 800-421-7250, ext. 4001 or email admissions@gia.edu.   

 

Identifying Diamond Treatments

Thursday, May 29, 9 to 11 a.m.

Attendees will learn about the most important diamond treatment processes currently used in the gemstone market. Through a combination of lecture and a hands-on lab, the seminar covers the nature and treatment identification of diamonds including, laser drilled, fracture filled, HPHT, irradiation and multiple treatment processes. Attendees will learn how to separate laser manufacturing remnants from treatments.

 

Colored Stone Treatment Update

Thursday, May 29, 1 to 3 p.m.

Attendees will learn about the most important treatment processes currently used in the gemstone market. Through a combination of lecture and hands-on lab, the seminar covers the nature and treatment identification of commercially important gemstones used in jewelry.

 

GIA Experts at Free Seminars

 

Update on Synthetic Diamonds

Friday, May 30, 10 to 11:15 a.m. at Tradewinds B

GIA’s Distinguished Research Fellow Dr. James Shigley will provide an update on GIA’s research into synthetic diamonds and will summarize how gemologists identify them. He will also introduce attendees to DiamondCheck™, GIA’s new device that accurately identifies colorless natural, untreated diamonds in the D-to-N range and refers diamonds that are potentially synthetic or treated for further examination.

 

Synthetic Diamond Disclosure Panel

Friday, May 30, 1 to 2:15 p.m. at Tradewinds A

Dr. Shigley will be part of a panel on synthetic diamond disclosure, discussing what should be done and what others in the industry are doing to better protect the public and the trade.

 

Educating the Next Generation of Jewelry Makers and Bench Jewelers Panel

Sunday, June 1, 1 to 2:15 p.m. at Tradewinds C

Mark Mann, GIA’s global director of Jewelry Manufacturing Arts, will be part of a panel discussing education for modern jewelry makers.

 

Alumni Bungalow at “JCK Rocks the Beach”

Sunday, June 1, 8:30 to 11 p.m.

 

The GIA Alumni Association is hosting Bungalow 2 at The Beach at Mandalay Bay during the “JCK Rocks the Beach” reception, featuring Grammy Award-winner Rob Thomas of Matchbox Twenty. Show attendees are encouraged to stop by to network and mingle with GIA alumni and industry members from across the globe. The event is open to all JCK badge holders; tickets will be distributed based on a first-come, first-served basis on Friday and Sunday at the show’s Ticket Centers.

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National Assn. of Jewelry Appraisers Will Meet in September

The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers has announced its 42nd Annual Winter ACE It Education Conference to be held in Rosemont IL on September 22-23, 2014. 

New this year will be the opportunity to attend the World of Gems IV Conference preceding NAJA in the same location. 

The appraisal organization dedicated exclusively to gems and jewelry presents an outstanding program to assist the professional appraiser’s continuing education and an unparalleled networking experience.  

The daily programs are: 

Monday, September 22, 2014 

     The Evolution of Fire, Facet & Form: The Evolution of Crown of Light   Tammy Cohen 

     Emeralds of the Atocha: The Value of History   Carl A. Schütze

 

     Afternoon Rotating Workshops:

 

     The New Arrival in a Changing Opal Market - A Workshop!   Paul B. Downing, PhD

     Getting the Secret Identity out of Jewelry Metals with Compassionate Interrogation

          AKA

     Identifying Common and Alternative Jewelry Metals with Nondestructive Tests...Mostly

          A Workshop!   Arthur Skuratowicz, GG

 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

 

     Charitable Contributions of Jewelry: What are the IRS Appraisal Rules?  Karin Gross, Attorney at Law

     Conch Pearl: The Queen of Seduction ManuelMarcial de Gomar 

     50 Amazing Ways To Energize Your Appraisal Business and Maximize Your Time While Enjoying     Life   Jeff Averbook, GG 

     The Price of Rarity—Appraising Natural Gems   Cigdem Lule, GG & Stuart Robertson, GG

To retrieve a conference brochure go to najaappraisers.com.

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White Pine Adds Two Top Execs

White Pine Trading, one of the world's largest recycled diamond and jewelry companies, has announced that industry veterans Jeffrey Sadowsky and Sam Zeifer have joined the company to aid the expansion of its services to jewelry retailers.

Mr. Sadowsky, formerly acquisition director of GBC, comes to White Pine with over 45 years of industry buying experience. Prior to his 16 years at GBC, he was president of Preferred Jewel Brokers Inc. and general manager of Silverman Jewelers Consultants Inc. In his new role with White Pine, he will focus on increasing the company’s wholesale jewelry footprint within the industry. 

Mr. Ziefer, who formerly led Circa’s retail division, joins White Pine with almost 50 years of industry experience. Prior to that, he was president and owner of Mayers Jewelry Company as well as WC Edge Inc.

At White Pine, Mr. Ziefer will focus on expanding the company’s nationwide jewelry buy-back program. The program enables retailers to buy diamonds, watches, signed pieces and designer branded jewelry from consumers. White Pine fulfills the purchases, with retailers then able to pay their customers in the form of store credit or cash. White Pine is currently in talks with a number of independents and chains to expand the program.

 

"White Pine is now firmly established in the jewelry sector and we are committed to servicing our current partners and expand our service offering,” said White Pine CEO Benjamin Burne. "We are delighted to welcome Sam and Jeff, who both have a wealth of industry knowledge and relationships and will be key to providing maximum value and high-quality service to our clients."

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Rio Grande Announces Winners of Saul Bell Design Award

Rio Grande announced the winners of the 14th annual Saul Bell Design Award competition at a celebration
dinner held on May 18 during the Santa Fe Symposium in Albuquerque NM.

After several months of judging, hundreds of entries yielded first- and second-place winners in each of six competitive categories. Judges for the final round were: Ryan Roberts, Chris Ploof, Jim Binnion, Kate Wolf, and Jurgen Maerz.

Prizes, awards and recognition were presented to each winner at the gala dinner. Winning pieces, as well as all finalist pieces are featured online at saulbellaward.com.

A LIST OF WINNERS FOLLOWS:

 

2014 Alternative Metals/Materials Category Winners:

First Place — $2,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Celestial Winds”
Zoltan David
Bee Cave, Texas, USA

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“It Begins”
Elysha Roberts
Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts, USA

 

2014 Gold/Platinum Category Winners:

First Place — $2000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Golden Kinematic: Ring”
Igor Salnikov
Ekaterinburg, Russian Federation

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Surrender”
Andrea Koenig-Carnahan
Louisville, Kentucky, USA

 

2014 Silver/Argentium Silver Category Winners:

First Place — $2,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“The Cynosure II”
Valerie Coulson
Pequea, Pennsylvania, USA

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Carnelian Wave”
Bruce Hartman
Carlisle, Pennsylvania, USA

 

2014 Hollowware Category Winners:

First Place — $2,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Silver Filigree Vanity Mirror”
Aleksandr Maryaskin
Yorktown, Virginia, USA

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Oil Can Teapot”
Sue Aygarn Kowalski
Carver, Massachusetts, USA

 

2014 Metal Clay Category Winners:

First Place — $2,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Doors To My Dreams”
Christi Anderson
Marana, Arizona, USA

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Slavic Tales: Leshy”
Anna Mazon
Kraków, Poland

 

2014 Enamel Category Winners:

First Place — $2,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Bobcat Secret”
Merry-Lee Rae
Freedom, California, USA

Second Place — $1,000 Rio Grande Gift Certificate

“Luminous Ring—Mandarine Fish”
Artem Kutyrev
Ekaterinburg, Russian Federation

 

2014 Emerging Jewelry Artist Category Winners:

First Place — $500 Rio Grande Gift Certificate (and matching award to designer's instructor or school)

“Calíope”
Louis Figueroa
Quito, Ecuador

Second Place — $250 Rio Grande Gift Certificate (and matching award to designer's instructor or school)

“Renoir’s Desire”
Aneka Hausmann
Auburn, Washington, USA 

Third Place — $100 Rio Grande Gift Certificate (and matching award to designer's instructor or school)

“Oriental Grace”
Inbum Yu
Carrollton, Texas, USA

 

For information about the 2015 Saul Bell Design Award competition, designers are invited email marketing@riogrande.com. Initial concepts for entries to the 2015 competition are due by September 19, 2014.

 

Visit saulbellaward.com for general information about the Saul Bell Design Award competition.

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Jewelry.com Will Relaunch Next Month

Jewelry.com will re-launch with a new format, design and focus in late June 2014.

Designed by Pod1, the talent behind sites like Alex & Ani and Tag Heuer, this new state-of-the-art website will focus on showcasing emerging jewelry designers, in addition to featuring Jewelry.com’s curated collections and jewelry deals.

Jewelry.com currently hosts 20 designers featured in their own dedicated, branded jewelry boutiques. Building on the success of these 20 designers, Jewelry.com decided to make designer boutiques the main focus of their redesigned website.

"While the big jewelry brands already have a strong distribution network on and offline, it is the new and emerging jewelry brands that are ripe for consumer recognition," says Jewelry.com President Ofer Azrielant.

Jewelry.com plans to add 15 new designers for the new website launch.

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Bling Cam Coming to Las Vegas Show

The Knot Wedding Network is rolling out a unique new program for the upcoming JCK show in Las Vegas.

The “Bling Cam,” which utilizes the innovative LearLite system, will be featured at The Knot booth throughout the entire tradeshow.

This newly conceived user experience is made possible with the news of The Knot, and jewelry industry leader, WR Cobb Online’s recent venture through use of the LearLite system.

The feature will emulate an entertainment feature known as a “ring-cam” or “mani-cam”, made popular in recent years, by Hollywood “red carpet” events. The camera setup allows the user to show their personal rings, jewelry and accessories, engaging audience participants in a fun and interactive way.

The “Bling Cam” will be a fancy and exciting new feature for crowds wandering the upcoming JCK show, and LearLite developer Derek Thomas thinks the program will work wonders for booth visitors at JCK. “Participant interaction with the LearLite system will bring a fun, unique experience to The Knot is already popular and busy booth setting.”

Thomas says, “I’m just a huge fan of the ‘crowd psychology’ at trade shows. When one person stops at a booth, it triggers this desire for everyone else to stop and see the action, and the Bling Cam will certainly do that.”

Thomas continues, “With the great products from The Knot and an interactive booth feature, it’s all that’s needed to create an interested and engaged crowd to gather at a booth and eventually leads to further business interactions.” Displaying similar enthusiasm, Bevin Stella of The Knot states, "I can't wait to see the buzz this creates at the show. Attendees are going to love it!"

More information at www.wrcobbonline.com or www.learlabs.com.

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Jewelers Mutual Recognizes Top Agencies

Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company has recognized its top agencies for their expertise in jewelers block insurance during its annual National Sales Conference.

Agencies were named to the President's Club and Centerstone Circle in recognition of their efforts to serve Jewelers Mutual policyholders.

"Jewelers Mutual agents are the most knowledgeable jewelers block insurance experts in North America, and we are pleased to recognize their accomplishments," said Jewelers Mutual's President and CEO, Darwin Copeman.

"Our agent partners play a key role in serving and protecting our policyholders. They are skilled in minimizing risk, assessing coverage needs, and, when the unthinkable happens, our policyholders count on them for advice and support as they recover from a loss. They are vital to our business."

Agents were recognized as follows

President's Club: All American Insurance, AP Intego Insurance Group, CAI Insurance Agency, Child-Genovese Insurance Agency, Clockwork Insurance Services, Insurance Specialists of Virginia, MJM Global Insurance Brokerage Group, Mountain States Insurance Marketing, Clippinger Insurance Agency, Insurance Marketplace, McMahon Company, Signature Group, Wells Fargo Insurance Services USA.

Centerstone Circle: Associated Agencies, CJB Insurance Services, Dawson Insurance, JMI Insurance Services, Judy Carter & Associates, Lubin-Bergman Organization, M L Cutler & Company, Riemer Insurance Group, Roach Howard Smith & Barton, Robert G Carroll & Associates, Rossmann-Hurt-Hoffman.

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Sethi Couture Redefines Brand’s Story

Sethi Couture announces the launch of its new brand manifesto just in time for the 2014 Luxury and Couture Shows in Las Vegas.

Known for their delicate and vintage-inspired designs using natural color diamonds and unique cuts such as rose, old mine and briolette, designer Pratima Sethi and creative director Prerna Sethi wanted to redefine their brand's story to have a stronger emotional connection with the consumer.

"We have always been focused on product and designing for the spring and fall buying seasons. We wanted to share not only our designs, but bring to consumers our basic point of view on everyday life and how it inspires us," explains Prerna.

Sethi Couture's refreshed brand messaging features the tag line, "Elevate the Everyday." This tagline will be translated throughout Sethi Couture’s marketing activities including a new website, packaging, and consumer advertising.

Prerna describes the philosophy behind Sethi Couture as, "We have discovered that life's simple yet significant pleasure bring a sense of fulfillment whether it is sipping a cup of afternoon tea, enjoying lunch with one's wedding china, or reveling in the details of a landscape during an evening stroll."

Pratima explains, "We believe that jewelry embraces this same philosophy. A simple yet significant luxury in one's wardrobe, jewelry is meant to be effortlessly worn and celebrated, not tucked away in a box. Each of our designs is purposefully imagined with the intention of elevating everyday life while embodying heirloom-quality that can be cherished and passed down for generations to come."

Sethi Couture will be debuting its new look and latest collections at Luxury/JCK - LUX607 and the Couture Show - Salon 600 from May 27th – June 2nd.

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Silver Jewelry Collection Honors Veterans

The Silver Promotion Service (SPS) has partnered with select Savor Silver brands in organizing a special silver jewelry collection to benefit the Jewelers for Veterans Foundation, an industry organization dedicated to connecting US military veterans with employment, training, and education within the jewelry industry.

The collection, titled ‘Silver Salutes the Service’, currently includes jewelry by ARIVA Living in Fine Jewelry, Cynthia Gale Jewelry, Frederic Duclos, Phillip Gavriel, Rotenier, The Samuel B. Collection, and Thistle & Bee.

Each brand has either designed special pieces or dedicated patriotic themed jewelry from their existing collections that will be available to view at the forthcoming JCK Las Vegas show.

The collection was formed to introduce a cause related shopping event at retail to be held during key holidays throughout the year such as Veterans Day, Armed Forced Day, or Memorial Day.

The SPS and J4V have collaborated to create a package of marketing collateral to support retailers that carry these pieces in their stores, including special hang tags, counter cards, consumer literature, and digital materials.

Todd Wolleman, Jewelers for Veterans President commented, “The Jewelers for Veterans Foundation is proud to be allied with the Silver Promotion Service for this project and many to come in the future. It is a natural partnership that we hope will flourish over time and progress into meaningful contributions to our stated goal of helping veterans find gainful employment.”

For more information on the SPS visit www.savorsilver.com.

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Calla Gold Wins Spirit of Entrepreneurship Honor

Calla Gold, Santa Barbara jeweler and owner of Calla Gold Jewelry, won in the Retail category for the 2014 Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards held on May 9th at Fess Parker's Resort in Santa Barbara CA.

Calla Gold has been a jeweler since 1983, specializing in custom designed jewelry as well as jewelry repair and restoration. She speaks at seminars and conventions as an expert jeweler, designer, marketer, sales trainer, female entrepreneur, and on empowerment for women in business.

Gold is also the author of The Language of Jewelry Design and has written several articles in Professional Jeweler magazine. This will be the second time Calla has been recognized by the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Foundation. She was previously a finalist in her category.

Calla Gold said of the other award nominees and finalists, “I congratulate the entrepreneurs whose innovative ideas and passion bring vitality and diversity to the universe of business.”

The event was hosted by the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Foundation, which recognizes outstanding women entrepreneurs in Santa Barbara County.

The goal of the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards is to support entrepreneurship by honoring successful women business owners for the benefit of high school and collegiate student entrepreneurs.

To learn more, visit www.CallaGold.com.

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Triton Introduces New Metal for Men’s Jewelry

Triton has introduced TungstenAIR, an innovative, patented new metal that delivers the perfect balance of weight and strength to keep pace with any man who lives an active lifestyle.

“Triton is defined by our attention to detail, artistry, innovative engineering, and contemporary metals to create bold statements,” says Jonathan Goldman, CEO of Frederick Goldman Inc. “Triton continues to pave the way for innovation in men’s rings and jewelry with launch of TungstenAIR, built for the active lifestyles our consumers live today.”

TungstenAIR has all of the benefits of Tungsten Carbide, including durability, strength and scratch-resistance, but with a reduced weight. The lighter weight makes it possible for the active man to do everything he does in his daily life without thinking about having to remove his ring or having his ring get in the way.

The collection will include traditional styles as well as rings with a pop of color on the inside and edge. These “Sport Collection” rings will be available in four colors: Arctic White, Midnight, Electric Blue, and Fire Red. The entire TungstenAIR collection will consist of 30 different styles of scratch-resistant men’s bands, including 24 rings in the Sport Collection.

TRITON TungstenAIR can be found at authorized retailers via www.TRITONjewelry.com.

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Fiamma Line of Pink Diamond Jewelry Shows in Vegas

Kama Schachter, one of Asia’s most preferred manufacturers and exporters of diamond jewelry will promote Fiamma, a color-enhanced pink diamond jewelry brand at the JCK show in Las Vegas.

Through a breakthrough technological innovation that the company has global rights for, it produces beautiful, aspirational pink diamonds within easy reach for fashion connoisseurs.

Fiamma’s floral collection is fashionably designed and every sparkling piece radiates with warm glow of a new bloom.

Fiamma is an exclusive collection of fashionably patterned earring pendant sets, rings and bridal jewelry that feature spectacular color-enhanced natural diamonds in hues of soft pink.

It now extends its repertoire to delicate necklace sets and exquisite styled tennis bracelets.

Inspired by nature, this dazzling new collection from Fiamma diamond jewelry captures nature’s treasures into jewels crafted in 14kt white & pink gold. With its floral collection, Fiamma celebrates the spirit of new beginnings in the most graceful way.

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44 Jewelry Execs Attend GIA Seminar at Harvard

To address the unique challenges facing the gem and jewelry industry, Gemological Institute of America, in conjunction with the Harvard Business School, organized a global leadership program for 44 senior executives representing gem and jewelry firms from 15 countries April 28 – May 1 at the Harvard campus in Cambridge MA.

The custom curriculum, based on the renowned HBS case study method, examined topics ranging from strategy to customer centricity to leading high performance teams.

“Developing innovative programs like this to meet the needs of our global industry directly supports our public benefit mission of protecting the gem- and jewelry-buying public,” said Susan Jacques, president and CEO of GIA. “We are very pleased that so many senior executives found the curriculum compelling and the networking opportunities invaluable.”

GIA initiated the program with HBS to bring together leaders from around the world representing different sectors of the gem and jewelry industry to help further develop senior management expertise. During the four-day program, the participants examined issues faced by global businesses and how to apply the experiences of other sectors and industries to their own, as well as discussing challenges facing the industry.

Given the success of the inaugural program, GIA will hold another global leadership program at HBS in June 2015.

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Jewelers of America Announces Buyer Discount Program

Jewelers of America has found another way to help retail jewelers maximize profits through its new Buyer Discount Program, which offers JA Retail Members discounts on merchandise orders at select jewelry trade shows.

Following a successful launch at the SMART Jewelry Show in Chicago, which had more than 60 Participating Exhibitors, the JA Buyer Discount Program will be featured next at JCK Las Vegas from May 30 - June 2, and the JA New York Show July 27-29.

JA Retail Members receive discounts on finished jewelry, on loose diamonds, and other services and tools from participating trade show exhibitors.

Sample discounts range from 3-5 percent up to 7-20 percent, depending on the exhibitor’s promotion. The list of participating exhibitors and their offers at upcoming trade shows can be found at www.jewelers.org/buyerdiscount.

“At Jewelers of America we are always striving to find new ways to help our members become more profitable,” says JA Director of Membership and Sales Matthew Tratner. “By shopping with just one participating vendor, a retailer can easily save more than the cost of their annual JA membership dues.”

The Program is open to all exhibitors; those who participate attract more business from Jewelers of America Members. JA Retail Members own and operate more than 3,200 companies – with more than 10,000 storefronts – and are considered the most professional jewelry retailers in the U.S. as they sign an annual Code of Professional Practices.

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WR Cobb and LearLabs Partner on New Retail Tool

WR Cobb Online and LearLabs have partnered to improve the retail market space.

The LearLite 3.0 tool provides versatile lead-retrieval solutions for independent jewelers with the vision of transforming shoppers into customers, while collecting their qualified, quantifiable data.

LearLite 3.0 is an exciting product that will enhance the customer’s in-store experience, by offering the ability to take remarkable photos of jewelry, and automatically send them to their inbox, along with the store’s contact information. Allowing retailers to capture shopper information as they browse is a crucial advantage to a retailer’s marketing efforts in this mobile era. The LearLite 3.0 system allows these retailers to effectively evolve with the future of the industry, while adding to their bottom line.

WR Cobb Online, developers of e-commerce solutions, and specialized diamond configurator platforms for independent retailers, have partnered with LearLabs to become the exclusive distributor of LearLite 3.0. WR Cobb Online will enable LearLite to reach the vast network of retailers that utilize the Cobb e-commerce platform.

WR Cobb Online sees the value in this new partnership for both parties, as well as the countless number of retailers that will invest in boosting their consumer experience by adding LearLite 3.0 to their stores.

Through Cobb, LearLite 3.0 is getting opportunities to connect with big players that will help thrust the unique technology into the spotlight. LearLabs Founder and President Derek Thomas, states, “I was just a small, veteran-owned business/entrepreneur with a passion to develop this product, and Cobb has brought it into the spotlight.”

For more information, see www.wrcobbonline.com or www.learlabs.com.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for May 15

Although there were again many positive changes in prices of round diamonds this week, there was a noticeable rise in price decreases, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

As with their round counterparts, fancy shape diamonds again posted a large range of changes which were largely in an upward direction, but with more decreases than in previous weeks.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts F-G / SI2 decreases of4%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / VS1 +2.4% to $2,100 p/c

  • 0.30-0.39 cts many increases inbetter colors and clarities

  • 0.40-0.44 cts mostly rising

  • 0.45-0.49 cts many changes in lower colors and clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts just two changes, one up and one down

  • 0.70-0.79 cts unchanged

  • 0.80-0.89 cts D / I1-I3 declines of 1-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts increases inbetter colors and clarities

  • 1.00-1.24 cts L / IF +2.1% to $4,800 p/c

  • 1.25-1.49 cts just two changes, one rising and one declining

  • 2 cts just one change, upwards

  • 3 cts H/ VS2 +3.1% to $20,100 p/c

  • 4 cts M-N / IF-VVS2 declining by 2-3%

  • 5 cts unchanged



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E-H / IF-VVS1 rises of 2-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts D / VS2-SI1 declines of 3-4%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts J / IF-VS2 rises of 3-5%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts F / VS1-VS2 increasing by 2%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts several increases in better colors, mid clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts just one change, upwards

  • 0.70-0.79 cts H-K / SI1 rising by 3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts K / VS2-SI3 rising by 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts unchanged

  • 1.00-1.24 cts just one change, upwards

  • 1.50-1.99 cts two changes, one up and down

  • 2 cts I / VVS1-VVS2 rising by more than 3%

  • 3 cts I / VVS2-VS1 rises of2-3%

  • 4 cts several increases

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Fiera di Vicenza Announces Joint-Venture with Dubai

As of 2015, Fiera di Vicenza and Dubai World Trade Centre will organize in Dubai a mega jewellery international exhibition dedicated to the region.

"DV Global Link, "the new company formed by Fiera di Vicenza SpA and the Dubai World Trade Centre DWTC, was announced at a press conference in Vicenza, Italy.

In attendance at the announcement were the President of Fiera di Vicenza, Mr. Matteo Marzotto, the Managing Director, Mr. Corrado Facco, the Director General of Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing and CEO of The Dubai World Trade Centre, His Excellency Helal Saeed Al Marri and the Senior Vice President of Exhibition & Event Management of the Dubai World Trade Centre, Mrs. Trixie LohMirmand.

The joint venture will become operative with the organization of the new international VICENZAORO Dubai exhibition managed by Fiera di Vicenza, which will consolidate Dubai as the undisputed jewellery capital in the Arabian Gulf and that will take place April 23-26, 2015.

The agreement with Dubai World Trade Centre, the largest exhibition organiser and management company in MENA, aims to establish a new company called "DV Global Link", based in Dubai. The goal of the two companies is to jointly organize VICENZAORO Dubai, a super global show dedicated to jewellery, filling a void in this sector in a region accessible by two thirds of the world's inhabitants in 6 hours by plane.

Thanks to the expertise of Fiera di Vicenza and VICENZAORO and prestigious collaboration with DWTC, the Event will become an important international meeting in the Spring, that will become the point of reference for the whole basin of the Arabic-speaking countries, Middle East, Africa, Russia, Central South East Asia.

This agreement represents a success strongly backed by President Matteo Marzotto, together with the entire Board of Directors, who has been the architect of a global expansion plan which increasingly projects Fiera di Vicenza as an authoritative and recognized leader in world top range product systems.

After the major alliances and partnerships that have delivered the keys of global luxury strategic markets to the Fair - from U.S.A. to Brazil, from China to India - Fiera di Vicenza now becomes a candidate for becoming the main point of reference for the rich Macro Region which stretches between the Gulf Countries, India, Africa and the Russian speaking States. Fiera de Vicenza is the organiser of the VICENZAORO series of jewellery events, one of the world's largest jewellery and most respected portfolio in the global jewellery industry.

Matteo Marzotto, President of Fiera di Vicenza, commented as follows, "Today is a historical moment for Fiera di Vicenza and for the entire Venetian and Italian trade fair system. The agreement reached with DWTC to launch VICENZAORO Dubai is a decisive turning point in our Company's internationalisation strategy and defines a systemic union that is not just economically highly valuable, but also for its cultural interconnection with a very prestigious partner.

“An alliance laying a bridge between Vicenza, pearl of the gold and jewellery industry and Dubai, important world luxury showcase, adding value to Italian lifestyle as never before in one of the Countries and areas with the highest potential. Presence in the United Arab Emirates significantly strengthens our role as a global “Event Show Producer”, in accordance with the new Fiera di Vicenza identity; no longer just container of spaces, but a company that promotes and generates top quality content, exporting its innovative format and know-how of excellence all over the world.

“Pursuing this mission, the agreement with the DWTC puts us in an absolute main player role on the global competition chessboard, generating value and promoting what's well done in Italy and Europe all over the world".

His Excellency Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General of Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, and CEO of Dubai World Trade Centre noted: "Today marks a significant milestone achievement for both the cities of Dubai and Vicenza, and between Dubai World Trade Centre and Fiera di Vicenza.

“The inter-region strategic intermix of visions, strengths and ambitions shall create Vicenzaoro Dubai, a joint venture mega jewellery event in Dubai which embodies friendship, creativity, knowledge and globalisation - the precise values that Dubai and Dubai World Trade Centre have built its successes on. As Dubai fast forwards its strategic efforts in achieving its Tourism Vision 2020 under the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai, we are excited by the partnership with Fiera de Vicenza in constructing a truly global jewellery sourcing hub in Dubai, where business tourism is a vital contributor to the Vision. The new event initiative will now offer the Italian and internationall luxury jewellery community the most sought after entry channel into one of the world's most vibrant emerging business districts."

Following the agreement with the DWTC, Fiera di Vicenza will strengthen its position among the leading players in the world including through the development and promotion of its brand.

The agreement between Fiera di Vicenza and DWTC is placed in a macroeconomic environment that on one side sees Italy as one of the most important manufacturing districts of luxury in the world, home for the internationally renowned "Beautiful and well done", and on the other, the United Arab Emirates UAE as a country with high potential, which over the years has increased its demand for made in Italy luxury. A significant fact: in 2013 the UAE have become the first destination for Italian jewellery exports with a market share of 20.7% and an increase of 30% compared with 2012, in a scenario that has seen total Italian sector exports grow globally both in value and amount compared with the previous year.

The two countries find in Vicenza and Dubai the respective protagonists of the intersection between supply and demand in luxury manufacturing. The Italian gold-working output is at the top of gold production, with exports amounting to approximately 6 billion euro per year. Dubai is a strategic location, the key centre of world luxury in a system that, thanks to recent infrastructure development, is accommodating 11 million tourists a year, with a Tourism Vision 2020 of welcoming 20 million visitors by the turn of the next decade.

In this context, Fiera di Vicenza and Dubai World Trade Centre represent two catalysts and a worldwide business hub, whose joint venture opens a new chapter in the global jewellery sector. The establishment of a new company "DV Global Link" creates a real bridge between East and West, between Europe and the United Arab Emirates, between brand awareness of the Company from Vicenza - in terms of design, innovation, manufacturing and B2B - and the strategic position of DWTC, reference leader in the UAE for the organization and management of fair Events in many key sectors of the global economy.

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Forevermark Will Debut PURE Line in Las Vegas

Forevermark, the diamond brand from the De Beers group of companies, has partnered with Precision Set to unveil PURE, an exclusive ideal cut Hearts and Arrows collection for Forevermark, at JCK Las Vegas/Luxury Las Vegas.

The collection is designed to complement Forevermark’s new Promise Campaign, also to be launched at JCK, which promotes classic, diamond-focused designs.

“Forevermark’s goal is to continually strengthen our product offering. With the addition of Precision Set, we are thrilled to now have an exclusive collection featuring Forevermark ideal cut Hearts and Arrows diamonds in diamond-focused designs to offer our jeweler partners,” said Charles Stanley, Forevermark US President. “Precision Set is known for their exceptional product quality and designs that truly enhance the beauty of Forevermark diamonds.”

The PURE Collection features new Forevermark exclusive designs as well as Precision Set’s current best-selling jewelry. Each piece of jewelry in the collection includes an ideal cut Hearts and Arrows Forevermark diamond and is available only to authorized Forevermark retailers.

The PURE Collection offers a total of 37 styles covering engagement rings, wedding bands, line bracelets, classic studs and fashion jewelry.

“We are pleased to be in partnership with Forevermark. Our goal at Precision Set has always been to build impeccably crafted jewelry in classic, coveted designs. Combining our elegant styles with the outstanding quality and integrity of Forevermark ideal cut diamonds will make the PURE Collection an exciting offer for our Forevermark customers,” said Buzz Jopling, President, Precision Set.

In Las Vegas, Forevermark is located in the Elite Enclave at Luxury, booth LUXEE9. Precision Set is located at Luxury, booth 1102, and in the Prestige Promenade of JCK, booth P04.

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New Midas Chain Catalog is 300-Plus Pages

Midas Chain has released their all-new 2014-2015 catalog. For over 30 years Midas has offered their clientele a wide array of unique gold and sterling styles, in addition to all the basics that every jeweler needs. With this new 300+ page catalog, they have added hundreds of new styles to add diversity to the existing product lines.

“This year’s new catalog took a vast amount of product research and development. The numerous brands are extremely diverse, and contain the hottest styles in the industry.” said Roy Merlucci, VP Sales of Midas Chain. “Our core business has always been as a gold and silver chain manufacturer, but the new collections—such as our officially licensed NFL products—has differentiated us from others,” he added.

The new styles in the upcoming catalog include earrings, bracelets, chains, rings, and much more. Some of the exclusive collections featured in this year’s beautiful counter top reference are: East2West, LightZ, NFL, 4YR Spirit, Crystal Persuasions and Midas Gold & Silver, as well as many others.

Midas has become known as a reliable resource for high quality products, fast shipping, and outstanding customer service. The unique details and craftsmanship of these collections are done with the highest level of standards and an eye for quality, which has always been a symbol of an original Midas product. Most items are immediately shipped on the same day and all merchandise goes through a rigorous quality inspection before leaving the facility.

For more information, visit www.midaschain.com.

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Vespa Scooter Will Be Given Away at Couture Show

Couture will give away a limited-edition, 946 Vespa at Couture this year. To be staged in the NextWave ballroom, La Tache, the 2014 scooter is valued at nearly $10,000 and is touted as the most stylish way of “nipping through traffic.”

The contest is open to all attendees at Couture, including both retailers and editors. Entry forms will be available at registration and throughout the show floor and can be submitted in nextWave, with the winner announced on Sunday at 5pm.

“We wanted to come up with a creative way to drive traffic to nextWave and to generate some added enthusiasm at the show in general,” explained Gannon Brousseau, Couture’s Show Director. “This particular, limited edition Vespa is a perfect fit for our event—it’s both classic and innovative with an emphasis on design.”

With its swooping lines and raised, red-leather saddle, the 946 is a comfortable ride for two. The photographer who shot the ad campaign for the 946, Pasquale Abbattista, who has worked with the world’s most important fashion magazines and for luxury brands such as Missoni, said that he fell in love with it at first sight. When asked who he thinks the unique design will appeal to he posited, “Someone who has nothing to prove, an elegant intellectual who doesn’t have to show off his muscles.”

The giveaway will also include a custom-created matching helmet and Couture will incur all expenses in shipping the Vespa to the lucky winner.

For more information about the Vespa Giveaway or about The Couture Show, please contact Michelle Orman at michelle@LastWordComm.com.

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Chaka Khan Headlines Diamond Empowerment Gala

Ten-time Grammy Award winner Chaka Khan will be the headline performer at the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s Diamonds in the Sky Las Vegas Gala to take place at the Four Seasons Ballroom on May 29.

The sold-out event starts at 6:30 p.m. and will honor President Khama and the Government of Botswana with the Global Diamond Industry Achievement Award and celebrate the good diamonds do for communities around the world.

In 1999, Ms. Khan established the Chaka Khan Foundation, which focuses on programs and initiatives that assist women and children at risk. A musical superstar, Ms. Khan has the rare ability to sing in eight music genres, including R&B, jazz, pop, rock, gospel, country, classical and dance music. She has released 22 albums with ten #1 Billboard magazine charted songs.

Phyllis Bergman, president of D.E.F’s board of directors, says, “We couldn’t be more honored to have such a musical legend perform at this important event that recognizes the importance of giving back.”

Premier Presenting Sponsors of the event include Rio Tinto, Signet Jewelers Ltd., The De Beers Group of Companies, Partner Sponsor is Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited, and Patron Sponsors include KGK Group, Le Vian Corporation, and Tiffany & Co.

For more information, see diamondsinttheskylasvegas.org.

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Bohemme Marks Fourth Anniversary

This year marks the fourth anniversary of the company Bohemme.

In its four years of life, the company has managed to position itself in several countries as a benchmark high-end fashion jewellery brand featuring fine jewellery finishes at affordable prices.

Bohemme is characterised by offering a totally innovative, unique range of products, the outcome of research and the use of new technologies and manufacturing systems. It features a new timeless aesthetic which turns its back on the tired old clichés and opts instead for a new way of making jewellery harnessing the latest innovations in a highly original fashion.

Bohemme currently hopes to double its manufacturing capacity by increasing the size of its factory located in the Parque Joyero de Córdoba, the most important jewellery manufacturing centre in Spain and Europe.

The company has just purchased a building measuring 400 square metres next to its current factory of the same size. The total of 800 square metres will be ready to meet the rising demand for its products in foreign countries starting in September. Last year, Bohemme ventured to launch onto the market collections crafted with diamonds, along with other precious stones, and that same year it exported 55 percent of its total output. Its plans are to raise this figure to 70 percent this year.

In terms of turnover, the company’s goal is to double its sales from financial year 2013. To this end, Bohemme has just opened a subsidiary in Mexico, which is added to the ones the company already has in South Africa, Russian and Turkey. With these subsidiaries, it has a local partner that has set up an in-country structure to develop the brand both in that country and in its nearby markets.

The company’s goal is to develop a network of its own shops where it can consolidate its international vision, and then grow further through franchises. For the time being, Bohemme has its own point of sale in Moscow at the prestigious Crocus City Mall, and in the short term it is examining the possibility of opening another one in Los Angeles. Bohemme has grown steadily ever since it was founded.

One year ago, it also opened a subsidiary in the United States, with which it has woven a web of 30 multi-brand points of sale, which it plans to increase to 50 in 2014. Bohemme recently formalised trade relations in Croatia, Cyprus and Hungary, and it continues to consolidate its presence in the countries where it already has distribution points. In the Spanish market, Bohemme is focusing on growing through multi-brand outlets (300 points of sale) and a presence in the prestigious department store El Corte Inglés (it is now present in 30 stores).

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Baltimore Summer Antiques Show Sets Dates

Now celebrating its 34th year, the Baltimore Summer Antiques Show will make its annual return this summer to the Baltimore Convention Center from August 21-24.

Art and antique aficionados from across the country and around the world will have the opportunity to view and purchase from the diverse collections of more than 575 international exhibitors.

Guests will have access to an exquisite array of rare treasures from the last several thousand years, including furniture, American and European silver, major works of art, Asian antiquities, porcelain, Americana, antique and estate jewelry, glass, textiles and more. Produced by the Palm Beach Show Group, the Baltimore Summer Antiques Show is Maryland’s largest antiques event and the largest indoor antiques show in the country.

Highlights of the event:

Embracing the “show-within-a-show” concept, Art Baltimore will feature a spectacular selection of international fine art galleries within the Baltimore Summer Antiques Show. The diverse array of artworks and galleries have been carefully selected and integrated into the show, offering the opportunity to experience a variety of high quality fine art and an unrivalled art experience.

The Antiquarian Book Fair hosts up to 60 exhibitors that will offer rare books, first editions, autographs, fine manuscripts and unusual bibliographical material.

For additional information, see www.BaltimoreSummerShow.com.

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Hamilton Jewelers a Finalist for American Business Awards

Hamilton Jewelers was named a Finalist today in the Company of the Year-Retail category in The 2014 American Business Awards, and will ultimately be a Gold, Silver, or Bronze Stevie Award winner in the program.

The American Business Awards are the nation’s premier business awards program. All organizations operating in the U.S.A. are eligible to submit nominations – public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large and small.

The American Business Awards will be presented at two awards events: the ABA's traditional banquet on Friday, June 13 in Chicago and the new product & technology awards event on Friday, September 12 in San Francisco.

More than 3,300 nominations from organizations of all sizes and in virtually every industry were submitted this year for consideration in a wide range of categories, including Most Innovative Company of the Year, Management Team of the Year, Best New Product or Service of the Year, Corporate Social Responsibility Program of the Year, and Executive of the Year, among others.

Nominated for 2013, Hamilton was recognized for the company’s achievement as the recipient of the 2013 New Jersey Family Business of the Year Awards, bestowed by the Rothman Institute of Entrepreneurship at Fairleigh Dickinson University. Also noted was Hamilton’s ongoing commitment to social responsibility.

The firm works together with various industry, governmental, and trade organizations to influence and encourage safe and responsible business practices. In 2012, Hamilton was the first family-owned, independent jeweler to be certified by the Council for Responsible Jewelry Practices, an international non-profit organization representing over 60 member companies across the gold and diamond supply chain.

Another significant achievement in 2013 was Hamilton’s creation of the prestigious Liberty Medal, which was presented to former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Since 2010, Hamilton Jewelers has produced the Liberty Medal. Lastly, Hamilton was distinguished for the achievement of being selected as the exclusive resource for Princeton University’s Employee Service Recognition Program for both the University and Plasma Physics Laboratory.

“We are truly honored to receive this important recognition,” says Hamilton president Hank B. Siegel. “We have tremendous regard for the American Business Awards program and reaching this achievement is a wonderful distinction”.

Finalists were chosen by more than 150 business professionals nationwide during preliminary judging in April and May. More than 150 members of several specialized judging committees will determine Stevie Award placements from among the finalists during final judging, to take place May 13-22.

“The final judges have a difficult task ahead of them, to rank the Finalists, because there are so many great nominations this year,” said Stevie Awards president and founder Michael Gallagher.

Details about The American Business Awards and the list of finalists in all categories are available at www.StevieAwards.com/ABA.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for May 8

A wide range of activity was seen in round diamonds again this week, with most of it being positive, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

Fancy shape diamonds again posted a large range of changes which were almost all in an upward direction.

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

Rounds

  • 0.18-0.22 cts H / SI2 -4.8% to $1,000p/c

  • 0.23-0.29 cts just two changes, both rising

  • 0.30-0.39 cts K / VVS2-SI1 rises of 3-4%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts mostly rising

  • 0.45-0.49 cts many changes in better colors, mid and low clarities

  • 0.50-0.69 cts just one change, a decliner

  • 0.70-0.79 cts D / I1-I3 declines of 2-3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts severaldecreases in high colors, low clarities

  • 0.90-0.99 cts D-E / VVS1-VVS2 declines of 1-3%

  • 1.00-1.24 cts L-M / SI1 rises of 2-3%

  • 1.25-1.49 cts just two changes, both rising

  • 2 cts M / VVS1-VS1 rises of3%

  • 3 cts severalrisers

  • 4 cts J / VVS1-VVS2 declining by 3%

  • 5 cts unchanged



Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts D-F / IF-VS1 declines of 2-5%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts several risers

  • 0.30-0.39 cts J / VVS2-VS1 rises of 5%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts D-G / SI3-I1 rising by 3-5%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts D / VS1-SI1 rises of 2-4%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts a range of increases

  • 0.70-0.79 cts F-G / SI2 rising by 1-3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts G-I / SI1 rising by 2-3%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts three changes, two up and one down

  • 1.00-1.24 cts F / SI2-SI3 rising by 2%

  • 1.50-1.99 cts E-F / VVS2 declines of3%

  • 2 cts unchanged

  • 3 cts H-I / SI1-SI2 rises of2-3%

  • 4 cts many increases in top colors and clarities

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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AGS Announces Circle of Distinction Honorees

The American Gem Society has announced the 2014 Circle of Distinction Honorees, who will be recognized at the Society’s Circle of Distinction Dinner on July 29 at the historic Plaza Hotel in New York City. The recipient of the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award is Lee Berg, CEO of Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry. The Triple Zero Award recipients are Doug Hucker, CEO of the American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) and Joel Schechter, CEO, HONORA, a Division of Richline Group. “The 2014 recipients are outstanding professionals and individuals, and are well-deserving of this honor,” said Ruth Batson, CEO of the American Gem Society and AGS Laboratories. “The contribution they have made throughout their career to the jewelry industry is significant. We are proud to recognize their accomplishments. Lee is a revered industry leader and a mentor to many. Doug is a good friend to not only the American Gem Society, but he’s a tireless advocate for the members of the AGTA. Joel has volunteered with numerous organizations in the industry, and is a shining example of leadership through volunteer service. Congratulations to all three.” The Circle of Distinction event will begin at 6:00 pm with cocktails, followed by a three-course dinner and the awards presentation at 7:30 pm. To order dinner tickets or to learn about advertising opportunities in the Circle of Distinction Tribute Book, contact Lauren Ruggeroli at 866-805-6500 x1005 or email lruggeroli@ags.org. For more information, visit www.AmericanGemSociety.org. Add a comment

MaeVona Bridal Collection Honored in UK

MaeVona has been announced as a finalist for Bridal Collection of the Year at the Retail Jeweler UK Watch & Jewellery Awards 2014.

These prestigious annual awards celebrate the cream of UK industry, honoring the top Designers, Retailers and Manufacturers whose products or services are most in demand, leading the market with excellence, innovation and quality.

The winners will be announced at a ceremony in London on 2 July.

Although the majority of MaeVona's customer base is in North America, their Celtic-inspired bridal designs are in high demand in the UK. Daniel Henderson Jewellers in Scotland reports MaeVona customers coming from all across Europe to his Edinburgh store, which carries a full selection of MaeVona designs:

"With absolute certainty no other engagement ring collection has brought out as many "ooohs" and "aaahhs" as MaeVona. What we find our customers truly love about Maeve's designs are the soft flowing curves, the intricate details, the subtle references to the Celtic inspiration, but mostly their uniqueness. MaeVona's beautiful designs are unlike anything we have come across. We have made deliveries across the UK and Europe, and as far afield as Shanghai. We even had a couple fly in from Geneva especially to view the collection."

MaeVona experienced high UK demand in 2013 due to social media and extensive online advertising, and is exhibiting at IJL London in August to build a network of authorized UK MaeVona retailers in key locations.

For more details on the awards, see www.maevona.com.

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Nancy Robey Offers Expanded Services

Long-standing luxury marketing expert, Nancy Robey, Founder and Owner of strategic advisory agency, The Nancy Robey Partnership, Inc., has announced the expansion of client services.

Based on Robey’s extensive industry contacts and connections, The Nancy Robey Partnership, Inc. is now offering specialized Business Referral Services for U.S. representatives of high-end international fine jewelry designer brands seeking to connect with sales, marketing, and other business professionals.

These expanded services encompass a three-stage process designed to pair international clients with U.S. representatives best suited to support each brands’ needs in the area of sales, distribution and marketing. These business development pairings include, but are not limited to, sales & distribution, strategic new business development, marketing, public relations, celebrity placement, showroom presence, trade relations and trend forecasting.

With a career spanning over 30 years, Robey has held key executive positions with leading global brands, and is acknowledged as one of the jewelry industry's most prominent members and finest spokespersons.

Her career includes achievements such as the creation of the Couture show in 1995, advising Reed Exhibitions’ LUXURY by JCK, Elite Enclave at Luxury, Luxury Prive NY and Luxury Prive Panama, as well as overseeing the New Markets Entry Strategies Conference in 2012. She is responsible for U.S. new business development for TRENDVISION and trend forecaster, PDLG Paola DeLuca Creative Services.

“It just seemed like the natural next step for me to expand in this direction,” states Robey. “I love connecting professionals and have access to such great talent. Having been in the industry now for over 30 years, I know many of the most talented freelance professionals and have countless relationships to tap into.” Robey continues, saying “There are some very elite professionals offering different services that go beyond the traditional outside sales representative roles. I can unite businesses with top talent in the areas of sales, marketing, PR, celebrity product placement, showroom capabilities, distribution and most importantly, I will source the team needed to take a business to the next level.”

Robey has also achieved many international business accomplishments such as launching the Couture show international editions, which served international retailers in London, Monte Carlo and Latin America, along with running the New Markets Entry Strategies Conference in 2012, which focused on emerging markets in Russia, Eastern Europe and the Far East. Robey is now collaborating with Luxury Brand Group to develop the Fiera di Vicenza (VICENZAORO) Fair’s U.S. buyer cultivation programs. Her qualifications and experience consistently exceed expectations.

Licia Mattioli, CEO of Mattioli, encouraged Robey to conduct her search for U.S. representation. "I was extremely impressed with the depth of research and screening Nancy conducted in order to present us, not only to top candidates, but also to the most qualified sales reps that fit our needs,” states Mattioli. “I was very pleased with her level of professionalism. She understands the needs of the international branded designer".

In addition to a diverse luxury business career, Robey has served as Vice President and board member of multiple prestigious associations within the jewelry industry including the Women’s Jewelry Association, Jewelers for Children and Gemological Institute of America Symposium. Robey is the proud recipient of the Women’s Jewelry Associate Award for Excellence in Marketing, VNU Chairman’s Award and Spirit Innovation Award for the Couture Diamond Leadership Conference, just to name a few.

For more information on Nancy Robey and The Nancy Robey Partnership, Inc., see nancyrobey@nancyrobeypartnership.com.

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Long’s Jewelers Continues Support for Boston Marathon


Bob Rottenberg, CEO of Long’s Jewelers, with the winners of the 2014 Men’s and Women’s Wheelchair Divisions, Ernst Van Dyk and Tatyana McFadden.

Since 1985, Long’s Jewelers has served as an Official Sponsor of the Boston Marathon, providing individual trophies for the race winners each year.

“It is a wonderful honor to be a part of one of Boston’s most memorable annual events,” notes Craig Rottenberg, President of Long’s Jewelers.

“Long’s is thrilled to provide over 100 crystal trophies for the Awards Ceremony. We also take pride in offering our exclusive licensed Boston Marathon jewelry and gifts which serve as mementos for Boston Marathon participants. It is a tradition we cherish each year.”

Long’s provides an assortment of collectibles in conjunction with America’s oldest Road Race. The Boston Marathon Collection includes gold and silver rings with the B.A.A. logo commemorating the Marathon, charms featured in 14k gold and sterling silver, and more.

Long’s also has created a special Support Medal so runners can share their great achievement of finishing the Boston Marathon with those who supported them through their intensive training.

Long’s Jewelers is proud of and has enjoyed the extensive association over the years with the Boston Athletic Association and the Boston Marathon. Long’s participation, along with its 130 year history, adds to a race rich in history and tradition.

Long’s Jewelers is located in Burlington MA and has five stores in Massachusetts, including one in the Financial District in Boston.

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for May 2

Small round diamonds posted many rises again this week, with mid-size and larger stones seeing relatively thin activity, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

 

Fancy shape diamonds this week saw a wide range of changes which were overwhelmingly positive.

 

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

 

To receive a free copy of the full IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email us at prices@idexonline.com.

 

Rounds

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts I / VS2-SI2 rises of 4-6%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts J / VS2-SI2 increases of 4-6%

  • 0.30-0.39 cts manyincreases

  • 0.40-0.44 cts a wide range of rises

  • 0.45-0.49 cts J / VVS2-SI2 rises of 2-3%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts several decliners

  • 0.70-0.79 cts N / VS1-SI1 declines of around 3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts N / VVS1-VS1 decreases of more than 2%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts range of declines in lower colors, better clarities

  • 1.00-1.24 cts just one change, upwards

  • 1.25-1.49 cts just two changes, both rising

  • 2 cts M / VVS1 +3.3 to $6,200p/c

  • 3 cts D-E / SI1 rises of more than 2%

  • 4 cts J / SI1 +3.0 to $13,700p/c

  • 5 cts unchanged

 



 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts E / IF-VS1 declines of 3-4%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts no changes

  • 0.30-0.39 cts many changes in top colors across all clarities

  • 0.40-0.44 cts D / SI2-I2 increases of 3-5%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts D / VS1-SI1 rises of 2-4%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts D-G / VVS1-SI1 rises of 2-4%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts F / VVS2-SI2 rising by 1-3%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts just two changes, both rising

  • 0.90-0.99 cts two increases

  • 1.00-1.24 cts three risers

  • 1.50-1.99 cts H / IF -3.1 to $9,300p/c

  • 2 cts L / IF -3.6 to $5,400p/c

  • 3 cts several risers in mid-colors and clarities

  • 4 cts many increases in top colors, lower clarities

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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AGS Elects Louis Smith as President, Names New Board


Newly Elected President of the American Gem Society Board of Directors, Louis Smith, CG, (left) with outgoing President, David Gardner, CG.(right)

The American Gem Society elected Louis Smith, Certified Gemologist, of Smithworks Fine Jewelry as President of the Society’s Board of Directors, taking over the role from outgoing President, David Gardner, of David Gardner’s Jewelers. The appointment was made during the Society’s annual Conclave in San Diego, on April 26th.

“Louis is going to be a wonderful President,” said Ruth Batson, CEO and Executive Director of AGS. “He has been a hard-working and committed member of our executive committee for the last four years, and is well-deserving of this honor.”

Smith will hold the role of AGS’s Board President until April 2016. Smith said, “I’m very excited to assume the role of President. We have a talented team at headquarters, and a hard-working and dedicated board. With that combination and our membership, I’m looking forward to great things in the next two years.”

AGS also announced the list of its 2014 - 2015 Board Of Directors including: President Elect – Scott Berg, CG; Secretary and Chair, Conclave Sub-Committee – John Carter, CGA; Sr. Advisor – Bill Sites, CGA; Treasurer – Kelly Kinas; Director at Large – Beryl Raff; Director at Large – Yancy Weinrich; Director at Large – Charles Rosario; Chair, International Guilds Council – Laura Stanley, CGA; Chair, Gemological Sciences Committee – Michael Richards, CG; Chair, Education & YT. Committee – Lisa Bridge, CG; Chair, Marketing Committee – Michael Wilson, CG; Chair, Membership & GR. Committee – Kelly Newton, CGA; Chair, AGS Lab Advisory Committee – Mark Moeller, CGA.

The Board also added three new members, each appointed as Director at Large – Frank Brown, RJ, Scott Udell and Stewart Wicht.

For more information regarding the American Gem Society, visit www.AmericanGemSociety.org.

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Stuller Goes Live with Sustainability Position

Symbolizing its ongoing environmental consciousness in all areas of operations, Stuller is pleased to announce the go live of its sustainability position on Stuller.com.

The information gives the prime manufacturer’s views on a variety of topics ranging from water, waste and energy management to the responsible sourcing of precious metals, diamonds and gemstones.

“We have always been committed to conducting all phases of our operations in the most ethically, environmentally and socially responsible manner possible,” says Stuller President Danny Clark. “As a member of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality Leadership Program, we were proud to accept the Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) Award in the Large Business Pollution Prevention category both this year and last.”

Most recently, all of the manufacturer’s in-house produced gold and silver has been recognized for 100 percent-recycled content by the Scientific Certification Systems' (SCS). The SCS is a global leader in verification of environmental and sustainability claims with internationally recognized standards. www.scsglobalservices.com.

Learn more about Stuller’s sustainability promise at www.stuller.com/green.

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JVC Issues Statement on Dodd-Frank Appeals Decision

On April 29, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued guidance in response to a Court of Appeals decision concerning the conflict minerals provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act, and the SEC rules implementing those provisions. The court upheld Dodd-Frank, but declared one provision forcing particular language to be a violation of the First Amendment. The Court rejected the many other challenges to the SEC rules made by the appellants in the case.

In its guidance, the SEC stated that it expects covered companies to file forms and reports required by its conflict minerals rules on or before June 2, 2014, as previously mandated by the SEC rules. Companies that are covered by Dodd-Frank are those that are listed with the SEC and file reports with that agency.

The guidance also made clear that the conflict minerals filings should comply with all aspects of the SEC rules, other than the specific obligation found to violate the First Amendment. Thus, covered companies must still inquire about the country of origin of conflict minerals – tin, tungsten, tantalum and gold. They must also report on their supply chain due diligence regarding any conflict minerals that originated, or may have originated, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country.

Cecilia Gardner, JVC’s CEO, President and General Counsel, stated: “the SEC’s guidance makes clear that companies in our industry covered by Dodd-Frank must be ready to submit filings by June 2, 2014. This will require cooperation from every business in their gold and tungsten supply chains. Suppliers should take steps now to implement supply chain assurance systems.”

JVC’s recently published Supply Chain Assurance Kit, a do-it-yourself kit to help suppliers of gold and tungsten implement assurance systems, is available on its website at www.jvclegal.org. Please call JVC at 212-997-2002 if you have questions.

The SEC’s guidance can be found here.

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Patti Geolat Creates Foundation to Combat Eating Disorders

Geolat Companies has announced the appointment of Terry Chandler to the board of the Something for Kelly foundation.

Motivated by the untimely death of her niece, Kelly Burk Nobbe, in 2009, Patti Geolat created a national foundation to prevent eating disorders in children ages 6 to 12.

Something for Kelly was launched this year during the National Eating Disorders Week, February 23 to March 1. Its mission is to empower children ages 6 to 12 to fight their predisposition to eating disorders. Through its programs and services, the foundation aspires to create a mindset shift in children with a predisposition to eating disorders, assist them in recalibrating their relationship with food, and motivate them to voluntarily choose a healthier direction.

Responding to his recent appointment to the board, Terry Chandler, “I am honored to be asked to serve on the Something for Kelly board. The opportunity to work with Patti and her team on this important mission to help these children is humbling.”

Eating disorders in children, as signaled recently by CNN, are on the rise, with girls and boys as young as 8 years old being hospitalized with anorexia—the deadliest of all eating disorders.

CNN points to a recent study conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality showing that hospitalizations for eating disorders in children under 12 increased by 119 percent between 1999 and 2006. According to the same study, the numbers are not getting any better.

Reacting to these alarming numbers, Patti Geolat’s decision to give back was easy.

“These statistics should be disturbing to any family in the United States, and for that matter throughout the world. In 2009, my family was devastated by the loss of my niece, due to anorexia. Aside from the obvious grief that we felt, we were stunned by the overwhelming fact of how ill-prepared we were to face this tragedy.

“Although we knew she was battling this monster, we could not fathom that she could go to bed one night, after what seemed like a normal day, and not wake up.”

The Something for Kelly Foundation has been established to prevent this tragic and needless loss from happening to other families. It will showcase programs and services that care for the most vulnerable in our society: our children.

Speaking about the vision of the foundation, Geolat added that “through our programs, we will catch this disease before it takes root. That is why our focus is children in their formative years of 6 to 12. Our programs will help them to achieve and maintain a healthy body image and relationship with food.”

To help the mission of the Something for Kelly Foundation, please get involved today at www.somethingforkelly.org.

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24 Karat Club Seeks Scholarship Applicants

The 24 Karat Club Southeastern United States (SEUS) is pleased to announce that applications are currently being accepted for multiple scholarships.

Individuals currently working in the jewelry industry for a minimum of one year and holding residence in the following states are eligible and encouraged to apply: AL, AR, FL, GA, KY, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV.

The deadline for application submission is June 30, 2014. Scholarship winners will be notified no later than August 1, 2014.

Scholarships will be awarded to deserving individuals based on criteria outlined in the Scholarship Application. Available scholarships are:

  • The Robert Foreman Memorial Scholarship – a $2000.00 award to be used for jewelry education and training
  • The Sterling Reputation Scholarship Program – One or more scholarships distributed from a $2500.00 fund to be used for jewelry industry education and training. This scholarship program is made available through a generous gift from Sterling Reputation, a leading manufacturer of fashion-forward, high quality sterling silver jewelry based in Sunrise, FL.
  • Diamond Council of America (DCA) Scholarships – Three scholarships covering the cost of any course from DCA. Made available through a generous gift from the DCA, the DCA is one of the jewelry industry’s leading accredited schools and offers professional certifications in diamonds, colored gemstones and jewelry sales through distance education.

Scholarship applications are available from any 24 Karat Club SEUS member or by contacting David Peters at dave_peters@sbcglobal.net. A list of members can be found at www.the24karatclub.org.

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Indian Gem and Jewellery Council Announces Year-End Results

The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council of India has announced the annual performance for the Indian gem and jewellery sector for the FY2013-14, declaring a contribution of $34746.90 million to India's foreign exchange earnings, with a decline of 11 percent as compared to the last year figures.

The financial year 2013-14 saw an increase of 12.65 percent in export of cut and polished diamonds with figures of US$ 19635 million. The industry also saw an increase of 11.98 percent in imports of rough diamonds with figures of US$ 16716 million indicating an increase in cutting, polishing and other manufacturing activities in India.

The export of gold jewellery and gold medallions together for the period April 2013-14 was at $11045.92 million, which shows a decline of 39.50 percent. This was mainly due to the non-availability of the gold limiting the extent of trade for many of the Indian players.

The average price for exported gold was lower than previous year adding to the woes of the industry that took a hit and closed at a negative of 11 percent. The coloured gemstones export also dropped by 20.10 percent in this year with figures of $519 million. The silver jewellery exports had a significant increase by 58.57 percent with figures of $1460 million.

Key exporting destinations for gems and jewellery in 2013-14 were UAE with 35 persent of exports valued at $12195.34 followed by Hong Kong that stood at 28 percent with value of $9790.45 and USA at 14 percent with export value of $4948.92.

Commenting on the financial year results, Mr. Vipul Shah, Chairman of Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council said, “There has been a robust growth in the diamond sector. The market is bullish and the US and Europe markets have also improved. Although, there has been a decline by 11% in the overall performance, there are numerous opportunities for growth and improvement. We are looking at new ventures, new markets such as Middle East, Russia, China and various initiatives to promote the industry.”

Mr. Shah also said that, “The outlook for 2014-15 looks positive in the overall gems & jewellery exports in the current fiscal. The MoU being signed with Russian diamond mining firm ALROSA to share trade and statistical data between the two countries will help in strengthening trade relations between the two countries. Some of our other initiatives for the year 2014-15 include the India - China Gemstones Buyer - Seller Meet in Jaipur, India – USA Buyer – Seller Meet to be hosted for the first time in Chicago, The 2nd edition of the global Gem & Jewellery fair in Dubai this November and many more.”

On an optimistic note, Vice Chairman, Mr. Pankaj Parekh said, “The prospects for 2014-15 looks bright for Jewellery, especially silver jewellry, as the 80- 20 scheme might get diluted, import duty is expected to be rationalized as the RBI has already allowed 4 more banks to operate in imported gold trading. There is also a huge demand in the international market, so we expect a boom in the silver jewellery exports with at least 10 % more exports compared to 2013-14.”

The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council continued with its various initiatives aimed at promoting international as well as domestic trade in India.

Some of the initiatives included India International Jewellery Week (IIJW), India International Jewellery Show (IIJS), India-USA Buyer Seller meet, Basel World 2014, JCK Las Vegas Show 2014, Singapore International Jewellery Expo, Bangkok Gems and Jewellery Fair 2014, Budget recommendations to the Government of India and regular industry reports.

In other news, GJEPC and state-owned Russian diamond mining firm Alrosa have signed an agreement to exchange information pertaining to the development of the co-operation between Indian and Russian diamond sectors, including overviews of the diamond market situation, the Indian and Russian trade figures, information on Indian diamond market research. The agreement, inked by GJEPC Chairman Vipul Shah and Alrosa President Fyodor Andreev, is more evidence of warming trade relations between the two countries.

The India-China Gemstones Buyer-Seller Meet organized recently to bring together key trade representatives from the two countries would also be effective in not only presenting new prospects for the Indian trade but also provide the Chinese trade with deeper understanding of the Indian market, leading to establishing stronger business ties.

The Global Gem and Jewellery Fair offered an exciting opportunity to explore new markets in Middle East - Dubai and the Gulf region to the Indian participants who showcased new collections revolving around the region-specific aesthetics. With over 130 exhibitors participating from India and the GCC, the GGJF was an ideal platform for international buyers and sellers and after the astounding success received for the first edition in 2014, GJEPC has been invited to host another edition within 6 months itself in Dubai.

The India-USA Buyer-Seller Meet is set to be organized in Chicago from September 5-8. This will bring together key trade representatives and would also be effective in not only presenting new prospects for the Indian trade but also provide them with deeper understanding of the Indian market, leading to establishing stronger business ties. GJEPC aims to strengthen the existing trade ties with USA and provide a platform to develop new customers for the Indian G&J industry.

More info on: www.gjepc.org.

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Sarine Loupe Tests Pronounced a Success

Sarine Technologies has announced the success of Sarine Loupe tests in the United States and India.

A limited number of customers in India are now employing the technology, which provides revolutionary digital imaging of diamonds and gemstones anywhere.

Scanning 360 degrees of a diamond or gemstone, the Sarine Loupe creates a 3D digital file that can be rotated freely in all directions, zoomed in, and thoroughly inspected.

Sarine Loupe provides, for the first time ever, an objective visual standard resulting in unprecedented ease of trade. The file can be shared digitally throughout various platforms, eliminating the need to travel with stock. Secure and high tech, Sarine Loupe fills a void in the market for inspecting diamonds and gemstones globally, without the worry or hassle of shipping.

Manufacturers in India and buyers in the U.S. have responded positively, with the majority of participants expressing interest in the imaging technology. Responding to the demand in India, Sarine Technologies has decided to start offering the imaging on a limited roll out basis.

At the suggestion of participants, Sarine is in the process of adding additional features to Sarine Loupe, providing even easier online assessment of polished diamonds. Production ramp-up and the implementation of additional features will happen simultaneously over the coming months, with full the commercial offering of Sarine Loupe imaging occurring in the third quarter of this year.

Uzi Levami, the Group's CEO commented, "The feedback from the testing has been very positive, and the ideas proposed by our customers show just how excited they are about the concept embodied in the Sarine LoupeT. We are, as we have previously commented, confident that the Sarine Loupe will enable online assessment of polished diamonds in an altogether new and efficient mode, by enabling buyers to ascertain accurate and objective information as to the polished diamonds’ Clarity and Cut.

“We will further enhance the system so that an impression as to the polished diamond's Color and its visual appearance will also be provided. Coupled with the Sarine Light, diamond sellers will have at their disposal two effective means by which to accurately present the features of their polished diamonds to potential buyers, and the buyers will have the objective means by which to make informed decisions online about buying the stones, without being encumbered by the inefficiencies that are currently part and parcel of the trading process."

Two demos of the technology are available online at: sarine.com.

These examples of two equally graded 2.5-carat round brilliant diamonds (with GIA certificates), both with Color H and Clarity VS1, show just how objective the new Sarine Loupe imagery is. In the first example, one can easily see that the stone, though a VS1, has two black inclusions near the center of the stone, while in the second example there are no easily discernible inclusions of any type (though upon closer inspection at a higher magnification one can find the very small imperfections).

For more information about Sarine and its products and services, visit sarine.com.

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Vice President Moves at Stuller

(left)Tammy Kidder, (right) Shawn Montgomery

Former Executive Director of Corporate Operations, Tammy Kidder has been promoted to vice president of findings, metals and recycled materials at Stuller.

Tammy joined Stuller in 1994 in production control. Over the years, she’s worked in many of the divisions here at Stuller including product design and development, merchandising, materials control, and procurement.

Current Executive Director of Customer Experience, Shawn Montgomery will assume the role of vice president of sales.

Shawn has been a part of the Stuller team for 18 years. He began his career in manufacturing and in 2002, became a sales director. He gained sales experience in the field and within Stuller's contact center. Most recently, Shawn has led a cross-functional leadership role in implementing a CRM system to pave the way for Stuller to continue its path is seeking "The Perfect Customer Experience" across all of Stuller interactions with its customers.

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GIA Field Gemologist Will Speak at Bangkok Gathering

Vincent Pardieu, GIA's senior manager of field gemology in Bangkok, and Votha Un in Pailin. Photo by Brian Smith.

A decade ago, a gemologist and his friends journeyed to Pailin, a small Cambodian town surrounded by jungle, volcanoes and rivers, to get a rare glimpse into its gem mining world. In search of a translator at the Samaki market, they encountered a local English-speaker knowledgeable about gems who would forever change their views on field gemology.

Attendees of Gemological Institute of America’s next Gemstone Gathering in Bangkok on April 30 will hear from Vincent Pardieu, GIA’s senior manager of field gemology in Bangkok, on how a Cambodian man named Votha Un taught him that gemology encompasses much more than science, art, history, geography or trade.

It is most importantly about the people. Pardieu learned that the key to visiting places like Pailin, once thought to be too dangerous for outsiders, is the support and companionship of someone like Votha, who opens the doors to the local trade. That lesson helped Pardieu create his vision and methods of field gemology.

Pardieu and Votha made 29 expeditions to Pailin to meet with gem miners and traders, allowing Pardieu to gain an extensive insight into the dynamics of the gem trade there. This event about the mines and gems of Pailin is dedicated to Votha Un, who is in Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh with a life-threatening illness. 

Pardieu specializes in the origin determination of gemstones and has visited numerous gem-producing areas in South East Asia, Central Asia and East Africa, particularly the Ilakaka–Sakaraha sapphire deposits of southern Madagascar. He has spent his career in leadership positions with gemological laboratories around the world, including in Thailand and Switzerland. His research and expertise have been the catalyst for numerous articles in GIA’s Gems & Gemology and various trade publications.

GIA’s Gemstone Gathering, a free event, begins at 6 p.m. on April 30 in the “Crowne Room 1-3” on the 21st floor of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, Lumpini Park in Bangkok. 

 

Due to limited seating, please RSVP by April 29 to pkosolsu@gia.edu; the GIA laboratory in Bangkok at 02-632-4090; or call the Thailand campus at 02-632-4590. For more information, visit www.giathai.net/news.php.     

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Las Vegas Show Brings Together World Renowned Dealers

The largest selection of antique jewelry and watches will be presented at the 2014 Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show.

Hosted by U.S. Antique Shows, the trade-only event is held at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Casino, May 29 - June 1.

“We’re thrilled to continue to host our event in Las Vegas and acquaint the trade community with today’s latest antique jewelry trends,” says Dan Darby, Emerald Expositions vice president and U.S. Antique Shows group show director. “We’ve made some notable improvements this year, like refiguring the show’s floor plan to allow dealers an increase in booth size to showcase more of their merchandise.”

Prominent dealers from as far away as France, India, Holland and Singapore will be showcasing their rare and unique collections at this year’s event. Items featured include trends straight from the spring runway, such as gold chains, retro watches, cuff bracelets, colored diamonds and more. Attendees will also be able to purchase an array of merchandise from the Renaissance to Modern periods.

In addition, U.S. Antique Shows is a proud supporter of the 2014 Rings of Strength held on May 29 at Mandalay Bay Resort Hotel Casino. Participants can choose to bike a challenging 50K route in the scenic Red Rock Canyon, a moderate 15K ride, a brisk 5K run or a relaxing 5K walk along the Las Vegas strip. The event begins at 5:30 a.m. and all proceeds benefit the Jewelers for Children, which helps children who have been affected by illness, abuse or neglect.

 

For more information, visit www.ringsofstrength.org

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Peggy Jo Donahue Named Director of MJSA Education Foundation

MJSA has announced that Peggy Jo Donahue has been named director of the non-profit MJSA Education Foundation.

Well-known throughout the industry for her broad-ranging contacts and exceptional communication skills, Donahue formerly served as Director of Public Affairs at MJSA, a position she held since joining the association in 2009. She is also the former editor in chief of both JCK and Professional Jeweler magazines, and her honors include two Jesse H. Neal National Business Journalism Awards and the Women's Jewelry Association Award for editorial excellence.

The Foundation, a 501(c)3 subsidiary of MJSA, supports educational programs and initiatives to help ensure the industry maintains a qualified, competitive workforce. It sponsors several seminar series and conferences, including the "At the Bench" demonstrations at AGTA GemFair Tucson; the seminar program at MJSA Expo New York; and the MJSA ConFab conference in New York City, which focuses on "profit lessons" for designers. In addition, the MJSA Education Foundation Scholarship Group has, since 1997, generated nearly $165,000 to support U.S. students enrolled in jewelry-design and jewelry-making programs.

 

"Peggy Jo's contacts, energy, and knowledge of the industry are exactly what the Foundation needs to further its educational outreach," said Dave Meleski, president of the Richline Group and chair of the MJSA Education Foundation. "We look forward to having her lead the Foundation to its next level of success."

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The IDEX Online Polished Price Report for April 24

As in past weeks, smaller round diamonds saw a wide range of increases, while there was less action and more negative movements in mid-size and larger stones, according to the weekly IDEX Online Price Report.

 

There were very few changes in prices of fancy shape diamonds, with many categories unchanged.

 

The following are some of the changes in this week's IDEX Online Diamond Price Report.

 

Rounds

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts H-I / VS2-SI2 rises of 3-6%

  • 0.23-0.29 cts unchanged

  • 0.30-0.39 cts F-J / SI3 increases of 3-4%

  • 0.40-0.44 cts J / VVS2-I1 rises of 2-4%

  • 0.45-0.49 cts H-J / I1 rises of more than 3%

  • 0.50-0.69 cts H-J / SI2-I1 increases of 2-4%

  • 0.70-0.79 cts just three changes, two up, one down

  • 0.80-0.89 cts N / VVS1-SI1 decreases of more than 2%

  • 0.90-0.99 cts range of declines in lower colors, better clarities

  • 1.00-1.24 cts just two changes, both upwards

  • 1.25-1.49 cts K / SI2 +2.5% to $4,100p/c

  • 2 cts N / VS2-SI1 rises of 2%

  • 3 cts D-E / SI1 rises of more than 2%

  • 4 cts F-G / SI1 rises of more than 3%

  • 5 cts H-I / IF declines of 0.5%

 



 

Fancy Cuts

 

  • 0.18-0.22 cts unchanged

  • 0.23-0.29 cts no changes

  • 0.30-0.39 cts unchanged

  • 0.40-0.44 cts E / SI2 +3.3 to $1,550p/c

  • 0.45-0.49 cts no changes

  • 0.50-0.69 cts unchanged

  • 0.70-0.79 cts I / I1-I2 falling by 3-4%

  • 0.80-0.89 cts unchanged

  • 0.90-0.99 cts no changes

  • 1.00-1.24 cts unchanged

  • 1.50-1.99 cts no changes

  • 2 cts N / IF +2.4 to $4,200p/c

  • 3 cts three changes in mid-colors and clarities

  • 4 cts F / VS1 +3.1 to $33,500p/c

  • 5 cts unchanged

To receive a full free copy of the IDEX Online Diamond Price Report, please email prices@idexonline.com.

Edahn Golan is Editor-in-Chief of IDEX Online, heading an international team of writers that covers global industry related events and issues. He writes about rough and polished diamond prices, publishes industry analysis articles and a popular weekly opinion column. In recent years, Edahn has advised a number of leading diamond firms, industry bodies and governmental agencies. He writes research papers on topics ranging from provenance analysis of fancy color diamonds to diamond's contribution to local economies, often contributing or writing the diamond chapters for leading research organizations such as KPMG and Bain & Co.

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Second Annual Northwest Jewelry Conference Coming in August

The history, science and artistry of fine jewelry will be highlighted at the second annual Northwest Jewelry Conference August 15-17 in Bellevue WA.  

Noted jewelry historians Diana Singer and Peter Shemonsky will be returning with new topics of value to collectors, jewelers and appraisers. 

In all, eight industry leaders will provide in-depth presentations plus hands on workshops for up to twenty-four students.

“This is an information-dense weekend” explains Ted Irwin, director of Northwest Gemological Institute (NGI), the conference host.  

“It all started 25 years ago with period jewelry seminars by Karen Lorene (who will also be speaking this year), and grew into full weekend programs, first with Christie Romero and then Peter Shemonsky.   

“Last year we transitioned to a multi-speaker format.  Our intent is to bring world-class speakers to a small group environment.   It may not make the school money but it does provide an opportunity for those passionate about period jewelry to explore the topic at home in the Pacific Northwest.”

The NGI classes have expanded outside its original localized audience.  Students have come from seven western states and Canada to attend the NGI programs, and inquiries have spread to the other coast. “We are not trying to compete with the other great programs out there” says Irwin, “but offer a unique class where students can really interact with their instructors”.  And the instructors seem to like that.  

“Diana’s “Great Jewelry Heists” was a big hit last year and Peter has been an NGI favorite instructor here for several years, so they have to be back – both even asked if they could return.”

The conference kicks off this year with a champagne/hors d’ oeuvre reception on Friday, August 15 where Singer will present “What Makes Good ‘Good’?”  We know it when we see it; good things always stand out from the crowd. But what are the elements that determine excellence in jewelry?  

Singer will discuss stone quality, workmanship issues, and the components of good design, including mathematical principles, color usage, negative and positive space.  You will never look at jewelry the same way again. 

On Saturday, August 16, Singer and Shemonsky will team up to cover the formidable history of Tiffany & Co., its innovations, designers and imposters.  This presentation is the launch of an in-depth coverage of one major jewelry house at each conference.  

Another planned yearly presentation is “Another Time and Place,” which will offer a 360-degree look the influences, developments and transitions within a slice of jewelry history.  

This year, Shemonsky will examine 1890-1905, the closing of the 19th Century to the dawning of a new era, navigating the political, socio-economic and technical influences that shaped the 20th century and the jewelry associated with it. 

Diana Singer is owner of D & E Singer Inc., buyers and sellers of estate jewelry and gemstones out of New York City.  She is a founding member of the Women’s Jewelry Association (WJA), recipient of WJA Retailer of the Year Award in 1988.  Singer is a Board of Directors member and Program Chair of the American Society of Jewelry Historians (ASJH); frequent lecturer including Tucson Gem Fair, GIA Symposium, Annual Period and Estate Jewelry Conference, Jewelry Camp, auction houses, and industry shows.  She has been published in Rapaport Diamonds, JCK and other trade publications.   

Peter Shemonsky, is president of Peter Jon Shemonsky Fine Antique Jewelry, as a buyer and seller of estate jewelry based in San Francisco, and provides restorations, design and appraisals.  He is the author of the International Society of Appraisers Antique and Period Jewelry course, co-director of ASJH West Coast chapter; past Jewelry department head of Grogan & Co, Bonhams, and buyer for CIRCA Jewels, San Francisco and Hong Kong.   

Peter is a frequent lecturer including American Gem Society (AGS) Conclave, National Association of Jewelry Appraisers (NAJA), American Society of Appraisers (ASA); and a regular of TV’s Antiques Roadshow for the past ten years.  This will mark his fourth year as instructor with NGI.

“The Evolution of Diamond Cutting” will be a comprehensive history from Al Gilbertson cut historian at the Gemological Institute of America, and Scott Sucher, principal of The Stonecutter who provides museums with replicas of the world’s most famous diamonds.   

Al Gilbertson has helped develop many of the industry’s analytics that determine a diamond’s light performance, including the American Gem Society’s (AGS) cut grade system and GIA’s cut grade system with his current research being on the metrics for fancy cuts as GIA’s Cut Project Director, Carlsbad, CA.   He is author of “The American Cut – the first 100 years.” 

Scott Sucher has degrees in semiconductor manufacturing, chemistry and management.   He has done exhaustive historical and hands on studies of the Hope Diamond and its lineage from the French Blue as published by GIA’s Gems and Gemology as well as television  productions by National Geographic and The Discovery Channel.  

He will present his exact replicas of the World’s Most Famous Diamonds, where students can see and feel just how impressive they really are.

Jewelry as Art is Karen Lorene’s look at designers who create jewelry for artistry sake over intrinsic value and how it is evaluated.

Karen Lorene is the owner of Facèré Jewelry Art, Seattle, WA featuring dozens of local and international artists and has appraised jewelry art since 1987.   She is an authority on antique jewelry as an appraiser since 1972 and author of “Buying Antique Jewelry – Skipping the Mistakes.”  She published the memoir/business workbook “Building a Business – Building a Life,” and her second novel should be out by Conference time.  Lorene is a senior member of the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers and participated in the Antiques Roadshow for several years.

A lighter, but informative close to Saturday’s schedule will be a Pearl Stringing Demonstration by Evie Chung,