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Finalist-ACS 2002 - Judith Ripka

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Judith Ripka, Beverly Hills, CA

OWNER: Judith Ripka; ADDRESS: 234 North Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210; PHONE: 310- 275-3013


ABOUT AS EXCLUSIVE as you can get, the Rodeo Drive outlet for New York-based designer Judith Ripka just oozes class, sophistication, and a design combination of romance and simplicity. The pure, sleek lines of the design by James D’Auria Associates focus the customer upon the jewelry itself, which is presented in elegant dark wood cabinets with an absolute minimum of fuss. The exterior of the store, with its starkly geometrical windows and door, also acts as a magnet to passersby. Understated showcases in the windows allow all the emphasis to be put on the product.

The judges were divided on Judith Ripka’s store. Karen Karch, herself a jewelry designer and storeowner, recognized the store’s good fit for its clientele, noting, “It’s a tasteful and correct design for the clients.” The carefully matched wood also met with her approval: “I like the dark wood furniture against the lightness.” Bob Olmstead proclaims the store “a nice, sophisticated boutique,” while Gwen Carrington says, “I like the fact that the jewelry was used as the basis for the design,” adding, “I also get feelings of confident feminism.” Anne Sowden took the minority opinion, pointing out the drawbacks of both the Rodeo Drive address and the too-rich-for-my-blood atmosphere, going so far as to describe the design as “very Tiffany’s and intimidating.” additional faux beams were added.

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Copycat Tips:

  • Bases overall design on the jewelry displayed, makes no bones about its clientele and image they’re after

Watch Out For:

  • Even top-end clients can be nervous nellies — take care not to present them with an atmosphere that’s too intimidating

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Thinking of Liquidating? Wilkerson’s Got You Covered

Bil Holehan, the manager of Julianna’s Fine Jewelry in Corte Madera, Calif., decided to go on to the next chapter of his life when the store’s owner and namesake told him she was set to retire. Before they left, Holehan says they decided to liquidate some of the store’s aging inventory. They chose Wilkerson for the sale. Why? “Friends had done their sales with Wilkerson and they were very satisfied,” says Holehan. He’d enthusiastically recommend Wilkerson to anyone looking to stage a liquidation or going-out-of-business sale. “There were no surprises,” he says. “They were very professional in their assessment of our store, what we could expect from the sale and they were very detailed in their projections. They were pretty much on the money.”

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