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In the End

Off The Edge



THIS MONTH’S lead feature on ?Edgecraft? provides you with some truly outlandish ideas on how to make your store different. In fact, some of the ideas presented are so outlandish that In the End’s usual approach of offering a ?comedy? take on one of the current issue’s key features … well, pales in comparison. The fact is … you could build any one of these stores (of course, you’d probably need a few adjustments). And you might be successful. And hey … isn’t that what makes retail such a glorious business?  


SUMMARY IN A SENTENCE: If only for an hour, you too can live life exactly like J-Lo, Mariah, Christina, and Britney.  

WHAT’S SOLD: Medium-grade jewelry, of dubious taste, at wildly exorbitant prices. 

INSIDE THE STORE: Enter through a pair of featureless steel doors. A limousine drives you down a long narrow corridor. You exit the vehicle to a blinding wall flashbulbs and the sound of a roaring crowd. Instantly, you are surrounded by a crowd of at least five store employees. These will cluster tightly around you from the moment you enter the door, and remain with you to the moment you leave. They refer to you always as ?Miss ? saying, for example, ?Is there anything I can get you, Miss (Your Last Name)?? or ?Am I allowed to address you directly, Miss (Your Last Name)?? Products will continually be pushed at you, as your ?entourage? murmurs audibly about how ?hot? you look in each. You’re also welcome to have temper tantrums, and insult or ignore any store employee as much as you like. In fact, by their flinching and cringing demeanor, it appears you are expected to do so. So, do so. And don’t think twice ? because it’s all about you. It’s your day to spend a lot of money and feel super … or at least superior.  

SYNERGY: Diva Massage … face, feet and ego.  



SUMMARY IN A SENTENCE: It’s your modern stone-aged jewelry shop.  

WHAT’S SOLD: Giant ? and we do mean giant ? crystal jewelry. And of course, those perennial favorites, Flintstone-sized pearls. INSIDE THE STORE: Primary design materials: stone, bone and bubbling lava. You enter through an archway of dinosaur ribs. All Bedrock’s female and male employees are dressed, respectively, in form-fitting saber-tooth tiger pelts and wooly mammoth skins. Male employees carry giant wooden clubs, which are a useful deterrent to potential shoplifters. (Although the fact that the average necklace from Bedrock will weigh 32 pounds makes shoplifting unlikely.) Another highlight will occur after-hours, when Bedrock’s maintenance staff emerges and cleans the store with elephant vacuum cleaners.  

SYNERGY: Cleary, there is huge restaurant potential here. Given the chance, what American baby-boomer who would turn down the opportunity to eat a big, juicy brontosaurus burger?  


SUMMARY IN A SENTENCE: Teenage girls across America are shrieking, ?Oh my God! I love this store so much!!!?  


WHAT’S SOLD: Friendship rings, necklaces, and even the occasional engagement ring (parental consent required). Every item in the store retails for $99 or less, includes a heart somewhere in its design, and features a diamond so small that you’ll have to take the salesperson’s word for it that it even exists.  

INSIDE THE STORE: Pink walls. Throw pillows. On the store’s video monitors, scenes from the most romantic TV shows and movies, like, ever! ? The O.C., American Pies 1 through 3, and anything featuring Orlando Bloom (who, I’m sorry, is smokin’ hot!). Is this an awesome store or what? Hell-o? The store’s display cases contain cute stuffed bears wearing ?Endless Love? jewelry. (Stuffed bears are sold separately but, at least if couples are shopping together, girls will almost always convince their boys to buy the bear by pinching his arm really hard.) Salespeople at Endless Love are trained to react to any buying objections from male customers by shrieking ?That is so not fair!? and pouting (with lots of foot-stamping) until the objection disappears. The store has no business cards ? instead, employees write the store’s phone number on their customers’ arms.  

SYNERGY: ?Endless Love? training bras; ?Endless Love? pimple cream.

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Wilkerson Testimonials

Downsizing? Wilkerson Is Here to Help

Orin Mazzoni, Jr., the owner of Orin Jewelers in Garden City and Northville, Michigan, decided it was time to downsize. With two locations and an eye on the future, Mazzoni asked Wilkerson to take the lead on closing the Garden City store. Mazzoni met Wilkerson’s Rick Hayes some years back, he says, and once he made up his mind to consolidate, he and Hayes “set up a timeline” for the sale. Despite the pandemic, Mazzoni says the everything went smoothly. “Many days, we had lines of people waiting to get in,” he says, adding that Wilkerson’s professionalism made it all worthwhile. “Whenever you do an event like this, you think, ‘I’ve been doing this my whole life. Do I really need to pay someone to do it for me?’ But then I realized, these guys are the pros and we need to move forward with them.”

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