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Reader Letters about Lab-Grown Diamonds, The Big Survey and the Holiday Season

One longtime reader writes that she’ll be retiring.




  • Loved reading the Big Survey. Insightful, always a great resource and report card for me. — Dan Levinson, Ellis Jewelers, Concord, NC
  • Loved the Big Survey. Great way to compare what we’re doing to others. — Christine Matlack, E.G. Landis Jewelers, Boyertown, PA
  • I love the Big Survey! It always so interesting to see how we stack up and where we could be improving. — Kevin Kelly, Kevin Kelly Jeweles, Peoria, IL
  • I’d like to thank you for the years of good stories and special articles you’ve had over the years. I remember the very first edition of INSTORE and how exciting it was to have a fresh perspective on the jewelry world. We are retiring at the end of the year after a long and successful career. It’s time to do something else while we are still able … it is both sad and exciting. Saying farewell. — Laura Sipe, JC Sipe, Indianapolis, IN

Laura, thank you for your enduring and consistent support over the years, and enjoy your retirement! jewelers like you make this magazine possible. – Trace

  • I love this magazine! I only started working with my husband in this business about 11 years ago and I knew nothing about jewelry, but came from a tech background, of sorts. I’ve gotten a lot of good marketing ideas from your magazine over the years. For example, I had angel wings painted on our front window so people can take photos for social media. The kids love it! — Christine Berryhill, Morrison’s Jewelers, Orinda, CA
  • We’re excited to head into the holidays and even more excited for 2024. I always like to set new goals for the store, and we have ideas to get out into the community more, support each other better, and improve staff relations in the store. — Beth Greene, Conti Jewelers, Binghamton, NY
  • As the debate about lab-grown diamonds rages on, consumers in our neck of the woods are actually thrilled to find out that with perceived rising prices on just about everything, the price of diamonds has gone down a bit. And it’s really nice to see that they are actually having FUN with diamonds. Natural diamonds have never really been fun. They were always a serious item. The fun and affordability of lab-growns has also led to creativity. Fun, affordable, creative … I think that’s why you see sales of them. — Alex Weil, Martin’s Jewelry, Torrance, CA
  • With so many hats to wear, just hoping everyone stays healthy and I have the right merchandise for the requests of my customers. I love seeing everyone that comes in to find the next piece of jewelry and their families from out of town who come in too. It’s a race to the finish line and I am ready to go! Happy holidays to everyone and thank you Brain Squad for helping us all become better at what we do by your thoughts! — Susan Eisen, Susan Eisen Fine Jewelry & Watches, El Paso, TX
  • We are going to be closed on Christmas Eve for the first time ever. It is on Sunday this year, and never a big sales day, so I closed the studio, and we are hosting our whole family for Christmas dinner instead, giving me my first Christmas day off in 30 years! — Jo Goralski, The Jewelry Mechanic, Oconomowoc, WI
  • I’m glad the INSTORE show made a comeback. It’s nice to have all our employees be able to go unlike Vegas. I hope next year is even bigger and better. — Aimee Ford, Creek Jewelers, Crawfordsville, IN
  • Lab diamonds — I find the massive opposition to them in groups like JHJ odd in face of the interest and movement in that direction from the luxury group that owns Tiffany’s. Sarcasm light on: What does Tiffany know about jewelry? — Cliff Yankovich, Chimera Design, Lowell, MI

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When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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