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Renowned Retailers to Judge INSTORE Design Awards

Nine distinguished retailers form the panel.

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INSTORE ANNOUNCES THE JUDGES for its fourth annual design competition, the INSTORE Design Awards, which is accepting entries through February 22. Nine top retailers comprise the panel, which will determine 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in each contest category (the contest will also have an online voting component wherein all retailers will be invited to cast their votes for Retailer’s Choice in each category).

The judges are:

Patricia Faber
Co-owner, Aaron Faber, New York

Patricia and her husband, Edward, co-own Aaron Faber, which was founded in 1974 and resides on Fifth Avenue in New York. The store is dedicated to the presentation of contemporary studio jewelry, boasting nearly 50 designer collections. Patricia is a graduate gemologist and a frequent lecturer in the field of studio jewelry.

Elizabeth Gibson
Owner, Eliza Page, Austin, TX

Elizabeth founded Eliza Page in 2004 to showcase select independent jewelry artists based in Austin and around the world. Now with two locations, Eliza Page has been featured in various industry publications including INSTORE. Elizabeth is also the president of the Austin chapter of the Women’s Jewelry Association.

Lindy Kavanaugh
Owner, Lindy’s Jewelry, Fernandina Beach, FL

Lindy, a graduate gemologist, opened Lindy’s Jewelry in 2001 in her hometown: Fernandina Beach in the greater Jacksonville area. The store moved into a new downtown building in 2016, adding about a dozen designer lines.

Lauren Kulchinsky Levison
Chief Style Officer, Mayfair Rocks, East Hampton, NY

Lauren represents the fourth generation at Mayfair Rocks alongside her brother Justin Kulchinsky. The store delivers a high-end client experience while representing nearly 40 jewelry designer collections. Lauren was inducted into the NATIONAL JEWELER Hall of Fame in 2002.

Marcus Majors
Owner, Sam L. Majors, Midland, TX

Marcus represents the fifth generation of Majors at Sam L. Majors and is a certified gemologist through AGS. Founded in 1898 by J.P. Majors, Sam L. Majors has been an authorized dealer for many high-end luxury jewelry and watch lines for over 40 years.

Sia Maravelias
Director, Quadrum Gallery, Chestnut Hill, MA

Sia considers her life “one big treasure hunt” as she is constantly seeking new jewelry artists to present to her clients at Quadrum, which is celebrating 40 years in business in the greater Boston area under owner Cynthia Kagan. Nearly 40 designer collections are currently on display in the gallery.

Orin and Tina Mazzoni
Owners, Orin Jewelers, Detroit

Orin and Tina represent the second generation of Orin Jewelers, which celebrates its 86th year in business this year. Orin is a graduate gemologist and a certified gemologist appraiser; he took over from his father as president and CEO in 1969. The store numbers nearly two dozen designer lines in its showcases.

Matthew Rosenheim
President, Tiny Jewel Box, Washington, DC

Matthew oversees the day-to-day operations of Tiny Jewel Box, named America’s Coolest Store in the Big Cool category in 2011. Matthew is the third generation of the Rosenheim family at Tiny Jewel Box, having joined the company in 1993. A graduate gemologist, Matthew is a founding member and serves on the Executive Board for Gen-Next Jewelers, serves on the Advisory Board of the Jewelry Information Center and is a member of the Young Presidents Organization.

Laurie Watt
Co-owner, EAT Gallery, Maysville, KY

Located in historic downtown Maysville, KY, EAT Gallery offers one-of-a-kind local art and breathtaking natural treasures from around the world, including many independent jewelry designer collections. The gallery launched in 2006.

These judges will choose winners in each of the following categories of jewelry: gold, platinum, silver, colored gemstones, diamonds, colored diamonds, alternative materials, pearls, men’s jewelry and engagement/wedding rings, as well as best bracelet, best earring, best necklace, best ring and best statement piece.

Additionally, all entries will be included in a Voting Guide shipped with the April issue of INSTORE, as well as displayed online at instoremag.com where jewelry retailers will be invited to vote and choose a “Retailer’s Choice” award in each category.

Winners will be featured in the June issue of INSTORE, which is distributed at JCK and Couture in Las Vegas, as well as online at instoremag.com. Each winner will also receive a trophy commemorating their achievement. The grand prize winner will be featured on the front cover of the June issue.

Designers may enter at instoremag.com/awards.

Trace Shelton is the editor-in-chief of INSTORE magazine. He can be reached at trace@smartworkmedia.com.

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Jewelry Distributor Arrested With $15M in Counterfeit Goods, Police Say

$15M in counterfeit merchandise was seized.

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The owner of a business in the downtown Los Angeles jewelry district has been arrested for allegedly selling counterfeit jewelry.

Moossa Lari is accused of felony trademark violation, according to a press release from the LA Police Department.

Moossa Lari

Investigators conducted several undercover buys and surveillance operations and determined that he was “a major distributor of counterfeit jewelry nationwide,” the release states.

Search warrants were served at multiple locations in the jewelry district on Nov. 7 by LAPD in collaboration with the FBI, Homeland Security Investigations and Custom Border Protection.

Officers seized about $58,000 in cash and over $15 million counterfeit jewelry with Street value of over $1 million, according to the release. Counterfeit jewelry recovered included fake Hermes, Gucci, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Rolex, Michael Kors, Cartier, Tiffany Co., YSL, Dior, Calvin Klein, Guess, Van Cleef and Bvlgari pieces.

The counterfeit jewelry was tested at the scene and did not meet U.S. safety standards, the release states.

The standard of acceptable lead and cadmium is 90 parts per million. The seized counterfeit jewelry tested as high as 200,000 parts per million.

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Video: It’s Not My Problem When You Buy a $120 Ring and Your Wife Finds Out It’s ‘Fake’

It’s not the jeweler’s fault she got mad.

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LIKE ANY JEWELER, Cullen Wulf sometimes runs into customers who aren’t looking to spend much money.

Unfortunately, sometimes their expectations are way out of line with what they’re willing to pay.

In the video below, Cullen re-enacts a scenario where he encountered just such a customer — a customer whose wife was unhappy with her sterling silver and CZ anniversary gift.

The customer felt that Cullen was to blame, and Cullen set the record straight.

Take a look.

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FTC Releases Disclosures Guidance for Social Media Influencers

It explains when and how influencers must disclose sponsorships to their followers.

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Enlisting social media “influencers” has become a popular way to promote a wide range of products, including jewelry.

Unfortunately, it’s not always obvious to consumers what is and isn’t an ad. The Federal Trade Commission wants to fix that.

The FTC has released a new publication for online influencers that lays out the agency’s rules of the road for when and how influencers must disclose sponsorships to their followers.

The new guide, “Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers,” provides influencers with tips from FTC staff about what triggers the need for a disclosure and offers examples of both effective and ineffective disclosures.

The guide and accompanying videos underscore that the responsibility to make disclosures about endorsements lies with the influencer. The guide outlines the various ways that an influencer’s relationship with a brand would make disclosures necessary, and it reminds influencers that they cannot assume that followers are aware of their connections to brands.

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The guide includes tips for when and how influencers should tell their followers about a relationship. For example, it suggests the words influencers might use, as well as where in their social posts a disclosure should appear.

The new publication summarizes the FTC’s existing guidance in this area, including the FTC’s Endorsement Guides and a 2017 question-and-answer document produced by staff.

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