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Russian Diamonds, Crafting the Custom Sale, and More Reader Letters

One reader introduced a puppy as a “greeter” in their store.

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  • Just wanted to say that I loved the feature in the April issue about a responsible future! Thank you guys for shedding more light on this topic, and I learned a lot from reading it. I hope that you can continue on this topic in the future as I feel that this is such an important topic and I know jewelers like myself really want to know more about how we can be a part of the change. — Alex Hevia Schlindwein, Kiefer Jewelers, Lutz and Dade City, FL
  • I look forward to this magazine every month! I really should be doing other things, but sometimes I just have to see what new things I am missing. You have such great articles. And I love to see what we are experiencing in the market is occurring in other towns too. — Ellie Mickey, DBS Fine Jewelers, St. Michaels, MD
  • Key thought: How do you cope with the JCK Show. There are so many vendors, it is impossible to cope. For me, it is like trying to fill a teacup with a fire hose. — Alexander Rysman, Romm Diamonds, Brockton, MA
  • I’m caught in fear about the future of luxury products due to high inflation and the dollar losing global strength. — Alta Fernandes, Vail Creek Jewelry Designs, Turlock, CA
  • We recently “hired” a puppy to act as our “greeter.” Our clients’ reactions have been all I’ve hoped for … a puppy has a way of really breaking the ice with new people. I can’t believe how many people have a dog and dog stories! — Laura Sipe, JC Sipe, Indianapolis, IN
  • From a PR standpoint, our industry better get it together on the sanctions of Russian diamonds. It does no good to see some taking advantage (and even some celebrating) current loopholes to continue avoiding the sanctions. While I understand they are trying to protect their own livelihoods and it is complicated, continuing to trade in Russian goods is an existential threat to the entire diamond business in my opinion. And I would ask those that look to loopholes what are they gonna do when the world decides it can perfectly go without any Russian diamonds. — Alex Weil, Martin’s Jewelry, Torrance, CA
  • We were really interested in the “Crafting the Custom Sale” story. Custom is a major part of our business, and we were happy to see that we are doing a lot of the thing that other stores are having success with. There were a few things in there that we found intriguing, some that we may think about adding to our custom process in the future. — Joe Kirk, Kirk & Co. Jewelers, Milford, OH
  • I shared your March issue article on “Crafting the Custom Sale” with my employees, and they all agreed we are doing the right things to make a customer for life! — Karen Hollis, K. Hollis Jewelers, Batavia, IL
  • The custom article was very good. I have been a custom jeweler for almost 40 years and also do everything in house. I am very happy with my process and was happy to see that I was in line procedurally with so many other successful custom jewelers. — Rick Sanders, Sanders Jewelers, Gainesville, FL
  • I own and run the Treasure Traders Facebook group for jewelry stores, coin dealers, and pawnbrokers. We are over 8,300 strong. I am so sick of the hate surrounding lab-grown diamonds and so many most elite jewelry/diamond dealers trying to restrict them from being traded. They are a strong part of our industry and future, but they are constantly trying to ban them, make lies about them, and many false narratives against them. If they don’t like them, then they shouldn’t sell them but stop trying to discourage others and trying to ban them everywhere. Our millennial and Z generation customers totally embrace them as we do and many older customers as well. If they are presented truthfully and fairly along with natural diamonds, let the customer decide what is best for them. — Medford Chason, Treasure Hut, North Charleston, SC
  • I’m so tired of unaware dummies that buy jewelry and watches directly from designers/brands and then expect us to provide the service for that product. Here’s the deal folks … if you buy a watch directly from one of my brands, then you can send it back to them to have it sized for you. Oh … that’s a pain? Really? You know what else is a pain? Having someone accept a service from you when they never gave you a thought to do business at your store in the first place. But now they want the service from you? Do me a favor and pull your lips over your head and swallow. These people will never become customers if you help them. If anything, they’ll only continue to use you for your service on something you never even sold them. I’m not catering to these people, and if a brand/designer wants to have their cake and eat it too … let them and they can provide the services that follow as well. — Marc Majors, Sam L. Majors, Midland, TX

Over the years, INSTORE has won 80 international journalism awards for its publication and website. Contact INSTORE's editors at [email protected].

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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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