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Stuller Announces 2019 Annual Bench Jeweler Workshop

It features informational classes, hands-on demos, and the fourth annual Battle of the Benches Competition.

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(PRESS RELEASE) LAFAYETTE, LA – Stuller’s annual event for bench jewelers, Bench Jeweler Workshop, is returning to its global headquarters in Lafayette, LA, on March 22 and 23, 2019.

“Workshop is the ultimate educational and networking event for bench jewelers,” said Tammy Lail, vice president of tools and metals. “This event brings hundreds of bench jewelers together in one place, to learn from each other, as well as industry pros.”

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The two-day event will host a variety of Stuller and industry experts presenting hands-on demos and in-depth training and classes.

Some of the new classes, demos and tours include:

  • Basic Jewelry Sizing
  • Diamonds and Gemstones Private Tours
  • Social Media Uncovered

The fourth annual Battle of the Benches competition will also take place on the demo floor.

“This year, three exceptional bench jewelers will be selected to compete against defending champion Patrick Dobbs, in a real-time design contest,” said Lail. “The contestants will compete in two different challenges – parts and pieces, and prep and polish.”

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For more information on the Battle of the Benches competition, visit www.stuller.com/battleofthebenches. For more information on Bench Jeweler Workshop, visit www.stuller.com/workshop.

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Consumers Stress Importance of Independent 3rd Party Verification of Diamond Social and Environmental Impact Claims

67% of respondents said they would be more loyal to a retailer or brand that sells diamonds verified by an independent 3rd party company.

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(PRESS RELEASE) AUSTIN, TX — A large majority of consumers consider independent 3rd party verification of diamond retailer, brands and manufacturer claims about social and environmental impact to be important, according to a research study by MVI Marketing LLC. Key findings from the research include:

• Over 85% of jewelry purchasers responded that independent 3rd party verification of chain of custody and social and environmental impact claims is Very or Somewhat Important for any diamond they want to purchase
Consumers of both mined diamonds and lab-grown diamonds in the study cited higher credibility, transparency to all parties and independent quality control as the top three reasons for this preference.

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“Retailers and brands should take notice of this growing trend among jewelry consumers and get on board early to establish credibility for any claims they make to position their brand above the competition,” stated Liz Chatelain, president of MVI.

Asked whether they would be more loyal to a retailer or brand that sells diamonds verified by an independent 3rd party company, 67% of respondent said Yes.

“We know from other studies that diamond consumers are becoming increasingly concerned and interested in the country of origin of the diamonds they purchase,” Chatelain continued. “This new study further confirms the need for claims of origin, as well as claims of social and environmental impact, to be independently verified. This is particularly important for claims related to sustainable production and responsible mining,” she added.

Asked how much confidence they would have if a company created its own standards for claims of social and environmental responsibility and then self-reports, consumers were not impressed. However, when asked if those same claims were also backed up by an independent 3rd party verification, consumers were much more confident.

“Independent 3rd party verification of origin, safety, environmental and quality claims is standard practice in industries from food to cosmetics to automobiles. This research confirms that it’s time for the diamond industry, both mined and lab-grown, to give consumers what they want. At a time when the diamond industry is struggling to reassure the next generation of consumers, independent 3rd party verification will reinforce that trust,” notes Chatelain.

This MVI research study was completed in July 2019 by 1,506 fine jewelry consumers (77% from the U.S. and 23% from Canada) with household incomes over US$50K, and between the ages of 23 and 55.

The complete report can be downloaded here.

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Jewelers for Children Announces 2019 Hope for the Holidays Program

It includes holiday greeting cards produced by Hallmark.

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(PRESS RELEASE) Jewelers for Children, the industry’s charity, has unveiled their 2019 Hope for the Holidays program. The program includes holiday greeting cards produced by Hallmark from the designs of children representing St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The program also includes an honor donation program, and contribution cards and inserts.

This is the third year that Hallmark has donated all the printing for the cards. The card designs feature original children’s artwork and include the Hallmark logo on back of every card and embossed on the envelope flaps.

In lieu of traditional holiday greetings, members of the jewelry industry can send holiday cards showing their support for the charity. There are also contribution recognition cards that can be purchased with a donation to JFC and sent to special contacts on everyone’s holiday list. Contribution card inserts are available as an option for use with any holiday card. This year there are three different designs to choose from, all drawn by children who were either patients at the hospital, or a sibling. JFC has supported St. Jude since 1999 with more than $ 12 million in donations that have been used to fund research projects, including a bone marrow transplant clinic.

Honor donation programs are conducted by a number of companies in the industry who send letters to their customers and suppliers asking that in lieu of holiday gifts, a donation be made in their honor to JFC. The honor donation program can be utilized by anyone in the industry to easily complete their gift giving for the season and support children in need. JFC provides suggested language for a letter and customized donation forms.

Information on purchasing holiday cards, contribution cards and inserts, and the honor donation program can be found on JFC’s website at www.jewelersforchildren.org, or by calling 212-687-2949.

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Press Releases

NAJA Offers Scholarship for Gemology Students

The deadline for submission is Nov. 1.

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The National Association of Jewelry Appraisers (NAJA) announces that it will award an ACE It Appraisal Conference Scholarship to a deserving gemology student. NAJA invites GIA, FGA, FGAA, FGG, FCGmA amd RGA students to apply for the scholarship for the 53rd Annual ACE It Winter Educational Conference scheduled for Feb. 2-3 in Tucson AZ.

This opportunity gives the gemology student a first-hand experience of networking with appraisal professionals by attending the highly regarded NAJA educational experience during a time when Tucson devotes itself to gems, jewelry and minerals. The scholarship, which covers the conference fee only, requires a resume, photo and an essay explaining the reason why the gemology student would choose to become a gems and jewelry appraiser. NAJA believes that becoming a gems and jewelry professional appraiser is a viable career option for gemological students.

Applications can be obtained at http://najaappraisers.com/ScholarshipApp2019.pdf. The deadline for submission is Nov. 1 and the final selection by the NAJA Scholarship Advisory Board will be announced Dec. 1.

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