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Editor's Note

Welcome To The League Of Extraordinary Characters

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EVERY FAMILY has that
one weird relative — the one you most look forward to seeing
every holiday season because they always
have the best stories, and they do things
that make you shake your head in disbelief.

I’m related to several such weirdos.
Growing up, I had an uncle in the U.S. Border Patrol whom I saw only occasionally.
We were always excited to hear his stories
and have him draw amazing “tattoos” on
our arms with a ballpoint pen. Another
uncle often presented us with slingshots
and tiny cars and other wooden implements
that he’d carved and polished himself.
Still another uncle is a public speaker who
started a fan newsletter about Pez candy
dispensers and once competed on the game
show Jeopardy.

In many ways, the jewelry industry is one
big family. And boy, do we have some weird
“relatives” in our group!

December seemed like the perfect opportunity to celebrate our odd peers — and in
so doing, celebrate the bizarre in all of us.

Webster’s defines “weird” as “of strange
or extraordinary character.” We certainly
have some extraordinary characters in our
industry. And even more important, we have a great many with extraordinary character. Often, they’re one and the same.

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In our “Tales of the Weird” story, you’ll
read about jewelers who have some strange
habits, skills and preferences, but the one
thing they have in common is that they all
love making and selling jewelry. And, they
all do it with passion and integrity.

Admit it: We’ve all got a little weirdness inside us — and that’s worth celebrating. Happy holidays!

TRACE SHELTON

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The store was a landmark in Topeka, Kansas, but after 80 years in business, it was time for Briman’s Leading Jewelers to close up shop. Third generation jeweler and owner Rob Briman says the decision wasn’t easy, but the sale that followed was — all thanks to Wilkerson. Briman had decided a year prior to the summer 2020 sale that he wanted to retire. With a pandemic in full force, he had plenty of questions and concerns. “We had no real way to know if we were going to be successful or have a failure on our hands,” says Briman. “We didn’t know what to expect.” But with Wilkerson in charge, the experience was “fantastic” and now there’s plenty of time for relaxing and enjoying a more secure retirement. “I would recommend Wilkerson to any retailer considering a going-out-of-business sale,” says Briman. “They’ll help you reach your financial goal. Our experience was a tremendous success.”

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