05242017Wed
Last updateTue, 16 May 2017 10pm

Other News

Southern Jewelers Guild reviews popular industry Facebook groups

Southern Jewelers Guild reviews popular industry Facebook groups

It’s been about 6 months since I first wrote about the industry-only, closed Facebook group named Jewelers Helping Jewelers. In the last 6 months, it has been my pleasure to watch this group continue to flourish, and grow from the 3500 members it had...

Readmore

Loading...

Industry Events

GIA seminars on synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments announced for August Atlanta Jewelry Show

GIA seminars on synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments announced for August Atlanta Jewelry Show

(ATLANTA, Ga.) - For the first time at the Atlanta Jewelry Show, GIA (the Gemological Institute of America) will offer two seminars focused on identifying synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments. The seminars will be offered on Sunday, August 13 dur...

Readmore

Loading...

On The Move

Finalists and judges announced for 2017 Saul Bell Design Awards

Finalists and judges announced for 2017 Saul Bell Design Awards

Rio Grande, the organizer of the Saul Bell Design Awards ( www.saulbellaward.com ), is pleased to announce the finalists of the 17th annual international jewelry-making and hollowware competition, as well as the two panels of experts tasked with judgin...

Readmore

Loading...

What's New

Hoover & Strong introduces certified lab grown diamond selection

Hoover & Strong introduces certified lab grown diamond selection

Hoover & Strong has announced the addition of certified lab grown diamonds to their product selection.

“Hoover & Strong continues to lead the ethical jewelry movement with its newest addition of Harmony Lab Grown Diamonds. We have always felt ...

Readmore

Loading...

Featured Articles

Stuller, Inc. wraps up annual Bench Jeweler Workshop

Stuller, Inc. wraps up annual Bench Jeweler Workshop

Jyothi Forman walks away with overall win

(LAFAYETTE, La.) - Stuller hosted their annual Bench Jeweler Workshop this past weekend welcoming more than 200 jewelers from across the country to its global headquarters in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Readmore

Loading...

Latest News

Southern Jewelers Guild reviews popular industry Facebook groups

7 DAYS AGO
Southern Jewelers Guild reviews popular industry Facebook groups

It’s been about 6 months since I first wrote about the industry-only, closed Facebook group named Jewelers Helping Jewelers. In the last 6 months, it has been my pleasure to watch this group continue to flourish, and grow from the 3500 members it had when I first wrote about it, to where it stands n...

Readmore

Artist donates paintings to benefit Jewelers for Children

13 DAYS AGO
Artist donates paintings to benefit Jewelers for Children

Noted jewelry designer and artist Reena Ahluwalia has donated two original, museum quality paintings to be auctioned at the Jewelers for Children (JFC) Facets of Hope event in Las Vegas. The paintings, Portal of Empowerment and Brilliance Pink Diamond, show highly nuanced, hyper-realistic diamonds w...

Readmore

GIA seminars on synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments announced for August Atlanta Jewelry Show

7 DAYS AGO
GIA seminars on synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments announced for August Atlanta Jewelry Show

(ATLANTA, Ga.) - For the first time at the Atlanta Jewelry Show, GIA (the Gemological Institute of America) will offer two seminars focused on identifying synthetic diamonds and diamond treatments. The seminars will be offered on Sunday, August 13 during the Fall Show, held August 12 - 14, 2017 at th...

Readmore

JA to host events and Certification exams at JCK Las Vegas

7 DAYS AGO
JA to host events and Certification exams at JCK Las Vegas

Member-only cocktail party, JA Sales and Management Professional Certification exams included

(NEW YORK) - Jewelers of America (JA), the national trade association for businesses serving the fine jewelry marketplace, is offering a variety of events, promotions and certification opportunities during La...

Readmore

Finalists and judges announced for 2017 Saul Bell Design Awards

13 DAYS AGO
Finalists and judges announced for 2017 Saul Bell Design Awards

Rio Grande, the organizer of the Saul Bell Design Awards ( www.saulbellaward.com ), is pleased to announce the finalists of the 17th annual international jewelry-making and hollowware competition, as well as the two panels of experts tasked with judging the finalists’ work.

Readmore

ASHI Diamonds appoints Al Minor as National Director of Sales

21 DAYS AGO
ASHI Diamonds appoints Al Minor as National Director of Sales

(NEW YORK) - ASHI Diamonds is pleased to announce the appointment of Al Minor as their National Director of Sales. Al’s appointment is part of ASHI’s marketing and expansion strategy that will enable it to better service independent jewelers in the United States.

Readmore

Hoover & Strong introduces certified lab grown diamond selection

7 DAYS AGO
Hoover & Strong introduces certified lab grown diamond selection

Hoover & Strong has announced the addition of certified lab grown diamonds to their product selection.

“Hoover & Strong continues to lead the ethical jewelry movement with its newest addition of Harmony Lab Grown Diamonds. We have always felt that lab grown diamonds are the ultimate ethical a...

Readmore

Stuller releases Tools, Equipment, and Metals 2017-2018 catalog

7 DAYS AGO
Stuller releases Tools, Equipment, and Metals 2017-2018 catalog

(LAFAYETTE, La.) - Prime manufacturer and global distributor, Stuller has announced the release of its newest tools catalog, Tools, Equipment, and Metals 2017-2018.

“This 600+ page catalog is the resour

Readmore

Do you do appraisals?

What a lovely day, 85 degrees, low humidity, slight breeze out of the north, (my store is south of the Krispy Kreme) a squirrel has a nut in it's mouth digging a hole. I'm sitting on the bench in front of my store taking a break when an old car pulls up and something told me my bliss was about to end.

The driver gets out of the car wearing a 20 year old shirt with a 19 year old food stain on it, and he was looking right at me kinda funny. Maybe he thought I was goofier looking than him with my optivisor, my store phone, my cell phone, my pager, my blue tooth, my 7 pairs of tweezers, my 6 pens and 2 pencils all clipped to my ears or my apron. Wait... maybe I was goofier looking than him?

Anyway, he comes walking up and asked if I was the jeweler. Now, normally I'd be thinking, "what do you think?" But since I'm next door to a gun store, most people think I'm a gunsmith so I had to give him a break on that one. I told him I was and asked him how I could help... like maybe buying him a new shirt or something.

I know. I've heard the same story about the old guy that walked into a jewelry store in old coveralls and no one would help him because of how he was dressed so he drove to the competition and pulled $10,000 in cash out and bought something on the spot. Yeah right. That didn't happen. If it did, someone needs to give me solid proof because in my 30 years experience if they look like this guy, they don't have $10,000... or a wife to spend it on.

The guy asked me if I did appraisals. I told him I did. He stuck his hand in front of my face and showed me a diamond nugget ring that was dirtier than his shirt. YUCK!

"Is that a Diamond?"

I realized now that I was going to have to get up from my comfy resting spot if only to try and get away from that smelly thing under my nose. We walked in the store and I didn't see any big round bulges in his pockets (the kind that $10,000 in cash makes) so I'm back to my original theory by now. I asked him why he needed an appraisal and he told me someone wanted to sell him that ring and he wanted to know if it was real. (I wanted to know what the guy looked like that he was buying that nasty thing from) I told him that a written appraisal was $75, but it wouldn't help him much unless he was going to insure it which didn't seem likely.

"I don't need nuthin' written down, just tell me what it's worth."

Okay class, here's your lesson for the day. When people started buying diamonds off of the Internet, they would bring them to a jewelry store to validate their purchase. They wanted to know if the bright shiny rock in their left hand matched the overwhelming amount of paperwork in their right hand. In the beginning, most of us didn't think anything about it and would spend 60-90 seconds looking at it and say yes or no. Then, the inevitable happened.

Someone bought an expensive diamond off the Internet and took it to their local jeweler who verified it was what the paperwork said it was. The guy buying the diamond decided to keep it and got married. A few years later the marriage didn't work out and one of them went to sell the ring only to find out after all that it wasn't what the paperwork said.

Uh Oh! That Internet company is in big trouble now. Nope. Out of business. Gone. Vanished.

The only person in the entire chain of events that was still approachable was the home town jeweler and he got sued by the guy who bought the diamond off the Internet. Why you ask? Because the guy claimed that he made his buying decision based upon the professional opinion of the home town jeweler... even though the jeweler didn't charge him a dime and only spent about 60 seconds looking at it. I don't remember the outcome of the case, but I do know one thing. It forever changed the way I approach appraisals.

I, like many thousands of you out there, carry appraisal liability insurance. I made a decision that I will never again do a verbal appraisal as long as I live (or until my policy is no longer in force, whichever comes first). I can glance at a cert paper and a diamond and in 2 seconds tell you if they match with about a 75% certainty. But I'm not willing to get sued just because someone "didn't need nuthin' written down." If you want my professional opinion, you'll have to pay for it. If I'm charging you $75 - $100 then I'm doing due diligence to the situation and signing my name to a legal document that is covered under my appraisal liability policy. If I'm wrong, I've got insurance to protect myself. Me saying, "Yep, it's a diamond" is not covered in most instances and leaves me wide open legally. Why would I do that when I pay a lot of money to be protected legally?

As a matter of fact, if a person is not going to hire me to do a full blown written appraisal, I won't even so much as hold the object in my hand. Because it starts that game of: "Just look at it, I won't sue you or nuthin'. Just look at it and tell me if it's real." If I'm not holding it, I can't see it and I can't render a professional opinion on it. I know a lot of people think I carry that a little too far (and I probably do), but when I explain the situation to my customer, they understand. They don't always like it, but they understand... even though they would never sue me.

A lot of people I've found are more than willing to spend the money to find out if they got what they paid for while they're still in that ‘30 day refund window,' so it's not all bad. Selling appraisal services is one of my profit centers so why would I give it away? But today it worked out better than I could have ever imagined.

Old dirty shirt guy with the nastiest ring I think I've ever seen (made nasty by someone else mind you) decided he was going to hand it to me anyway and make me take a look. The ring was way too small for his finger and when he tried to take it off it wouldn't budge. He tugged once. He tugged twice. And everyone knows what happened next. He started licking the ring like it was an ice cream cone and I thought I was gonna throw up. Through my gags I told him not to bother... cough cough... I'm not going... cough cough... to look at it.

So... what do you think of my policy now?

Chuck is the owner of Anthony Jewelers in Nashville, TN. Chuck also owns CMK Co., a wholesale trade shop that specializes in custom jewelry and repair services to the jewelry industry nationwide. You can contact him at 615-354-6361, www.CMKcompany.com or send e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Columnist