Thursday, October 1, 2015

Trending: Custom Designed Engagement Rings

Getting engaged? Haven't found exactly the right ring? Many couples today are focusing on personalization, seeking out custom-made rings rather than prefabricated. You might think this option is out of your budget, but it just takes some smart shopping to avoid costly pitfalls and get that one-of-a-kind engagement ring.

At a mall store or national chain, you generally interact with a salesperson, never meeting with whomever is making your ring. In this case, you're putting your faith in the middleman to convey your wishes accurately, as well as in the anonymous jeweler to do quality work. Furthermore, it's likely the salesperson is paid on commission and therefore has incentive to sell at the highest price. That's a lot of faith in strangers for such an important decision.

Valley Jewelers owner Craig Brady comments "I am completely redoing a ring right now for a new customer who had her ring made by a national jeweler. It's a mess. When she complained to them, she got nowhere. Now, this couple is eating the cost of the first ring and we're starting over. Even the diamonds were sub par."

At an independent jewelry store like Valley Jewelers, you can work directly with the designer who will be creating your ring. In this case, you can also check out his/her portfolio of work so you know the level of craftsmanship you'll be getting. Don't let the small storefront fool you. Independent jewelers with diamond-buying group affiliations offer the best of combination of personal service, quality workmanship and huge diamond inventory availability. It's another example of how buying local is best.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Diamonds Are Forever; Jewelry Not Necessarily.

Increasingly consumers are opting to upcycle their gemstones and precious metals into fresh pieces, rather than leaving the outdated jewelry to waste at the bottom of their jewelry box. There are many reasons why restyling jewelry has been growing in popularity: economics, resource conservation, and sentimentality to name a few.

For a fraction of the cost of buying new, a master jeweler can transform a worn-out piece into something that better suits its current owner. Through custom design, a goldsmith creates a one-of-a-kind heirloom owners can wear proudly now-- as well as pass down to family members. Meanwhile, precious materials have been recycled and, in many cases, the loved one from whom the original jewelry came is honored and remembered.
"We have a makeover event 2-3 times a year during which you can have your own gemstones from old jewelry reset into new pieces. Or you can select new gemstones from our diamond and colored gemstone collections to replace missing ones from pieces you love," explains Craig Brady, owner/jeweler of Valley Jewelers.

"Our designers will aid you in finding the appropriate gemstone or setting and our expert craftsmen will fashion your jewelry while you watch." Brady adds that he works with clients all the time to repair, restore and recycle jewelry, but only at the makeover events do people have the opportunity to watch the work being done.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Free Fall Jewelry Cleaning!

Sunscreen, moisturizers & hair products mask jewelry with a dull film and hide their true beauty. Stop by our showroom, have something cold to drink on us and browse a bit while we freshen up your treasures. In just a few minutes, your item will be SPARKLING! Now until Saturday, October 17th-- excluding 9/19. Limit 1 item per person.

Why not Saturday, 9/19? Because it's Upper Montclair's Annual Sidewalk Sale Day! Don't miss 50% reductions on 100's of items!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Fall 2015 Jewelry Trends

Along with juicy Jersey apples, hot cider with cinnamon and pumpkin flavored everything, most women anticipate fall fashion.

Here are the jewelry trends that will be winners this fall/winter season:
Yellow gold is back in a big way-- especially if it's a chunky necklace, waist-skimming pendant or wide cuff like this one in our showroom.
Two-gemstone ring designs, particularly bypass settings (such as the vintage ring shown), rule the world of rings. We doubt this trend will replace halos but it's a runway favorite.
Stiletto earrings-- like these from Stephen Estelle-- replace chandeliers & teardrops as the predominant shape. Think straight or matchstick. Metal only or gemstone studded, polished or hammered, linked or flat, it's all about the basic linear form.
Peach is in season all year round whether it's morganite, coral, freshwater pearls or rose gold like this Eco-Drive watch from Citizen. Try it with shades of warm gray for an elegant look.
Thin stacked bangles continue to dominate. (These are from Thistle & Bee, a gorgeous collection we're launching this fall.) Make a bunch of bracelets your single statement. Other jewelry worn simultaneously is best if understated.

For the latest information about all things jewelry, join our blog, check out our showroom at 219 Bellevue Av., Upper Montclair, NJ, as well as our pages on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Buyer Beware: There's More To Know Than the 4 C's

Okay, you understand the basics of color, cut, clarity and carats so you're ready to buy a diamond, right? Well, not so fast. These days, you also need to watch out for color-enhanced, clarity-enhanced and even synthetic diamonds. Unfortunately, these are often undetectable to the eye.

Briefly, many types of gemstones including diamonds can be heat treated to improve their color. This process and the resulting effects vary greatly in permanence and stability, so over time your beautiful purchase may fade.

The black spots ("inclusions") found in diamonds are sometimes drilled out and replaced with a clear resin to improve the gemstone's aesthetic. This compromises the diamond's integrity and makes any repair or remounting tricky because the resin can melt and run out of the gemstone when heated.

New synthetic diamonds, particularly Moissanite, can be very convincing imposters. Cases have been in the news of unsuspecting consumers learning they purchased a fake after the seller is long gone.

The solution?
Protect your investment by buying from a long-standing brick & mortar store in your community. Independent jewelry stores are often family businesses operating in the community for decades. In today's retail climate, particularly after the recent economic downturn, a main street jeweler has survived by being trustworthy, offering great service and competitive prices. We want to help you find your next family heirloom.