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Summer cautions!

Chlorine damage

 

We all know to take care of ourselves with good nutrition and exercise, so our joy will not be ruined by pain. But, little things can cause us great harm.

Likewise, our jewelry needs protection. Studies are proving that the exposure to chlorine in pools and hot tubs, as well as household cleaners, will damage jewelry. Prong failure can occur in only 21 hours with 5% chlorine heated to 110 degrees. When using 5 parts per million bromine as found in hot tub chemicals, prongs can fail after 384 hours, or, 192 days based on 2 hours per day, 7 days per week. Your jewelry may look nice after leaving the water, but damage HAS BEEN done!

Please don’t wear jewelry when you are swimming in pools or using hot tubs. Be careful when using chlorine cleaners. And, DON’T wear jewelry when you work out at the gym. You bought your jewelry to enjoy, not to be repaired repeatedly. Care for your jewelry and it will give you years of use and enjoyment.
Bring your jewelry to me to be inspected and cleaned, and I’ll do it for FREE! Anytime!

Non-diamond engagement rings

Recently, a woman told me her son’s girlfriend did NOT want a diamond for her engagement ring. I told her I understood and that I’ve created many engagement rings with sapphires, rubies and other gemstones and that I’d be willing to help create a beautiful ring just for her.

I also had a man come in for an engagement ring without diamonds. He just didn’t care for diamonds. We created the perfect ring.

Another friend recently became engaged using an opal as the main gemstone. The ring means so much to her.

Princess Kate wearing Princess Diana's engagement ring

While diamonds are a tradition, history has shown other gemstones can also be worn as the engagement ring. Remember, Princess Diana wore a sapphire surrounded with diamonds for her engagement ring. That same ring is now being worn by Prince William’s wife, Kate.  There are several things to consider with color gemstones – durability, availability and preferred color. Besides sapphires and rubies, I’m seeing gemstones like Morganite, Tanzanite, and emeralds being considered. They are beautiful gemstones but will scratch easily, chip and become dull looking. Moissanite, a synthetic gemstone, is also being used in engagement rings.

You see, color gemstones are beautiful, but just aren’t as hard, or scratch resistant, as diamonds are. You may have heard of the Moh scale. The Moh scale rates gemstones from 1 to 10 and is used to indicate hardness. A diamond is rated 10, while Talc is a 1. Even though Sapphires and Rubies are rated a 9, the diamond is many times harder than any other gemstone.

So, no matter which gemstone you want set in your unique ring, I can help guide you to the gemstone of your dreams.

Our new Custom Studio

Custom Studio: The Best Jewelry App for Our Customers

We are excited to announce the addition of another great tool to Dale Robertson Jewelry’s tool chest. Custom Studio’s innovative jewelry app is delivering a high-tech revolution as our customers enjoy easily creating custom jewelry at the tip of their fingers, and, it’s FREE! The industry’s best jewelry app allows our customers to design or redesign pieces to their own specifications, creating exactly the piece desired by downloading the app on their laptop or mobile device.

There’s nothing on the market like Dale Robertson Jewelry’s Custom Studio app, offered in partnership with a leading diamond importer/jewelry manufacturer based near Atlanta. The app’s Edit button makes designing fun and simple even for a jewelry novice. It’s as easy as connecting with our store, who links the consumer’s device to the app. From there, you can play with your choice of thousands of designs or even designs discovered and downloaded from the Internet.

With a click of a button, the “designer” chooses among many colors, stone shapes, shanks, halos and metal fillers, clicking and dragging elements onto the image of a ring, pendant, bracelet or earrings. You can even draw on the design, inserting engraving or their own handwriting.
With the Share button, you can take a piece you’ve created and share it with friends and family for reaction and input. The Share button is useful for us as well as we can send brilliant, high-res images with SKU number to you.

Other features include an Appointment button, allowing you to set up in-store appointments directly through Dale Robertson Jewelry’s Custom Studio. The app, when used in our store, also creates a universal, shared communication portal with store employees picking up messages and responding without delay.
The internal message system within the app links the retailer to customers, providing direct communication and collaboration.
To learn more about the app, visit www.customstudiousa.com., or connect with the app at https://tinyurl.com/ydanadv7. Register your app using code 5900.

Did I get a good deal?

It’s beautiful! But, did I get a good deal?

A customer recently took a cruise and bought a piece of jewelry. She came in to have the ring cleaned. Everything looked fine. She then proceeds to tell me about her trip and how she kept going back to the shop and the price kept getting lower. She was able to buy the ring for about 60% off the original ticket price. She asked if she got a good deal. As it turned out, she paid about what she should have for the ring. Then, she asked if the stones were real.

Deal, or not a deal?

Cruises and tourist spots a notorious for beginning with a high price, only to drop the price to make the sale. In many countries, haggling is normal. Both parties know the ticket price isn’t real and work to come to a mutually agreeable price.

Here in the US, some stores have conditioned customers to expect a discount with those phony sales of, “up to 70% off!” Penney’s several years ago experienced tremendous push-back when they went to an “Everyday Low Price” policy. I overheard people saying they would stop shopping at Penney’s because they wanted the discounts and coupons. After what seemed forever, Penney’s fired the president and went back to the old pricing policy. A local tv consumer advocate purchased a new shirt at Penney’s. The ticket shows $30 for the shirt. The sale gave him 40% off. He paid $16 for the shirt, a price he thought was good. Unfortunately, Penney’s had placed a label on the ticket showing the new price. The reporter removed the sticker and found the ticket had a printed price of $10. So, the “sale” cost him $6 more.

You should understand that every store has a target profit they need to stay in business. One large jewelry chain has to achieve a 60% gross profit as required by their bank. No matter how much they take off the ticket price, the profit has to be 60%. So, they could have a ticket price of $500 and take 60% off, making the sale price to be $200. If their cost was $90, then their target was achieved. Another store may offer the same piece at $200 realizing the same profit, but would the public buy it? In fact, the other store could probably charge less because their overall expenses will be less than the big box/ mall store, saving you even more. The pricing game benefits the stores, not the unknowing consumer.

So, next time you’re shopping and getting a sale price, ask yourself if you would buy the piece without a “sale.” If you wouldn’t, then the original ticket price is just a come-on and you’re really not saving money.

Do you need your jewelry appraised?

I’ve heard from 2 customers recently that their experiences with insurance on their jewelry didn’t go well. A woman lost her ring and filed a claim with the insurance company. She was dismayed when the check she received would not come close to allowing her to replace the lost ring. The insurance company had an old appraisal from 20 years ago. They insured her ring for that amount. They did not ask for a more current appraisal any time since originally writing the policy, which meant they never increase the policy to match current replacement costs. So, if the ring was insured for $2000.00 based on the 20-year-old appraisal, that’s all they would pay her for the ring if/when lost, meaning $2000.00 for a ring that would cost considerably more today.

The second customer recently changed insurance companies. He had appraisals from about 10 years ago. The insurance company asked for current appraisals. When new appraisals were not issued, the insurance company dropped the coverage and sent the customer a refund on that part of the policy, leaving him without any coverage for the many pieces of jewelry he owned.

In each of these instances, the customer was grossly underinsured and one was not “made whole” while the other would not have received anything if a loss occurred.

While I’m not an insurance agent, and don’t have a current license to sell insurance and cannot offer insurance advise, I will give you some ideas to ask your insurance professional about.

Most insurance companies expect that your jewelry appraisals are updated every 3 to 5 years. The prices of metals and gemstones fluctuate, going higher or lower by the day. Gold, for example, is nearly $1300.00 per ounce today, June 8, 2018. Over the past 10 years, gold was as low as $709.50 and as high as $1900.30 per ounce. Gemstones have similar cost changes.

Some questions to ask your insurance professional to be sure your jewelry is covered correctly in case of loss are:
• Ask how often you should have your jewelry appraised? Be sure to adhere to their guideline so your coverage is correct.
• Does your policy have a “cost of living” clause so your coverage increases as inflation increases?
• Does your policy cover against, “loss of, or damage to the diamonds or gemstones?” I’ve heard of diamonds falling out of the mountings and, since the client still had the mounting, the loss was not covered.
• Is there anything else you may need to insure your jewelry?

Please, do not have your jewelry insured for any phony original price from the stores that “give” you 40, 50 60% or more off the price. Your coverage should be for about what you paid for the jewelry because that’s the real price of the jewelry. Almost every insurance company I know will not pay you that phony retail if you lose the jewelry. They will only pay you what they, themselves can buy it for, and then give it to you.

There are other pieces of wisdom your insurance professional can give you, just ask them. When you need an updated appraisal, that’s where I can help you. As a Gemologist, I’m approved by my insurance company to do appraisals for you. I appraisal your jewelry here in the store when you need it, not when someone else comes into the store. I’ll first inspect your jewelry while you’re here. I’ll thoroughly clean your jewelry so I can see what you have. I’ll measure and grade each stone, determine an insurance replacement price for the jewelry, then print 2 copies of your appraisal; one for you and one for your agent. It’s that easy!

Why you should update your appraisals every 2 to 3 years

Pearls for appraisal

Owning a piece of jewelry, no matter the price range, is a meaningful keepsake for many people. Many celebrate a special occasion with a piece of jewelry or receive a special item as an inheritance.

Most people own at least one piece of jewelry. This may include necklaces, earrings, engagement and wedding rings, antique jewelry, custom jewelry, as well as estate jewelry. However, what most people don’t realize is the importance of protecting these valuables. As a result, getting an appraisal often gets shoved down the list of priorities. Whenever you purchase or receive a new piece of jewelry it is essential that you insure it in a timely fashion. This will cover your precious jewelry if something is to happen after getting it in your possession. It doesn’t matter if you have only one piece of jewelry or a whole collection; having an appraisal done for insurance purposes is a life saver when the unthinkable happens. Don’t believe me? Here are some reasons why you should have your jewelry appraised:

While it matters, your voice alone is not good enough in the event of theft, damage, or loss. Documentation from a certified source is required, and an appraisal can attest to the design, quality and condition of your jewelry.
The market is constantly fluctuating, so it is important to realize that value and cost are not the same. The value of gemstones, diamonds, and metal fluctuates daily. Even if your receipt states that you paid a certain amount, the market is never static so the value can change.
Knowing the value is essential to the insurance process. The value of your jewelry can affect your premium, and due to the fluctuating market values, your insurance policies should change accordingly.
Insurance companies will typically cover your jewelry if it is stolen to a limit. Damage or loss may have to be added to your policy, so it is vital that you check to see what is covered with your insurance agent. However, not all of the insurance policies you have may cover the full appraised value of your jewelry, so it’s important to update your policies regularly to ensure adequate coverage. If you’ve ever wondered why it’s recommended to update your appraisal every 2 to 3 years, the answer is simple, for protection and peace of mind! Because of the fluctuating market values of silver, gold, diamonds, and jewelry, it is important to stay on top of the changing market so you are current with inflation prices. The value of that wedding ring may change few cents from day to day, but the value can change dramatically over the course of a few years. This is why it is vital that you have a current, updated appraisal so your insurance agent can ensure that you are protected accordingly from the unexpected.

Here at Dale Robertson Jewelry, I specialize in providing my customers with comprehensive appraisal services. Remember, paying for an appraisal is a cheap investment for a big value, so if you are looking to have an item appraised, give me a call today.

Shared, in part, from Geolat.com

White gold and rhodium

Thumbnail Rhod WG
Rhodium, white gold

Did you know…Rhodium and white gold.

First and foremost, please understand that white gold does not exist in nature; white gold is a man-made product. Pure gold is 24kt and is a very bright yellow, not white. So what is white gold?
Imagine 24 identically sized bb’s of pure gold. If you melt all 24 of them together, you will have a blob of 24kt gold. If you remove one 24kt bb and replace it with another bb of any other metal (remember, there always has to be 24 bb’s when you melt them down) you will have 23kt gold.
Okay, follow the math here; if you take 10 of the 24kt bb’s away and replace them with 10 bb’s of nickel or zinc and melt all 24 of them together, you will have 14kt white gold. Therein lies the problem. You have 10 white bb’s and 14 bright yellow bb’s, thus, 14k white gold will always have that slight yellow sheen.
10kt white gold on the other hand contains 14 parts white to 10 parts yellow. 18kt white gold…well, it should be outlawed in my opinion because its 18 parts yellow and 6 parts white…aka…Slight Yellow Gold!
Rhodium on the other hand is a naturally occurring bright white member of the platinum family that lends itself very well as a plating material. Since its naturally bright white, when you use rhodium to plate a ‘whitish’ metal like 14kt white gold, it brightens it up and makes it appear whiter. Lotions, hand sanitizers and other materials cause the rhodium to dull over time, showing the slight yellow sheen. The process is not permanent and will need to be repeated sometime in the future.
Do you have jewelry question? Send me a message and I’ll give you an answer.

 

 

What’s Trending for 2016, part 2

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Every year around the end of May and beginning of June, thousands of jewelry manufacturers and retailers gather for three days to determine what you’ll buy in the coming months and season. It is overwhelming and intense. There’s so much to see and to choose from. And, there’s so much at stake. If a design is chosen and the consumer doesn’t like it, the jeweler takes a financial hit. If the design is a hit and the jeweler hasn’t ordered enough, they risk losing customers. If the jeweler didn’t buy into the design, they’ll lose business and customers. It’s not as easy as one might think.

Here’s a list of jewelry consumers love for 2016, so far.

  • Social media and influencers are helping to drive trends.

While posting on social media sights are thought to drive some trends, it’s the “influencers” – bloggers and popular Instagram users who are focusing on style and fashion – have something to do with what brides are looking for. Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram have great impact on what’s trending.

  • The average engagement ring price is about $6000.00

A survey from The Knot last year found the average price of an engagement ring is about $6000.00. The average price of a loose diamond from an independent of chain store will be about the same. When you add in a branded ring for a special look or a custom, most couple will pay a little for that value, driving prices upward.

What’s trending for 2016

20160509

Every year around the end of May and beginning of June, thousands of jewelry manufacturers and retailers gather for three days to determine what you’ll buy in the coming months and season. It is overwhelming and intense. There’s so much to see and to choose from. And, there’s so much at stake. If a design is chosen and the consumer doesn’t like it, the jeweler takes a financial hit. If the design is a hit and the jeweler hasn’t ordered enough, they risk losing customers. If the jeweler didn’t buy into the design, they’ll lose business and customers. It’s not as easy as one might think.

Here’s a list of jewelry consumers love for 2016, so far.

  • Consumers want something different, unique or custom.

Cluster rings (think of the Cocktail Ring with multiple diamonds or gemstones) have been hard for some stores to keep in stock.

Jewelry that carries a story is more important now than ever! Your jewelry can have a family history like maybe a diamond that was worn by a loved one. Or, how the groom chose the center gemstone and designed the rest of the ring with the help of the jeweler and friends. These stories have been shared on social media for others to enjoy and be a part of.

Round shaped diamonds continue to dominate by making up about two thirds of the sales. Princess shaped diamonds are second in popularity, but are losing market share. Fancy shaped diamonds  still make up a small part of the market but Radiant shaped and pear shaped diamonds are on the rise.

 

Check back for more trends.

Emeralds – May’s Birthstone

The ancient Egyptians mined emeralds nearly 4,000 years ago, and Cleopatraemerald was an avid collector. South America’s rich bounty of emeralds was discovered by16th Century Spanish explorers who found large emeralds in the possession of the Aztecs and Incas. Believed by the ancients to empower the owner with
foresight into the future, emerald is regarded as an amulet for good fortune Emerald, to many, symbolizes rebirth and the abundance of the life force. The rich green hue brings to mind the regeneration of life in spring and hope of new possibilities. Emerald is the birthstone for May and a talisman for Gemini.

Spring can also be seen in the network of inclusions in the depth of the emerald that the French call the jardin, or garden, because it resembles foliage. The inclusions are like a fingerprint, giving each emerald a distinct personality and distinguishing them as truly natural gemstones.

Today, most of the world’s emeralds are mined in Colombia, Brazil and Zambia. Emeralds can be cut in a variety of different shapes, ranging from the traditional rectangular step-cut, known as the “emerald cut,” to rounds, ovals, squares and cabochons.

Early gemstone merchants sought to purify the transparency of their emeralds by immersing them in clear oils or paraffin. They found that clear oils and waxes rendered surface fissures less visible to the eye. Today, we have many sophisticated technologies with which to clarity-enhance emeralds. In addition to the oils and waxes of ancient methods, we now use clear resins to penetrate the open fissures surfacing in the stones. Hardeners are often added to solidify these liquids. This step prevents the resin from evaporating, thus making the clarity enhancement more permanent than oiling or waxing the gem.

Although emerald itself is quite durable, the garden of inclusions may make individual gems vulnerable to damage if
handled roughly. Dale Robertson Jewelry can help you with care and cleaning all your jewelry.

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