The Jewelry District show

The Jewelry District

Summary: A podcast by JCK Magazine and JCKonline about industry news, trends, interviews, weird stories, and more!

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 Episode 52: Thoughts From The JCK | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 453100:29:50

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director 

 Episode 51: Guest Kate Youngstrom and the JCK Show | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:03

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) ...

 Episode 50: JCK Las Vegas, Tiffany, and Rolex | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:23:05

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about the new Tiffany campaign, Rolex, and diamond tracking systems. Show Notes00:51 The JCK Show is coming up, and Rob and Victoria excitedly wonder how it will go.05:36 Rob talks about how Tiffany & Co.’s new campaign is ruffling some feathers.11:50 Rolex has increased market share over the course of the pandemic, and the JCK editors talk about the brand.17:46 Alrosa came out with nanotechnology to track its diamonds. Rob explores the technology's applications. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: JCK Show, (https://lasvegas.jckonline.com/en-us.html) jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap The JCK Show Victoria and Rob talk a little bit about the JCK Show coming up later this month. They both have been making appointments, and Rob will be on a panel. Victoria thinks this will be a very different Vegas than what we’re used to, but she says it’ll be a very special one as we all come back together for the first time. Not Your Mother's Tiffany Rob recently wrote about Tiffany & Co.’s new campaign, which has been a bit controversial. Some are attributing the company’s new campaign slogan, “Not Your Mother’s Tiffany," to 29-year-old Alexandre Arnault, who oversees the brand’s communications. He’s the son of Bernard Arnault, LMVH chairman. Rob says Alexandre is trying to “hip up” the brand—but wonders if the new campaign is too cheeky. Some mothers are offended by the campaign, as it dates the Tiffany they know. Victoria brings up the Mercedes Benz campaign featuring Janis Joplin that isolated its core consumer but ended up working well for the brand. Rolex, Unsurprisingly, Stays on the Rise Victoria pivots to talking about the watch industry, specifically Rolex. The brand has gained market share over the course of the pandemic. Victoria spoke to a fellow editor in the watch space, who said that other watch companies looking to gain market share shouldn’t compare themselves to Rolex: “We all live on planet watchmaking, but they’re on planet Rolex.” Victoria brings up the brand since Tourneau has recently opened up an adjoining Tudor–Rolex boutique in New York City's Meatpacking District. New Diamond Tracking Technology Rob talks about tracking diamonds through the supply chain. Alrosa just came out with a system that uses nanotechnology, a part of the gems' molecular structure, to track its diamonds. Rob mentions that some people are concerned about hacking and security. However, this technology should be able to bring more transparency to the industry when it comes to origin, traceability, and trackability. But Alrosa’s tracking technology doesn’t just have to be about tracking where diamonds came from. It may also be useful for those wanting to track their diamonds if they happen to be stolen, so there are plenty of uses for this tech.

 Episode 49: Guest Alan Revere | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:43

In This Episode You’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk with Alan Revere, award-winning jewelry designer, author, and founder of the now-closed Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts. Show Notes00:50 Victoria and Rob introduce their guest, Alan Revere.07:16 Alan got his start with jewelry in Germany, and he explains what he did once he got back to the United States.11:00 Alan tells the JCK editors what the jewelry industry was like back in the ’60s and ’70s.13:04 Alan discloses which jewelers have stuck out to him.15:47 The Revere Academy closed in 2017, and Alan explains his feelings on that time.18:58 Now retired, Alan lets listeners know what he's up to these days. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jcklasvegas.com (https://lasvegas.jckonline.com/), jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Introducing Alan RevereVictoria and Rob briefly mention this year’s new issue of JCK magazine, which is all about JCK Las Vegas, now taking place in late August. They then introduce their guest, Alan Revere. He is the past president of the American Jewelry Design Council, founder of the Contemporary Design Group, and founder of the Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in San Francisco. He’s now retired in Lucas Valley, in Marin, Calif., living in a midcentury modern home. He grew up in Great Neck, N.Y., but trained in Germany. Here he tells the story of how he got involved in the jewelry industry. How Alan Got His StartAlan tells us he dropped a potential career in law for the arts in the ’70s. Victoria asks about what happened when he came back from Germany in 1974 and landed on the West Coast. Alan says he got a job as a bench jeweler in Oakland, Calif.. It was there that he learned how to do repairs, resize rings, fulfill custom orders, and the like. At the California College of the Arts, Alan taught a small class—which eventually led to him teaching from his studio, and then his home. In 1979, he established the Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts. Industry Changes in the ’60s and ’70s Rob says we think a lot about how the ’60s and ’70s were a big time for change in arts and design, and asks Alan what school of design he belonged to. Alan says in the ’60s, contemporary jewelry started to come of age, but no one was selling under their own name. By the ’70s, that had all begun to change, when a range of trends began to bloom and jewelers started their own name brands. At that time, Alan says people had more money than they knew what to do with, so it was a better time for buying jewelry. Who Stands OutVictoria asks Alan if he taught CAD at the Revere Academy, and he explains that he did, but seldom. For him, creating jewelry is best when done with your hands. He’s a craftsman who wants to touch the materials—but he recognizes how useful today's technology is. Changing subjects, Victoria asks which of Alan's students have really stood out. Alan says James Binnion, a metaler; Mary-Lee Rae an enamelist; and Dana Bronfman, a newcomer to the space. He also mentions Kirk  Bloodsworth, the first convicted inmate to be released because of DNA evidence, who then released a line of jewelry for others who have been exonerated. Though Alan says there is no other academy like his as none are all-encompassing as his was, there are a few he likes.

 Episode 48: Watches of Switzerland, Alex and Ani, and Marketing Innovations | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:02

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about Watches of Switzerland, Alex and Ani, and marketing innovations. Show Notes00:55 Victoria talks about her trip to New York to see Watches of Switzerland's new campaign.07:02 The jewelry industry is doing well.09:25 Rob explains how Alex and Ani declined into bankruptcy.16:49 Victoria discusses her article for The New York Times in which she talks with top minds in marketing.20:14 The president of research and strategy at the New York–based company PSFK told Victoria about developing technology called "digital twins." Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: Zing by Jewelers Mutual (https://zing.jewelersmutual.com/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIreWth9nO8QIV-25vBB2MxAJ7EAAYASAAEgIHffD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds), jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap New York Is Back! Plus Watches of Switzerland Shows Off Victoria and Rob kick off the podcast by talking about Victoria’s recent trip to New York, her first visit to the city since the pandemic started. She was in New York for a press trip, sponsored by Watches of Switzerland to celebrate its newest campaign: Anytime, Anywhere. The brand showed off its watches in a spectacular video created by a creative director hired specifically for the job. Watches of Switzerland will have an Airstream parked in the Hamptons in New York through August to show off its watches. Victoria and Rob also briefly talk about how New York has changed since the beginning of the pandemic and where peoples’ dispensable income is going. A Thriving Industry Rob says lab-grown and natural diamonds are doing well. The fear was that these two industries would cannibalize each other, but so far that hasn’t happened. Retail sales are up, and people are ready for the pandemic to be over. Victoria pivots to mention a company called Threads Styling, a chat-based platform with an Instagram account. If consumers like what they see, they can start a chat via WhatsApp with a personal shopper and talk about the pieces they're interested in. Now, the company has its own shop on Instagram. Rob mentions Signet is also doing well. Alex and Ani and Bankruptcy Victoria gives a quick counter to all the optimism we’ve heard so far of booming retail sales: Alex and Ani has gone bankrupt. Rob explains the brand was once one of the biggest in the industry, valued at over a billion dollars. However, last month it filed for Chapter 11. Alex and Ani's interim CEO has said the company faced three main problems: macro trends driving customers away from brick-and-mortar retail, explosive growth in the early 2010s that resulted in operational challenges, and significant turnover in management. Rob also explains the company’s link to a spiritual healer and the ways in which its mobile app used customer data. What's Next for Watches Victoria held a trio of interviews for an article called “What’s Next for Watches (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/18/fashion/watches-future-predictions.html)” which ran in The New York Times on June 19—asking her interviewees what's coming in the watch industry and retail at large. The first person she spoke to is an expert on consumer psyche, who held conversations with consumers on what they need to feel good about purchasing something.

 Episode 47: Guest Casey Melvin | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:25:00

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk with guest Casey Melvin, cofounder and co-CEO of the Future of Jewelry. She'll be describing what the company she and her sister started offers and how it's different from traditional jewelers. Show Notes00:30 Victoria and Rob introduce their guest, Casey Melvin.07:08 Casey describes the Future of Jewelry platform.10:20 Casey talks about how she differentiates her company from those of traditional jewelers and describes her consumer.13:05 Victoria asks if the Future of Jewelry has had any investors, and Casey describes the types of rings consumers can create on the company's website in greater detail.20:30 Rob asks Casey what the future of her company looks like. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Riley McKascleProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: thefutureofjewelry.com (https://thefutureofjewelry.com/), jckonline.com (http://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Introducing Casey Melvin Victoria and Rob introduce their guest, Casey Melvin, cofounder and co-CEO of the Future of Jewelry. Casey entered the jewelry industry in 2016. Before that, she was in law school. It was during law school that she studied abroad in the United Kingdom with her sister. One weekend in Spain, they were looking for a piece of jewelry to mark their trip to the country. She found a signet ring that she loved and wanted to surprise her sister with one—but the rings were either extremely expensive, or extremely cheap. From there, they both got into 3D printing for their own brand of customizable signet rings. The Future of Jewelry Platform Casey tells the JCK editors a little bit about the platform the Future of Jewelry uses that allows buyers to design their own ring on its website. You don’t have to be a designer in order to create your signet ring. You can choose the band, engraving, and kind of metal, all of which helps you make a ring that's completely unique and personalized. If you have access to a 3D printer, you can also buy a design file of the ring you design and 3D-print the piece yourself. (https://www.jckonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/TheJewelryDistrict-SigentRing-175x300.png) How the Company Stands Out Victoria asks how Casey’s platform fits in to the world of more traditional jewelry. She believes that her company stands out as it democratizes jewelry at a lower price point. She wants her consumer to be a part of the design process. She says she imagines the Future of Jewelry buyer to be in their 20s or 30s, someone with a bit of disposable income, who wants a piece that stands the test of time. Casey says the company has attracted a lot of customers by word of mouth, and she wants to create direct relationships with her customers. The Ring and Company Inventory Victoria asks Casey if the company had any investors, and Casey answers that it's just been her and her two sisters (though she's received some advice from Mark Cuban; he told her to keep the company in the family, advice that she took to heart). As for the ring itself, you can engrave it with a monogram, roman numerals, icons, dates, geographical locations, and more. Victoria asks if this kind of personalization is coming soon to other companies—Casey doesn’t think so.

 Episode 46: India, Kay + Zales, and De Beers Forevermark | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:45

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about how COVID-19 is affecting India, the Kay + Zales combo stores, and the De Beers Forevermark rebranding. Show Notes 00:30 While New York City and Los Angeles are doing okay in terms of COVID-19, the situation in India is looking bleak.06:27 Rob discusses what stock prices are looking like in India despite the pandemic.12:36 Kay and Zales have come together to form Kay + Zales. Rob and Victoria offer their thoughts.18:32 Forevermark rebranded recently. Why? And what does Gen Z think? Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Riley McCaskillProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com, @jckmagazine Show Recap Stuggles In India Victoria and Rob talk about how things seem to be going back to normal in Los Angeles and New York City, as people start leaving their homes more after being inside for so much of 2020. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for India, where 132,788 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on June 1. Victoria recently reached out to Tarang Arora, who is part of the family that owns Amrapali. He’s involved in an initiative called Find a Bed, which helps place people in hospitals in India. Where Are India's Stock Numbers? Rob looks at India from an industry perspective and reports that its stock levels in jewelry were very high before the country was hit so hard by COVID-19. In fact, its stock numbers were higher in March 2021 than they were in March 2020, before the country experienced a spike in COVID-19 cases. Victoria wonders whether India is now experiencing the same things the United States did in 2020 as far as buying and selling—such as people being home more often and buying jewelry to pass the time. Rob also relays an interesting news story about fraudulent letters and bank loans from one Indian company. Combining Forces: Kay + Zales Victoria asks Rob to explain a story (https://www.jckonline.com/editorial-article/signet-kay-zales-combo-stores/) he wrote recently about a Kay and Zales combo-store concept, Kay + Zales. Since malls haven’t been getting the same traction they once did, the two competitors (both owned by Signet) decided to combine forces and share the same store space. Will this idea be successful? Time will tell. You’ll also hear from who Rob calls his “JCK spy." They visited the store to see what the commotion was about, and he relays his informant's thoughts. Victoria applauds the stores' innovation and willingness to try something different. What's in a Name? Recently, Forevermark rebranded itself as De Beers Forevermark. The reasoning behind this move, Rob explains, is that LVMH once had rights to use the De Beers name commercially, but once De Beers bought the company out, De Beers wanted to consolidate its brands under the same name. We have yet to see if the De Beers name will make any difference to the Forevermark brand. Victoria wonders what members of Gen Z know of the brand name De Beers, if they know it at all.

 Episode 45: Guest Shelia Bayes | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:28:51

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) ...

 The Jewelry District, Episode 44: Our Digital Future, Tiffany’s Male Engagement Rings, Burma Sanctions | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:40

In This Episode You’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about new technology in jewelry, Tiffany & Co.’s new engagement rings for men, and the United States' sanctions on Burma. Show Notes 00:30 Victoria questioned luxury brands about their opinion on technology in the industry.6:55 Victoria wonders whether jewelry will eventually become all digital.13:30 Rob and Victoria discuss Tiffany's new engagement rings for men and why these are different from previous men's engagement pieces.19:36 Rob explains what's going on with the sanctions on Burma and what they mean for you. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Resistance to Technology in the Luxury Space We’re living our lives in the digital sphere more than ever, but the question remains, will our future be digital? Victoria explores the intersection of jewelry and the digital world, especially in the luxury industry. When Victoria reached out to leaders in the jewelry industry for comment, very few responded. A woman from Boucheron was one of the few who did respond, and she and Victoria spoke about AI, 3D printing, and more. Victoria will explain the collision between high jewelry and mass jewelry and what she sees as the democratization of jewelry, largely due to the development of our online world. What A Digital Future Could Look Like While she was researching this topic, Victoria spent time thinking about a world in which jewelry is primarily digital. A digital world of jewelry could mean we all have avatars and digital skins, but it could also mean owning digital-only jewelry. Victoria and Rob briefly discuss NFTs (non-fungible tokens). NFTs are driven by cryptocurrency, and you can buy jewelry, real estate, art, and other big-ticket items that only exist as a unique entity whose sale is minted on a digital ledger. Victoria deep dives into what NFTs are and how they work, and why high luxury brands are wary of them. Tiffany Announces Engagement Rings For Men Tiffany & Co. has announced its offering diamond engagement rings for men. While the company is not the first to offer men these rings, it joins a trend in the jewelry industry toward gender neutrality. Rob explains how prior to World War II, men did not receive wedding rings at all, so America has come a long way in its jewelry offerings. He also mentions the bittersweet removal of Tiffany’s A3 ad in the New York Times. Victoria and Rob also explore the difference between the diamonds on Tiffany's men’s and women’s diamond rings. The Sanctions On Burma Rob and Victoria wrap up the podcast with a more serious topic: the U.S. sanction on Burmese products. For a long time, Burmese rubies were banned in the United States. Earlier this year, the country underwent a military coup, and now the United States has instituted sanctions against Burmese jade, ruby, and pearls. Some say the original ban wasn't as effective at hurting the military as the U.S government planned, but it did largely affect those small artisanal diggers who depend on mining for their livelihood. Rob says not only will all of these sanctions affect the colored stone industry, but they will also bring into question jewelers' sourcing.

 Episode 44: Our Digital Future, Tiffany’s Male Engagement Rings, Burma Sanctions | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:24:40

In This Episode You’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about new technology in jewelry, Tiffany & Co.’s new engagement rings for men, and the United States' sanctions on Burma. Show Notes 00:30 Victoria questioned luxury brands about their opinion on technology in the industry.6:55 Victoria wonders whether jewelry will eventually become all digital.13:30 Rob and Victoria discuss Tiffany's new engagement rings for men and why these are different from previous men's engagement pieces.19:36 Rob explains what's going on with the sanctions on Burma and what they mean for you. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Resistance to Technology in the Luxury Space We’re living our lives in the digital sphere more than ever, but the question remains, will our future be digital? Victoria explores the intersection of jewelry and the digital world, especially in the luxury industry. When Victoria reached out to leaders in the jewelry industry for comment, very few responded. A woman from Boucheron was one of the few who did respond, and she and Victoria spoke about AI, 3D printing, and more. Victoria will explain the collision between high jewelry and mass jewelry and what she sees as the democratization of jewelry, largely due to the development of our online world. What A Digital Future Could Look Like While she was researching this topic, Victoria spent time thinking about a world in which jewelry is primarily digital. A digital world of jewelry could mean we all have avatars and digital skins, but it could also mean owning digital-only jewelry. Victoria and Rob briefly discuss NFTs (non-fungible tokens). NFTs are driven by cryptocurrency, and you can buy jewelry, real estate, art, and other big-ticket items that only exist as a unique entity whose sale is minted on a digital ledger. Victoria deep dives into what NFTs are and how they work, and why high luxury brands are wary of them. Tiffany Announces Engagement Rings For Men Tiffany & Co. has announced its offering diamond engagement rings for men. While the company is not the first to offer men these rings, it joins a trend in the jewelry industry toward gender neutrality. Rob explains how prior to World War II, men did not receive wedding rings at all, so America has come a long way in its jewelry offerings. He also mentions the bittersweet removal of Tiffany’s A3 ad in the New York Times. Victoria and Rob also explore the difference between the diamonds on Tiffany's men’s and women’s diamond rings. The Sanctions On Burma Rob and Victoria wrap up the podcast with a more serious topic: the U.S. sanction on Burmese products. For a long time, Burmese rubies were banned in the United States. Earlier this year, the country underwent a military coup, and now the United States has instituted sanctions against Burmese jade, ruby, and pearls. Some say the original ban wasn't as effective at hurting the military as the U.S government planned, but it did largely affect those small artisanal diggers who depend on mining for their livelihood. Rob says not only will all of these sanctions affect the colored stone industry, but they will also bring into question jewelers' sourcing.

 Episode 43: Guest Christina Miller | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:29:37

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) interview Christina Miller, owner and founder of Christina T. Miller Sustainable Jewelry Consulting. Show Notes 00:30 Victoria and Rob introduce their guest, Christina Miller, founder of Christina T. Miller Sustainable Jewelry Consulting.06:09 Christina discusses her first company, Ethical Metalsmiths.15:27 You'll hear the very first step you can take to become sustainable.19:26 Christina argues that claiming you use recycled gold is not enough to be considered sustainable.23:33 Victoria asks if Christina is hopeful about sustainability, and Christina says we have a long way to go. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: christinatmiller.com (https://christinatmiller.com/), jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Introducing Christina MillerAn expert on sustainability and sustainable sourcing, Christina Miller is the owner and founder of Christina T. Miller Sustainable Jewelry Consulting. From 2004 to 2015, she led the nonprofit organization Ethical Metalsmiths, which she cofounded. Today, she’s calling in from the village of College Corner, Ohio. Perhaps not a hub for jewelry, College Corner does happen to be a place where international activities on responsible sourcing and sustainability occur (right from her home office!). Christina comes from an academic art background and always wanted to be an art teacher; she earned bachelor's and master’s degrees in jewelry and metalsmithing. Ethical Metalsmiths Around 2005, Christina and her Ethical Metalsmith cofounder, Susan Kingsley, gave a talk on sustainability at a conference put on by the Society of North American Goldsmiths. Though this concept is commonplace in our jewelry industry now, their ideas were not well-received 16 years ago. Early on in her career, large-scale mining really made an impression on Christina. She's been concerned with the way we pushed aside Native Americans and eradicated groups of people to obtain our raw materials. Christina explains who Ethical Metalsmiths originally aimed to inform, and how the industry changed over the next 11 years after she formed the organization. How to Become Sustainable Since her days in Ethical Metalsmiths, Christina has been working with retailers, designers, and civil society organizations on sustainable practices. She encourages people to look inward and to work within their own belief system. First, you should think about the impact you would like to have, and then work to pursue sourcing that matches those values. Christina says ethical jewelry sourcing lies in the relationships we have with people all along the supply chain. Sustainability is a journey, and while we may be shortsighted when we start out, we learn to to be more ethical as we become more educated. Why Recycled Gold Isn't Enough Christina encourages people to reconsider how highly they tout their use of recyclable gold; companies shouldn’t be making claims that they can’t substantiate. We need to be doing more than just using recycled gold. Christina argues that all gold is really recycled, as all the gold that has ever existed lies somewhere on or within our planet. Using recycled gold is a start, but there’s so much more that has to be done in order to be considered sustainable. We Have a Long Way to Go

 Episode 42: Industry Departures, Rocksbox, and Watches and Wonders Geneva | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:27:17

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk about industry departures, Rocksbox, and Watches and Wonders Geneva. Show Notes 00:30 Victoria and Rob are excited for JCK Las Vegas. They also mourn the loss of two extraordinary women in the jewelry industry.08:04 Mark Smelzer, longtime publisher of JCK, departs the company.11:11 Rob talks about Signet's acquisition of Rocksbox, and his concerns about company consolidation.18:27 Victoria talks about Watches and Wonders Geneva.20:26 There's a new sustainable watch coming to the market in 2022. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap JCK Las VegasVictoria and Rob talk about getting their COVID-19 vaccines, followed by Victoria excitedly sharing that she just booked her hotel room for JCK Las Vegas, which runs Aug. 24–Aug. 30. She’ll be at the Palazzo and can’t wait to see everyone there. On a sadder note, Victoria and Rob take a moment to honor the extraordinary women in the jewelry industry who have passed away over the last few weeks: Elsa Peretti and Alex Woo. Mark Smelzer Leaves JCKIn other news, Mark Smelzer, who was JCK’s publisher for 17 years, has taken another job, with Jewelers Mutual Group as chief content executive. Victoria and Rob both share memories they have of Mark, and congratulate him on his new job. Signet’s Acquisition of RocksboxSignet has taken over Rocksbox, a subscription service that caters to the serious jewelry fan. Subscribers get three pieces of jewelry for $21 a month. The average three pieces cost about $150 in total, and the company sends subscribers two items they selected and one surprise. The surprise element makes this business model one of discovery. Rob spends a bit of time talking about the negatives of businesses consolidating. Watches and Wonders GenevaThis podcast was recorded on April 7, which was the opening day of Watches and Wonders Geneva. Just like last year, the event was all virtual. Thirty-eight brands participated this year. Victoria discusses some of the new models that were expected this year based on all the press releases she received. A Sustainable WatchVictoria also mentions the Panerai Submersible eLAB-ID, which she wrote about (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/12/fashion/watches-suppliers-secrecy-switzerland.html) for the New York Times. The timepiece is a concept watch that’s due to come out in 2022 with a limited release of just 30. A big selling point of this watch? It’s made from 98.6% recycled material—a record in the industry. Panerai also used nine external suppliers, a fact that it publicized in its press release. It's not typical for Swiss companies to share who their materials come from, so Panerai doing so signals a new effort toward sustainability.

 Episode 41: Guest Madeline Fraser | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:27:38

In This EpisodeYou’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/) talk with Madeline Fraser, founder and CEO of Gemist. They'll be discussing her entrepreneurial spirit, how she started her company, and how she views the jewelry industry as a former outsider. Show Notes 00:30 Victoria and Rob introduce their guest, Madeline Fraser, founder and CEO of Gemist.04:04 Madeline explains how she started Gemist.09:46 Gemist has evolved over the years to include fashion jewelry.15:43 Rob asks Madeline about her marketing strategy; Victoria asks about AR technology.19:24 Madeline gives her take on the jewelry industry, and recounts a meeting she had with De Beers. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/?hl=en) Show Recap Introducing Madeline FraserVictoria and Rob introduce their guest, Madeline Fraser, founder and CEO of a direct-to-consumer company called Gemist. Last year, JCK senior editor Emili Vesilind wrote that Gemist was like the Warby Parker of jewelry. Madeline tells her story of becoming an entrepreneur, which begins with her starting her first business in college. She created the very first online interior design company. Her idea got her a spot on Shark Tank and ended up being developed into a platform called Hutch. She then explains how her engagement to her then-fiancé sparked her to start Gemist. What Is Gemist?Madeline explains how she started Gemist. First, she noticed a hole in the jewelry industry: There weren't any companies that allowed you to design your own piece of jewelry online. She figured out the market, who Gemist's competitors were, how big the industry was, and what problem it was looking to solve. What makes her company stand out? Customers can not only create their own jewelry pieces online or in the app, but also try the pieces out at home before they buy them. How Gemist Has EvolvedWhile Gemist originally started out as a brand revolving around creating your own custom engagement ring, the company has evolved into selling fashion jewelry as well, including rings and earrings. This expansion of the inventory was at the request of customers who loved being able to create engagement rings but wanted more diversity. Rob asks Madeline about security risks with potential customers trying out the jewelry at home, and she explains how her customers get a replica product. Victoria asks about what the reaction was to her company from investors and Silicon Valley, and Madeline explains the challenges of getting investors interested in the jewelry industry. Marketing and AR TechnologyVictoria asks if Madeline has seen any men shopping for themselves despite Gemist being a female-centered company, and she says yes. Rob then asks about marketing, and Madeline explains how affiliate marketing has especially worked well for them. Victoria asks Madeline about AR technology, but Madeline doesn’t think the tech is fully developed yet, and believes AR still needs to catch up with itself before she incorporates it into Gemist. The Jewelry Industry Through Entrepreneurial EyesVictoria asks Madeline what she believes entices people into a store, keeps them there, engages them, and drives them to make a purchase. You'll hear her answer that question,

 Episode 40: Gendered Watches And Lab-Grown Sustainability | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:19:51

In This Episode In this edition of The Jewelry District, you’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/)talk about gender in the watch industry, secondhand jewelry and watches, and a new sustainability certification for diamonds. Show Notes00:30 Victoria and Rob take a second to review this busy month.02:15 Victoria notices the watch industry’s disapproving reaction to the category of women’s watches.09:00 Gendered products are outdated. Rob and Victoria explore how marketing such products has failed.12:13 Secondhand jewelry and watch sites are plentiful. Rob talks about authentication and sustainability.14:35 Rob recently wrote about the language surrounding lab-grown diamonds, and discusses the new criteria a producer must meet to be considered eco-friendly. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap A Busy March It’s mid-March! That means it's daylight saving time. We’ve set our clocks forward in preparation for more hours of sunshine. But that’s not the only marker of time. This time last year, the first COVID-19 lockdowns were just starting across America. We’ve come a long way since then. Another March event? Women’s History Month. And that takes Victoria’s mind to watches. Women Aren’t MonolithicVictoria wrote an article for the New York Times for International Women’s Day both this year and last. When she wrote last year’s article, she spoke to Kathleen McGivney, CEO of RedBar Group, who told her there are so many categories for men’s watches, but when it comes to women’s watches, there is just one category. She made the point that women are not monolithic, and the industry has been missing that fact. This year, Hodinkee published a piece (https://www.hodinkee.com/articles/all-watches-should-be-unisex-and-heres-why) making the argument that all watches should be unisex. The Failure of Watch AdvertisementsRob says when you go online, watches are advertised as these macho, masculine pieces. Victoria agrees: In advertising aimed toward women, models are scantily dressed and posing in their watches. In advertising aimed toward men, men are skiing, climbing mountains, and using their watches as tools, not just as accessories. Advertising for women just shows how they can be sexier, which doesn’t necessarily reflect what women actually want. The industry's marketing toward women is outdated. In other watch-related news, Rob reports that Hodinkee bought Crown & Caliber, the secondhand watch site. He’s interested in Hodinkee's move from a watch site into the e-commerce realm. Secondhand Sites Rob wonders about secondhand watch sites: Are there too many of them? Can the market handle them all? Victoria counters by asking when the jewelry industry will follow suit. Rob points out that the real problem with secondhand jewelry sites is getting the pieces authenticated. eBay is one place trying to grown its certification processes. Rob says people's desire for secondhand jewelry and watches comes from their interest in sustainability. Lab-Grown Language On the topic of sustainability and eco-friendliness,

 Episode 39: Guest Alexander Lacik | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 0:19:32

In This EpisodeIn this edition of The Jewelry District, you’ll hear JCK editor-in-chief Victoria Gomelsky (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/victoria-gomelsky/) and news director Rob Bates (https://www.jckonline.com/writer/rob-bates/)talk with Alexander Lacik, CEO of Pandora. They discuss how Alexander got into the jewelry industry, the trouble Pandora was having back in 2017 and how the company has been working to recover, and the effect of COVID-19 on its e-commerce business. Show Notes00:52 Victoria and Rob introduce guest Alexander Lacik, CEO of Pandora.04:35 Alexander details the trouble Pandora was in before he came aboard.10:03 Rob asks Alexander why he thinks Pandora charms took off in the first place.11:47 Alexander is asked about the company's efforts to market to Gen Z.13:54 Victoria asks about Pandora’s e-commerce initiatives, and then they talk sustainability. Episode CreditsHosts: Rob Bates and Victoria GomelskyEditor: Olivia BrileyProducer and engineer: Natalie ChometPlugs: jckonline.com (https://www.jckonline.com/), @jckmagazine (https://www.instagram.com/jckmagazine/) Show Recap Introducing Alexander LacikAlexander is the CEO of Pandora. Before moving to Pandora, Alexander worked with a range of brands including Pringles, Vicks, Always, Olay, Pantene, Lysol, Woolite, Head & Shoulders, and more. After moving back to Sweden with his kids, he ended up working with Britex for a while before Pandora knocked on his door. He was excited to work with Pandora because it was an international brand, and he liked working with a company based in a different locale. In Hot WaterRob asks Alexander if, since he has worked on so many brands, Pandora is his first that is a discretionary category. Alexander says jewelry is more of a luxury item than other brands he’s served, but marketing any product is similar in some ways. Pandora was having some trouble in 2017, and that’s when it approached Alexander. Pandora's cardinal issue? Fixing its brand relevance as it had lost touch with its core audience. After a study with 30,000 people, Pandora realized product design wasn’t an obstacle. The problem was that the brand had lost a bit of its clarity and needed to redefine what it stood for. Standing the Test of TimeRob asks why Pandora took off in the first place, and why its charms continue to strike a chord with people. Alexander clarifies that Pandora did not create the idea of charm bracelets; they’ve been around for thousands of years. He says that it's hard to determine why things become relevant in pop culture, but that marking milestones and celebrations in one’s life with a charm is what really drew people to the company. Now, Alexander says, Pandora is in a much better position than it was two years ago. Who’s the Audience?Rob asks if it’s important for Pandora to pull in younger consumers. Alexander says women are the biggest buyers, particularly those between 25 and 40 who have a large disposable income. But he believes that by 2030, 30% of jewelry will be bought by Gen Zers. Pandora is currently working to figure out what the difference is, if any, between marketing to millennials and Gen Zers, while still staying relevant to the market at large. E-commerce Solidification and SustainabilityVictoria asks about the impact of COVID-19 on Pandora’s e-commence business. Alexander says the company used to have 16 different e-commerce platforms globally, so the problem that it encountered was that if it wanted to upgrade something,

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