Joe and Leah are the proud owners of Fircrest Jewelers, a unique small business unlike the big jewelry stores we are all used to seeing, and here’s why!
Fircrest Jewelers opened its doors in 2016, but Joe and Leah have been working with jewelry for far longer than the past 5 years. Joe says that he has always liked to work with his hands. “I wasn't able to get into the career choice I had chosen when I came out of high school and with the limited amount of college that I had. I enjoyed art and woodworking and found an opportunity to go polish for somebody.” He said, “My mom used to work in a jewelry store when I was a little kid, and it reminded me of when I worked in a shoe shop in North Proctor District when I was 16 years old. It just seemed to fit; a kind of comfort zone. And here I am, 40 years later!”
In 1986, Joe worked as a polisher for a local jeweler doing repairs before working under Master Jewelers where he feels he really refined his craft. He then decided in 1993 to go out on his own as a wholesale manufacturer and repairman for a few local stores. In 2008, he took a management position at Blue Nile based in Seattle. He says the commute was rough, but that is where he met his wife, and now business partner, Leah, and so it made it all worth it. Together, Joe and Leah have over 45 years of jewelry retail experience, so the couple thought they would give owning their own shop a try. “It’s been a wonderful experience!” They say. “We want to encourage anybody who might have a dream to just do it!”
So what sets you apart from other jewelry stores?
“When you walk into the mall, the big-name stores don’t normally have a jeweler on-premesis. The person you're talking to you is not the person who's going to work on your piece, and in most cases cannot even turn around to talk to the person who is going to work on your piece to ask a question if necessary. If you have a ring you want to be made, it's going to go back and forth for an unknown amount of time. If you are having a repair made, it's going to go off to another shop. It may come back quickly, and may not. But the most important thing is that you never actually meet the person working on your ring.” Joe and Leah say. “It’s nice to be able to have a conversation with the person who is making or repairing your jewelry.”
Fircrest Jewelers does not have employees working on commission, and they don't have high overhead costs that are common with the big-box stores. This allows them to give their customers the best deal possible, and hopefully make great relationships in the process.
Joe, Leah, and the staff at Fircrest Jewelers love every aspect of what they do, and it shows up in the quality of their work. You can come in with an exact idea of what you want, or you can schedule an appointment with them and talk about options. It’s a big decision, a piece that you will likely wear every day, and they are happy to accommodate you to ensure you are getting something to wear proudly.
Joe says, “I like making complete fabrications. It doesn’t matter what the metal is or what the design is; making something new is a lot of fun. When you start, you have a foundation in the framework and I know what it's going to look like at the end. Then in the polishing, cleanup, and everything in the process. I love fabrication! But if I have a ring that comes in for repair and has been destroyed, I get a lot of happiness out of making it look like the ring my customer got when it was new or when they were first married. It really brings me a lot of joy.”
So if you are looking for a new piece for your jewelry collection, if you are about to ask your lady the big question, or if you just want a nice gift for a loved one, look no further than your true neighborhood jeweler! You'll find them at the corner of Regents and Alameda, where they share a parking lot with Espresso Yourself in Fircrest. Look for their new beautiful sign!
1001 Suite A Regents Boulevard, Fircrest
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