Thursday, November 5, 2009

Now Open in Jacksonville!

Bigger but still small. Older but still new. Charming
but still hip. Worldly but still local. Adorable but still afordable. In Jacksonville but still in Ashland.

Continuing our mission to offer jewelry, art, and gifts with meaning, The Crown Jewel is featuring Jackson-
ville jewelry artist Lynne Whipp and Applegate
painter Kayde Mowry along with more than twenty
other regional artists.

Our Grand opening party was fabulous. The Tritone Trio turned into a quartet with the addition of a clarinetist who also played a melodica. So French!
C'est beau, non ?

And while we're speaking the language, have you seen these beauties just off the plane from Paris?

We're in the cutest little historic building right next door to the Jacksonville Inn and an ATM machine. Imagine that.

Originally a saddlery, the space has been home to jewelry for the past 25 years.

We are excited to become a part of that history but we think the best is yet to come.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mother's Day Top Gift Ideas
Here are some of the gifts that have been flying off the shelves for mom this mother's day:

5. "My Mother, My Friend" Ring in Sterling Silver.

Apart from just being downright touching, the beauty of this ring is that it is adjustable from sizes 5-8. (And even a bit larger if you just must make it fit! ;)... )

4. Mother Link Bracelet in four languages.

We can see why this is such a hot seller. It is charming, adjustable, hypoallergenic, and comes in a gift box. And, "like oh my gawd-- the price!" In English, Spanish,
French, Italian. (Note: Stock is dwindling,so order now!)

3. Elega
nt Skagen Watches Made in Denmark.
Distinctive and refined but inexpensive for the
quality, Skagen watches are the shizzle. Yes that is Dutch.

Many Hearts - One Family™ Necklace in Sterling Silver and Gold
It's all about family. And there is no one who appreciates that more than Mom. With an adjustable length and a reversible pendant this necklace it's not just heart warming, but versatile too!

1. Mom Mobius Bracelet.

A bracelet with a twist! This handmade bracelet has 32 ways of saying Mom all elegantly inscribed on a sterling silver mobius band (an shape said to represent infinity). We learn something every time we look at it. And with all of the world's major languages on it Mom will know she is at the center of your world every time she wears it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Behind the Times or Ahead of the Curve?

The New York Times recently started advertising some fantastic jewelry. As it happens it is jewelry that we have been carrying for years. I am not surprised that our prices are so much lower than theirs (excuse me while I gloat) judging by the reaction to our shop that we get whenever New Yorkers come through.

When New Yorkers come into our shop, there is always a somewhat frenzied reaction. Prices in New York are apparently so high that it is as if The Crown Jewel is a magical wonderland where everything they have ever wanted is here but now just costs less. Of course, Californians buy up all they can at across the border prices-- tax free. When something is $20 it rings up at $20. Then they wait. We repeat $20. "And..." Another wait. "Just twenty."

That is equivalent to one Andrew Jackson or two Alexander Hamiltons. Without the pesky Lincolns, Jeffersons, and that guy on the dime. Oh yes, Roosevelt.

So I was not shocked when I saw that The New York Times is advertising some of the same jewelry that is carried by The Crown Jewel--but at a pretty penny more. In fact, when I did a web search for others carrying our mobius bracelets, I found that we almost universally had the lowest price.

Hmmmn. I will call that a strategic pricing move. Yeah, that's it.

Or, more likely, The Crown Jewel is a magical wonderland. :)

One romantic piece of jewelry (also carried by The New York Times) is a quotation of Alexander Hamilton's. The very same guy on the ten dollar bill. There is something surprisingly touching and unexpected in this quote. And the design of the necklace, with its writing so small that it feels like a discovered secret when you finally read it, lends to its romance.

"I meet you in every dream."

Now, while I would definitely shop for a crossword puzzle cookie jar at The New York Times store, I would choose The Crown Jewel for those who wish to hang on to their beloved Alexander Hamilton(s).

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Of Coffee, Chocolate, and Carrots?

Friday night we hosted student artists, featuring hand-turned pens and paintings. We arranged to have two of the students set up a lathe and make pens throughout the evening. Actually, these are quite time consuming to make. They were only able to make two of them all night. Come in and see our selection of wood and acrylic handmade pens.

We also had wonderful chocolates on hand by our local organic chocolate maker Dagoba. And, Mix, the coffee and pastry shop down the street, brought over these absolutely unreal chocolate cupcake confections. Everyone kept asking if they were real! Please visit Mix and tell them we sent you (we want more cupcakes)!

New in the shop are recycled faux leather purses and wallets with absolutely adorable designs. These bunnies are ready to hop along with you. Check out our selection on our website

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

In the Shadow of Starbucks

Our neighbors to the West are a little coffee shop named Starbucks. The people who work there are wonderful! And despite the trend to bash any and all corporations I have little but kind observations of them. I even love their coffee.

But it is a somewhat unique window that I have, being a small business that shares a deck with a Fortune 500 corporation. Once in a while I will interject my observations on what I have learned from this contrast in business styles.

One of the nice things for my business is that almost daily someone will accidentally step into my shop thinking they are going into Starbucks. Yes, I know, the pink door, the oval signs, the sparkly jewelry in the window. But keep in mind that these are people who have not yet had their coffee. So give them some slack. I don't think the people who are in charge of branding at Starbucks would believe how little people pay attention to their logo-- or absence of it-- on the door.

And the reason this accidental tourist is so nice for The Crown Jewel, is that having someone in my door, for whatever reason, usually creates a customer. Maybe not before their first latte, but sometime around when they realize that the buzz of a frappacinno wears off much sooner than the thrill of that ring on their finger. I have sometimes thought our logo would be something like that of Saab: "people who test drive a Saab usually buy one."

People who stumble upon The Crown Jewel usually make it a habit.