Thursday, October 28, 2021

Enough with the Doom and Gloom


They are at it again! The media is spreading rumors about the economy tanking in the somewhat near future, according to some Wall Street wing nut who swears its gospel. Yes, that’s not the one to be confused with the same economy that they have been telling us is only getting better day-by-day. I have seen them (the media) instill the smallest granule of doubt in the average American’s mind, be it true or false, about what could happen to their money and property values and Mickey Mouse watch collection. Now look and see what inevitably happens! Instant recession. 

It’s enough to make a small business owner feel like a goldfish living in a Waring blender, especially for those of us in buying and selling wares that just happen to be made of gold or silver; metals that happen to be price volatile during recessions real or imagined… to me it’s even more stressful. Why add more expensive stock to existing expensive stock when I’m being told the sky is falling and the end is near?

As I have mentioned in the past, as far as downturns, recessions, oil spills and hurricanes go, it’s not exactly my first rodeo when it comes to unfavorable retail working conditions. So I’m gonna do what seems to still work the best for me, stop watching the idiotic news stations and concentrate my head and hands on my workbench and design some really cool things for the coming season and hope this nonsensical recession B.S. blows over really soon.

Aquamarine rings and pendants are still popular, and my newest addition to my shop is a fabulous line of jewelry from Florence, Italy.

Onward Christian soldiers! The wet summer has been an interesting one so far. We saw many more European customers this year than in the past couple summers. There is interest in nice gold jewelry, especially heavy neck chains, bracelets and anklets. Aquamarine rings and pendants are still popular, and my newest addition to my shop is a fabulous line of jewelry from Florence, Italy. The jewelry is all new and sexy European designs and is appealing to all ages. So far it has been the rage in my store all summer. I’ve had to reorder the best-selling crystal pieces that look like diamonds three times already, and that is an unusual thing for me to do in the summer months.

Summer time is a good time to bring in your jewelry that may need attention. My shop offers free inspections and cleaning. If you want to go the Full Monty, so to speak, I can hand polish and refinish your tired looking pieces for a nominal price.

I just had a customer come in while writing this and ask me why all her sterling jewelry looks so dull and terrible. After cleaning and giving some of the pieces a good polishing and restoring everything to like-new results, she mentioned she is a swimming pool and hot tub enthusiast. As many of you may know from my years of preaching common jewelry sense, chlorine and bromine are not friends to your precious jewels, and simple removal of one’s adornments before mimicking a mermaid and taking the plunge would remedy the problem. Only thing is most folks insist in wearing 90% of the jewelry they own while frolicking in the ocean or pools. (Yes, even the Gulf ocean water can discolor most jewelry!) Simply rinsing your jewels in clean fresh water afterward can help retard the oxidation of the precious metals.

The dreaded month of September is now upon we band of business brothers and sisters and when the going gets rough, the rough gets going (away), so I’m looking forward to my long annual vacation (sabbatical?) where I can recharge my batteries, step back and walk away from “the Rock” for a while. This valuable time away is when I can change my perspective about certain things and come back rested, refreshed and hopefully renew my creative juices.

Have a great end of the summer season! See you all soon! 

Richard Alan is a designer/goldsmith and owner of The Harbor Goldsmith at Island Plaza and welcomes your questions about all that glitters. Contact him at 239-394-9275 or, or visit his informative website at

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