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Monday, February 23, 2009


When you're in sales, you try to keep your own costs down so you can make a little money, right? So you try to follow the rule: "buy low, sell high" but far too often the reverse happens i.e. you buy high and sell low or sell for what you paid. At least that seems to happen to me more than I care to tell you.

But recently, I decided that some of the gorgeous pieces I have must be worth way more than I'm asking for them. So I took a bunch of items to my appraiser. If someone had had a camera on me when I began reading those appraisals, they would have gotten a shot of me with eyes bulging in shock. There I was looking at an appraisal for the pretty little 14k gold diamond/ruby necklace I last talked about in this blog (Click link). There I had it listed in MY SHOP AT RUBY LANE for $450 USD and even dropped it for a sale this past weekend to $350! I must have been insane. The appraisal for that one came in at $2350 CAD. I need my head examined! Needless to say, I've removed it from the listings for now. It'll reappear in a week or two (I'm leaving for vacation tonight) but it won't be listed for $450 again. Now just think of the buyers who passed that one up!

Now take the fantastic necklace shown at the rop of this blog: it's 18k gold, has 60 rubies in it for a total ruby carat weight of 8.40 cts. and weighs over 21 grams. I wonder what I would have listed that one for if I hadn't had it appraised. I know I paid a bundle for it but I never realized it's retail replacement value today is $4150 CAD or about $3300 US. So now it's listed in our shop as it should be at roughly 1/3 of its value. What a fabulous piece for the astute buyer to pick up. This is heirloom quality and you know what they say when times are tough: invest in diamonds, gemstones and gold. Just look at what's happened to the value of gold in the past few weeks. It's now over $1000 US an ounce. Must admit it puzzles me that our shoppers aren't picking up something like this lovely 14k Greek Key bracelet below:

I've got that listed for only $325 and you can make an offer. I find it strange that so many women are selling off their gold for peanuts. They're attending "gold parties" and taking less than a refiner would pay. And yet gold is one of the most valued investments you can make! Yes, I'm selling it too but I'm not giving it away and after all, I am in the business of selling jewelry!

Well I could go on about all the other pieces that were appraised: an opal bangle I'd listed for only $495 and came in at over $4000; a 14k bangle with rubies and sapphires that I was giving away for $395 and was appraised for around $3500; an opal ring with over half a carat of VS diamonds and fantastic opals, custom designed that no-one seems interested in because it's large and showy. Appraised value? Over $4000! And then there's the diamond ring below with over 1 carat in diamonds that I've yet to list in our shop. It came in at over $4800! The jeweler was so impressed with it, he wanted to buy it from me!

Don't go looking for it in our shop yet because it's not there at this time. But it will be after I get back from my holiday! Watch for it.

Let me finish by saying that this exercise proved something to me: it's not worth baulking at paying $25 - $50 for an appraisal if it means you get a much better picture of what your item is worth. If you need a good reason to get an appraisal before you sell precious jewelry, I just gave you one!

See you when I get back. I'm going where the sun shines and the waves are rolling. Yummy!

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