just because we are making smaller type jewelry (which we are KILLING!) and using higher standards than most jewelers of course, a lot of you guys seem to compare us to the wrong competition. we’re not here to sell you clarity enhanced diamonds or 9.2k gold (which isn’t legally gold btw) or make you a big 4″ chain for $3,000?
diamonds are NOT cheap and gold is SKY HIGH!
so what are most jewelers doing nowadays? if you live in LA or NYC you can see that the diamond districts are dying; some slow and a lot of them have crumbled….. 1 of the reasons? they don’t have hustle in their blood…. they’ve been spoiled with the fact that they can work hard with work coming to them and not having to hunt for it. the other reasons? obviously that our economy is for shit… and luxury items are the last thing on peoples minds, but I try to make it the first in their eyesight
as I’ve said here before, “in everything that I’ve succeeded in in my life, nothing has been given to me, I had to go get it, or take it”…
so when it comes to this jewelry biz, a few things that EVERYONE should follow….
if you still have gold around that you paid $700 to $800 for(1st off why do you? you’re prolly doing bad as is or not very intelligent) ANYWAYS, if you have gold jewelry sitting inside your store from a long time ago when gold was significantly cheaper, YOU DON’T WHEEL AND DEAL TO THE POINT OF WHERE IT’S LOWER THAN WHAT GOLD PRICES CURRENTLY ARE IDIOT! DON’T FORGET YOU HAVE TO REPLACE THAT CHAIN YOU JUST SOLD AT TODAY’S PRICES! unless you just want to be in business for a few weeks or for a temporary time period. I’ve never been about beating someone else’s prices, I’m about beating their work! Fake jewelers or people who sell and own a few pieces of jewelry and then call themselves jewelers but are really peddlers don’t understand the logistics of this shit for the long run. this is chess, not checkers, you don’t jump 1 man to jump another…. play your position and make a blueprint for your takeover or business plan, then execute…. but I guess with business being so bad especially in my line of work, people are so desperate for a sale, they’ll do anything.
well check this out, we’re not going anywhere…. unless gold hits $3000 an oz. then we’re melting the whole entire store down and retiring and you will never see me again unless it’s twitpics of me sipping syrup and eating Hawaiian Bread somewhere where the water is damn near white and 75 degrees all year round….
so last year was the worst…. but I lived, we lived… but this year I see is worse than last year financially for most of my colleagues and many others… I think the recession is still knocking people over and this x-mas will be the worst people have seen in their lifetimes…. so I made the conscious decision to go out and fucking get it! right around my birthday this year, I said fuck that, I can’t dip into my savings, I need to chase this money and cut out all the bullshit…. I realized I had way too much overage of everything…. besides my hobby of vinyl toys i.e. be@rbricks and kaws 4 foot companions…. I gave away 90% of my clothes or sold them for dirt cheap…. same with kicks… less options = easier lifestyle… went back to basic slim jeans…. a few levi’s, kr3w and apc denim and mostly american apparel tees or hanes tees…. basic! I am going to get a prius very soon because I’m wasting $600 to $750 a month on gas on a car I honestly don’t even give a shit about anymore. I don’t even go to the car wash as often as I used to… and those who know me, know that I’m an anal ocd neat freak….
yesterday was a busy fucking day and I got now, close to 110 custom jewelry pieces to make before x-mas!
and guess what? I’M NOT GOING TO STOP! fuck that, it’s not about making money, it’s about supporting my fam and working for the slow days and a future…. even if it’s not for me, I’ve learned to be selfish in many ways, but if I’m not around to enjoy shit, I want my loved ones to be able to….. just cause I can’t take it with me when I’m dead, don’t mean that my seeds or fam can’t use it to buy something useful or even something that just puts a smile on their face…..
No other jeweler is like me, no other jewelry business is like US. Don’t compare me to a store that sells 8k gold or sells the same gucci digital watches BUT WITH CLARITY ENHANCED DIAMONDS! big difference… yeah it looks close IN A PICTURE OR AT A GLANCE, but upclose and personal, it is NOT the same.
Have you ever taken a look at one of our G-Shocks before? and then looked at what other people make? I mean, I’ll give it up to Jacob because his work is on point, but then again, he’s at least 65% higher to even 90% higher in price than us…. but our work is fucking with his if not fucking it up….. don’t look at g-shock’s on ebay ever…. not even in the same galaxy as we live in
remember, you also got to give a little ass to get a little ass….. those days of “certain” good jewelry promo are dead. You have to be creative and stand your ground. DON’T BELIEVE THAT YOU NEED TO GIVE AWAY FREE JEWELRY TO RAPPERS TO HELP YOUR BUSINESS! Rappers are the worst people to loan or give jewelry away to. Be professional and don’t get walked on. Find reputable stylists and people who have your best interest so that if you loan you jewelry out to someone for a tv show, commercial, movie or music video you get it back…. Everytime you seen me in a video it’s because I WAS PAID TO BE IN IT! and not only was I paid to be in it, I was flown out, jewelry contracts for anything used were signed to cover my end. Not all rappers are shady, but I have zero interest in loaning anything out to them for an award show…. if Taylor Swift wants to borrow some jewelry, then cool… the game is different. sad but true….
once you succeed in the music business, you’ll understand that you may have to step on some folks, but if you step on the wrong persons head, that person will shit on you and fuck you financially in court. STAY AWAY FROM COURT! nobody wins in court except for the lawyers, at the end, they get paid no matter what.
learn how to promote your business right. I look at every email sent to us and with that said, let me break down some shit to those youngsters or newbies to buying jewelry.
1. JUST BECAUSE YOU BOUGHT JEWELRY BEFORE FROM SOME DOWN SOUTH JEWELER, DOESN’T MEAN YOU UNDERSTAND THE JEWELRY GAME, THE JEWELERS KNOW WHAT THEY’RE SELLING YOU IS CRAP, BUT THEY’RE JUST TRYING TO EAT. AM I MAD? NOT SO MUCH, BUT IT POLLUTES WHAT WE DO IN A WHOLE.
2. Clarity enhanced diamonds are as good as fake stones, yeah they’re genuine diamonds, but you put a coat of wax over it basically to try to make a I3 shine to a SI3…..
3. anything under 10k gold is not legally gold. because the price of gold is so high, others have decided to use alloy, silver and even make pieces with 10k gold on the outside and fill it up with brass on the inside! true story, a jeweler in atlanta has done this before and I shaked my fucking head when I opened up the piece to see what was good because it was so heavy and he told me what he paid, so I was skeptical like a motherfucker.
4. If the deal is too good, it’s usually not legit. real talk, sorry to say, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO GET A 4″ DIAMOND PENDANT WITH REAL DIAMONDS AND REAL GOLD THAT IS HEAVY AND SOLID FOR $4,000, NOT EVEN $8,000!
5. always take in mind that gold prices do not reflect on what you are exactly going to pay for your pieces… example: gold is at $1,341 an oz. today… that’s for 24k solid gold right?
okay, so divide that troy ounce into grams and then divide by the type of gold you are buying 14k = 58.5%, 10k = 41.6% and so on….. so say for instance you want a franco chain that is 10k gold and weighs 120 grams… YOU ARE NOT PAYING $17.94 A GRAM! you have to add in labor costs, shipping from the manufacture in Italy to USA….. and now a days, Italy is charging damn near $10 a gram to ME, so you know I have to make a little bit, not what I used to make, but definitely something on top…. so I can eat too. Nobody gets shit for free. if anything jewelers are happy to break even on a chain if you are buying a custom piece…. they can eat on the custom piece.
now onto custom jewelry the same thing goes into labor and such with gold…. we add money per gram for labor and then on top of that, if you have a crazy 3-D mold, you’re gonna pay for the mold. so you might be paying up to $50 a gram for a 18k gold these days…. that’s high as fuck, but I’m being real.
ALSO REMEMBER, just because you paid $3,500 for a necklace doesn’t mean you are going to get that back even if gold went up in price…. take in count again the labor and also just because 14k gold is at $25 a gram, doesn’t mean you’re going to get that back… there’s fees in everything…. melt down prices are usually a little bit less than that. you gotta pay the refinery and etc etc…. CASH FOR GOLD IS A HUGE SCAM! do some research.
6. Diamond labor is a big factor…. diamond labor depending on where and how good the labor or diamond setter is, can range from $3 per diamond to $12 per diamond (roughly)…. now hand setting (manual labor) will be less than machine setting, but will most likely be faster…. we have 5 amazing diamond setters in house that do the damn thing! we charge a fair price for our diamond setting. places in NYC and London usually charge more because of the cost of living etc…. houston has the cheapest prices for diamond settings and honestly? in general, the worst diamond setting I’ve ever seen came from houston… so go figure. Machine set diamonds look factory, hence why we use that on a AP or Rolex or high end watch…. but our hand set stones are the truth also….
7. Diamond colors… black diamonds are the least expensive, but that doesn’t mean they are Cheap! less expensive and cheap are 2 whole different worlds…. yellow diamonds and blue diamonds are next up in the price range and then the chocolate or cognac colored diamonds, purple, etc……. the glacier blue diamonds are a little more in price and finally white diamonds are always going to be the most expensive period. DO NOT FALL FOR THAT PINK DIAMOND BULLSHIT! we have used pink diamonds before, but REAL (COLOR TREATED, NOT NATURAL) PINK DIAMONDS ARE EXPENSIVE AS HELL! most of the time, people use Pink Sapphires for pink stones…. obviously I’ve seen tons of pink cubic zirconias
so Whites will always cost you more if you are using legit SI and better diamonds. yeah, if you have i3 quality stones, they will be less than some of our black diamonds even.
when it comes to these melee diamonds(smaller tiny diamonds) 99% of the yellow diamonds you see are color treated, NOT LAB MADE, BUT GENUINE DIAMONDS THAT WERE TREATED. so they are not true canary diamonds, they’re yellow diamonds…. but when you are buying a solitaire for a large earring or engagement ring and it’s yellow… that shit better be a x, y or z in color…. check your certs for a fancy or intense or natural yellow mention or you got GOT.
there are a few more things that I want to break down, but maybe at another time. just know that, a very high % of the jewelry you see in music videos these days are either fake or much lighter and worse quality than you think it is…. alloy and silver with heavy rhodium…. shits disgusting.
I’d like to say our competition work wise is with the boutiques on 57th, 5th ave… Bond St. Rodeo Drive and in Bal Harbor…. but our rent is a little less…. and btw, don’t sleep. OUR RENT AT THE SLAUSON IS MORE EXPENSIVE THAN EVERY SINGLE STREETWEAR STORE ON FAIRFAX AVE. yes true story….. we’re paying for the traffic, etc… peeps think shit is a game…. Jordans cost the same at the slauson as they do at the Beverly Center.
how do we adjust to this? #1 we don’t make rappers jewelry….. we known for making celebrity’s jewelry… but we cater to everyone who had from $200 to $20 million to spend
but honestly, I’ve been working on making the more affordable stuff which is usually under $4,000 a piece and the smaller understated more muted custom jewelry pieces are winning for us right now.
you read my blog and see we’re still making some big huge diamond and gold pieces, but not as much…. but if you got the money, we always got the time and NOBODY IS FASTER THAN WE ARE. and NOBODY CAN BEAT OUR PRICES FOR THE TYPE OF WORK WE DO. you get what you pay for.
WHEN I SAY AFFORDABLE, remember we’re talking about precious metals and gemstones here. not costume jewelry! shit is not going to be $500 for something with diamonds in it. GET IT STRAIGHT. DO NOT EVER USE EBAY AS A REFERENCE FOR CUSTOM JEWELRY.
these smaller clean pieces are selling well.
peep out a couple things we made this week
AND IN THE PAST 5 YEARS THAT WE HAVE BEEN MASTERING AND MAKING DIAMOND G-SHOCK’S WE HAVE NEVER DONE THIS BEFORE AND I THINK I SLAPPED MYSELF THEN MY COUSINS FOR NOT DOING SO A LONGGGG TIME AGO!
SMH… I can’t believe we really didn’t do this at least 2 years ago for those who didn’t quite have the money to cop a fully flooded diamond G-Shock
we put a fully iced out dial/face set onto white gold (we can do stainless to save money if you’re going on white and can make any color gold you want) set inside a Military edition Casio 6900 G-Shock
the price is right… thanks Derek for your patience…. you only waited what? 4 business days? lol
so I’m off to Sin City for a few days… but before I leave.
the infamous P-Zizzzle came by IF and Co yesterday……
now I had to temporarily block him from posting comments and yes I never responded to any of hist comments, because none of them were direct questions to me, they were more praise or whatever and when it got to be a problem with the extra hating or shit talking was going on…. I had to press a button to chill everyone out. Everyone has an opinion and can say negative shit about me and I’ll let it slide, but when it’s outta bounds speaking about loved ones or ones who passed or spam, it’s gotta go.
I appreciate your business PZ, but peep game, I understand your difficulties in life and can’t imagine how hard it was to save up enough money to cop your new jewels, but I’m/We’re just regular koreans hustling and living homey. There is nothing outstandingly special about me. I dig that you respect my grind and somewhat internet fame, but you don’t have to put it out there like a fan. Don’t feel like you HAVE TO defend me when someone says something crazy about me, you’re a grown ass man and a business owner…. We all appreciate your business and loyalty to the brand/store. I don’t hate you… I don’t even know you. I just think you’ve been very excited to get your new 18k gold bead chain and your 14k VS diamond jesus piece and VS diamond 14k g-shock… it’s all good… if you weren’t so excited I woulda probably posted pictures, but I think you know how busy we were yesterday. safe travels back to Canada.’
peace out everyone else