All, Gemstone treatments, gemstone dealer competition, and conflict
of origion issues have all left a degree of uncertainty in the minds
of buyers. I am a US gemstone cutter and dealer of the stone that I
produce. I produce these stones from rough and from recuts. In order
to stay in business in the USA I have been forced into decisions that
10 years ago I would have argued against.
First I have given up on the difference between wholesale and
retail. It has been my experience that there is very little loyalty
between a custom stone cutter and wholesale buyers. Mass producers
and wholesale buyers have stolen designs and methods of producing
these designs from the custom cutters and the minute these inferior
quality stones hit the market my business dies. All my former
clients buy the inferior quality, but much cheaper stones as long as
they have the look, but not the quality. What this has caused me to
do is to closely protect my designs and production methods. I offer
my designs to wholesale customers first at Tucson. If they do not
buy them I take them directly to the public at only slightly higher
prices. That is because the public only buys one and two of an
item. Wholesale is supposed to be quantity. Quantity means to me 3
or more of each design. Otherwise I might as well sell to the public.
When I price my items for sale they are priced at the one item
price. When a customer buys in quanity I lower the price.
I disclose all gemstone treatments that I am sure of, treatments
that I suspect, and on some stones the fact that I do not know what
has been done to the stone. I only sell stones as natural that I am
100% sure in my mind are natural. If I make a mistake I eat it.
I try my best not to buy cut stones directly from dealers that I
know buy from sweat shops or use child labor. Sometime I am forced
to buy from these dealers to have a certain stone in stock. Then I
buy only the minimum quantity that I need. I buy most of my cut
stones from US dealers that are US citizens. They must disclose
treatments. Dealers from countries outside the US that I buy from
are very few. My experience is that I have been lied to on most of
the rough and cut stone transactions that I have made with non-US
dealers. In the current atmosphere of disclosure I can no longer
afford to tie up large amounts of money when the deals are not
trustworthy. I also do not buy from non-US dealers that travel the
USA selling to anyone who can afford the stone, dealer or nondealer.
Last summer I called a few large rough dealers in the USA. I asked
them for 20 gram plus rough in several varieties of beryl,
tourmaline, and quartz. I told them I would only buy the rough if
they would sign a form that the rough was natural and untreated. My
goal was to send the finished stones along with a sample of the rough
which cut the stone to GIA for a gemstone identification. I was
going to offer natural stones with a GIA Gemstone ID in large gem
quality sizes. Every rough dealer I talked to refused to sell me the
rough with the gaurantee. Go figure.
If you want to see well cut stones in many designs of faceted,
cabochon, and carvings come see me at the Gem Mall Booth 111, Jan 31
- 13 Feb. We will tell you everything we know about each and every
stone. Just do not expect us to tell you how we achieved the cut or
polish. You know, the difference between a stone cut by a skilled
craftsperson with artistic creativity and one turned out only for
weight and color. Skill and creativity are the only thing that I
have left to sell.
Gerry Galarneau, almost ready for Tucson - Yeah!!