Submitted by Meg Wilson on December 4, 2011 - 20:32.
Ann Bocchi started a blog a few months ago to write about her passion - jewelry. Check out her wonderful jewelry blog here. She's agreed to do a short interview with us.
Hi Ann, thanks much for this talk with us. Our readers should know you are in the process of obtaining a graduate gemologist certification. Can you tell us about this schooling? Is this like a graduate degree at university? What kind of training is required to become a certified gemologist?
Right now I am actually in the process of obtaining a Bachelors Degree in Business Management from The University of Nevada, Reno. After my graduation in December I plan to apply to the gemologist program sometime in either January or February. I will obtain my degree from The Gemological Institute of America (GIA). The gemologist program is very exciting! Those wishing to pursue a career in jewelry will learn the grading and identification skills to become a buyer, appraiser, retailer, and senior professional across the entire gem and jewelry world. Through a series of gem labs and classes, one will be able to speak the language of jewelry throughout the industry! What is great about this program is that it can be done online or at a physical GIA location. The training required to become a gemologist is achieved through their laboratory classes—learning how to use the equipment including the microscope, spectroscope, learning how to identify different gemstones, learning how to detect synthetics, and learning the latest stone treatments. The gemologist certification program lasts around 6 months. I cannot wait to start!
Once you become a certified gemologist what would your typical workday look like?
Once I am certified I hope to find a job at an upscale jewelry gallery. I would love to eventually work my way to Tiffany & Co., or to a jewelry store at the luxury level. My typical workday would involve a lot of sparkle and bling! I hope I will be able to physically work with gemstones and diamonds, and also work with and educate customers about different gems and their meanings. I would love to assist customers with their jewelry questions, and also help them purchase a piece that best fits their style and personality. I have also brainstormed about going into the jewelry design process as well. Basically, I will be swarmed by jewelry 24/7!
How did you first become interested in jewelry? How did this passion evolve into the decision to pursue a career in the jewelry industry?
I honestly think my love for all things shiny began when I was born! Ever since I can remember I was just captivated and mesmerized by anything that sparkled. When I was about 6 years old I even named my pet rabbit “Diamond”. I remember when I was a little girl (probably about 7) my dad would buy me jewelry from QVC. I still have the rings he bought me in my jewelry box. From then on my passion has grown into an obsession. I would definitely say in the past couple years I figured out that my passion had to become my career—I knew that jewelry was the only thing that would make me happy. As a result I have surrounded myself with basically anything and everything jewelry, also known as Heaven!
Can you give us some broad overview of the big trends you are seeing in the jewelry industry over the past few years?
I would say that large/bold statement necklaces, rings, earrings and bracelets have definitely made their way into the jewelry world. A lot of celebrities wear statement jewelry to big events. I am also seeing a lot of layering in the jewelry industry. Layering necklaces, rings and bracelets are a cute way to add some bling to your wardrobe. Rose gold is also making a comeback— as is gold in general. Customizable jewelry is a huge craze right now; a lot of jewelry companies are promoting jewelry that is specific to their customer’s wants and needs. One of the biggest jewelry trends (and my favorite) is bold/daring colors. I love wearing a simple outfit with daring jewelry.
How do you think the Internet is changing the jewelry industry?
I think it has completely changed the jewelry industry. Now instead of having to go to a physical jewelry store, customers can sit in the comfort of their own homes and order to their heart’s desire. And not only that, so much education regarding diamonds and gemstones is on the internet. I would say I have gained a lot of my diamond and gemstone knowledge simply from surfing the web. I would say that smartphones are absolutely changing the jewelry industry with so many jewelry and gemstone apps. Now customers are able to compare prices, investigate different brands, and find what jewelry best fits their style and price range.
Is bold statement jewelry here to stay or will we see a return to the fine dainty stuff anytime soon?
In today’s society bigger is better. I think bold jewelry will be here to stay for awhile, but I also think that there is a time and place where dainty jewelry is more appropriate. I love both styles. I have many bold pieces of jewelry in my collection, and I also have delicate pieces. In some cases, I think dainty jewelry makes more of a statement than bold jewelry! Especially with the recent auctioning of Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry collection, I think American can’t get enough of daring, one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces.
Thanks so much for this interview. Wishing you an absolutely dazzling career in jewelry!
Please check out Ann's site here .