Well, it's that time of year again when I dust off my crystal ball and make wild guesses about the future. One of the most entertaining things about this exercise is that I get to look back on what I predicted the last couple of years. Well, pull up a seat and light the candles because these are my predictions for the oncoming year....
One of the few things I got right in my previous predictions was the dramatic decline in retail brick and mortar square footage. I believe 2018 will see the conversion of malls into total living environments offering housing, dining, office space and services in addition to shopping.
The digital shopping experience will continue to draw consumers with Augmented Reality (AR) technology.
Retailers will continue scrambling to come up with new ways of engaging customer experience that flows seamlessly between their online sites and physical stores.
The diamond industry has been challenged with undisclosed lab-grown “melee” (.005ct - .25ct) diamonds. This issue will soon be solved since the technology for rapid cost effective detection has recently become available.
What's Going On With Palladium?
In September 2017 the United States Mint released the first Palladium American Eagle coin which features a high-relief likeness of “Winged Liberty” from the “Mercury Dime”. It was such a hit with consumers that at the time of this writing the Palladium American Eagle is sold out with no indication of their next availability.
To start off with, it's more rare than platinum! It's also the metal that is used to make gold white and is a crucial component of fuel cells and catalytic converters. Palladium is one of six metals in the Platinum Group Metals (PGM) and is known for its purity, high melting points and unique catalytic properties.
Palladium’s Recent History
In 2009, according to ElementInvesting.com, about 45% of the total output of palladium was used by the autocatalyst industry, about 19% by the electronics industry, and about 12% by the jewelry industry ("white gold" is an alloy of gold and palladium). The rest was used in such industries as chemical, dental, investment, and others.
As in most things, supply and demand drive price. Over the past year or so palladium (historically the poor cousin to gold and platinum) has out performed all other the precious metals. Over the past 20 years manufacturers, have slowly shifted to palladium instead of platinum as a cost saver.
This past October palladium’s value shot past platinum, which historically has been roughly twice the cost per ounce of palladium, and looks to be challenging gold. Since both platinum and palladium are metals used in production and for the same types of applications preference for which to use will simply become a price issue. My belief is that manufactures will rotate back and forth, using whichever metal is cheaper.
What Is Jewelry Restoration?
You may hear a jeweler say they can restore your jewelry to its original state, but what does that actually mean? Jewelry restoration is when someone brings in a piece of jewelry that has been extremely worn out over the years or that is critically damaged from accidents unforeseen, and has to be built on from its original piece. An example of a critically damaged item is dropping a ring into a garbage disposal (which is most common) or even running it over with your car.
Restoration can commonly get mistaken for a repair which is just a simple and straightforward fix. This can be retipping the top of your prongs or rebuilding a ring shank that has worn too thin or broken in half.
Here at Medlars, the most common restoration we work on is antique jewelry or family heirlooms. We work with what you have to preserve it back to its original state. Sometimes the jewelry can be so worn or smashed that it has to be completely remade which is then considered a custom design.
This broach came to us with only one section of the design left. We recreated the fan and added 4 sections to restore the broach to it's original design. If you look real close you can see the original fan piece on the right side of the broach.
This ring was cut off of a woman’s hand in the ER.
When Medlars began to repair it we discovered the ring had a great deal of porosity in the metal. Because of that, fixing the ring was not an option.
We duplicated the design and set her diamonds. The new ring appears bigger because it isn’t worn down and softened by the years of wear and tear the original ring had experienced.
This type of damage is commonly seen when someone has stepped on their ring or it was accidentally run over by a car.
Precious Metal Quotes
Click HERE to view up daily metals price indications for the most popular gold and silver coins.
Medlars Guarantees Our Work
Your Purchase of Fine Jewelry From Medlars Always Includes:
Two Year Warranty On Labor & Materials
Free Appraisal On New Purchases Upon Request
Free Sizing On New Ring Purchases
Free Lifetime Rhodium Plating As Necessary On White Gold Jewelry Purchased At Medlars
Free Jewelry Cleaning, Polishing, And Maintenance Inspections
At Medlars, We Ensure Enduring Quality and Satisfaction.
We guarantee ALL of our work and materials to be free of defect for a period of two years from the date of purchase. We will replace or repair as necessary any defect at our cost. This includes all parts and labor. Our guarantee does not cover damage caused by abuse or accidents.
We guarantee the silver, gold, or platinum purity of our jewelry, our custom design, and our restoration work. We further guarantee our stated weight and quality of the stones we supply.
Added Value Guarantee
Every finished ring (not just a simple solitaire but EVERY ring) purchased at Medlars includes:
Free Appraisal for insurance purposes
Free lifetime cleaning, maintenance inspections and polishing
At Medlars your purchase is the beginning of a lifetime of our personal attention and care.