National award recognizes gem of a jewelry store
Q & A with Dave and Sherrie Rabellino, owners of Artful Eye Jewelers at 124 S. Montezuma St. The store is open from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays. 445-5570; www.arfuleyejewelers.com.
Q: What service do you provide in the community?
Sherrie: "We design and make beautiful one-of-a-kind jewelry and custom-design and restyle customers' old jewelry into something they'll love to wear again. We offer expert repairs and excellent craftsmanship."
Q: How did you get into this business?
Sherrie: "Dave started making jewelry when he was 16 and was an apprentice jeweler under a family friend where he learned how to repair, design and make jewelry. We opened our first retail jewelry store in 1980 in Santa Rosa, Calif."
Q: What is the key to your business longevity?
Sherrie: "We run our business the way we run our life: Be honest, treat others as you want to be treated, always be learning something new, work hard and never, never, never, never give up."
Q: How many hours do you work a week?
Sherrie: "We each work about 50 hours per week, but only because we have the absolutely best staff."
Q: What is the best business advice you've given and received?
Dave: "(Received:) Love what you do and be the best you can be."
Sherrie: "(Given:) If you pray for potatoes, be prepared to have a hoe in your hand."
Q: If you could take a week away, what would you do?
Sherrie: "We are planning an RV trip to Colorado and Utah."
Q: How are you handling the economy?
Sherrie: "We have been in business long enough to foresee the ups and downs. We saved for a rainy day, tightened our belts and continue to give killer customer service so they refer us to family and friends."
Q: What's something unique about you?
Sherrie: "We were high school sweethearts, got married at ages 19 and 20 and have worked together every day for 33 years."
Q: How long does it take to make a piece of jewelry?
Sherrie: "Every piece of jewelry is different depending on complexity of design, wax carving, casting, cleaning, setting stones and polishing. Most of our custom designs are made within two to four weeks."
Q: What's something unique about your business?
Sherrie: "We design and create most of the jewelry in our store. We were recently honored with winning a national award out of 880 independent jewelers. We won for superlative design and innovation."