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8787 North Scottsdale Road Suite 116
Scottsdale, AZ, 85253
United States

480-607-4444

Elegant shop offering house-designed, one-of-a-kind gemstone and diamond jewelry, plus timepieces.

Blog

Oliver's watch and jewlery blog with the latest news and thoughts on the happenings in the industry, new products and more. 

Watch Words May 2018

Nikki Ollive

Hello fellow watch lovers and welcome to the latest installment of Watch Words!

In this installment we are introducing the new Polaris collection from Jaeger-LeCoultre! The watches have landed in store, and if you were enchanted by this vintage homage in photos, prepare to have your heart stolen when you see these in person. The styling is reminiscent of vintage Jaeger models but with a modern flair. This is exemplified in the alternating brushed and grained finishes given to the rotating inner bezel and dial. A truly stunning detail. A standout in the lineup, the Polaris Memovox is a beautiful modern rendition of a classic dive watch. The angled indices are now an applied affair, finished in a perfect (you know what I mean) faux patina luminescence. These 50th anniversary tribute pieces are a perfect sport extension to the JLC lineup. Think less aggressive Master Compressor meets Master Control. This is a wonderfully restrained and beautiful watch, which will fit perfectly in any collection. I can't wait for you all to see it!

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Sincerely,

George Reid

 

Thoughts from the Desk of Oliver Smith April 2018

Nikki Ollive

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Happy Spring!


This past week Sprouts opened in our shopping center. We are very excited to have the pull of an anchor neighbor. Actually this is the first time we have been in a shopping center with an anchor for 35 years. Scottsdale is in another growth mode. The cycle continues! Please continue to support your local neighborhood stores and all they have to offer.

Many brands are starting to roll out boutiques. In the jewelry business this is a store that only sells one brand. This week I took over the Panerai Boutique in Aspen. For a life long skier this was a big day! Panerai and Oliver Smith have been great partners since the brand was introduced to the US in 1998. The boutique is in a beautiful building in the main shopping area. If you visit Aspen you have to come to the boutique and hangout on the 2nd floor, the view of Aspen mountain is incredible!

  

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Our store remodel is underway in Scottsdale. We will be adding bigger spaces for our brands, like this new Jaeger-LeCoultre case, and more seating for our clients.  

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Congratulations to Villanova for running the table in NCAA basketball! Those Catholics were never known for Bball when I grew up back in Philly. I do remember when they discontinued their football program in late 1970's, freshman Howie Long had to transfer to keep playing. 

25% of malls in US will close in 5 years, malls grew at twice the rate of the population from 1970-2015, according to Credit Suisse. 

How about all the 'for rent' bicycles in town. The city needs to study the best options to store the bikes as they are scattered all over town. As a cyclist, I never thought I would say they are an eye sore, but they are! Great idea, and I love to see people riding them, but it's out of control. 

Read a great book the other day, Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover. Also have been enjoyingThe Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson. The guy makes some important points! 

I sketched about 75 new designs and have put them into production this past quarter. Looking forward to showing you some of my new jewelry!  

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Congratulations to the SUSD Robotics Team as they head to the World Championships with the help of the Scottsdale Charros. 

Congratulations to Charro Jeff Meyer, the Chairman of Cactus League, for another successful season, Scottsdale people giving back! 

Watch Words December 2017

Nikki Ollive

Watch Words  - December 2017 
 

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IWC Mark XVIII Heritage

We are happy to welcome to Oliver Smith the newest Pilot's watch design from the quintessential maker of pilot's watches, IWC. The Mark XVIII Heritage is the latest of several designs by IWC paying homage to their history as a military watch manufacturer. The 'faux vintage' trend has spread across several brands, and has received polarized reactions. I find myself always drawn to vintage, and many vintage styled pieces; but many ask why pay more for a vintage looking watch when you can have a vintage watch for less? They criticize poorly  executed 'vintage' design elements that come across as kitsch or almost cartoony. For those who are skeptical of vintage styled watches, the Mark XIII will be the watch that changes your mind. Unlike some of the competitors, which create a vintage look with faux bleached dials or forced patinas, IWC gives this watch a 'like new' vintage feel. The dial is the same black seen on other watches in their collection, but the lume is switched from a bright white to a beige color.  This lume in conjunction with the blued steel hands is a sight to behold!  The case itself has also been modernized. It is rendered in a sandblasted titanium, which in combination with the dial elements, serves to give a similar visual to the patina; without feeling dirty or forced. For me, this watch is in perfect balance. A great size, and  a look that brings a vintage feeling without feeling like a prop from a B-movie! Oh, and at a great price point of $4,150.

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Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Chronograph Sector

Continuing with my obsession for pieces that have a vintage flair, we have the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Control Chronograph Sector Dial. Jaeger, as with everything they do, has taken a much more reserved approach to creating a vintage styled watch. They brought back a sector style dial layout for it's Master Control series. The sector dial refers to the very precise sets of markings on the dial of the watch that break time out into 'sectors.' This dial style has roots in military officer's watches and was popular for scientific use due to its precise legibility. This watch is truly stunning on the wrist. The high polished case contrast beautifully with the silvered, multi-finish dial. The dial's finishes combine to give a depth to the dial, while the tachymeter scale and blued steel hands add the perfect pop of color. Blue has been a popular color for watches the past few years, and this combination manages to make this watch feel like a 'blue watch' without having a blue dial. While not heavily advertised, this year marks the 25th anniversary of the Master Control collection, and the Master Control Chronograph Sector, as well as two other sector dial pieces, will only see a one year production.

 

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A. Lange & Söhne Datograph

The newest brand here at Oliver Smith, and a personal favorite, we are proud to be carrying  A. Lange & Söhne. For those who don't know, this Germany brand is known for its functional beauty and movement finishing that rivals the finest timepieces on the planet! One of the jewels of the collection is the Datograph, a watch whose movement has been called "The best finished, serially produced, chronograph in the world!" by none other than Philippe Dufour (maybe the greatest living watchmaker on the planet -next to our own Ben Lam of course!).  The beauty, functionality and rarity of this piece are hard to quantify.  We have the piece on hand.  Please stop in when you can and get the live show on this one.  It's worth the trip!

 

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Estate Oliver Smith Edition Chopard

Last but certainly not least we currently have, gracing the estate case, a very special piece to all of us at Oliver Smith Jeweler. In celebration of the 30th anniversary of Oliver Smith Jeweler, Oliver partnered with Chopard to create a special watch, available in a very Limited Edition of 30 pieces. The Mille Miglia GT XL Chronograph base design was reimagined in Oliver's signature silver (or in this case stainless steel) and brown accents. This piece features handsome rose gold detailing on the chronograph registers  and his OSJ logo on the exhibition caseback. To help bring this watch to life Chopard shut down all other production to focus on these 30 watches. This watch sold out quickly, and this is the first time we have seen one come up on the estate market. This is a rare opportunity to get ahold of an amazing design in a very limited edition from a great watch brand.

   That's it for now from Oliver Smith's world of watches.  On a personal note, thank you to everyone who helped make my first six months here at OSJ, some of the best in my 30 year (yikes!) career!  For myself and the whole Oliver Smith family, I would like to wish you all a very safe and happy holiday season, and look forward to seeing you soon!

Sincerely,

George Reid

Thoughts from the Desk of Oliver Smith December 2017

Nikki Ollive

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Happy Holidays!


As you know I have been fortunate to go to my in-laws place every summer in Carpenteria, below Santa Barbara. The Thomas fire came pretty close to their property but they were spared. It's remarkable to think of the devastation a wildfire can cause. I'm sure many of you have been effected at one time or another by all manners of life's trials and tribulations. The holidays are a time where we can count our many blessings. I have been very blessed and I want to thank everyone for your continual support. 
 

What are you doing Sunday the 17th?  Come to our 14th Annual Cars and Cigars! 

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Stop by from 12pm - 4pm for some BBQ and listen to the Herndon Brothers band from Handlebar J's...while you are cruising the cases for that stocking stuffer of course!

Drive your collectible car too, and see all the other amazing vehicles!

Love to see ASU Bball knocking off #2 Kansas this week. The Bobby Hurley influence is the real deal. Will the Herm Edwards hire succeed too? Hope so...

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We are excited to introduce Ryan Belton to our staff. Ryan is a hometown product that grew up in Scottsdale and has been groomed by Tourneau over the past few years. Now he can add diamonds and OSJ jewelry to his knowledge base. He's already sick of hearing 'Is Oliver here?' LOL. Come by and introduce yourself. 
 

Gold has been hovering at $1250 for most of this year. 
 

Congratulations to Steve Walker for 10 years of service in the repair and manufacturing department at OSJ. Here he is getting a watch from OSJ. Dilly Dilly! 

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Diamond prices have gone down for the past 3 years but now seem to be holding steady. Time to buy?! 

The last 6 months have been great for sales in the store. People are feeling better and buying things. 

Plenty of work still to be done on the old Scottsdale jean space in the center of our building .... a grocery store is set to open in March. I'm not allowed to say who, but it rhymes with pouts. 

Don't forget you can shop OSJ online at any time!  www.oliversmithjeweler.com 


Have a Happy New Year!

Oliver Smith

Watch Words September 2017

Nikki Ollive

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     My name is George Reid and I'm the "New Guy" here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.  For those who do not know me I have been in the watch industry for over ten years with the majority of those years as the CPO ( Certified Pre Owned) Manager for Tourneau.  I have been a passionate watch collector for as long as I can remember.  Oliver was kind enough to give me a new home to ply my trade and to continue my education as a watch enthusiast.  But enough introductions, it's time for me to tell you about some of the new pieces here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.

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The first watch I would like to introduce to you is the Jaeger LeCoultre Ultra-Thin Date, a personal favorite of mine, and the first watch I had to add to my collection after coming to Oliver Smith. The case on this watch is a mere 7.45mm thin. For comparison the ETA/ Valjoux 7750 movement, one of the most popular chronograph movements by ETA, without any casing is 7.9mm thick. The proportions of the Ultra-Thin Date are balanced with slightly short lugs and curved spring bars, which allow it to fit perfectly under a shirt cuff. Of course, this timepiece affords the watchmaking prowess of the maison a chance to shine; this watch boasts a sapphire caseback which allows the intricacies of the caliber 899 movement to be admired. All this for just $7,500 makes this one of the best value propositions in the industry.

Continuing today's theme of slim watches is the Slim D'Hermes. Typically Hermes is not a brand that floods the mind with images of carefully crafted movements, but I believe this watch could change that. Hermes has been working hard to overhaul their watchmaking division; in 2006 they purchased 25% of the prominent Manufacture Vaucher Fluerier. Since then the brand has gained praise, awards and critical acclaim for their new movements, especially those within the Slim D'Hermes line. This particular model uses a micro-rotor to help cut down on the size of its automatic movement, leaving it only 2.6mm thick. In proper Hermes fashion, every element of this design has been meticulously considered and executed. To help set apart what could otherwise be a very simplistic dial, the numbers and subdial have been split onto separate levels with elegant brushed finishes. My favorite detail of this watch is the custom font used on the dial, designed specifically for this line by famed French graphic designer Philippe Apeloig! This unique font paired with the smooth lines of the case paired give this watch a look that is at once both retro and modern. The Hermes Slim D'Hermes retails for $7,650.

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Now, on to the next big (slim) thing from Panerai: the Luminor Due!  The 45mm case of the PAM00674 comes in at a positively svelte (for Panerai) 10.7mm thick. The Luminor Due ushers in a new age for the brand, and is easily 40% slimmer than any other piece Panerai has done.  But lest you think the movement had to be sacrificed to slim down the profile, this watch features a fully in-house, automatic, p.4000 movement with a 3 day power reserve. The 674 retains all the presence and masculine lines of its predecessors, yet slips under a cuff like no Panerai before it. Finishing off this amazing watch is a dial that has to be seen to be truly appreciated. The fine grain sunburst finish makes the color shift between shades of light gray, anthracite and black, depending on how the light hits the dial. All this and it's a traditional sandwich dial to boot!  This new, modern Panerai retails at $10,500.

Thank you all for taking the time to read Watch Words.  All of the watches discussed are available here at Oliver Smith Jeweler.  Please stop in, say hello, and talk some watches!

Thoughts from the Desk of Oliver Smith

Nikki Ollive

Aimee and I are celebrating our 30th Anniversary this month! She has raised 3 wonderful kids and been a real steady partner. Recently we were out to dinner with some friends and the next day the guy said to me 'I can see Aimee wears the pants in your family'. The success of a good relationship is knowing when to stay quiet and let the other lead. Of course I did mention it to Aimee and every now and than I have to pretend to be hiking my pants up, when she tells me to do something. Ha! keeping the humor is pretty important too. 

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After 35 years years in business I have decided to close on Mondays! From this point forward we will be open Tuesday through Saturday and closed on Sunday and Monday. Being open for only 5 days a week will make scheduling easier and my mental state more relaxed.

The discussion over the $60 million Desert Discovery Center (now called Desert Edge) is heating up. After years of study it is probably going to come to a vote by Scottsdale citizens. Stay tuned. 


Diamondbacks have been really fun to watch this year. Congratulations to whomever decided to trade for J.D. Martinez. He hit four homeruns in one game the other night!

Sprouts is opening right next to me. Work has begun on the demolition of a 30,000 square foot space in the center of my shopping center. The owner plans to rebuild a space for Sprouts. Plans are to open in March. Lucky for me my friend Adam Mays is doing the construction work and have been extremely understanding of my needs.

Alma closed in my center... now something new 'Urban Kitchen' to open soon.

Amazon owns 7% of the US retail market. There is a trend by Millennials to shop in stores more because they want the experience!

In order to give you a better experience at OSJ we are beginning a store remodel. We will be creating a few more seating areas were you can enjoy a more intimate environment to look at jewelry and watches. Work is to begin shortly. I'm using Jere Plank again, from Archicon, he did our original design of the store in 2007.

Last week a client came into the store with a ring she bought from a competitor up the street for $15,000. It was such an egregious overcharge for a ring that we would have charged $6,000. The jewelry business has changed, and you need to do your homework.

George Reid, my new watch guy, is doing a great job for OSJ. Please stop in and say hello and ask him to put you on his WATCH WORDS email blast list that talks about the watch industry and new products in the store. Or email him here.

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Consumer confidence is the highest in 16 years!  No amount of bad leadership can cripple this economy or this country....you just have to keep working.  

Diamond prices are still flat or some would say depressed. Good time to buy. Gold is getting a little hot at $1340/ounce. We are still looking to buy estate jewelry. Please continue to send me your referrals. I promise to take good care of your friends and neighbors. Send Jodie an email to get on my schedule.

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Lastly we are looking for someone to help us in the sales department. Must have at least five years experience selling jewelry locally. Let me know if you have a good person.   

OSJ is proud of the value we represent to our clients. After 35 years in an extremely competitive business we have grown 30% this year alone. No one sells custom designed high quality fine jewelry for a better price than we do!

Sincerely,

Oliver Smith

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