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Meet Jack Kira of JayKay Jewelers in Downtown

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jack Kira.

Thanks for sharing your story with us, Jack. So, let’s start at the beginning, and we can move on from there.
My father has been in the jewelry industry since I can remember. When he was first starting out in the 1990s, he worked for a number of jewelry manufacturers. After gaining the necessary knowledge and work experience he needed, in the early 2000s, he started his very own jewelry company that focused specifically on custom designed jewelry.

I vividly remember him spending hours on end carefully crafting each piece. There was a computer software program called Rhinoceros 1.0 that I recall him using often. I graduated high school in 2014, and as I was preparing for college, my father asked me that summer to assist him with basic office needs, such as running errands, organization, etc.

During our free time together, he would allow me to help him in designing some of the custom jewelry pieces. Watching how the process worked and seeing the 3D CAD images he designed literally transform into a piece of wearable jewelry, was an incredible experience for me that I’ll always remember.

My father recognized my growing interest in the jewelry, so he would teach me the basics I needed to know: how to clean and polish jewelry on a jeweler’s bench. I slowly began to clean and polish the jewelry for him, and he would pay me in return, but my interest in the industry did not stop there. I was already hooked and eager to learn more about my father’s business, despite the fact that I was enrolled in Community College.

College left me with an indecisive feeling as I never felt passionate about it, like the way I did learn the ins and outs of my father’s successful business. Straight from my college course lectures, I would hurry back to my father’s office so that I could continue learning and working on my newfound passion.

In the months that followed, my father introduced me to a diamond setter that he frequently worked with. This setter was kind enough to take me under his wing and showed me how to set pavé, a special type of diamond setting that is done under a microscope.

After two months of hard work, lots of practice and confidence gained in my new skills; I was finally good enough to work on orders that came in. At this point, my father would not only give me cleaning and polishing jobs, but I would also do the diamond setting while he would design the custom rings his clients had ordered.

At the end of my first semester of college, I decided to put academics on hold as I was unsure of what I wanted to do in terms of formal education. I then decided to create an Instagram page as well as my own DBA and business moniker, JayKay Jewelers. The brand I created back then was nothing like it is today.

When I first started, all I had been working with were engagement rings, so I would just post pictures of the rings I had finished to Instagram. After about a year of doing so, I did not notice any progress, and I decided to shift my audience base from couples to something more relatable to me and my everyday life. I felt it best at that time to delete all the posts on my Instagram page.

Then I started my own website, I created the website and its design on my own but decided it best to hire a professional photographer to capture beautiful shots of the jewelry. Initially, I started with a small and specific line that I had crafted myself. Soon after launching, I reached out to a growing artist by the name of Coinslot, who at the time had 30,000 followers.

We settled on a mutual agreement that I would create a custom chain for him if, in return, he would give me a mention on his Instagram account. The piece I designed for him was an Artist Palette, and his followers absolutely loved it. Because of this, I quickly gained recognition and followers. Almost instantly I received a handful of custom orders. From there, my journey in the custom jewelry business began.

A popular YouTuber named Sam Pepper had also seen the custom piece that I had created for Coinslot and reached out to me directly. The two of us met in person, and he was immediately intrigued by the jewelry making process. He saw my talents and knew that I had something special, introducing me to many social media influencers and other YouTube hosts that were interested in having custom designs made exclusively for them.

As a means to advertise my business, I would make them their custom pieces at a discount, and they would share the finished product with their large audience of followers on social media. Quickly this business model that I had developed proved effective. My custom jewelry design business hit the ground running.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
No, it most certainly has not. My biggest hurdle is that I do not have a storefront location and the only way to view my designs is strictly online. As many other online business owners can agree, it is often difficult to establish trust when potential customers cannot see your products up close–which is especially true for jewelry. Looking at a piece of jewelry online cannot serve it justice or show the buyer the quality of the work as it would if it were on them.

I’ve also felt that my age has been a struggle for me to be taken seriously in this business, as I am only 22 years old. In most cases, jewelers are established individuals who have been in this business for decades, some even long before I was born. But I firmly believe that the quality and attention to detail that I provide my clients proves that my work not only matches but surpasses other jewelers’ work–even if they have been in the business much longer than I have.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
Jaykay Jewelers is a company that focuses on custom jewelry and bringing our clients’ ideas to life. Our specialty is definitely custom pendants for men. The level of customer service that we offer is unparalleled, and we are known by all of our clients to have exceeded their customer service expectations with our creativity and execution.

What sets us apart from others is not only the quality of our work but the transparency and honesty we provide each and everyone who trusts us to design for them.

With every order, we continually update our clients. We gain their trust by allowing them to become a part of the process every step of the way from start to finish.

What were you like growing up?
As a kid, I was not much of a talker. I was very quiet, but I was also very observant. I played chess most of my childhood along with sports and video games. Also, I enjoyed taking things apart, whether it be to fix or to see how something worked. I would gain interest in something quickly, but also lose interest when there was nothing more left to learn.

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