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Meet Julio Benez of Artisan LA Jewelry in Los Feliz

Today we’d like to introduce you to Julio Benez.

Artisan LA is a boutique jewelry shop featuring the work of Julio Benez along with a unique collection of local and national artisan jewelry. We offer contemporary, vintage, and handcrafted jewelry with a heartfelt focus on “Made in the USA.” Artisan LA specializes in crafting unique custom orders and custom engagement rings with a top-of-the-line technology. We would love to work with you to create that perfect ring or re-imagine a sentimental piece of jewelry that needs a modernized make-over.

Established in 2011, Artisan LA has been serving Los Angeles since 2011. Located in the heart of Los Feliz, we’ve been offering a fun shopping experience for locals and visitors alike for more than five years. We look forward to working with you to create something truly unique.

Julio Benez is a certified GIA gemologist and the proud owner of Artisan LA. Born in Brazil, Julio started making sculptures at the early age of six. Previously a designer for Cake Jewelry, he was inspired to open his own shop with a focus on creating unique sculptures to wear that incorporate gemstones. Julio finds creating unique and custom designs for his customers to be one of the biggest challenges and also one of the most rewarding parts of being an artisan.

Has it been a smooth road?
As a self-financed business, the trick is to be prepared for the customers that want something bigger than I had. The solution was custom orders, that way I could provide jewelry to a higher level of clientele without having too much inventory. Other parts of the business are very challenging too. When I signed up for these job I was targeting to do what I like and what I do better, but the level of multitasking in a small business require much more than a jeweler/sculpture/gemologist, it requires communication skills, staff management, accounting, marketing and other skills that I never thought would be necessary.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Artisan LA Jewelry – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
We drilled vertically, in a country where everything is made abroad we make everything in LA. We are prepared already to bring the manufacturing back to US. The solution was high tech. Once we got overwhelmed with custom request I got the challenge and the opportunity to learn how to design in 3D, CAD and start making jewelry using the computer. It cut the cost, made it faster and precise and increased the communication with my clientele. Now I don’t need to invite my customer to see the piece and request the changes in person. They can receive the images of the piece by email and figure out the changes by email.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
LA gives you a chance to figure yourself up. Thanks to LA and the diversity of art schools and business related with making jewelry, I got the chance to figure out what I am doing today. As the second biggest jewelry district in the country, LA is only second to New York, but the first in making jewelry. New York is more a diamond dealing than a jewelry manufacturing.

LA is a very expensive city, it would be better to make jewelry in a small town and just sell online or wholesale to other stores.

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