Love Rekindled: Find Second-Chance Jewelry at Goodwill

    [fa icon="calendar"] Feb 14, 2024 10:15:00 AM / by Sam Stockman

    Sam Stockman


    A 1.83 carat Cartier diamond platinum ring sold at Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana

    The tradition of giving jewelry to loved ones dates back centuries. According to the American Gemology Institute, women in ancient Rome received rings made of ivory, iron and bone. Between the 14th and 15th centuries, naturally forming diamonds were cut and polished into what is known as point diamonds, the precursor to our modern round brilliant cut diamond. Engagement rings were introduced in America in the early 1900s. In 1948, De Beers, one of the world's leading diamond companies, launched its "Diamonds are Forever" campaign, marking a pivotal moment in the history of jewelry.

    Thousands of pieces of jewelry are donated to Goodwill each year, giving these stunning accessories new life, and providing their owners with new opportunities to create memories. When jewelry is donated to Goodwill, it’s first sorted into categories and styles. A quality control member inspects and identifies the pieces, and specific brands will be submitted to a third party to ensure the piece is authentic. A precious metal analyzer is also utilized to help identify the elemental makeup of specific pieces, ensuring the listing is as accurate as possible. 


    Katherine "Katz" Finch, a professional gemologist, is a sorter for Goodwill’s eCommerce division. In this capacity, she categorizes loose jewelry and searches for special pieces, later sold on Coincidentally, she celebrates seven years in her role today – on Valentine’s Day. 
    Before joining Goodwill, Katz worked for major jewelry retailers, including Reis-Nichols. With a natural affinity for the romance and lore of jewelry, Katz relied on her knowledge and interpersonal skills to connect with customers.
    "We're talking about a different level of communication and sensitivity,” said Katz. “When someone walks into a jewelry store, they’re looking for something precious and sentimental.”


    In September 2023, Katz achieved certification as a professional gemologist, enabling her to scientifically understand the crystalline structure of gemstones. This certification validates her extensive 20 years of experience in the field. She takes great pride in her accomplishment and finds joy in her current role as a jewelry sorter.
    Katz notes that while she still encounters a significant number of conservatively designed rings, there is also an increase in hand-engraved pieces. She fondly recalls when a collection of point diamonds arrived at eCommerce, as well as other notable pieces from Tiffany, and even Cartier. Katz has experienced a diverse array of jewelry, but even the smallest diamond rings hold significance for her. Every piece she touches has history. 

    "A ring is an unspoken commitment,” said Katz. “Even the tiniest diamonds still have sparkle. It says you are cherished.”

    Shop for jewelry for your special Valentine at ShopGoodwill. 

    Topics: Employment, Valentines Day, ClickGoodwill, Retail

    Sam Stockman

    Written by Sam Stockman

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