By Lenore Fedow
Forevermark U.S. President Charles Stanley (far left) joined owners Judy and Steve Padis and their daughter, Alexis, for the opening of the first Forevermark boutique in the United States.
Walnut Creek, Calif.—Forevermark cut the ribbon on a new boutique in California last week, marking the opening of the De Beers-owned diamond brand’s first store in the United States.

Located at Broadway Plaza, a shopping center in Walnut Creek, the 600-square-foot store will be wholly owned and operated by the Padis family of Padis Jewelers, which has carried Forevermark since 2012.

Steve and Judy Padis, Bay Area natives who have been in the jewelry industry for 45 years and were inducted into National Jeweler’s Retailer Hall of Fame earlier this year, run three Padis Jewelry stores in San Francisco and one in Napa Valley.

20191113 Forevermark BoutiqueThe Forevermark store in Walnut Creek, CAThe Forevermark boutique was slated to open last year, but some administrative issues, such as signage agreements and local government approval, delayed the opening, Steve Padis said in an interview with National Jeweler Tuesday.

Nevertheless, he characterized the opening weekend as a success, with dozens of customers stopping by to check out the boutique.

The store opening kicked off with a weekend-long celebration, offering complimentary manicures and a daily “Bubbles and Bites” champagne happy hour.

A cart parked outside offered passersby fall-themed drinks, like hot apple cider and hot chocolate.

Shoppers were invited to play dress-up with one-of-a-kind pieces of diamond jewelry from the Forevermark Red Carpet Collection, including the “Force of Nature Ring,” inspired by the Kudu, an African antelope.

The Force ring is set with a 7.78-carat diamond, the brand’s 2 millionth inscribed diamond.

The store had a soft opening two months ago, Padis said, to prepare the staff ahead of the full-fledged opening in November.

Initially, the Padises had planned to stock 70 percent bridal and 30 percent fashion jewelry in the store, but the soft opening revealed a higher demand for fashion jewelry so they shifted the mix to 60 percent bridal and 40 percent fashion.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if we go to 50/50,” Padis said.

A portion of sales from the opening weekend will be donated to the California Fire Foundation to support victims, firefighters and communities affected by wildfires throughout California.

Commenting on the opening in a press release, Forevermark U.S. President Charles Stanley said: “In opening our first Forevermark boutique, consumers will be able to more deeply experience and appreciate the full journey of a Forevermark diamond.”

“Forevermark diamonds are the most carefully selected diamonds in the world, and we applied the same rigorous standards when selecting our partners and the location for our very first Forevermark boutique.”

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