Business Spotlight: Mason Jewelers
Mason Jewelers has been in business since 1957 and will be celebrating its 62nd year of business in September. Owner Scott Mason won’t let the milestone pass without a celebration, kicking off a big September sale by offering 50% off any piece of jewelry in his shop on Thursday, September 19, from 3 to 8 p.m.
Another reason to stop in on the special night is to see Judy Ring, an employee who recently retired from Mason’s but will be back for this one special evening.
“The last couple years, we’ve had people lined up outside,” Mason says. “We only do it one night, and it’s crazy.”
In addition to jewelry and watch repair, Mason Jewelers offers basically anything in jewelry, from custom work to original pieces, as well as Citizen and Seiko watches. Mason also buys gold, which many jewelry stores don’t do. In fact, Mason will either buy it with cash or trade, offering a double value on the trade.
Mason offers a free lifetime warranty on any and all pieces of jewelry, including estate jewelry. Mason says this, as well as his customer service, is a big draw for customers.
“Customer service is the most important thing,” he says.
Many customers have told him they feel pressured to purchase or fill out credit applications at other jewelry stores because many salespeople work on commission.
“I’d rather just be polite, let them look and help them in any way I can,” Mason adds. “If they want to buy, they’re going to buy. It’s much better to let them take their time and be comfortable with their purchase. My name is on that sign, so I want to keep people as happy as I can.”
Mason works hard to do just that. Most days he can’t get his jewelry work done during business hours, so once he locks the door at 6 p.m., he can still be found at his jewelry bench until even later.
While Mason Jewelers has been in Plainfield since 1982, Mason’s parents started the business back in 1957. His father Harold had just come out of the Air Force and went into watchmaker’s school. He had a tiny watch bench in his own families’ hardware store in St. Louis where he simply fixed watches. That bench became the humble beginnings of Mason Jewelers.
Harold and his wife, Dorthea, eventually moved to Greencastle, Indiana and opened a watch repair shop. Every time they fixed a watch or two, they’d buy a piece of jewelry to sell. Eventually, this allowed them to expand into an entire store of jewelry.
In his early teens, Mason learned engraving as well as other jewelry work on the job from his father. Scott and his brother Steve both attended the Gemological Institute of America. Harold decided to open his second store in Plainfield in 1982. He always told his sons that he felt he needed to have a store for each kid.
“I don’t know if that’s actually true or not,” Mason says laughing. “But he was trying to expand so it worked out.”
Steve runs the Greencastle store, and between the two of them, the brothers have 90 years of experience.
Mason also prides himself on his friendly staff, even employing some of his longtime customers. He said it’s important for them to learn about the gems, but he intentionally hires people who have a knack for working with people.
“Friendly is something natural,” Mason says. “You don’t need training in that. The ladies I have hired have been customers who appreciate the jewelry. I just brought them to the other side of the counter, and all of a sudden they’re doing really good because they’re selling something they love.”
In fact, one woman named Carol Middleton has worked on and off for Mason since the 80s. Her trademark look is lots of shiny jewelry. She’s made a name for herself in Mason’s store, and there is a specific case designated for any flashy jewelry that is reminiscent of her style.
“It’s called Carol’s Corner,” Mason says. “If anything comes in real flashy, we put it in Carol’s Corner. A lot of people will say hey, let me know if you add anything to Carol’s Corner. You won’t find that at the big stores.”
Other unique displays include his new silicone ring line as well as men’s wedding bands made from the wood of actual whiskey barrels. His designer, Promezza, is known for their high quality, custom design rings, trademarked with a tiny yellow diamond set on the inside of the band.
Longtime customer Wendy Young loves jewelry and has been a customer of Mason’s as long as she’s been a Plainfield resident, which is 27 years.
“I’ve been in customer service my entire life,” Young says. “Scott is one of the finest managers I’ve ever met.”
Young has made many transactions over the years at Mason’s, remembering in particular one trade she made on a day she was feeling low in life. She had taken in some gold and jewelry to trade in, and she ended up leaving with a gorgeous pear-shaped diamond ring.
“Needless to say, I was on top of the world after that,” Young says. “He has anything you’d want there. They have the bling, things you can afford, lots of trade pieces, he can order things for you, he has a great estate area. I can go in there in a so-so mood and come out feeling fantastic. He is so friendly and gracious, and his staff is just fantastic.”
Mason loves owning his own jewelry business, and he loves the clientele that comes through his doors.
“It’s really fun because very rarely do people come in here angry or in a bad mood,” Mason says. “Typically they’re in here buying something for someone they love. It’s very easy working with people who are happy.”
Mason Jewelers is located at 1822 E Main St in Plainfield. For more information, visit them online at masonjewelersco.com or give them a call at 317-839-3202.