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Vivek Soni, a resident of Guna took admission in Indian institute of Gems and Jewellery (IIGJ Mumbai) for various courses namely with the sole objective to make a career in the gems and jewellery domain and expand his family business. I met him in the institute -IIGJ Mumbai on various occasions.
The motivation came from the family business which is in jewellery. Soni’s shop is SBJ, and they have one of the oldest and the largest shop in the town of Guna, started way back in 1965. The shop houses on an average of 5000 pieces of non branded jewellery in gold, silver sterling, and diamonds. The customer composition is typically from business class, service class and even from villages around Guna. Most of the customers have displayed their loyalty to SBJ, purchasing only from them for more than 30-45 years. Vivek is the fourth generation from the family an all set to get into the same business.
Why did you select the Gem Institute? Why did you choose such an offbeat, unique and unconventional career such as Gem designing
Vivek’s business, SBJ Jewels which will branch into two brands:
- SBJ: the commercial brand for daily wear, simple but elegant
- SBJ Rajrani: the high end, exclusive and exquisite luxury brand with shades of metal, color and stones
Vivek was all set to take up relevant courses in the gems and jewellery domain. He searched on the web for institutes and courses across the country with a well focused aim to become a jewellery designer. He decided to study outstation and get exposure of a metro city known for its culture, big names in jewellery manufacturing and diamond industry, trends in fashion and jewellery, commercial designs, and network with stalwarts in the same domain. This would not have been possible in a small town like Guna nor at Jaipur or other cities where jewellery institutes and markets exist. He chose IIGJ Mumbai to gain the skill set required to become a designer for gold, silver and platinum metals, diamond and gemstone. He came down to Mumbai, took a flat on rent, managed his own cooking, made friends and networked with people from the same sector.
What courses did you study?
He studied the following courses at IIGJ Mumbai:
- Six months Diploma in Professional Jewellery Design
- Diamond Grading
- Basic Jewellery Making
Unveiling Vivek’s designs
Believe me, Vivek had told me two months ago, that he is preparing some innovative designs but it would be a suspense. I have been eagerly waiting for him to unveil the designs and the wait for really worth it. The two designs labelled Queen Collection and Glittering Waves are elaborated here:
- Design 1: Queen Collection:
The Queen collection is based on the design of a peacock, the queen of birds. The Queen collection was evolved keeping in tune with the market demand of a fusion of traditional and modern design. This collection has a necklace and a pair of earrings. The design according to Vivek is unique, elegant and balanced. The USP of this collection is the shades in the design. Instead of using normal purple, dark green and dark blue, Vivek has innovated with mild shades nearer to the actuals: purple, light green, pink, for a blend of two golds: pink and yellow. This unique peacock design if made in gold and diamonds, will cost in the range of 8-10 lakhs but with a few modifications the cost can be brought down to about 4 lakhs. The peacock is amalgamated into jewellery design often, but never with opened wings and spread feathers, and the Queen’s collection is unique and beautiful in this respect. The peacock design with spread feathers signifies the warm and open heart and welcoming nature of the person adorning it. The soft color and tone of the peacock design will surely catch the people’s eye. The idea of this design was to keep it simple, make it traditional and yet western. So, the necklace size was kept to medium, but it can be varied as per customer requirements. To highlight the jewellery, it can be smaller in size and made in a lighter tone and worn with simple western apparel.The story behind the Queen’s Collection:Peacock is considered the queen of birds. Her aura and beauty is divine and this idea is put into this collection. I have portrayed the peacock in an ethnic look but with western shades. The design is enhanced with colored stones along with pink and yellow gold. The prong settings place the stones comfortably with a unique combination of black pearls. Imagine wearing the Queen’s collection: the peacock will make you feel exuberant with royalty and ethnicity.
- Design 1: Queen Collection:
- Design 2: Glittering Waves Collection:
Well this one was traditional, jazzy, a little big and quite eye catching. The idea of the design evolved from the waves of the sea which keep on lapping at the shore. The design comprises of wavy shapes and is not yet made in hasli and this brings in its uniqueness. The design is innovative, sophisticated and yet traditional ‘hasli’ with diamonds and a few color stones. The collection comprises of a hasli necklace, ring, earrings. With higher class of diamonds, the cost would go up to 40 lakhs while the same design can be made in low budget by lowering the diamond cost. The design is not yet rendered but I am sure that once it is rendered it will stay in the hearts of many.The story behind the glittering Waves collection: The word glitter and the wavy nature of the design brings in a feel of sparkles, and a tingling effect to the eyes. The diamonds are set in wavy shapes in the shape of a classical hasli. The traditional design set with diamonds give a royal feel to the one who adorns the entire collection. A design which takes you on a voyage into the sea.
Both the Queen’s Collection and the Glittering Wave Collection have made a place in my heart and I am sure I will cherish the design for its uniqueness and a blend of traditional and western touch.
Vivek’s future plan?
From my experience: for any person to succeed in his career and life it is important to plan the short term and long term goals and prepare an action plan to achieve them. Vivek has worked out both the short term and long term goals to the minutest details. His stay in Mumbai was focused on sharpening jewellery design and manufacturing skills, networking with renowned designers and get the designs reviewed. Within two months he is moving back to Guna, to contribute to organized retail counter family business and settle in with father. He has planned to learn the tricks of the trade and mingle and develop relationship with customers. Typically Vivek will decide the business strategies jointly with his father. Gradually within a year Vivek proposes to launch his own luxury brand SBJ Rajrani in Guna. Once the teething period is over, he plans to open up counters in other cities domestically and later expand to even abroad. In short Vivek visualizes himself like the sea: open, willing to grow, and aim to make parents, relatives and friends proud of his achievements. Based on my experience and his confidence, professionalism and ethics he will sure make a name for himself.