With its second-generation family business thriving, Walters & Hogsett Jewelers decided to forge ahead with a major brick-and-mortar renovation along with large-scale rebranding – all in a four-month period while the store remained open in Boulder, Colo.
As the project was completed in November, a celebration was due – a grand one at that, with more than 300 guests attending the upscale Water Street Plaza location.
“It was time to update and create a fresh and inviting environment,” says Mark Vieregg, partner and owner. “With the opportunity to partner with a couple of leading brands and develop their in-store experience, the expansion and remodeling made the most sense.
“Our business has grown exponentially over the last four years, and we feel fortunate it has in this changing retail environment. Our customers are sophisticated and seeking more, and now we are able to meet those expectations. Our internal team is second to none. We knew we needed to grow our footprint to meet demand and drive our future.”
Icon Architecture & Fabrication from Kansas City, Mo., redesigned the interior in a Colorado-casual style with appealing textures and colors reflecting the Boulder surroundings. The feel is earthy and modern with innovative lighting, sleek wood tones and natural finishes.
“We updated and expanded collections, added more fashion jewelry lines for the woman self-purchaser, and created some entertainment/event space,” Mark says. “We added additional case lines for fashion collections featuring front-loading cases to work side by side with customers, a Rolex environment to highlight what they do best, and added additional space for our repair work and our design studio, both of which had grown over the past four years. We want to have our jeweler more accessible with an open kitchen-type shop, so customers can see what it takes to be skilled in jewelry repair.”
The store grew from 2,500 to 3,400 square feet, allowing those additions plus a unique entryway, private buying room and a new social area to serve champagne and other beverages. Dedicated shops were created for John Hardy and Hearts on Fire. Collections from Lika Behar, Sethi Couture and Marco Bicego were expanded, and designers new to the store include Jude Frances, Roberto Coin, Mémoire, Lauren K and Ron Hami.
A Complete Rebranding
Walters & Hogsett’s rebranding included its logo, brand colors and packaging, led by local company Cultivator Advertising. The store’s website improvements and complete marketing plan were led by jewelry marketing specialists Fruchtman Marketing.
“The rebranding became a reality once we got into the architecture and interior concepts,” Mark says. “We realized we could probably improve our brand position in our market with updated brand colors, logo, packaging, etc. and tie that into our brand experience online. That was certainly a fun part of the process – selecting a brand agency and really investigating how we wanted to be seen in the marketplace.
“During 2017, including the four months of remodeling and working out of 800 square feet, our business has continued to grow by double digits. We feel fortunate with the staff and brand partners we have and will keep working to elevate our position in the market.”
Don Janson, partner and owner, says it’s been an exciting time for the 37-year-old family business. “We knew as a company we needed to seize the opportunity to improve our fashion jewelry choices our customers demand and our overall brand position in the marketplace. We couldn’t have done it without exceptional industry partners and phenomenal customers.”
Walters & Hogsett Jewelers was founded in 1980, when two entrepreneur-type couples met and hit it off. Walter (Wally) and BJ Vieregg teamed up with Ron and Gail Hogsett to launch a store in Boulder County that eventually found its way to Water Street Plaza. With 18 years of jewelry experience already, Don joined the team in 1991. Mark, Wally’s nephew, came on board in 2007, and ownership of the store was transferred to Don and Mark in 2013.
A member of the American Gem Society and Jewelers of America, Walters & Hogsett has been named the Best in Boulder for 18 years in a row and was named one of Town and Country’s Leading Independent Jewelers in 2015. A dedication to excellence has spurred the company’s growth in recent years, Mark says.
“We consistently work on the following: Challenging and improving our mix of people, product, and marketing with an uncompromising dedication and passion for curating the best collections and creating the best customer experiences. We owe that to our existing customers while inviting new customers to try us and trust us.”