WARREN, Ohio – Thom Duma Fine Jewelers of Warren took a hit in 2020 as the pandemic forced the temporary closure of the shop in the spring, when sales of wedding rings and bridal jewelry are at their peak.
But revenues bounced back in 2021, as the jeweler’s bridal revenue in the first 10 months of the year increased 64%, with units sold up 32%. The numbers set a sales record for the company, says owner Tom Duma.
“We never really made back the revenue that I lost for the eight weeks that we were shut down,” Duma says. “But when you look at it year-over-year, we were just having increases every single month.”
The average center stone sold at Thom Duma is about one carat. That’s up from the quarter-carat average Duma’s father sold in the early 1980s, he says.
While he still sells the small diamonds, demand is up for larger stones. What helped, Duma suspects, is that pandemic-related restrictions prevented customers from taking luxury trips and cruises so “they had some extra disposable income.”
While Duma hasn’t had issues acquiring diamonds for his inventory, he reports prices are higher.
During a recent buying trip, the price of diamonds was up 7% to 10% year-over-year, he says. But that trend was happening before the pandemic, he adds.
Thom Duma Fine Jewelry has a long history.
Founded in 1896 as Klivan’s Jewelers, the business was a respected institution in Youngstown when the first individual with the Duma name became associated with it.
Thom Duma Sr. and his partner, Isadore Diamondstein, purchased the business in 1957 and kept the name.
Tom Duma, the current owner, learned the business by working with his father. When his time came to take over the store, he gutted it and remade it as the chic and sleek store it is today.
Thom Duma Fine Jewelers is unique in the Valley because of its extensive inventory of top bridal brands, including Tacori, Gabriel, Michael M., Verragio and Hearts of Fire. In 2019, the store added a 500-square-foot Rolex sales environment.