Back Then: Little did Jay Feichtinger know at the time, but a shop class in basic jewelry making during high school would be the start of a life-long career in jewelry retail. After high school, while completing his degree at the University of Minnesota in the late
1970’s, Jay worked part time at a jewelry store. During that time he learned various bench jeweler basics, including essential jewelry repair work. But his main responsibility was soldering charms on charm bracelets.
After college he worked full time in a trade shop that did repair work for other jewelry stores. Three years later he decided to do the same work out of his studio, and then worked for a retail jeweler for one year before opening his own store, Valley Jewelers, in 1988. When he moved his store to Apple Valley in 1992, he changed the store name to Jay F. Jeweler.
What’s happening now: In the same store location for more than two decades, Jay’s competitive edge in the Twin Cities market
remains being a pioneer in specializing in jewelry repair and custom work, a business model he has built on and fine-tuned over 30 years.
In the last six to seven years, Jay has returned to the custom jewelry work essentials that gave his business its start, with new investments in the latest CAD and CAM technology. Jay’s sons have joined the family business in recent years with his oldest son Christian doing marketing work for the store, and his younger son Joshua working at the bench like his father. And, in 2012, Jay will do a soft launch of his own wedding band collection with an official launch planned for 2013.
What we do: Jay F. Jeweler provides jewelry repair, CAD and CAM custom jewelry work, and a selection of finished bridal jewelry. The store specializes in CAD and CAM custom jewelry work, jewelry repairs, finished jewelry, wedding bands and bridal jewelry, and an in-house collection of wedding bands.
Apple Valley is the best place to do business because: The community is still growing. Apple Valley is only about 30 years old. In and around my store there’s a lot of retail development. And, there are also a lot of residential areas currently under development, from condominiums to single-family home neighborhoods.
Customer specs: Our primary customers are women, ages 25 to 45, looking for custom bridal and redesign work. They come to us because they’re looking for something different in quality designs they can’t find anywhere else.
Owner: Jay Feichtinger
Address: 15050 Cedar Avenue South, Suite #104