WORLD-CLASS GEM CUTTER CELEBRATES THIRD YEAR IN BUSINESS
Pearls International brings high-fashion jewelry to Daytona Beach Shores
Many residents of Daytona Beach Shores don’t know there is a living legend in their own backyard. Jim Stradley, the owner and jeweler at Pearls International in Daytona Beach Shores, has singlehandedly affected the path of the jewelry industry for the past 45 years.
Beginning in 1967 with a small lapidary company in the western United States, Stradley rapidly became known for his avant-garde styles and for tackling large-scale projects that other cutters avoided. His notable achievements have included cutting three of the world’s largest gem-quality amethysts and a softball-sized blue topaz that topped 2200 carats. Some of his cut gems are a part of the Smithsonian Institute’s collection.
Stradley worked tirelessly to develop new styles of cutting gems to maximize their inherent color and refractive properties. Many of his signature cutting methods are now used by jewelers around the world to increase the brilliance and sparkle of traditional stone shapes.
In 2009, Stradley left gem-cutting in favor of a new venture, pearls. He set up shop on A1A, and now spends his time creating affordable one-of-a-kind pearl jewelry and gifts. Pearls International carries exotic and unusual pearl jewelry incorporating pearls from around the world. On the affordability of his art, Stradley quips that he would ”rather charge lower prices and get beauty into people’s hands, than charge high prices and keep the beauty locked up in the store.”
Pearls International is marking its third anniversary in business this month by holding a “Party with the Pearls,” Red-Tag Celebration Sale from March 19th-31st.