Story of Antoinette’s Antique Jewelry
For store owner Tanya Mahood, the idea of closing the door for the last time at Antionette’s Broadway location elicits combined feelings of enshrining the past and setting sails for the future. In December, Tanya and business colleague, Kerry Kruskop, will be redirecting their collective passion for antique and estate jewelry, and focusing on enjoying life in new and different ways.Doris Voss opened the original Antoinette’s in 1977 in an antique mall on State Street. When Tanya took over in 2005, she moved the business into the current East Broadway space and scaled back to concentrate on her passion and expertise for antique jewelry.
Circling the store’s glass display cases, Tanya graciously presents particular pieces of fine craftsmanship. She gently handles and describes the unique characteristics of earrings and pendants with words such as “incredible” and “fantastic.” Lifting a 19th-Century diamond to the light she says, “The stones come to life.”
Tanya and Kerry
Learning about antique jewelry has been a pleasure for Tanya and Kerry because they both have a passion for quality, plus a deep respect for pre-industrial handcrafted jewelry. Knowing jewelry, however, does not guarantee a successful business outcome. One of the ways that Antoinette’s has stayed relevant is by offering styles revisited in modern jewelry trends. Kerry notes that “anything of quality is always popular,” but Tanya keeps her eye on the latest fashions. For example, many Victorian cluster rings are similar in style to the currently popular diamond halo rings. “Studying and matching styles from different eras has kept it fun,” Tanya says.
Tanya and Kerry have helped educate their customers over the years regarding the history of antique jewelry. Chatting in the quiet luxury of Antoinette’s polished interior, the cordial pair have passed on the historic context of these often one of a kind pieces.
Tanya proffers a gold locket where a wound snippet of hair is presented under a glass disc. “Victorian mourning jewelry was popular in the decades following Prince Albert’s death,” Tanya explains. “People had no photos back then. If you consider the historic perspective, this jewelry is all about sentiment. We have taught our customers how to appreciate this wearable art. By teaching them we have kept them from making bad jewelry mistakes for the rest of their lives.”
Part Of The Community
Along with the loss of bygone craftsmanship, Salt Lake City is losing a valuable brick and mortar community resource. “We’ve gotten a million dollars’ worth of enjoyment in running this business and being part of the community,” Tanya recounts. “Our joy has been from talking to people, educating people, getting to know people. We have appreciated meeting people and being a part of the community, and we want to thank everybody who has supported us.”