“I know it sounds corny, but working with my family really is my favorite part of the job,” says Emily Cole, manager of D. Cole Jewelers in Portland. Her parents founded the boutique jewelry business 35 years ago, and although Emily worked at the store all through high school, she didn’t intend on returning after college. However, just a few months after she graduated, her mother asked her to return.
“A managing position had opened up,” she recalls. “I decided to come back, and honestly, it was the best decision I ever made.” Emily works alongside her brother, Ryan, and her parents, Dean and Denise. “My brother and I both have 2-year-olds right now, and even on our days off, we still get together and go to our parents’ pool, just to hang out and talk.” Over the years, she’s watched the jewelry business change and evolve, but she appreciates how D. Cole stays true to the company’s founding principles. “Whenever I work with new artists, I always look for something unique,” she says.
As for her own jewelry, Emily prefers pieces that she can just put on and go. “I wear my diamond hoops almost every day. I used to change my earrings out more, but now, being a mom, I love my diamond hoops. They’re easy,” she says. “I can even wear them while I’m running, when I’m at the gym, when I’m showering.”
This, she says, is why quality jewelry is so important, particularly when it comes to those subtle, small, everyday pieces—the pieces that offset an outfit just right. “People wear their jewelry,” she says. “They don’t want to put it on for dinner and take it off when they get home. Our pieces are designed for wear—to enjoy them, always.”
Katy Kelleher is a writer and editor who lives in Buxton with two dogs and one husband.