A new setting for Doerner Jewelers in Algonquin
ALGONQUIN – Inside the new, 1,600-square-foot Doerner Jewelers is new drywall, some hanging lights, new glass cases, and new carpeting.
Inside the former martial arts studio, there is a private room for people to work on designs or have appraisals done at the store.
Doerner moved into the new store in August after the eight-month renovation.
During the project, which is next door to the store's former 500-square-foot space, workers had to chip off plaster from the wall, and took out a dropped ceiling.
They've added a fireplace and a television in a small area where people can sit and wait while at the shop.
Eventually store owner Gabriele Gutierrez wants to set up a computer in the shop for customers to design their own rings while they wait.
"That's the future," Gutierrez said.
The building was constructed in the 1893. As part of the renovation, Gutierrez had the original brick work uncovered and cleaned. The brick work was covered by a facade in the 1960s
"I don't think it did the building any justice, I couldn't wait to take it off," she said. "The front of the building is original."
The former space is now vacant. Gutierrez, 49, of Crystal Lake, said she isn't sure if they will eventually use it as store space or rent the space out.
The space next door has to be gutted and redone, as well.
"I'm not sure what we'll do with next door," Gutierrez said. "Next year will tell."
There is a wooden beam that is original to the building purposely exposed to show off part of the history of the building.
Working the smaller space next door was tight.
"We needed more room, we have to be able serve our customers better," Gutierrez said. "There wasn't space over there. ... We were able to work out of it, but it was very close quarters."
They have three full-time employees and one part-time employee, which is an increase of one employee from the the previous location.
Guiterrez also has her husband, Jose Gutierrez, 59, in the front of the store working on designs of pieces as he uses daylight rather than room light to do his detail work.
"People can see what we do," Gabriele said.
The jewelry shop remodels gold, takes old stones and sets them in new pieces, appraises pieces, and repairs watches among other things. They have gold they could customize in anyway customers want. Earrings are on display on plastic ears to see how they would look.
Gabriele's father started the jewelry business 56 years ago in Niles. She took it over in 2004, and decided to move it to Algonquin. They also have a store in Geneva and plan to open one in Aurora.
They had a small space and saved up to remodel the 1,600-square-foot space. Gabriele designed the renovation, but they have yet to add up the final cost.
"It took a couple years to save," she said.
What: Custom jewelry design, appraisals and watch repair.
Where: 119 S. Main St., Algonquin
Information: Call 847-458-9779, or visit www.doernerjewelers.com