‘Rising Star’ owner says price is key


Simmi Davis feels she’s bringing something new to the Jewel: value.

“My thing is pricing,” said the owner of a new boutique, The Rising Star La Jolla, a combination jewelry/fine arts shop she opened Nov. 3 at 1158 Prospect St. in the Village. “My concept is very different - I have something for everyone. I’m very proud that you can’t beat my prices.

“I’m not going to mention stores, but you can go to some and pay $200 for this,” Davis added, gesturing toward a rack of stylish bracelets, “or you can pay $25 for it in my store. I want to give my customers the best deal of their life.”

True to her word, Davis, who also owns a successful jewelry store in Colorado, has items throughout her shop at price points along every stage of the spectrum from low- to high-end. “When I first started, everyone thought I was crazy to bring in such affordable prices,” she said. “But everyone’s looking for a deal. I believe, at some point, everyone is price conscious.”

Davis also feels fortunate to have found a retail space along the main drag of La Jolla’s downtown Village. Her retail spot is bookended by an art gallery and an ice cream store. There is a Starbucks next door. La Jolla’s hallmark, pink-hued La Valencia Hotel is just a stone’s throw away.

“I fell in love with this spot,” admitted Davis. “It’s location, location, location. If you’re not in the right location - your business is not going to make it.”

The Rising Star La Jolla carries both custom and costume jewelry and accessories, as well as fine art. The fine art she sells on consignment is from Derissi Studio nearby at 1237 Prospect, Suite W. A Salvadore Dali-influenced native Iranian, Derissi began painting at age 10. He has been featured in French, German, Italian, American and Swiss exhibits. His artwork is noted for his realistic figures and objects which often appear in fantastic or surrealistic situations.

A case in point is one of Davis’ favorite Derissi pieces, “Safe at Sea,” which graces one of her walls. It depicts a happy couple lying on a beach with the ocean comfortably wrapped around them. “It’s just like a blanket,” noted Davis, pointing to another Derissi work on another wall titled “Hope,” which is selling for $1,800. “I like his art because I think it’s very different. I just picked out what I like.”

But Davis’ pride and joy are the amber Jewelry she sells, noting her product is imported and of the very finest quality. “I specialize in amber and sterling silver,” she said. “Amber is made from the sap of a tree. Some of it is millions of years old.”

On one of the display racks in The Rising Star is a necklace fashioned from handcrafted amber pieces resembling wood cuts selling for $1,999. “These are conversation pieces, totally handmade,” pointed out Davis, adding she has a Polish partner, a jewelry designer and silversmith, who has access to the best quality amber available from Poland, Russia and the Baltic.

Products available at The Rising Star are cosmopolitan. Jewelry hails from around the globe - India, all over Europe. “I’ve got something for everyone’s taste,” said Davis, “simple and elegant, classy. We also specialize in jewelry made of 22-carat gold. We can offier it to you, or, if you want jewelry set in your house, we can do that as long as you are willing to pay for the expenses.”

There are other truly unique, one-of-a-kind items in The Rising Star. Just one example is a necklace made with a real tree leaf that’s been dipped in sterling silver, copper and gold that is as striking-looking as it is exquisite. Another eye-catching item is a necklace with red-colored pieces resembling chili peppers. “Those are real corals and turquoise,” noted Davis. “My stuff is something you’re not going to see anywhere else.”

A jewelry designer herself, Davis’ background is in marketing and advertising.

The Rising Star is chock full of display cases brimming over with both custom and costume jewelry. The collection is only going to get bigger. Davis is waiting on belts, handbags and other accessories to arrive to round out her already diverse selection.

Davis has found a tried-and-true business philosophy to call her own. “As long as you make what you promise,” she said, “and as long as your prices make them (customers) feel special ... it always works.”

The Rising Star La Jolla is open seven days a week, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information call (858) 454-4815.