Featured Vendor: Cas-Ker

In celebration of 50 years in business we would like to feature one of our vendors each month.

By Eileen R. Eichhorn

Every day for 50 years Eichhorn Jewelry needs a part (jewelry or watch finding) to make or repair a piece of jewelry or a watch. Most days we pick up the phone and order having gotten the number from a supplier’s catalog or their web site. The vendor we have relied on since our opening day for books, displays, tools, and batteries, numerous findings, boxes, general supplies and finished jewelry is the Cas-Ker Company of Cincinnati, Ohio. Examples of some findings include clasps to complete necklaces or bracelets, ear wires to make earrings, bails for pendants, just to name a few. Many findings come in a variety of different metals, too. Their inventory is tremendous!

This contractor also can supply and fit any one of hundreds of thousands of watch crystals. This service became necessary immediately after my watchmaker father passed away in 2004.

The Cas-Ker Company was started in 1927 as the American and Swiss Watch and Supply Company. In 1937 the name was changed to its present form. The Cassedy brothers who now own and operate the company represent the third generation of family operation. Cas-Ker has active accounts in all 50 States, Canada and Puerto Rico, and has been serving jewelers and watchmakers for over 70 years.

The relationship with this jobber started when I was 14 and visited my first jewelry show with my parents in 1965. That evening I had the pleasure of having dinner with the Cassedy family across the Ohio River at the White Horse Tavern. During that dinner discussion I was most impressed by the arrangements my father made to pay for the items he agreed to purchase earlier that afternoon. Of course, they previously knew him for 17 years ordering parts for his former employer, Ferris Bower. But now he was starting a new business. How would he pay for everything? As the oldest of 10 children, I knew the struggles my parents endured. It is still amazing to me that the invoice he signed was affirmed with a handshake at the end of the meal.

In our industry, many suppliers have closed their doors over the past several years. We are happy Cas-Ker is still servicing our needs.

Trivia: One of our jewelers, Dave Petersmann, is the grandson of the Cassedy family.

LAURA (EICHHORN) DITTO: A REAL GEM

By Eileen R. Eichhorn

Behind the scenes at Eichhorn Jewelry is a world similar to the backstage of any theatre! My sister Laura Ditto has the monumental task of paying the bills as the bookkeeper, balancing the daily total sales and making the bank deposits. In addition, she assists in a myriad of other tasks. I consider her my ‘right arm’. Eichhorn Jewelry would be hard pressed to function without her!

Placed with the assignment of managing our corporate employees’ payroll records, vacations, and other human resource responsibilities Laura is happy the days of hand writing checks are a thing of the past. She is old enough to not only remember those times, but can’t imagine life without QuickBooks™.

We ship hundreds of packages to vendors and customers all over the country. With the advent of the internet the number grows each year. Laura packs and tracks all of those. Christmas is our busiest time with her work load increasing during November and December. This past year was especially stressful with so many customers waiting until the last minute to order!

Eichhorn’s Diamond Club is a huge responsibility assigned to Laura.  Maintaining the internal records for this attraction includes not just the computer receipts, but creating a hard paper trail for credits. Whoever said we would be a paperless society never ran a business! Typically, over 350 clients are actively enrolled in either a $2.00 or $5.00 club or about to join. This rewards program would cause some to say, an impossible undertaking. Few jewelers have tried to emulate our success. Once they find out how much is involved they soon discover they are not up to the chore!

Whenever we need office supplies Laura is not only the purchasing agent but the buyer extraordinaire. She is a personal shopper for her private jewelry clients as well. Having started in sales at Eichhorn Jewelry after high school, she is called on to help out during the busiest of days ‘pinch hitting’ on the sales floor or if someone calls in sick.

Laura is a great jewelry model, too! Not only does she love her own jewelry, she will try on an item so a customer can see how it may look on. After 33 years at Eichhorn’s she would probably say this is the most fun part of her job!

I may have overlooked one or more of the undertakings listed here. I am so very grateful I can rely on this ‘real gem’ of an employee to complete so many without ever complaining.

Trivia: If you think you are seeing double: Laura Ditto is a twin to Phyllis Whitright, Decatur’s city clerk treasurer.  Who would have guessed they’d both be bookkeepers!

Laura Ditto Eichhorn Jewelry, Decatur Indiana

Laura Ditto Eichhorn Jewelry, Decatur Indiana