The art and craft of fine jewellery

By MEENAL BALE

Margao based Anta Jewellers enjoys an 85-year-old legacy; a trust-worthy brand name and a go-to place for qualitative jewellery ornaments

Aditya Raikar is the fourth generation and Director at Anta Jewellers, who joined the business in 1998 and has been successfully running the family business ever since. He brought in a new wave of creativity. Not only has the logo been revamped, but the very same spot where the family jewellery store would function, has been converted into a swanky showroom, with an extension being set up on the top floor.

Established in 1932 by his forefather Anta Raikar at the same spot where it is currently housed, the place underwent its first renovation in 2007. The current brand logo culminates into Lord Ganesha, represented by the three vital facets of the brand – gold, silver and diamond.

“In earlier times, it was just a small space where customers came, saw what they liked and placed an order. There were no showcases and no fancy displays. Today, as the times have changed, it has grown into a well-known brand,” says Aditya.

Ever since his childhood, Aditya had always been fascinated and curious about how his father and grandfather ran a business by themselves. Stepping into their shoes was bound to happen eventually. Earlier, the workshop used to be situated at home on a very small scale with the local artisans, where his forefather himself was a hands-on goldsmith. Then, they purchased the premises and over a period of time, laid down the foundations for a professional workshop.

From simple necklaces to designer stone bracelets, single aesthetic bangles to traditional Hindu ornaments such as ghot, patli, todo, galsari, pakhey, gizbizli, bajuband, pisoli, mangalsutra, etc, the store houses it all. In diamonds, they also market brands such as Nakshatra, Sangini and D’Damas.

“We have skilled artisans working with us who make it possible to deliver customized designs within a reasonable turn-around time and all our products are 916 Hallmark jewellery certified. Earlier the patterns used to be limited and the value of gold has become so high, that people tend to seek an alternative medium such as silver, platinum or even semi-precious stones. Although if you do a rough calculation, the price will end up within a similar range; gold has always been a popular choice and is however viewed as the ultimate medium of security. Till date, most people prefer gifting gold coins for an auspicious beginning, because its resale value remains the secure and it is a safer option, as it can be used to make an ornament of the receivers’ own choice,” states Aditya.

With the amount of functions that occur, every individual seeks for something new and unique. Over the years, gifting gold has become a much sought-after trend as well. It’s a small world and someone or the other within the family or friend’s circle may end up with a similar design. Hence, at Anta Jewellers, they believe in changing the designs and patterns every season. The brand also undertakes Goan filigree jewellery designing, including miniature crosses. “People today like options and are more attracted towards fancy custom made products. Real diamond patterns adapted into 22 karat gold can be made feasible within a budgeted economical range, with the same precision and detailing,” says Aditya.

Today, there is no more a season or off-season for purchasing gold. According to the changing lifestyles, people have the money, the capacity and they purchase for various reasons. Today, customers are more equipped and aware of the fluctuations in the rate of gold; that gives them the upper-hand. In earlier times, after carnival, the sales used to be low, because it was not the wedding season. But over the years, people have become more cautious. They don’t wish to wait for the last minute and instead purchase earlier, before the wedding season comes about in full swing.

“My belief is simple – word of mouth publicity still works wonders. If you provide good quality to customers and are transparent in your operations, you will automatically generate more business. With a major plus point of being situated at a prime location in the heart of the city, because of the goodwill and genuinity built over the years, our old customers still pass on referrals,” says Aditya, who is also a member of BNI-Goa and the Goa Gold Association.

A fascinating aspect of the store however is its welcoming décor. Normally, a jewellery store gets decked up during an occasion, especially during Diwali or Akshay Tritiya. But at Anta Jewellers, the colourful decorations are present throughout the year. Aditya’s better half Prajita, has a creative eye for detail and puts her personal design acumen to a very good use. She plays a vital role in ensuring that the first impression of the store is a cordial one and also helps in the operations of the store.

When asked about the future plans for the brand, Aditya concludes by saying “We have always focussed on providing quality products as well as better service to our customers. We also house branded pearls and semi-precious stones based designs on orders, and there are many items in silver ware that can be explored, including designer jewellery…”

 

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