As a business, Corwin's is on it's fifth generation - family owned and operated. We've been jewelers since 1879, but we're much more than that. We're collectors, we're craftsmen, we're pioneers, and we're a part of our Southampton community.
Community : As a member of Rotary, and the Masons, Tim Corwin participates in projects that benefit the world, and his son, Travis Corwin, is a volunteer firefighter for the Southampton Fire Department. Meanwhile, Corwin's Jewelers also participates in town events and benefits, in the spirit of keeping our small hampton town a healthy, lively addition to Long Island, New York.
Business: Corwin's is a trusted and established jewelry store, and repair center. Most of our business consists of repeat customers, and local regulars. Many of our repairs can be done while you wait, or sent out for special services, and most others will be done in-store. Our estate section is extensive - dating back generations and we provide unparalleled work in engraving, and custom design. Our on-site jewelers, Tim (now retired and working irregularly) and Travis Corwin, grew up in this family business, learning the trade from father to son, and have gone on to become accredited jewelers, and experts of the art.
Quality : As jewelry is our a family art, we take pride in our work. Our repairs are built to last, and we examine each piece that comes in our door for structural integrity. We stop problems before they happen, reinforcing and rebuilding where needed. In addition to free ring sizings on rings purchased from us, we offer a multitude of guarantees on the pieces we sell. We'll advise you on quality, longevity, care and maintenance before you buy a piece, and our expert jewelers are adept working within your budget. We've fixed many a job that other jewelers have botched. That's why our customers come to us for quality end results.
A Brief History of our Store
Willis G. Corwin began his business in 1878 in the small whaling village of Orient, New York. Shortly thereafter, however, the jeweler made his way to Southampton, New York, following the newly finished railroad, and a new dream. In 1879, Willis opened Corwin's Jewelers, Southampton's first jewelry store.
As a talented optician and jeweler, Willis sold everything from eye glasses to delicate bracelets and chains. It was in the early 1900's that the fate of the business took a turn for the worse when the store caught fire.
Applying the dedication demanded by his craft, Willis G. Corwin rebuilt the back of the store and laid the framework for what would become the longest family owned and operated jewelry store in New York State.
Meet the Corwin's Pups!
First kids, now this! It seems that at Corwin's, we always have some wee ones underfoot, no matter the species! We Corwin's are a dog-loving, pet-friendly family. Don't be alarmed though! We train our pups in the art of politeness. They promise to be quiet and unobtrusive, unless you'd like to say "hi!" that is!
Meet Kip - the Borderline-Crazy Collie (bottom left)
Kip loves to entertain our guests and friends with his constant crazy antics. Our not-quite-patented soft stuffed Frisbee is jewelry-case friendly, and is constantly on the fly when Kip's out front! Kip is particularly fond of our hardworking mailman, Jim, and has developed a small following of local fans. We apologize if he's a little sandy before 12pm. He spends his morning beach hopping and eating egg sandwiches with his daddy, Tim.
Ellie Belly - our velveteen dog (right)
Sweet, quiet Ellie spends most of her time curled into a tiny dog-ball on the little red cushion she's commandeered in the back. I'm not sure who the cushion belonged to originally, but it has since become her property. As a pound-pup, Ellie found Travis in a faraway state, and it was love at first sight for them both. When Ellie does make her occasional appearance, you'll recognize her by her adorable upright begs for pettings and love. She particularly loves to have her belly rubbed!
Max - the new pup on the block
Max came to live with Travis and Ellie after his previous mommy passed on to the next life. We're not sure what Max is supposed to be. Something black and hairy, and inexcusably cute. Max has taken to our family like a dog in a jewelry store, with a little more exuberance added in to offset the atmosphere. Max is currently a student of the trade, learning first-hand what it means to be a jeweler's loyal dog. His first lesson was how to not take a tour of Southampton town when our door is open on a bright summer's day.
Kia - the princess pooch (bottom right)
Your chances of meeting Kia, the Rhodesian Ridgeback - aren't great, since she now lives in Indiana with her mom, the web designer, Karianne. Kia is possibly the most prissy dog ever to be a Corwin. She detests a variety of terrains including woodchips, dirt, and gravel, and routinely grooms her nails once she returns to the clean indoors. She is a couch-potato comfort-loving pup who enjoys fine foods and utilizing dramatic improv acting to get her way.
Kip - The Borderline Collie
Max - The New Kid on the Block
Kia - The Princess Pooch
Growing Up at Corwin's
Hello! I'm Karianne Corwin, the youngest child, and the original web/graphic designer for our business. I want to tell you about our store, because it's more of a way of life than a business.
I remember growing up at Corwin's as a young girl. My mother, Toni-Lea, raised Tamara, Travis, and I, all while working the front-end of the business. It was hard for my dad, too, who had to take over the business early when tragedy struck our family. Things didn't go smoothly for quite some time, I'm told, but like all families born into a business, we persisted.
One of my earliest memories of growing up at the store was sitting on my father's knee while he showed me what a watch looks like from the inside out. I remember being totally amazed and intrigued by all the little parts. It was astounding to me, as a child, that something that looked so simple on the outside could be hiding such a complex system beneath it's surface.
At the age of five, I coerced a couple of women to come look at my favorite piece - a dachshund pin. As luck would have it, one of the women was a dachshund lover, and I earned my first sale! I got an ice cream cone for it, but if I'd known better at the time, I would have asked for commission!
So, we grew up there: my brother, sister, myself, and of course my cousin, Alyssa, with whom I was inseparable. So, I learned how to change watch batteries and replace watch bands. I learned how the engraving machine works, and I learned how to identify precious gemstones. I learned the complex, and exacting system that runs a business like Corwin's. Just like the watch of my early memory, we are a unit of step-by-step procedures, all functioning in accordance to the ultimate driving force - time. Everything has it's proper place. Organization is tantamount to success. I also learned to appreciate what it means to have a loyal customer. I learned that a customer isn't just someone who shops in our store. These people are our friends, and we care about them. We know what their preferences are, we rejoice with them on joyous occasions, and we commiserate with them when life turns bad. Sometimes our friends come in just to enjoy a quick lunchtime chat. It's makes for a nice change in an otherwise busy, and demanding work day.
As my sister and I found our passions in life, I watched my brother's passion in gemology grow, and blossom into the jeweler he is today. Its quite remarkable, and utterly enjoyable, how a single craft can consume a lifetime. How vividly I remember that tiny boy learning at our father's knee. Now my brother is a man - and not just a business man. He's a firefighter, a chef, a husband, and an integral part of the Southampton community.
My mom loves to tell the story of one of Travis's early engraving lessons, a triumph of an engraving plate which read:
"Travis Corwin is hungry"
"Travis Corwin wants food"
"The deli delivers".
I guess that's what happens when you try to teach a hungry boy engraving!
For my part, I never expected my passion for art and computers (which seemed relatively irrelevant to our business at the time), to turn out to be so crucial to our business's adaptation to the changing times. I'm glad, because Corwin's Jewelers will always be a part of me. To this day, our store continues to be among my favorite places of the world. Simply stepping into it, I once again feel submerged in the flow and feel of the art that has defined my family, my childhood, and my life.
It is my sincere hope that family businesses like ours will find a way to adapt to our changing culture of technology. I can't imagine a world without them.