Black-owned fine diamond jeweler started selling hair products

0

The 317 Project tells stories of life in all of Indianapolis’ bustling neighborhoods – 317 words at a time.

Before selling fine diamonds under the glare of a chandelier, Joann Carter endured the vagaries of life.

She grew up in the “projects” of Cincinnati, Ohio. Survived a teenage pregnancy. Counted on welfare. Lived in social housing.

“I came from nothing,” Carter, 63, said.

After graduating from college in 1989, she moved to Indianapolis, got married, and had two more children within two years.

Project 317:One of Crown Hill’s hidden gems lies just beyond its doors

In 1994, Carter determined that “it was time to make some money.” Her husband was working, but that was not enough.

She bounced between beauty salons and hair salons selling products until one day she met the woman who changed her life forever: an antique and jewelry store owner with no more mink coats. that she couldn’t sell.

While hitting the road, Carter eventually sold out all the coats in the store.

“She looked at me,” Carter said, “and said, ‘Well, I guess it’s time to start selling jewelry. “”

Carter loaded $10,000 worth of diamonds and gold into the trunk of her car and continued the hustle – selling each of them too – earning the nickname Jewelry Lady, which hangs above her store today. today.

Project 317:Sights and sounds of the White River, a waterway for the people

In 2007, she opened her own boutique, where her youngest daughter, Ashley Perryman, apprenticed in high school.

Playing with “every tray of jewelry” in her mother’s safe, since childhood, Perryman knew she would work in jewelry.

Joann Carter and her daughter Ashley Perryman pose for a photo at the family business, Jewelry Lady fine diamond jewelry shop, Thursday, June 16, 2022, in Indianapolis.  Carter opened the store in 2007 and Perryman is the general manager.

Perryman joined her mother full-time in 2013 after college — but not without unfiltered mother-daughter friction.

Perryman’s new ideas clashed with Carter’s old-school outlook.

“We argued and fought,” she said, until Perryman quit and left, taking “any job I could get.”

Joann Carter discusses a ring duplication project with an entrepreneur from her company, the Jewelry Lady diamond jewelry store, Thursday, June 16, 2022, in Indianapolis.  Before Carter opened the business in 2007, she began traveling to sell products to salons and hair salons and later sold mink coats.

Perryman wasn’t too proud to ask to come back months later, provided a few concessions, like moving from paper and pen accounting to an electronic system, and, improving the aesthetics in their current location at 4507 East 82nd Street.

Love and loyalty prevailed.

“I thank God everyday,” Carter said, “to have her with me by my side.”

Contact IndyStar reporter Brandon Drenon at 317-517-3340 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter: @BrandonDrenon.

Brandon is also a member of the Report for America corps of the GroundTruth Project, an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit news organization dedicated to supporting the next generation of journalists in the United States and around the world.

Report for America, funded by private and public donors, covers up to 50% of a journalist’s salary. It’s up to IndyStar to find the other half, through local community donors, benefactors, grants or other fundraising activities.

If you would like to make a personal tax-deductible contribution to his post, you can make a one-time donation online or a recurring monthly donation through IndyStar.com/RFA.

You can also donate by check, payable to “The GroundTruth Project”. Send it to Report for America, IndyStar, c/o The GroundTruth Project, 10 Guest Street, Boston, MA 02135. Please quote IndyStar/Report for America in the check memo line.

Share.

Comments are closed.