Whether they are newlyweds who just had a ring designed by Brian Long, or one of the many local organizations that has been on the receiving end of Long & Co. Jewelers philanthropic commitment to 60010, the reaction is the same.
Overwhelming gratitude and appreciation for what Brian and the folks over at Long & Co.
do for this community and its residents. From parades to events all over town, their presence is recognized by the reputation of generosity that precedes them.
Long & Co. Jewelers
has such a dedicated commitment to 60010 for a number of personal reasons.
“When we first started this business our goal was to be able to give back, and we wanted to be successful enough to give back in a meaningful way. We always agreed that we would support this community and its local organizations, as much as we possibly could,” Brian Long
This philosophy is something that Long and his constituents take very seriously, as they will give more financially in 2016 to charity than they ever have in any other year.
Another reason for Long & Co.’s investment in the greater Barrington area has to do with the fact that 60010 is a place the Long family calls home. Brian and his wife Julianne have two children currently attending Barrington High School. Their daughter, Jocelyn, is one of the top female distance runners to ever compete for Barrington’s cross country and track teams. This along with their son, Brenton, playing trumpet in the BHS Marching Band, gives the Longs a vested interest in our community.
first started upon the path to owning his own jewelry store when he was in middle school. It was then after taking his first metal workings class, and forging a keychain out of brass and sterling silver, that his passion for art and design truly began. By his senior year of high school he had cast his first 14k gold ring, and the story of how he got to where he is in the business today was well underway.
Living60010 had the privilege to stop by and learn a bit more about the history of Long & Co. Jewelers
and the Long family.
When did you start designing jewelry?
I made my first piece of jewelry back in middle school. It was a little keychain out of brass, copper, and sterling silver. Even from that early age, I enjoyed metal-smithing. During high school I was working in sculpture and 3 dimensional art and always took a liking to jewelry. By my senior year of high school, I had cast my first 14k gold ring.
Was there an ah-ha moment where you realized you wanted to do it as a career?
I knew early on that I wanted to be an entrepreneur and own my own business. It felt natural for me to own a jewelry business because that way I could marry two of my passions, combining my love of art with business.
What are some of the first pieces you designed, and who were they for?
Some of my early works were actually for my high school girlfriend, who is now my wife Julianne. I really wanted to make her nice jewelry even at that time, and she’s still getting nice jewelry to this day.
What types of jewelry do you enjoy designing most?
Most of the custom designs we do here at the store are designed by myself, or our resident goldsmith/designer, Sherri. She is a wonderful designer as well as a GIA Graduate Gemologist
, and we enjoy doing the custom work. We met while I was a jeweler's apprentice in college. She was in charge of the custom production.
The most popular jewelry we design today are rings, but we’ve done everything from bracelets to pendants, and much more.
You help a lot of people update their traditional jewelry, wedding rings etc. What are some of the trends people are wanting to emulate?
Right now a diamond halo around the main diamond has been very popular, and yellow gold is making a comeback. Rose gold has some popularity right now, but I would still say that most of our business is just traditional white gold or platinum and diamonds. People love the look!.
What are some of the services you offer?
We have our goldsmith Sherri on premise, so most of our work is done right in the lower level beneath the store. Our customers really appreciate that because they don’t want their jewelry being sent or shipped off somewhere else to be worked on. It’s a great system, not only to get things done quickly, but to ensure the security of our clients products. We also offer watch battery service, watch bands & straps, and other minor watch repair for our customers while they wait. We also offer jewelry appraisals which are prepared by our GIA Graduate Gemologist
You have been very supportive of local charitable organizations, is there a charity or cause that touches you personally?
That’s a tough question. We all have a lot of different causes that move us personally. There are many things that have happened in my life that contribute to the reason of why we give to the organizations that we do. We were a big supporter of Wellness Place
before they closed their doors a few years ago. They were an organization that helped cancer patients and their families by offering support and counseling.
The first organization that we ever donated to was Barrington Youth and Family Services
. Being a father myself, I understand the importance of what that organization does for young people and their families.
We’re also involved with Barrington Junior Women's Club
and Barrington Children's Charities
. We also support school fundraisers and many other charitable events around town.
When we first started this business our goal was to be able to give back, and we wanted to be successful enough to do it in a meaningful way. We always agreed that we would support this community and its local organizations as much as we possibly could. 2016 will be no different. In fact, we will end up giving back more this year than we have in any other year.
As someone who chose to live and work in the Barrington community, what are some of your favorite things about the area?
My wife and I moved to Barrington in 2004 right before our kids were starting school. We knew the school district was excellent, and we wanted our kids to reap the benefits of that. Since then, we’ve been very supportive of all the schools in District 220.
How has having two kids currently in District 220 schools affected your involvement in this community?
It has definitely brought us closer to the community, and we’ve met so many wonderful people through our kids attending school here. The neat thing is that people are really fascinated with jewelry and what we do here at Long & Co. People love to talk to us about jewelry, and they ask us all sorts of questions about the store and our business. It’s fun to be part of something that genuinely excites other people.
The greatest enjoyment I get out of my business is helping with engagement rings. It’s so exciting to see and be around young people when they are in love.
I always ask my customers to let me know how the actual proposal goes, and they’ll end up texting me or sending pictures once they propose. Sometimes I’m even one of the first people they share the news with!
Being in our 11th year of business, I’ve gotten to see couples get engaged, married, and in some cases start a family. It really is a rewarding experience to think that we at Long & Co. had a very small part to play in all of that.
Tell us about your relationship with Barrington Bank & Trust
The day we opened up in 2006, I already had so many great relationships at Barrington Bank & Trust. We had all of our personal accounts there well before we opened our business accounts with them. They’ve always had my back. What I love about Barrington Bank & Trust
is that they do business like I do business. When I walk into Barrington Bank, they know who I am. There’s a very real relationship that exists. I’m not just another number to them!