Researcher of precious stones
Photo courtesy Martine Lavoie
Martine Lavoie don’t dream of retirement. She is too busy living his passion for the precious stones.
Sunday, February 4, 2018 01:00
Sunday, February 4, 2018 01:00
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Martine Lavoie has had a crush for the precious stones when she visited Rajasthan, India, with his two daughters.
It was in 2008, it has been almost 10 years. Then in the early fifties, Martine Lavoie earned his living by selling land…
“We were in Jaipur, a hub of precious stones. I bought a small ruby. I knew nothing of it. I immediately wanted to learn more about gemmology, the science of the precious stones. I googled the word, and I found the School of gemmology of Montreal. Upon my return, I enrolled. “
Martine Lavoie has said that this would be a good investment for later, when she retired. But for now, he must continue to earn his living.
“At that time, I was in the development and sale of land, especially near major highways. I was going to search for multiple building permits. This was not my first career. I was officer of the building for several years, with hours of crazy ! And I also had for 12 years, a construction company, which I closed in the mid-1990s. “
In 2008, the real estate is in slow motion. Martine Lavoie took the opportunity to take four courses in the program of the school of gemology, and obtained his diploma in November 2010.
It is not a little proud. “At age 55, the memory, my God ! she says with a laugh. I never thought I’d get there. Study the stones, to distinguish, to hear their reactions to ultraviolet light, or the systems of crystallography, it was like playing an extreme sport. “
The retirement plans to sell stones to jewelers, designers and jewelers would eventually be realized more quickly than anticipated.
“At the beginning of the years 2010, everything was stuck in real estate. It was impossible to work. I was bored terribly. “
Then everything fell down in the precious stones. His friend and mentor, the director of the school of gemology, encourages him to go to an international congress in China. Martine Lavoie is doing a lot of business cards, a website, and she created her company, Stone charm, specializing in the sale of fine stones and precious.
It has organised the first trip to Burma, and then in Brazil, in 2012.
She meets dealers of precious stones, visit of the mines and made his first purchases : 80 natural stones, zircons and blue tourmaline.
“But back to Montreal, no one wanted to buy. “Martine Lavoie learns the hard way that people prefer sapphires, topaz or rubies. “The culture of the gemstone is not very strong here, even if I see a transformation in the past four years. “
After a year working at home, she rents a space of 300 square feet among the wildlife, a montreal merchant of precious stones and jewellers, at 620 Cathcart street, a building behind the legendary Birks.
At a 100 miles an hour
Martine Lavoie still has much labored in the life, but never like today, she said.
“It is immeasurable the work that I do, but I am passionate about. And we are reaping the fruit : we really have a lot of success ! “
His company was now almost five years old. She moved into a room a little larger, 400-square-foot, always Cathcart street.
“After five years, we are super professional : inventory management software, billing, advertising better targeted… let’s just Say it was a costly year. My retirement savings are there, in the stones that I purchased. I created a job for the next 20 years. Because I would never have had enough money to live in retirement. I still have a mortgage, and I want to travel. “
Last weekend, she was in Tucson, New Mexico, for the world’s largest trade fair of stone in North America. And then there will be found in Myanmar, Brazil, Tanzania or Madagascar. But also all the major canadian cities, to visit twice a year, to meet with clients.
“There are some who travel for the golf, the diving or the museums. To me, it is for the stones. It is a fascinating world, populated by people generous, friendly and passionate. I’m surrounded by vibrations extraordinary. Everyone is working more than normal, and no one is really rich. It reinvests always. Our have is in the stones. “
And the relief is nice, ” she said. His daughter Bénédicte, 28 years old, joined Stones charm, after completing his studies in gemology, there are a little over a year.
“A lovely surprise of his life, said Martine Lavoie. Sometimes, we don’t know where it takes us. I feel privileged. So why stop ? It is pure happiness when you do what you love. “