The family-run jewelry company Bernd Wolf produces wonderful gold and silver jewelry. Messe.TV presenter Klas Bömecke talks to Managing Director Bernd Wolf about the new collections that will be presented at Inhorgenta 2016 in Munich. During the conversation, it becomes clear that the entrepreneur is not only concerned with beautiful jewelry and commercial success - sustainability also plays an important role.
Bernd Wolf is a jewelry company from Freiburg im Breisgau. And they are quite amazing for several reasons: firstly, they have a wide range of jewelry. Most of it is very fine and delicate, there are some very chic pieces, and secondly, sustainability plays a major role in gold processing, so I'm curious about that! Klas Bömecke: Mr. Wolf, the company that bears your name is a family business, isn't it? Bernd Wolf: Exactly. Klas Bömecke: But it's not just the family that works there because they have so much different jewelry, that's probably work for a lot of people. Bernd Wolf: Yes, we have over 50 employees. We produce near Freiburg, in the Dreisamtal in the Black Forest. Klas Bömecke: What are the highlights of your collection at the moment? Bernd Wolf: Well, our surface is quite typical. It's a brushed surface with pure gold plating, with 24 carat gold plating. As you can see, it has a very special look with a warm, sunny glow. Klas Bömecke: It's so glittering in itself. Bernd Wolf: Exactly, it runs through the entire collection. We've been working on it for over 20 years. The advantage for the wearer is that she could have bought a necklace ten years ago and today she could buy new ear studs to go with it and it would always match!
Klas Bömecke: Great. But that's a very recent collection, isn't it? Bernd Wolf: Yes. Klas Bömecke: It's all about water. Bernd Wolf: Exactly right. We call the design line Aqua and it is characterized by the fact that we have drops together with tiny freshwater pearls. Klas Bömecke: I think this is a beautiful piece here.
Bernd Wolf: Yes, this is the sun necklace and the name says it all. The stones grow from the inside out. This gives it a really nice dynamic and sparkle. We can see that on my daughter Annalea - when you come into our midst. Klas Bömecke: You're wearing that. It looks really chic. Bernd Wolf: And you can see that it glitters much more vividly when worn. Klas Bömecke: It's actually logical that you're wearing your own family jewelry. Family jewelry has a different meaning for you than for other people. But is this a favorite piece of yours? Annlea Wolf: Yes, definitely. Precisely because of the beautiful sparkle. It's something very special. Klas Bömecke: Thank you very much. Bernd Wolf: We can look further: A drop of water can of course be caught in a bowl and when I came up with the design line, I thought the interplay between a drop of water and a bowl could be exciting. That's how the concave design line came about. Slightly curved inwards. In this case, we now have a small frame of glittering stones, a pavé setting. So each stone here is set individually. We have one in zirconia and one in diamond on request.
Klas Bömecke: Speaking of yellow gold, I saw on your homepage that you are particularly concerned about where your gold comes from! Bernd Wolf: Yes, it has to be said that there are big problems with gold mining because the big gold miners use cyanide to dissolve the gold from the rock. One gram of cyanide is enough to kill a thousand people. That shows how toxic it is. The small-scale gold miners use mercury, which also contaminates large rivers and themselves. What we use is simply washed gold - which is practically washed out of rivers - in compliance with environmental protection measures and the workers are paid decent wages. We have been doing this for five years now, so that all the gold from our factory comes from certified sources, and that is simply an important aspect for me. Klas Bömecke: The gold is both socially and environmentally friendly. You can buy it with a clear conscience. Bernd Wolf: We simply have a responsibility and because 80% of the gold flows into the jewelry industry, the jewelry industry also has a certain amount of power. We want this to change, so to speak. And we also see silver here, all the jewelry that we make in gold is also available in silver. We use silver with gold plating in premium quality. We also offer a lifetime service. This means that if a ring needs to be re-plated after 10 years, it costs €20 and it looks like it did on the first day. Klas Bömecke: No? Bernd Wolf: Yes. Klas Bömecke: Then I'm still getting a bargain. Klas Bömecke: Black is also something very unusual in jewelry! Bernd Wolf: Yes.
Klas Bömecke: What is that? Bernd Wolf: It's a black spinel gemstone. It comes from India, is cut with wonderful facets and you can wear it with practically anything when you go out. Whether it's with a little black dress or a dress. It's a stone that plays a very important role. It goes very well with this warm, pure gold that we simply use. But there are also beautiful contrasts with silver. (Mr. Wolf shows a necklace with black spinel gemstones) That is something very special. Klas Bömecke: What does the man of the world have to invest in it? Bernd Wolf: Well, that's within the recommended retail price of €1580. Klas Bömecke: But I would say that's still affordable. Bernd Wolf: Yes. This also has a very nice clasp.
Klas Bömecke: Great, but when I look at your jewelry, it's clear that everything is very fine and very delicate. Are you the kind of person who loves detail and says that everything has to be delicate? Bernd Wolf: Yes, I think attention to detail is a very important thing. I'm an engineer in my first job, so details are very important for us in production. For example, every single one of these beads sits in exactly the same position, no matter who does it in the manufactory. This creates a coherent, harmonious look. You can feel it when you wear it. Klas Bömecke: So you are actually a jewelry engineer? Bernd Wolf: You could say that. Klas Bömecke: I think it's great what comes out of it! Mr. Wolf, thank you very much for this little tour. I wish you continued success. Bernd Wolf: Thank you.