Talley Jewelry: Farmville’s not-so-hidden gem

Published 10:02 am Friday, December 31, 2021

Today, Ron Talley runs a successful, full-service jewelry store located in Downtown Farmville.

Although the business moved to its Main Street location in 2019, the store can trace its roots all the way back to Waldorf, Maryland where Ron’s parents opened the original Talley Jewelry some 65 years ago.

Ron’s father and mother, Joseph and Joyce Talley, grew up nearby in Charlotte County before moving to Waldorf in the fall of 1955. They opened Talley Jewelry in November of 1956, and from an early age, Ron participated in the family business.

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“I was basically raised in the jewelry store,” he recalled.

Put on the payroll when he was 14, Ron spent his first four years in the jewelry store performing watch repairs under the guidance of his father, a watchmaker. As he grew up, Ron decided he was more interested in making and repairing jewelry and pursued an education to make that dream a reality, attending the Cincinnati School for Jewelers, the Holland School for Jewelers and the Gemological Institute of America. He would later go on to earn credentials as an appraiser of gems and jewelry from the International Society of Appraisers and became a certified gemologist/ appraiser through the American Gem Society. He also earned the title of senior member with the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers.

As the years went by, Ron began doing all the repairs for the business and started making jewelry for the store, which operated successfully for decades.

Eventually, Ron would go on to purchase a home in Victoria, traveling back and forth from Virginia to Maryland in order to take care of the business. When it came time to renew the lease back in Maryland, an opportunity struck.

“I was contemplating what I would do with the store, and my wife and I happened to be in Farmville one weekend, and I took notice that they didn’t have a jewelry store,” he said.

One thing led to another, and suddenly, Talley Jewelry opened up at 223 N. Main St. on Nov. 1 of 2019.

It was an interesting time to open a business. Just a few months later, the whole world would seemingly go into lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But now, just two years down the road, Ron runs the shop with the help of his step daughter and sales associate, Amber Jones, and the business has become a one-stop-shop for citizens’ jewelry needs.

“We do it all,” Ron said.

Talley Jewelry, a full-service jewelry store, offers a wide variety of services to the area. The business does jewelry and chain repairs on premises as well as ring resizing and heirloom jewelry restoration. The store does engraving, appraisals, corporate jewelry and even some watch repair.

With the help of computer-aided design software, Talley Jewelry does jewelry design and manufacturing all in house, including the majority of the business’ bridal products. The store also does memorial jewelry and other custom designs such as fire, EMS and police department jewelry.

The business is known coast-to-coast for its custom pieces and impeccable repairs, so much so that even today, customers from Maryland make the trek to Farmville just to receive the quality services they’ve grown accustomed to over the years.

And although the business is now located in the heart of Farmville, Talley’s work can be found across the nation.

For more than 30 years, Talley Jewelry has been making jewelry for national sports teams, including National Football League (NFL) teams.

Years ago, Ron played trumpet for the former Washington Redskins Marching Band. He later began making necklaces for the team’s cheerleaders.

“It grew from there, and next thing you know, I was getting calls from other teams wanting me to make stuff for them,” he said.

Since then, Talley Jewelry has worked with 14 different NFL teams as well as other sports teams from the NBA and NHL.

Although it was a big choice to move the store all the way from Waldorf to Farmville, Ron said the response from the town and the surrounding communities has been great.

“I’ve been very pleased,” he said of his decision to relocate. “The people are really nice and welcoming. I get a feeling like I’ve been here forever.”

With the holidays coming up, Talley Jewelry is well-prepared. The store carries an array of fine jewelry, including diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, and more.

“I’ve got some new collections of jewelry that are in the cases and ready to find a new home wrapped up and under the Christmas tree,” he noted.

At the heart of Ron’s business is a passion for customer service. When asked about what sparked his passion for this line of work, Ron noted he has always loved the ability to make a customer’s dream reality.

“I grew up in the business, and I liked the act of creating jewelry for customers, going through the whole process with them and basically fulfilling their dreams,” he said. “That gives a lot of satisfaction to me, especially if you’re doing a restoration on an old piece, and you hand it back to them, and it looks brand new.”

“I’m dedicated to servicing my clients,” he said. “They’re my boss.”

When asked about the future of the business, Ron said he hopes to expand the store’s bridal selection to include even more wedding bands and engagement rings. The store is also in the process of making its website more friendly to e-commerce so that customers can shop 24/7.

Currently, Talley Jewelry operates Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m – 5 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. The store is closed on Sunday and is open on Monday by appointment only.