The Nomad's story begins 30+ years ago in Eastern Europe. A group of classmates, bonded over a shared love of mountaineering and travel, had recently graduated from Odessa National University and were contemplating possible future careers when the Iron Curtain fell. With it, the foundations of Soviet society collapsed - a shocking yet liberating time marked by a sudden flood of new ideas.
Previously forbidden works of poetry, philosophy, and science became available. Private business and capitalism, formerly vilified, came to be understood as forces for good. The founders of Nomad's, being young and enthusiastic, embraced this new worldview and started a private company cutting topaz and heliodor beryl from the Volodarsk-Volynskii mine in Ukraine. There were no other cutters to learn from, so they taught themselves to cut from Sinkankas' formative book, Gem Cutting: a Lapidary's Manual. It formed the core of Nomad's unique style: cutting for beauty, not for yield.
Even their cutting machines were unconventional. After the Soviet Union's recent collapse, the newly independent state of Ukraine demilitarized. A former weapons factory in Kiev became open for custom orders from civilians for anything mechanical. Working with the factory, they designed and built their own custom gem cutting machines suited for the precise angles needed. Today, nearly three decades later, these machines still run perfectly.
They learned the sales side of the gem business by exhibiting at small weekend shows throughout Germany, France, and N. Italy. The concept of cutting for beauty, not yield, was their competitive advantage, and they grew quickly. After a while, the Volodarsk-Volynskii mine was depleted, but the team was already deeply involved in the gem trade. They started sourcing rough in Tanzania, Sri Lanka & Southeast Asia and exhibiting at trade shows in N. America and Hong Kong. Soon, they realized the natural next step would be to leave Ukraine and become an international company.
As Nomad's grew, they became fascinated with the idea of synergy, of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. The company became cosmopolitan, opening up to new people from around the world. Each person wouldn't just fill in an existing position but would have to create a new job role for himself, something the company hasn't done before. For example, Craig came with the idea of taking the company online. He built and now runs this website. Or Josh, after joining the team, started making sales trips to countries brand new for Nomad's -- now, numerous jewelers in Singapore, Taiwan, and Japan are happily working with Nomad's stones.
This is the way Nomad's continues to grow; person by person, idea by idea.
We see ourselves as participants in humanity's interaction with natural beauty: the interwoven flow of gems and human artistry.
Naturally beautiful when unearthed, gemstones acquire symmetry and brilliancy in our workshop before moving on into creative jewelers' works of art.
- In this flow of gems, long-term relationships and the success of everyone involved are overarching priorities for us.
- Beauty is paramount. As artists, we want to reveal the full splendor hidden in each rough gem. Perfect polish, crisp meet points, and a mesmerizing pattern of facets are essential.
- We came together as a group of informal gem-aficionados seeking discovery and adventure; as such, we value an easy-going, direct, open style of doing business. Every buying experience should be enjoyable and friendly.
- Being part of a connected process, transparency in communication is crucial. We openly tell you the full story of each gem and share everything we know.
Relationships are important to us, and knowing who you're doing business with is crucial. If we were sitting in the office, we'd love to chat and look at stones over a cup of tea... so allow us to start the conversation virtually. (You'll need to pour your own tea, though.)