HOW IT STARTED
In 1976, Patricia Friend embarked on an adventure that grew into more than she had ever imagined. The company began as Simply Gold, a store where Pat wanted to offer beautiful jewelry at a fantastic price. Her concept took off and she quickly developed a following throughout the greater New Orleans area. But Pat’s concept was not the only thing people loved. They also loved her honesty and passion.
While she started with gold jewelry, customer demand soon had her expanding her offerings to include diamonds, gemstones and pearls. Next, she wanted to learn as much as she could about fine jewelry in order to help her customers make informed decisions, so she earned a graduate gemologist’s degree from the Gemological Institute of America focusing on diamonds, gemstones and pearls.
In 1983, Pat’s son Ken joined the family business. With the two of them at the helm, the company continued to grow quickly, requiring more space. In 1989, Simply Gold located to its current address at 7713 Maple Street. The location not only offered more space, but included off street parking.
Ken’s years of experience and knowledge earned him tremendous respect from his clients. Ken goes above and beyond for customers and believes that everyone deserves a high-end retail experience without the high price tag. In 1997, Ken’s wife, Nina, added her flare for design and style to the ever-changing business and a new name emerged, Friend and Company Fine Jewelers.
Friend & Company Today
As the store evolved, so did the offerings. Nina envisioned an elegant and sophisticated tabletop department and, in 2003, her vision became a reality. The store now offers exquisite china, crystal, silver and gifts and Friend and Company has become a destination for today’s bride. We open our arms to new clients and are thrilled that we have been able to service multiple generations of families from grandparents to great grandchildren. We are proud of our past, and look forward to offering outstanding quality and customer service for decades to come.