Puffes Fine Jewelry celebrates 40 years in business – INFORUM
“Rub the pearls on your teeth. If they feel smooth, they are fake. If they feel gritty, they’re real,” said store owner Scott Puffe as he tested the strands.
Jones used to live in the area and said she chose to stop into Puffes because they are “honest, reliable and give good service.”
It’s the kind of service Puffe and his father, Harry Puffe, have been providing for 40 years. They plan to observe their 40 anniversary this month with a large sale today through Oct. 21.
A family operation since 1975
Harry Puffe got his start in the jewelry business in 1955 when he was hired as the bookkeeper for Crescent Jewelers in downtown Fargo. Not long after, he was being pulled from the back office to the sales floor to help out when they were short-handed. He enjoyed the work, so he began taking correspondence courses to learn the diamond trade through the Gemological Institute of America.
Despite his father warning him about the long hours of working in retail, Scott Puffe followed his dad into the profession. He was still in high school when he began working for Keepsake Diamond Center in West Acres in 1973.
Father and son went into business together as Puffes Fine Jewelry in 1975 when Harry Puffe bought the Brooks Jewelry store in the Moorhead Holiday Mall. In 1988, they moved into its current location in the Moorhead Center Mall.
They are now one of the mall’s longest-running tenants, and Scott Puffe said he wouldn’t want it any other way.
“Moorhead has been very good to us,” he said. “The Moorhead community and other area Minnesota people tend to be very loyal to Minnesota businesses. They like to shop on this side of the river.”
Puffe also attributes their long-term success to being family-owned and having deep ties to the community.
“Being independent, family-owned and operated, we’re able to do a lot of things some of the larger corporations can’t do,” he said. “We can do a lot of service work in-store in a short and timely fashion, where other places send a lot of their work out. We also support the high schools and colleges and are active in the community. We’ve been members of different organizations over the years like the Lions, the Moorhead Jaycees and the Moorhead Chamber of Commerce.”
Harry Puffe is 88 years old and semi-retired. He still comes in from noon to 4 p.m. four days a week to do the books and stay involved.
Scott Puffe said after 42 years he continues to enjoy selling fine jewelry. He spoke of a couple celebrating their 40th anniversary who were in the store last week.
“The diamond is a gift of love. He hadn’t given her one since their 20th, so it’s been 20 years since he’s been able to show his love through the gift of a diamond,” he said. “It’s fun and exciting to be a part of those types of things.”
What: Puffes Fine Jewelry
Where: Moorhead Center Mall, 510 Center Ave.
Contact: (218) 233-3190
Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday