Little did Megan Martin know that when she got her first charm bracelet from Clater Jewelers, for her 16th birthday, that the experience with jewelry would guide her into a lifelong career, and one in which her daughter, Christy, would join her. Megan went to work for Clater Jewelers in 1973 and has been there ever since. She now owns and operates Clater Jewelers along with Sally Clater Baer, and she recruited Christy to help while she was still in high school. After going down another career path initially, Christy eventually turned to Clater for her full-time career as well. This mother-daughter duo loves their careers because they are in the business of making people happy. Whether it be with gifts, engagement rings or other celebratory items, the experience is always wholly positive. When you don’t see them at work, you can find them enjoying nature or exercising, usually together, and enjoying life’s simpler pleasures.
Megan, how did you end up in the jewelry business?
I ended up in the jewelry business after getting a charm bracelet for my 16th birthday. My parents purchased it from Clater Jewelers, and we went in to have it sized. I thought the lady who filled out our envelope had a neat job.
Christy, how did you end up working with your mother?
I started during the Christmas season my senior year in high school. The store was really busy, and my mom needed help. I had grown up seeing her passion for jewelry and her customers, and once I started, I realized why. It was hectic, so much fun and exciting!
What is the best thing about working together? What has been the biggest challenge?
Megan: The best thing about working together is being together and sharing something we both have a love for and interest in. Honestly, in my opinion we haven’t really had any challenges.
Christy: The best thing about working with my mom is getting to work with someone who loves me, and my opinions and ideas are valued. The biggest challenge is my mom knows how to push my buttons.
What is the secret of your success as a team?
Megan: I believe the secret to our success is always being honest and doing the right thing. I am a caregiver by nature and enjoy making others happy, whether buying a new treasure or repairing an item. I would hope Christy would say I was a good mom. I’m Italian, and family is most important! Christy has always been strong willed and focused, and she loved learning. We sorta breezed through.
Christy: We have a work environment that allows everyone to utilize their strengths and weaknesses. We all have our little niches and get to enjoy our jobs.
Is your relationship different outside of work?
Megan: After work, Christy and I spend quite a bit of time together. We enjoy doing some races together; I’m much slower! Also, we go to the Y and just pal around together. We truly enjoy each other’s company.
Christy: I know it is cliché to say, but my mom and I are best friends. We are always together!
Give us a peek at your agenda. What’s a typical day or week like for you?
Christy: When we get to work, we put out all the jewelry while we get to chitchat. Next is coffee and getting all the equipment started for the day. Once we have the store open and ready to operate, we all have Tupperware containers that are full of our jobs. Sometimes my jobs are designing new pieces of jewelry from old pieces of jewelry or getting to design engagement rings or appraisals or even repair jobs. Since I am a gemologist, I spend a lot of my time doing appraisals for insurance or estate purposes. As I am working on my jobs for the week, I also get to help the customers who come in. Sometimes it is as simple as doing a watch battery, or I might get to help them select a pretty piece of jewelry for a gift or special occasion or engagement. The day is wrapped up with putting all the jewelry back into the safe for the night.
What advice do you treasure?
Megan: Mr. Clater always said, “Maintain a tradition of trust and high ethical standards.”
Christy: My mom has always told me to “do the right thing” and “don’t drink your calories!”
Fill in the blank. You’ll never see me without my ___________.
Megan: You will never see me without my wedding ring on!
Christy: Sense of humor
Where can we find you hanging out around town?
Christy: The park with my dog!
Favorite thing to do in Louisville?
Megan: I truly enjoy going to Churchill Downs. My favorite spot is the paddock!
Christy: Exploring the trails at the Parklands
Night owl or early bird? What do you do during that quiet time?
Megan: I am a night owl, but also get up early. I enjoy the quiet, the birds singing and taking my dog out.
Christy: Night owl! I like taking a long, hot soak in the bathtub with a glass of wine!
Tell us some of your favorite local restaurants.
What’s on your personal reading list right now?
Megan: I just finished Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen and am figuring out what Jackie Kennedy book to start. I have several books about Jackie and find her very interesting.
Christy: Wildflower by Drew Barrymore
Lightning Round! Give us your:
- Candy or junk food splurge — Megan: Dark nonpareils. Christy: Reese’s Pieces.
- Guilty pleasure song — Christy: “I Knew You Were Trouble,” by Taylor Swift
- Tearjerker movie pick — Megan: The Notebook. Christy: Marley & Me.
- Standby nail polish color — Megan: OPI Red. Christy: Red.
- Favorite cocktail — Megan: Rum and cranberry juice. Christy: Old Fashioned.
- Cartoon alter-ego — Megan: Wonder Woman. I’d fly around and check on my family! Christy: Betty Boop.
What are three of your favorite things right now, besides faith, family and friends?
Megan: My rosary, my Rosie (a Vizsla dog) and my home
Thank you Megan and Christy. And thank you to Adele Reding for today’s beautiful photography.
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