WE START WITH YOU, AND MIX IN OUR MAGIC.

You are a fact finder. Or a style seeker. Or both.

You want the straight skinny, not a bunch of McJeweler jibber-jabber. You prefer to have someone guide you with suggestions that take lifestyle, preferences, and budget into account.

You don’t want the same ol’, same ol’. Even if you love classic design, you still want your jewelry to have that “little extra” that sets you apart from the crowd.

Sometimes, you just want someone to help you quickly. Someone who knows what they’re doing.

You love the idea of either selecting or commissioning a future heirloom.

As a gift-giver, you are hoping for “that look” when your gift is received.

You care about our planet and its inhabitants, and you believe businesses should take care of the people that make them grow.

We have the technical & educational chops to satisfy your inner nerd. From diamond and gem education to explaining “how it’s made,” we’re ready to nerd-out with you.

Our in-house designers are passionate experts, with the awards and degrees to prove it.

We will diagnose, repair, and maintain your precious things. Our studio is at the ready with communication, experience, and technology.

We delight in helping you select a “personal classic” for yourself, your boo, and your other important peeps.

We curate the work of vetted, earth-conscious designers from around the corner and around the globe. Through extensive collaboration, we can offer many affordable, yet one-of-a-kind pieces.

We are industry leaders in terms of carbon neutrality, precious metal recycling, numerous ethical options for diamonds, gems, and countries of origin.

WE ACCOMPLISH OUR MISSION

To that end, we passionately seek, provide, and create aesthetically innovative fine jewelry, in an environment thats blends our serious commmitment to customer services and technical expertise; all tempered by a sense of humor and joy.

To always bear in mind that we are part of a community, a country, a humankind, and a planet. To purchase designs and raw materials in a way that most responsibly reflects our membership in all four. To make our guests feel welcome and respected, whether they seek information, education, affirmation, alternatives, or support. To be a community and industry leader in philanthropy, small business mentorship, and building a kinder, gentler kind of capitalism. To grow responsibly, and to share that growth with team members through living wages, benefits, and delightful surprises and fun.

THERE’S NO McJEWELRY HERE.

SO HOW DO WE PICK?

As a design-focused gallery, design is a topic near and dear to us.

Our collective sense of design and aesthetic encompasses a number of very different jewelry styles: neo-classical, organic, curvilinear, geometric, industrial, kinetic, romantic, or specific period (Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Edwardian). But there are certain qualities that must be embodied in a designer line before we will present it with pride in our gallery, regardless of its generalized style.

There's plenty more info to be had--just explore the links below. Or call. Or text. Or email. Or hit up our webchat.

WORK HARD. HAVE FUN. NO DRAMA.

We’re a happy bunch of team players. Kinda like a family, but without the baggage. We support each other, and we support our guests.

When you enter Alara, you are more likely than not to find us laughing or smiling. We like to think this puts our guests in a better headspace for enjoying and selecting our artworks.

Team Alara is made up of designers, stylists, gemologists, jewelers, and dream brokers. We deliver service in a spirit that assumes jewelry shopping should be fun, not stressful. Our humor should in no way imply that we don’t know our stuff, or that we don’t take you and your needs seriously. We just don’t take ourselves too seriously.

There’s been a lot of hugs in our gallery. And happy tears. We feel your excitement and celebrate with you.

WE TAKE YOU SERIOUSLY.

WE TAKE YOUR NEEDS SERIOUSLY.

WE JUST DON’T TAKE OURSELVES TOO SERIOUSLY.

HOWDY, POD’NER.

RINGLEADER

FAVE ASSIST:

anything customers have been told by other
jewelers that it “Can’t be done!”

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Michael Jensen Designs
Steven Kretchmer
Gebrüder Schaffrath

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

The people! Friendly, hard-working, and
connected to Nature.

DAYS OFF?

camping, backpacking, hiking, sitting on the front porch,
whilst my sweetie plays guitar and sings

FUN FACT:

my first job was private violin teacher

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

owl (wise), monkey (funny), jaguar (graceful)

FULL BIO

ROCKSLINGER

FAVE ASSIST:

Guiding customers through the entire engagement
ring process. I strive to deliver the best
experience possible.

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Alex Monroe
Gebrüder Schaffrath
Meral Sartekin

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

That you can drive 15 minutes in
nearly any direction, and be hiking
in the mountains!

DAYS OFF?

I love going to Dave's Sushi for lunch. Delicious
food, a cold beer, and reading a good book does
wonders.

FUN FACT:

For a brief period, I dressed up as different Disney
princesses for birthday parties and other events. I
even have my own personal Elsa costume... "Let it Go!"

3 FAVE ANIMALS: red panda (charming), Honduran milk snake (feisty), and jaguar (dignified)

DREAMBROKER

FAVE ASSIST:

Helping people with self-gifting

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Alex Sepkus
Michael Jensen Designs
Ciara Easterling

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

The vastness of the landscape

DAYS OFF?

hiking, biking, camping, and the occasional foray
into the civilized world of the arts

FUN FACT:

My bird calling skills are pretty legit, if you limit it to
chickens and less intelligent cats/dogs

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

horse (intuitive), dog (loyal), and magpie
(tenacious)

MIRACLE WORKER

FAVE ASSIST:

Custom design, especially where I get to use
a lot of different skills and techniques.

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Steven Kretchmer
Michael Jensen
Ciara Easterling

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

Being close to lots of rock-hunting
spots. Warning: I will NOT tell you
where!

DAYS OFF?

Hanging out with friends, cooking, camping.

FUN FACT:

After graduating high school, I originally considered
attending culinary school. Luckily, my fascination
with crystals took me in a different direction.

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

raven (mischieveous), loon (crazy), dog (happy)

CORUNDUM CONNOISSEUR

FAVE ASSIST:

Loose gemstones. Specifically loose Montana
sapphires!

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Serafino Consoli
Todd Pownell
Michael Jensen Designs

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

When you’re here, you’re family.

DAYS OFF?

Taking a drive up through Hyalite in the mornings or
traveling over to Yellowstone National Park for the
day.

FUN FACT:

I grew up in a military family - so I've lived in
nineteen different houses in six separate states!

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

grizzly bear (bold), hammerhead shark
(bad-ass), and nautilus (weird)

STONE MAVEN

FAVE ASSIST:

Anything bridal: engagement rings, wedding
bands, “day-of” jewels; plus self-purchases.

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Alex Sepkus
Rebecca Overmann
Kaleigh Jones

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

Wild lands | wilderness

DAYS OFF?

Spending time in nature with my dog and my
camera.

FUN FACT:

I am a contact improvisation dancer

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

mountain bluebird (optimistic), fox (elusive),
rainbow trout (brilliant)

MARKETING GURU

FAVE ASSIST:

Drinks, LOL. Love hanging out at Alara during our
fun events.

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Barbi C Pearls
Sarah Graham
Suzy Landa

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

Small town. Lots of non-chain
restaurants

DAYS OFF?

Spending time with my hubby and kids, upcycling
furniture or working on a house project.

FUN FACT:

People tend to feel super comfortable around me
and tell me their life secrets, right away. Also,
people everywhere I’ve been tell me they feel like
they've met me before. Familiar face? Old soul?

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

donkey (goofy), cat (cuddly), and dog (loyal)

GOLD DUST WOMAN

FAVE ASSIST:

Helping someone find the perfect piece that
makes them feel as radical as the art they're wearing.

3 FAVE DESIGNERS:

Alex Sepkus
Markus Schmidt
Masriera

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT BZN:

The ratio of dogs to people;
you're never too far from a wagging tail.

DAYS OFF?

Taking care of our collection of tropical plants
[primarily philodendrons and aroids, if you're into
that kind of thing] with my husband
Berto and our dog, Jako.

FUN FACT:

My great-grandpa was a jeweler in St. Louis from
the 1940s to 1960s, specializing in watch repair;
it was during this period that my grandmother was shot
in a robbery (and survived)!

3 FAVE ANIMALS:

cow (delighted), Scottish Fold cat (sneaky),
crocodile (clever)

HOW WE PUT OUR HEARTS (AND $)

WHERE OUR MOUTHS ARE.

What goes around, comes around.

We are part of something bigger than ourselves, on so many levels. A very important way we acknowledge that, is through contributions to local-area nonprofits.

To the tune of over 10% of our profits.

How do we pick? Well, in many ways, we don’t. There are so many remarkable nonprofits in the Bozeman area...and we welcome all to make requests for their silent and live auctions, as well as for donations and sponsorships.

While cash donations and sponsorships are granted as part of our annual planning, we donate silent auction items to any local-area 501(c)(3) organization [exceptions being school clubs and political groups] that makes a request with at least four weeks heads-up of their event.

We know this approach is unusual and special, because it far exceeds small business and industry standards. And we’re pretty darn proud of that.

In addition, we design jewelry items in collaboration with non-profits, for the purposes of on-going charitable fundraising. Visit here to see current and past examples.

Visit here for a list of the local-area non-profits to which we have donated in just the past five years.

On a micro-level, Alara supports Downtown Bozeman through both our participation in, and support of, all the Downtown Bozeman Association events--everything from Bridal Walk to Ladies’ Night to Christmas Stroll, to the Cruisin’ on Main Car Show, among many others. And in addition to that, Babs has been the president of that organization since 2005! So, she helps to plot and plan for all the events that make our downtown so vibrant.

Alara is also active in the Prospera Business Network, the Montana Women’s Business Center, Sky Oro Women, and Women Who Wine (which Babs founded in 2006, and handed off to GenNext in 2017)--all Bozeman-area organizations focused on small business success, women’s empowerment, or grassroots nonprofit fundraising.

In the sphere of the jewelry biz, Babs offers long-distance as well as local mentorships for those who are just coming up. On a grander scale, Babs has been invited to speak at some of the nation’s largest jewelry trade shows, on topics as varied as curation, creative collaboration, bootstrapping, industry innovation, and her grassroots efforts to eliminate child labor in the jewelry industry worldwide.

But why stop there? Alara is trying to be a leader in the world of “kinder, gentler capitalism,” wherein company growth benefits all team members, not just the owner(s).

HUMBLE BEGINNINGS. GROWTH.

LOTS OF AWARDS.

While founded in 2004, Alara's bio actually starts in the 1990s. Babs found herself suddenly starting over in Denver, after living and working for many years in Houston. The move allowed her to build a jewelry business from scratch. Daunting, but embraced as an opportunity.

In preparation of opening her Denver store, she studiously absorbed the results of a multi-year market research study of retail jewelry shoppers that had been recently published. The results were disheartening: jewelry was NOT fun to buy, jewelry professionals were NOT to be trusted, and getting a root canal ranked as being more pleasant. There was no avoiding the harsh truth: people mostly purchased jewelry because they believed it was the best gift for a momentous occasion, but they truly didn't enjoy the process of acquiring it..

She knew if she could create the store that would make jewelry shopping enjoyable, that store would flourish. The resulting store concept was warmly embraced in Denver, but its mettle was hardly tested. An armed robbery not only led her to close the store, but also to exit the retail jewelry business and move to Bozeman, Montana to continue her wholesale European jewelry import firm.

Shortly prior to making the move to Bozeman, Babs learned of the recent availability of the lease space at the corner of Main and Willson. Suddenly, the wholesaler became a retailer once again. Alara moved into the space, sight unseen.

There were limitations to Alara's wonderfully-located space. Namely, the building’s owner at the time absolutely forbad a wall being removed from the front of the space, resulting in a gallery space of a mere 250 square feet.

Despite the gallery’s tiny size, Babs applied what she learned at her Denver store, and growth shortly followed. By bucking over 100 years of jewelry store design--opting instead for a European layout that physically allows for guests and team members to work side-by-side. The welcoming people of Bozeman figured out "the deal," and were soon stopping by for trunk shows, private parties, and impromptu wine chats. A new building owner allowed for expansion in 2007. That expansion allowed Alara to become more of its originally-envisioned concept.

NAMED ONE OF THE TOP 20 COOLEST JEWELRY

STORES IN NORTH AMERICA BY INSTORE

MAGAZINE. ALSO IN 2008 & 2009.

CHICA STARTS WORKING AT ALARA AS A PUPPY.

SHE PERFECTS HER “LOVE LEAN” AND LEARNS

HOW TO SMILE.

NAMED #2 COOLEST SMALL JEWELRY STORE IN

NORTH AMERICA BY INSTORE MAGAZINE.

BABS NOELLE NAMED WOMAN ENTREPRENEUR

OF THE YEAR BY PROSPERA BOZEMAN.

NO, IT WASN’T A MARKETING “THING...” OUR HUGE

“DIVORCE SALE” WAS ACTUALLY A COMPLETELY

TRANSPARENT CONCEPT. ALARA IS REBORN.

JCK DESIGN CENTER NAMES ALARA #5 TOP

RETAILER OF DESIGNER FINE JEWELRY.

IDA BIJOUX THE BARBET JOINS THE TEAM. SHE’S

ALREADY LEARNED TO SMILE. SHE LIKES TO HOP

INTO WARM OFFICE CHAIRS AFTER YOU GET UP.

ALARA ADOPTED THE GINGKO LEAF

AS ITS SYMBOL IN 2015.

THE GINGKO IS A LIVING FOSSIL. IT IS A

SIGN OF REBIRTH, TENACITY, AND

SURVIVAL, IN ADDITION TO HAVING A

BEAUTIFUL FORM.

THE TREMENDOUS SUPPORT OF OUR

WONDERFUL COMMUNITY OF FRIENDS

AND CLIENTS ALLOWED US TO SURVIVE,

AND THEN THRIVE.

AND THEN THRIVE SOME MORE...

THANK YOU FOR HELPING US GROW.

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