Welcome to the TIVOL Blog

Throughout time, the written word has been a medium for story telling, recording history and New York Times style Op Ed pieces. Over the last several years the internet has allowed for relative unknown individuals to reach hundreds of thousands of people by providing expert opinions, hands on experience (and trolling) through blog articles and reviews.

At TIVOL, we are constantly evolving and adapting to the times. Through our blog, we will offer insight into a range of topics from how we run our business, objective information on diamonds and jewelry, opinion pieces and interviews with the industry’s top designers — all from the various perspectives of our staff members and partners. Our goal is to educate and inform anyone who comes across our blog, as we have done inside our doors for generations.

The TIVOL workshop ca. 1912.

It was my great grandfather, Charles Tivol, who immigrated to the United States from Russia and figured that the center of the country was the best place to set up shop. Starting a business from scratch, and choosing his surname for the title, he worked as a bench jeweler for many years creating each piece of jewelry to the finest standards of quality and craftsmanship. He quickly became known in our community as the man to see for the finest pieces for every occasion. Charles was always educating those around him. This education included passing along everything he knew to his son (and my grandfather) Harold Tivol.

Growing up in the business, Harold quickly developed a keen eye for gemstones and diamonds, and his business sense was second to none. After a brief three-year stint in the Army during World War II (I can only assume as a line cook), Harold returned to Kansas City after the war to come back to the family business. He briefly attended both the University of Illinois and the Gemological Institute of America. However, he was the Bill Gates of his era. Finding the nuisance of attending classes and test taking too pedestrian, Harold did not need to complete his college courses in order to become a huge success.

Harold Tivol and his father, Charles, working together at TIVOL.

In the early 1950s, Harold’s business acumen served him well in convincing his father to move his shop to the newly developed Country Club Plaza, a robust outdoor shopping district and the first of its kind in the country. Over the next several years, Harold grew his father’s legacy into the country’s foremost authority on jewelry and gemstones, while providing an honest, ethical experience to everyone who came in the door. Harold’s reputation earned him many awards, including being named to the National Jeweler Hall of Fame, Lifetime Achievement Award from Modern Jeweler. More importantly, he was the runner up in two all-you-can-eat Buffalo wing contests.

Harold’s daughter Cathy (my mom) now runs the show. Under her guiding eye, TIVOL has opened another Kansas City jewelry store location at Hawthorne Plaza in Overland Park. She continues to instill the values that Charles believed in when he opened his store over 100 years ago: quality, craftsmanship and ethical standards.

We provide an experience that you are proud to share with family and friends, without having to embellish any details. It was because of my mother’s begging and pleading that I joined the business four years ago (really I think she wanted to ensure a decent retirement package for herself).

Harold Tivol, Hunter Tivol McGrath and Cathy Tivol in 2011.

I grew up in the business as well, although my experience was limited to cleaning the cases, cleaning jewelry, etc. — the kind of jobs you actually can give a child responsibility for in a store that has tiny rocks worth thousands of dollars. After completing my undergraduate and graduate courses, I practiced as a licensed CPA in Overland Park for a few years before my mother, as I mentioned, begged me to come work for her.

I am married (sorry girls), with two beautiful girls named Brooke, who is named in honor of my late sister, and Ellie. As I continue to grow as a man and business owner, I strive to always be thankful for the blessings offered me by my family’s achievements, and lead my life in an honest, ethical manner of which all my relatives would be proud.

So, stay tuned to the TIVOL blog. We have much more to share with you, and this is just the beginning.

– Hunter