Barbara Oliver…in My Own Words

While growing up in Tonawanda, I discovered my lifelong passion for gemstones. While my friends played with dolls and dressed up, I immersed myself in gemological books and learned about precious stones. While I can’t say this made me the cool kid in school (I was clearly a little before my time on this one), it laid the foundation for what it is we do now. I just knew that one day I would be a jeweler and create unique custom jewelry. I consider myself blessed to be doing what I love doing best.


Barbara Oliver Jewelry
5820 Main St., Ste 311, Williamsville, NY 14221


(716) 204-1297



Tues - Fri: 10am-5pm
Sat: 11am-3pm
Sun, Mon: Closed

Shopping by appt. also available

My father, Jerry, was the consummate sales professional, and I learned a lot from him as I launched my career. I honed my sales skills early on selling all sorts of things – clothing, real estate, cars, postage meters, even commercial lighting. Under dad’s tutelage I learned the art of being a sales professional; discovering the buyer’s needs and desires, overcoming objections, and closing the deal.

It was all good stuff, but there was an overarching lesson which he stressed constantly – to be successful in business, you have to be able to build relationships. He told me it’s not about leading someone to your way of thinking, it’s about listening carefully, asking the right questions, and finally, when you have real understanding, sharing relevant information. Dad said if you’ve done your job right, they’ll discover the reasons for themselves as to why they should do business with you. And if you do your job really well they’ll come back again and again. And he was right. It’s like instant karma.

After a few years of selling other things, I revisited my early dream of being in the jewelry business and became a Graduate Gemologist through the Gemological Institute of America (GIA). Having that formal and rigorous training in diamonds, gemstones, and precious metals enabled me to get a foothold in the jewelry business. When passion meets opportunity good things happen, and I thrived. I worked for other jewelry stores for a number of years, and I learned a lot about the jewelry and gemstone industries. During that time I also observed some business practices that were not customer focused, and on occasion, unfair and dishonest. I realized that the way I wanted to do business would only be achieved if I had control over the jewelry shopping experience from start to finish. So in 2003 I started Barbara Oliver Jewelry.

I was blessed that my customers from over the years followed me here to the third floor of an office building.  Sometimes people comment that our location is genius, and I laugh and tell them the reason we selected this location was so if I didn’t make it, no one would ever know. Now, of course, our location makes perfect sense – it allows us to focus on delivering exceptional customer service and building an intimate and personal shopping experience. We don’t get any “walk by” traffic, but once people find us, they keep coming back. Plus we don’t pay high retail rents, which reflect in the value we offer all of our customers.

For most people, buying a piece of jewelry is an act of trust. Educating yourself can be hard; there are significant variations in jewelry designs, the metals, the size and quality of the stones, the workmanship, and the degree to which the people selling you will stand behind their product. I hate to say it, but there’s also a lot of misleading or outright false information in our industry. So, it always comes back to trust. Which is where we excel.

Our commitment to quality, to providing expert knowledge, to sweating the small details, and to treating everyone with integrity and respect are the cornerstones of what we do here at Barbara Oliver Jewelry. We hope you’ll visit us and find out for yourself how we create a “jewelry shopping experience like no other.”

Barbara Oliver signature
Cindy, one of those folks who just brightens your day every time they walk in, just left here literally walking on air with the biggest smile on her beautiful face. Although camera shy, she was thrilled to show off her new ring. Cindy lost her beloved husband a number of years ago and we did some re-designing of other pieces with her over the years. This pear shape diamond, the original stone he gave her when they were much younger and just starting out, was the one that she just had to wait until both the time and the design felt right. Something different, with a lot of detail that didn't look bridal in design, classy and a bit kooky ( in the best way possible) just like the wearer herself. Although she told me this was the last of our projects, now we are working on a pendant with her mom's and MIL's diamonds.....yes, we will keep you all in the loop. Cindy sparkles even more now, heart, soul, and fingers! ... See MoreSee Less
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Ruth and Randy one of my favorite couples celebrated a new special moment with one another, "Because We Want To" Day. Nice ring to it we think, so we made them 3! Using his fathers' diamond, we crafted a very classy gents ring for Randy had Ruth's original engagement ring where the center diamond kind of "got lost in the sauce" and wasn't presenting as boldly or sparkly as it should. We ring-imagined it into a more classic slimmed down version using all the stones from the day she first said yes. The bubble ring, with its' own happy kind of vibe was done with an old pair of diamond studs and a few stones from mom and MIL all together in her new right hand ring. Now they both have new signature pieces, honoring each other and the love of their parents. We think everyday should be because we want to and can day. Everyday, just celebrate yourself and the ones you love. Happy weekend to you all! ... See MoreSee Less
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We do it because of the stories each piece tells... Boris And Blerta, their wedding day happening June 15th, wanted very sentimental wedding bands to celebrate their love and family history. They had Boris's grandfather's band and gold coins from Blerta's grandparents, the only two treasures brought over from the old country. We used the Ukrainian rose gold band in its' original form as the center insert in his, along with the coin gold used for the crafting of both, uniting the families and their heritage for the next generation. Blerta also dreamed of having an unheated, natural teal blue sapphire for her engagement ring (in process). This 4.01 carat beauty was mined in Madagascar, which also a fascination of Berta's ever since seeing the movie and realizing the magic of that place. They both live near San Francisco, and although we have never met, the bonding from the calls, texts and the sharing of their story along with the joy they are experiencing from all of this, I do have one of the most fulfilling "jobs" in the world. Thanks for being part of our community of jewelry and story lovers. ... See MoreSee Less
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