Want to go?
What: Parris Jewelers 75th Anniversary Sale
When: Began Friday, November 12, 2021
Where: BOTH store locations: 6254 US Highway 98 West, Hattiesburg, MS 39204; and the District at Downtown, 3000 Hardy St., Hattiesburg, MS 39401
• Highway 98 West location: 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; Saturday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
• Hardy Street location: 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
More Info: Visit www.parrisjewelers.com
Phillip Pitts was a student learning to become a watchmaker when his teacher became so impressed with his natural talent that he called a well-known jewelry store owner to tell him about Pitts.
The exact words of his teacher in 1989 to Butch Brown, owner of Parris Jewelers were, “He’s got potential.”
Brown hired Pitts on the spot, and Pitts has been working in the jewelry business ever since—both as an employee as a watchmaker and jeweler to the eventual owner of Parris Jewelers in 2007.
Biggest Sale in Store’s History
It’s been almost 75 years since founder Harold J. Parris set up his jewelry shop on Front Street in Hattiesburg. Pitts and his wife Lynn wanted to do something HUGE to mark the occasion. They decided to host the largest sale in the store’s history. Shoppers looking for great deals on jewelry should mark Friday, November 12, 2021, on their calendars. That’s when Parris Jewelers’ 75th-anniversary celebration sale kicked off to the general public. Expect to find one-of-a-kind deals on quality jewelry, including engagement rings, wedding bands and colored stone jewelry and so much more.
The store sells jewelry for every budget, whether it’s a $30 sterling silver trinket or a $50,000 diamond ring. Regardless of the type of jewelry, Pitts said shoppers should expect to find some pretty amazing deals during the sale.
“There are a lot of beautiful quality pieces of jewelry that we’re selling at once in a lifetime discounts,” he said. “These discounts are not because the jewelry is of lower quality. They’re going to be at tremendous markdowns because we want to show our appreciation for the wonderful support the community has given us going on 75 years.”
Serving Generations of Families
Pitts strongly believes that support is built on something that has to be earned: Trust. That’s especially so when it comes to working on jewelry pieces customers own.
“It’s been amazing and humbling,” said Pitts, who has worn many hats in his career, including watchmaker, master jeweler, and designer, graduate gemologist, and owner. “The client is trusting us with their jewelry. And someone would say, ‘this is my grandmother’s diamonds, and they’ve been in the family for 120 years.’ We’re pleased to take something so precious and re-style it into something even more special they can treasure for years to come.”
Warm and friendly atmosphere
First thing shoppers should not expect to find: a stuffy atmosphere. “You’re talking to someone whose dad was a farmer and pipefitter,” said Pitts, father of two daughters and a son. “There’s no reason to be intimated by my staff or me. We’re just average folks, and we also understand the value of a dollar.” His staff, including his wife Lynn, go out of their way to make customers feel welcome and at ease.
“Everybody loves Lynn,” he said. “She’s quick to share a laugh. A very friendly face here.”
Phillip and Lynn Pitts have also donated to many charities/events and their local church over the years. Phillip Pitts said they don’t do it for the recognition, which is why they prefer not to get into the details. “That’s something we’ll continue doing,” he said. “Wherever there’s a need or people call and ask, we try to help as much as we can.”
Reflecting on 32 years in the jewelry business, Phillip Pitts expressed gratitude for the strong community support Parris Jewelers has enjoyed.
“It’s been a true blessing,” he said.
Parris Jewelers Timeline
1947: Harold J. Parris founded Parris Jewelers, opening a store on Front Street in Hattiesburg, MS.
1950s: Parris Jewelers moved to 116 West Pine St. in downtown Hattiesburg.
1960s: Harold Parris hired Butch Brown (11 or 12 years old at the time) to run errands. After serving in the Vietnam War, Brown would eventually become an accomplished jeweler.
1979: Harold Parris moved the store to 200 S 27th Ave. in what is now referred to as “Midtown.”
1983: Brown purchased Parris Jewelers from Harold Parris. Butch and his wife Gail Brown became the faces of Parris Jewelers.
1989: Brown hired Phillip Pitts as a watchmaker. Pitts would become an accomplished jeweler, designer and craftsman over the years, winning several awards.
2007: Pitts bought Parris Jewelers Brown.
2014: Pitts and his wife Lynn Pitts moved Parris Jewelers to a freestanding storefront at 6254 US Highway 98 West in Hattiesburg.
2019: The Pitts opened a second location in the District at Midtown near the previous location on 27th Avenue.