Abrecht Bird Jewellers has a long and strong history of which we are extremely proud.
Eight generations, or over 230 years’ experience, reside in the heritage of Abrecht Bird Jewellers of Collins Street, Melbourne. The partnership arose from the amalgamation of Fred Robt. Abrecht (established in 1875) and J Bird and Son (1910) and continues to be represented by fourth generation descendants from each family.
The origins of the founders are European: Pforzheim in Germany for Friedrich Robert Abrecht and Birmingham in England for John Bird – both these locations continue to be the headquarters for jewellery manufacturing in Europe today.
Manufacturing and Wholesale
The late 19th and early 20th centuries were pioneering days for the fledgling Victorian jewellery industry that came to be based in the city block bounded by Swanston, Collins, Elizabeth and Little Collins Streets.
The two companies were competitors who specialised in manufacturing fine quality diamond jewellery. Their workshops were the training ground for countless young apprentices; many became master jewellers who in turn established their own manufacturing or retail entities.
Ranges of diamond jewellery were assembled and hand carried, generally by principals of the business, to retailers across the length and breadth of Australia. In the earliest times, travel was by long and arduous train journeys or even by sea, and could span weeks. Close and trusting relationships were developed with clients, and since the majority of jewellery retailers were family-owned these bonds spanned generations. Through this wide distribution network, engagement and wedding rings manufactured by the Bird and Abrecht family workshops have adorned the fingers of more than half-a-million Australian brides over the past century.
Businesses cannot survive this long unless they are based on solid foundations of quality and integrity. However, although well known and highly respected within the diamond industry, their public profile was minimal to protect their wholesale status.
In recent decades the doors were opened a little wider to referred private clients, but as word spread, the trickle became an avalanche! While continuing to concentrate on the core values established by their forefathers, the family businesses changed their focus from the trade to direct selling, and in 1992 they joined forces.
Clients of Abrecht Bird Jewellers seek high quality, individually designed, hand made jewellery. They appreciate consulting with highly qualified, experienced and passionate jewellers.
Leon Corn, son-in-law of third generation Noel Abrecht, has been a lecturer in diamond technology, past president of the Gemmological Association of Australia and served on the committee of the Jewellers Association of Australia for decades.
Peter Bird has 25 years’ experience in the industry, is a qualified gemmologist, diamond grader and valuer.
Peter’s business partner, Greg John, began making jewellery as an apprentice 40 years ago. His ability to design, sketch and manufacture superb jewellery is legendary.
This commitment to excellence is backed up by a support team led by Kylie Beachley, dedicated to making every client contact a positive experience.