This isn’t what it looks like. Erin is not newly engaged to this former principal dancer for the Texas Ballet Theater. No, they knew each other as kids. When Lucas left Fairfax at 17-years-old to dance for the Houston Ballet we stopped seeing him around town and read articles about him instead. He was our famous Fairfax phenom in the world of professional dance. He spent eight years as the principal dancer for Texas Ballet Theater after leaving the Houston Ballet. Marin County was awfully proud of him!
Here you’ll get an overview of his career and hear how he met his wife, a prima ballerina. They now have three little kids. It’s a busy family!
In 2014 Lucas was appreciative of his distinguished ballet career but ready to give it up and come back to Mill Valley to take over Sofia Jewelry, the business his parents started in 1994. His parents Carl and Susan Priolo turned over the reins to Lucas and his sister Sophia who ended her ballet career in 2012 to join the family business as well.
Last summer Russ and I were in the audience in Marin of a concert with Lyle Lovett and Vince Gill. Lucas and Lyle know each other. Lucas collaborated with Lyle Lovett and danced in a special concert Lovett performed in Texas. Lovett was about to sing a song at the Marin Civic Center auditorium when he went into a chatter about raising kids these days and how his friends Carl and Susan Priolo (who were in the audience) had done a great job with Lucas.
If you walk into Sofia Jewelry in Mill Valley, you’ll know instantly how true that statement is. He’s bright, kind, enthusiastic, and provides excellent customer service like he went to school for it. You can feel right away that it’s a family-owned business. There’s nothing hoity-toity here!
Last week Erin and I met in Mill Valley at Sofia’s Jewelry before our client appointment. We were scouting for wedding rings. Another client of ours is ready to replace hers.
There are plenty of beauties to choose from here. You can check out their website to see what we were looking at. Erin would demonstrate choices by slipping them on her finger. Every single one looked great on her. Poor darling. She needs a winning lottery ticket!
Notice you don’t see any pictures here of rings or bracelets, or necklaces. What I had my eye on was the adornment on Lucas’ Apple watch. “Tell me about that,” I said.
He’s created stackers that slide on your Apple watch or Fitbit. His is a prototype of a concept he’s been working on. He and a partner are behind the scenes getting ready to launch these. A website is coming and they’re planning to hit the stores with them in May. We’ve been stacking bracelets, layering necklaces and stacking rings. Now you can stack pieces of jewelry on that bland Apple watch strap.
Solving problems with stackable jewels
What I’ve really disliked about Apple watches or the Fitbit is that they look like an Apple watch or a Fitbit. I look at that real estate on the wrist and think of a hundred other things that would decorate it so much better. I wear a Fitbit most days and am always wanting to figure out a way to camouflage it, make it look pretty. Can’t we have function and fashion on the wrist?
That’s what Lucas thought and I think it’s brilliant. These stackers do double duty. On the back of them you can put your medical ID. Lucas has designed a variety of symbols to appeal to sports lovers and more. There’s a wave (think surfing), a cycle gear (think cycling all over beautiful Marin County), a footprint for the runners and an Om symbol with Lotus flowers around it for the meditators. Heaven forbid something happens to you while you’re surfing, running, or cycling but if it does, your medical information is right there.
Naturally the jewelry designer in Lucas has brought on the bling. Why not? Some pieces have rows of pave diamonds, others have scattered diamonds and still others have black diamonds. You’ll be able to purchase a gold vermeil stacker or one in solid gold. The financial difference is $95 dollars versus $3500.
I am so enthusiastic about his endeavor. Everything about it says YES to me.
Having a Zen moment
I remember walking past the ballet studio in Fairfax when Lucas was a kid. He was practicing, practicing, always practicing. I admired his discipline and commitment at such a young age.
Now I admire how he’s become the face of the family business. He’s rock solid all the while he’s bringing innovation to the business. To watch this generation build on the solid business and great reputation that was always attributed to Sofia Jewelry when his parents were running it is really cool.
So hey, I’m having a Zen moment thinking about our young people. What are some of the things your young people are up to? Let’s acknowledge them! I can’t wait to read your shares!