Norwich jewellery shop moves home
Their tiny jewellery store on Exchange Street was affectionately called the 'cupboard under the stairs' by customers.
But now Sara Sweet and Craig Snape, who own independent Norwich jewellers Sonkai, have woven their magic on a new, and significantly larger, store on the corner of Dove Street and Pottergate.
This week they moved into the fully refurbished store, which had previously been Rainbow Wholefoods downstairs and the Treehouse restaurant above.
They have replaced nearly everything apart from the roof and the move represents a long-term investment of nearly �250,000 for the family.
'We have such brilliant, loyal customers and decided the time was right to invest in our future and move on from our humble beginnings,' said Miss Sweet.
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'We are very proud of what Sonkai has achieved, it has been a lot of hard work but we are thrilled to offer our customers a beautiful new shop in the Norwich Lanes – with a little bit more elbow room,' she added.
To celebrate the move, the couple will be raising money for the Big C with a raffle.
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Mr Snape, 33, is an award-winning goldsmith and Miss Sweet, 31, is both the business brains behind Sonkai and chooses the jewellery ranges stocked alongside their own designs.
Both are familiar faces to their customers and last year the couple said hello to their first son, Foxley Snape.
They opened Sonkai together in 2006 and since then, the business has gone from strength to strength, something Miss Sweet largely puts down to their personal service and having a qualified goldsmith on-site.
'Most of our income comes from Craig in the workshop. You can come to the shop, talk to Craig, and nearly everything is done on site – the metal work, stone setting, Craig does it here and it is a bespoke service.'
In the future, Sonkai is hoping to offer jewellery classes to customers, showing them goldsmith techniques and allowing them to work on their own, bespoke, designs in the workshop.