On the heels of the biggest holiday of the year for jewelry retailers, Signet Jewelers Limited said Wednesday that it will acquire rival Zales in a corporate marriage valued at $1.4 billion, including debt the buyer will take on.

Dallas-based Zales counts three stores in the Charleston region among its 1,680 U.S. locations. Signet already operates two Kay Jewelers stores in the local area.

Signet CEO Michael Barnes told Reuters on Wednesday that nearby Kay and Zales locations that compete for sales wouldn't necessarily be combined, so long as they're each profitable. Zales will remain a separate chain.

Signet also operates in the U.S. as Jared the Galleria of Jewelry, which has stores in Columbia and Greenville.

Events on King

Madewell, J.Crew's sister store, opened its first location in the Palmetto State on Tuesday at 282 King St. in downtown Charleston. To mark the occasion, the women's apparel retailer will host an opening celebration 5-7 p.m. Friday with music, refreshments and a debut of its new spring collection.

Meanwhile, Upper King Street will play host to the monthly Shop and Stroll event 5-8 p.m. Friday. Art galleries, boutiques and eateries on the corridor from Calhoun to Cannon streets will offer refreshments and specials.

Scaling back

The Charleston Angler will shutter its Summerville store at 2143 N. Main St. on Friday after six years in the area. The locally owned sport-fishing retailer will continue operating stores in West Ashley, Mount Pleasant and downtown Charleston.

A Bass Pro Shop superstore planned for a nearby area of North Charleston likely would have diminished the Charleston Angler's consumer base in the Summerville area, said owner Caroline Rhodes.

"Although we are proud to have had the opportunity to serve the Summerville market, ... the Charleston Angler has decided to focus all retail efforts in proven markets in West Ashley, Mount Pleasant, and downtown Charleston," Rhodes said.

For the ladies

Whole Foods Market at 923 Houston Northcutt Blvd. in Mount Pleasant is hosting a ladies-only event 5-7 p.m. Thursday featuring free makeovers with natural beauty products, appetizers and a gift basket raffle. The first 25 women to show up will receive free gift bags.

Calling all vendors

Time is running out for vendors to apply for space at the upcoming season of the Charleston Farmers Market. The weekly event in Marion Square showcases local growers, food vendors and artisans each Saturday from April 12-Dec. 20. Applications can be found at charlestonfarmersmarket.com and should be mailed or delivered by 4 p.m. Monday to the Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs at 180 Meeting St., Charleston, 29401.

Reach Abigail Darlington at 937-5906 and follow her on Twitter @A_Big_Gail