INSTOREMAG.COM - News and advice for the American jewelry store owner http://instoremag.com Sun, 07 Feb 2016 05:42:52 +0000 Joomla! - Open Source Content Management en-gb 19 Jewelry Brands That Got Celebrity Love at the SAG Awards http://instoremag.com/guest-blogs/19-jewelry-brands-that-got-celebrity-love-at-the-sag-awards http://instoremag.com/guest-blogs/19-jewelry-brands-that-got-celebrity-love-at-the-sag-awards

Death, taxes and Lorraine Schwartz on the red carpet. These are things in life upon which we can always count.

When I crawled social media looking to see which jewelers made the biggest footprint at the last week’s SAG Awards, New York City-based Lorraine Schwartz was among the brands that generated the most buzz. The mega-celebrity label also caught the eye of INSTORE Senior Editor Tanya Dukes,who wrote about five jewelry all-stars from the SAGs for sister publication INDESIGN, three of whom (Kristen Wiig, Lily Rabe, and Sarah Hyland) were spotted wearing the brand.

Below you’ll find 19 different jewelry brands that made appearances at the SAGs, presented in alphabetical order.

Antonini

Diamond Looks Take Over the SAG AwardsE! correspondent Zuri Hall wore diamond earrings by Antonini.

Posted by Holman Jewelers on Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Aurelie Bidermann


Bavna


Buccellati


Bulgari


Butani


Cher Dior


Chopard


Dana Rebecca


Forevermark






Fred Leighton



Harry Kotlar


Harry Winston


Lorraine Schwartz



Laverne Cox in Lorraine Schwartz jewelry. #gemchronicles #SAGAwards2016 #sagjewelry

A photo posted by thegemchronicles (@thegemchronicles) on





Louis Vuitton


Mouawad


Neil Lane



Tiffany & Co.


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jesse.burkhart@gmail.com (Jesse Burkhart) Guest Blogs Fri, 05 Feb 2016 00:00:00 +0000
Christmas Numbers Are in — and There’s Reason to Be Cheerful http://instoremag.com/money-matters/christmas-numbers-are-in-%E2%80%94-and-theres-reason-to-be-cheerful http://instoremag.com/money-matters/christmas-numbers-are-in-%E2%80%94-and-theres-reason-to-be-cheerful

The busiest time of the year has just past and the results are in from the jewelers in our survey group. Overall December sales were up from $346,450 in 2014 to $352,716 – a rise of 1.8 percent. Year-to-date rolling sales increased from $1,523,801 in December 2014 to $1,624,513 in the same month in 2015 – an annual increase of 6.6 percent.

 

David Brown

President of Edge Retail Academy
T

he busiest time of the year has just past and the results are in from the jewelers in our survey group. Overall December sales were up from $346,450 in 2014 to $352,716 – a rise of 1.8 percent. Year-to-date rolling sales increased from $1,523,801 in December 2014 to $1,624,513 in the same month in 2015 – an annual increase of 6.6 percent.

Below is a breakdown of the numbers over the last three years:

The numbers show good growth over the last two years with the drop in quantity sold between 2014 and 2015 being more than offset by an increase in average sale value. After sitting at around the $225 mark for the last two years, average sale saw a 13 percent increase from $222 to $251 in 2015. That has resulted in a lift in gross profit from $170,331 to $171,058. The drop in units sold from 1,456 to 1,295 capped the growth in gross profit – had 2014’s volume of units been maintained, sales of $365,456 would have occurred and gross profit on a 49 percent margin as per 2014 would have resulted in gross profit of $179,073, an increase of $8,015 on the actual result achieved.

So how do your numbers compare? It’s a great opportunity to grab your own reports and compare the results your store has achieved against the average of your peers. Start by looking at your sales figures. This is a difficult comparison to make as each store is different but once you delve past this point you can start to see what others are achieving across the key reporting areas.

In the information above, we detail three of the four key performance areas of any jewelry store (stock turn is not included in these numbers but for reference in this exercise the average store is achieving a stock turn of 0.64 times per annum – that’s $64,000 of sales achieved annually for every $100,000 or inventory being held).

Let’s look at units sold. The typical store detailed above is showing 1,296 items sold per year. Different businesses have different mixes and depending on your own store’s formula this will vary. Do you tend to be a high value seller with fewer items sold or a large volume seller of cheaper items? Most will fit into one or the other. Looking at these items in isolation may not provide the answer but if you compare your units sold with the average sale ($251 in our data) you will start to get a picture of where you sit relative to the pool of information.

For me, the two most interesting numbers above, and the easiest to compare between stores, are margin achieved and percentage of sales provided by December. Margin can be a factor of whether you are a higher-end retailer (the higher the average sale the lower your margins will obviously be). However, if upon comparing your margin and average sale to the data you find you are lower on both counts then it is a sign something might need to change. If your margin is lower, it is a clear indication that other jewelers are selling higher priced items for a greater profit than you are so there may well be room to raise your margins.

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dbrown@smartworkmedia.com (David Brown) Money Matters Thu, 04 Feb 2016 00:00:00 +0000
TV Runway Adds Shopping Element To Customers' Favorite Shows http://instoremag.com/best-practices/tv-runway-adds-shopping-element-to-customers-favorite-shows http://instoremag.com/best-practices/tv-runway-adds-shopping-element-to-customers-favorite-shows

Here’s an e-commerce development that caught my attention this week:

A company called TV Runway is in the midst of negotiating with TV networks to enable viewers of websites like Hulu, ESPN.com, etc., to shop for jewelry and clothing items worn on their favorite shows.

Eileen McClelland

Managing
editor at
INSTORE Magazine.

H

ere’s an e-commerce development that caught my attention this week:

A company called TV Runway is in the midst of negotiating with TV networks to enable viewers of websites like Hulu, ESPN.com, etc., to shop for jewelry and clothing items worn on their favorite shows.

Three hundred retailers have signed up so far, says Terena Bell, co-founder and CEO.

Although many of those retailers tend to be large, there’s no reason small independents can’t participate, as long as the retailer’s inventory can be updated automatically every day. There is no cost to sign up but a percentage of the sales price – 5 to 10 percent — would be paid to TVRunway as a commission.

“It could be a great way for a small local store to extend its reach,” Bell says. “Let us into your inventory and we can compare it against what’s in the show.”

Each item of jewelry worn on a participating show will be compared to the inventory in the TV Runway system and the top three closest matches are displayed for purchase. The viewer can either buy it instantly or mark it as “favored” and save it to a wish list. If it’s labeled as “favored,” the information about the item and where to buy it would be sent to the shopper via email.

“While you are watching a TV show on the web, you just hit pause and click on the item,” Bell says. The user doesn’t need to download anything, but if the network has decided that they want to participate, the user can turn the shopping feature on or off.

The jewelry shown will be chosen entirely by how well it matches the piece on the show. Retailers can’t pay extra to have their pieces chosen, or to have only their piece shown during a certain show.

“It’s based on the best match,” Bell says. “We want to deliver the best experience to the consumer.”

If it’s an old movie, the closest replica or vintage piece available for sale would be displayed.

Although she can’t yet reveal which networks will participate, Bell says TV Runway will be up and running in about a month.

For more information, see www.tvrunwayit.com

 

 

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eileen@smartworkmedia.com (Eileen McClelland) Best Practices Tue, 02 Feb 2016 00:00:00 +0000
Gratitude for the Unexpected Handwritten Thank-You http://instoremag.com/guest-blogs/gratitude-for-the-unexpected-handwritten-thank-you http://instoremag.com/guest-blogs/gratitude-for-the-unexpected-handwritten-thank-you

It’s a rare occasion when I receive a handwritten letter or card in the mail. I’d estimate I get fewer than 10 each year, mostly from family members and close friends around holidays and birthdays. I particularly appreciate the ones from my grandparents, who still send me Halloween greeting cards with cartoonish lettering and ultra-cheesy punchlines that are clearly intended for children. The front of my last card read: “I have this haunting feeling that I’ve wished you Happy Halloween before.” The inside read: “Déjà Boo.” My grandmother then wrote a short note, signing her and my grandfather’s names to it. I kept the card because I’m a sucker for a good pun, and also because throwing away my grandmother’s delicate script would have felt like a criminal thing to do.

Jesse
Burkhart


Contributing writer for INSTORE.
I

t’s a rare occasion when I receive a handwritten letter or card in the mail. I’d estimate I get fewer than 10 each year, mostly from family members and close friends around holidays and birthdays. I particularly appreciate the ones from my grandparents, who still send me Halloween greeting cards with cartoonish lettering and ultra-cheesy punchlines that are clearly intended for children. The front of my last card read: “I have this haunting feeling that I’ve wished you Happy Halloween before.” The inside read: “Déjà Boo.” My grandmother then wrote a short note, signing her and my grandfather’s names to it. I kept the card because I’m a sucker for a good pun, and also because throwing away my grandmother’s delicate script would have felt like a criminal thing to do.

But every blue moon, I get a handwritten note that I wasn’t expecting because a holiday was around the corner. I don’t value one handwritten expression over another based on whether I was expecting it or not; the level of sincerity is the only thing that matters. But still, the unexpected ones produce a certain warming effect that the anticipated ones don’t.

I recently received an unexpected thank-you card from the small music studio at which I’ve been taking piano lessons for the past year. After I read the card, I plum forgot that it had been that long. (By my playing, you’d never have been able to tell.) But the music studio was keeping track, and so they sent me this card in recognition of my one-year anniversary.

The message is pretty simple, as you can see. And though it was awfully kind of the studio to call what I had been making “music,” the words themselves weren’t what I appreciated most. I appreciated that the studio thought enough of my patronage to acknowledge it with what’s considered an unconventional expression of gratitude in the year 2016. I had received physical mail from the studio before; it was usually the latest newsletter it sends to students. That’s what I expected when I pulled the envelope from my mailbox. But opening it revealed a pleasant surprise – one that compelled me to keep it in the same pile as my grandparents’ cheesy Halloween greeting cards.

Sincere, handwritten expressions of gratitude are a lost art in today’s increasingly digital and impersonal world. That’s nothing you didn’t already know. I only shared this anecdote as a reminder of how a personal touch can go a long way toward building customer loyalty. The next time you’re looking for a way to set your business apart from a competitor, remember that the ink still has yet to fade from the oldest page in the customer-service playbook.

 

 

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jesse.burkhart@gmail.com (Jesse Burkhart) Guest Blogs Wed, 27 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
Memories of Cindy Edelstein, My Friend and Contemporary Jewelry’s Champion http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/memories-of-cindy-edelstein-my-friend-and-contemporary-jewelrys-champion http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/memories-of-cindy-edelstein-my-friend-and-contemporary-jewelrys-champion

Two years ago, after the death of a mutual friend, Cindy Edelstein and I made a pact: whichever of us passed away first, the other would write their jewelry industry remembrance. I realize that may sound a bit strange, but Cindy and I had been friends and in the jewelry business together for 25 years. And, frankly, both of us being journalists, we wanted to ensure that the facts would be right. (Yes, it’s kind of control freak-y, I suppose, but it’s just one of many things we had in common.)

 

Cindy and I at the Couture Show party in Las Vegas in 2012.

Lorraine DePasque

Contributing writer for INSTORE and INDESIGN.
T

wo years ago, after the death of a mutual friend, Cindy Edelstein and I made a pact: whichever of us passed away first, the other would write their jewelry industry remembrance. I realize that may sound a bit strange, but Cindy and I had been friends and in the jewelry business together for 25 years. And, frankly, both of us being journalists, we wanted to ensure that the facts would be right. (Yes, it’s kind of control freak-y, I suppose, but it’s just one of many things we had in common.)

Cindy, as it turns out, had nothing to worry about, as some of the most insightful tributes have been written about her since her sudden passing on Sunday. In fact, one of the finest pieces was penned and posted here by Trace Shelton of InDesign and Instore. Trace’s words were so on-point down to every detail, and I have no intention of repeating all of Cindy’s unprecedented achievements in the contemporary fine jewelry industry. What I will do, however, is tell you a bit more about the smart, sassy woman, who was one of modern jewelry’s fiercest advocates and, thanks to the stars aligning, became one of my best friends.

These past few days, I’ve been thinking: Did you ever see anyone so at ease in a jewelry setting? Whether she was walking the aisles of a trade show, advising an emerging designer of their next marketing step, greeting an established one and noting nuances in their latest line, or critiquing the carving of gem in a design competition, Cindy’s confidence in her knowledge and skills was always apparent.


RELATED STORY: Memorial Services For Cindy Edelstein To Be Held Tuesday


Such self-assurance, I would think, was a result of her dedication to learning—more like absorbing—anything and everything about jewelry. Together, she and I judged hundreds of design contests over the years. I remember, when I was a newbie to jewelry, how honored I felt whenever Cindy (this oh-so-sharp, super-quick jewelry/fashion editor of JCK) would ask, “What’s your honest opinion of this piece?”


"I want it to be the place, where retailers come, when they want to know about jewelry designers — and vice versa."
— Cindy Edelstein


Over time, Cindy and I really developed that part of our professional relationship. It was SOP for us to email, text, or Facebook-PM each other at 2 a.m., asking for thoughts or feedback on something or other: a new collection, some line’s manufacturing quality, the viability of a trend, and so forth. In fact, decades ago, before she launched her jewelry industry-focused umbrella marketing firm, Jeweler’s Resource Bureau—initially, out of her somewhat-small NYC studio apartment—she asked me what I thought of the name. “My mother came up with it—what do you really think?”

I remember (oddly, almost as if it were yesterday), replying by asking her what, exactly, she wanted her new business to achieve. “I want it to be the place, where retailers come, when they want to know about jewelry designers—and vice versa.”

Now, thinking back to that day, I feel very happy that Cindy certainly accomplished that. And then some, for sure, because Cindy wound up inventing so many things--the “Future of Design,” for example, the industry’s first Project Runway-like business incubator contest. And the specialty trade show of studio jewelry artists called globalDESIGN, which celebrates its 16h year next month. And, just last summer at the JA Show, the interactive “Designer Retailer Forum,” featuring jewelers who’ve been successful in selling designer jewelry.

Honestly, the list of “Cindy creations” can go on and on. And there’s no denying that what she gave to the jewelry industry was transformational. But what she gave to me in friendship and consistent support? That’s immeasurable. This afternoon, when my husband and I join Cindy’s family and many friends at a cemetery, where she’ll be laid to rest, I will not say goodbye. Instead, I’ll quietly tell her, “Thank you, Cindy . . . and until we meet again.”

{igallery id=7418|cid=1543|pid=1|type=category|children=0|addlinks=0|tags=|limit=0}
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ldepasque@optonline.net (Lorraine DePasque) Designers/Jewelry Tue, 26 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
Goodbye, Cindy http://instoremag.com/customer-service/goodbye-cindy-edelstein http://instoremag.com/customer-service/goodbye-cindy-edelstein Cindy Edelstein and Trace Shelton

Cindy Edelstein spread good feelings wherever she went. Here, she shares a hug with INDESIGN's editor-in-chief Trace Shelton and television style pundit Michael O'Connor.

Remembering a dear friend, tireless jewelry advocate
and all-around industry dynamo, Cindy Edelstein

The jewelry designer’s fiercest advocate and one of my best friends in the jewelry industry, Cindy Edelstein, passed away yesterday. In truth, Cindy was a best friend to many, many people, and her passing leaves an enormous hole not only in our industry, but in our hearts. As stunned and devastated as I am today, there was no way I could write about any other topic — I had to tell all of you just what an incredible person we have lost, as many of you reading this already know.

The jewelry industry is a tightly knit community, especially in the designer world where the name on the door is also the person inside the booth at the trade shows. For someone like myself who’s not a jewelry designer or retailer, this community can be difficult to enter into. Cindy was one of those rare people who knew everyone in the room and yet still had a space at the table for you. No matter how busy she was during a trade show – and she was pretty much always swamped, since she worked on behalf of Couture, JA New York, the AGTA Show, and globalDESIGN – she always took the time to pause, even if only for a moment, to give a hug and ask about your life. Not your business -- your life. As much as I understand that most interactions at trade shows are necessarily transactional – what can you do for me, what can I do for you – I appreciated Cindy’s genuine interest in my personal life because there was nothing in it for her; she was just being a friend. It was always a short but much-appreciated moment of warmth amidst the hustle and bustle of the trade show.

That genuine, personal quality is not the only thing I will miss with Cindy’s passing, but it is the thing I’ll miss the most. Last year, at the JA NY Winter Show, I was fortunate enough to meet Cindy’s husband, Frank. Cindy made a point of introducing us, and the three of us sat and talked about our daughters, who were just a year apart – mine was in her second semester of college at the time, and Cindy and Frank’s daughter, Remy, was finishing up her senior year of high school. We must have talked for an hour about parenting and smart daughters and how hard it is to send them off and, really, how hard it is to live without them. As we always did, we talked about Malik, our son that my wife and I adopted nearly five years ago out of the foster care system; as always, Cindy encouraged me to keep fighting the good fight on his behalf. Did we talk about her regular contribution to INDESIGN Magazine (the “Customer Types” section, which won gold in last year’s Tabbie Awards)? I’m sure we did, but what meant the most to me, and, I think, to Cindy, was our personal conversation about things that mattered outside of work.


RELATED STORY: CINDY EDELSTEIN PASSES AWAY AT AGE 51


As much as Cindy was a good friend, she was also an unflaggingly positive proponent of designer jewelry. Her business, the Jeweler’s Resource Bureau, celebrated its 25th anniversary this year, and Cindy remained at the forefront of business methodology and always exhibited a remarkable sense of professional curiosity, regularly sharing articles about innovative practices through social media and her newsletter, the Cindy Edelstein Daily. She promoted the category of designer jewelry relentlessly in her many and regular Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts, and she constantly encouraged designers to improve their businesses in a myriad of ways – the bottom line being that she wanted to teach designers to be not just incredible artists, but incredible businesspeople as well.


"Cindy was especially an advocate for fledgling designers. In fact, 'advocate' is too weak a word — she was more like a mama tiger fighting for her cubs.


She was especially an advocate for fledgling designers. In fact, “advocate” is too weak a word – Cindy was more like a mama tiger fighting for her cubs. A friendly conversation could turn tense in a moment if Cindy thought there was a chance that you might treat small designers unfairly. She did not limit her support to her clientele; Cindy fought for every designer and promoted their virtues to retailers and press alike. She was convinced – and I believe she was correct – that emerging designers were the lifeblood of the industry because they fed it unbridled creativity. She believed they were the pioneers of jewelry, pushing the industry forward creatively even as they struggled to survive from a business standpoint. She was an advocate for “the poor” in our industry, if you will, and she often worked for free, speaking at events and writing for publications solely to advance the designer’s cause.

Over the past few weeks, Cindy had been consulting with our team about our inaugural INDESIGN Awards, which will recognize excellence in jewelry design. She emailed me early this month to say she had heard about the awards and simply wanted to offer whatever help or advice she could. She spoke to us about everything from contest categories to marketing to judging criteria, and she offered us invaluable advice from her many experiences as both an administrator and judge in various design competitions. Cindy was wonderfully frank and never hesitated to share her unvarnished opinion. Our contest will be the better for it. She never asked for anything in return; she just wanted us to be successful, and she loved when designers were recognized for their creations.

That was Cindy in a nutshell: She was a helper and a hero. She held her friends almost as closely as she did her family. She did what she thought was right and let the cards fall as they may. Her passion, energy, brilliance and experience will be sorely missed in our industry. But way more than that, we will simply miss Cindy, the person. Goodbye, Cindy – you were one of a kind. I do not expect we shall see your equal.



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trace@smartworkmedia.com (Trace Shelton) Customer Service Mon, 25 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
Ever Wonder Where To Find New Customers? http://instoremag.com/best-practices/ever-wonder-where-to-find-new-customers http://instoremag.com/best-practices/ever-wonder-where-to-find-new-customers

INSTORE’s March issue will include an article on the topic of where and how to find groups of customers who may be “hiding in plain sight.”

Eileen McClelland

Managing
editor at
INSTORE Magazine.

I

NSTORE’s March issue will include an article on the topic of where and how to find groups of customers who may be “hiding in plain sight.”

Real-life networking is a good place to start to find some of those elusive people, who for some reason have never had the good sense to just appear magically at your door, despite marketing efforts.

Social networking definitely helps break the ice, but there’s no substitution for making a good first impression face to face.

The important thing to remember, though, is to make that kind of contact genuine it has to be genuine. The group or the event ideally should be something you’re genuinely interested in.

Just as you tend to be best at selling something you’re especially enthusiastic about.

“Networking is important,” says Jim Alati, manager of Simmons Fine Jewelers in Boise, ID, “but it has to be something I enjoy doing as well. I’m a sports fanatic, I play ice hockey and I’m involved in a few ice hockey groups.”

So as a result of that interest, Alati regularly has contact with 300 similarly minded hockey fanatics. Inevitably, when one of those guys gets engaged or has an anniversary coming up, they naturally think about Jim and Simmons Fine Jewelry.

“I can’t tell you how many sales I’ve made,” Alati says. “But that’s the thing about networking. If you force someone to go they aren’t going to enjoy it or have much fun. So I tell people to find something you will enjoy doing.”

Your enthusiasm for a shared interest will make you the natural choice when they think about jewelry.

Kate Peterson of Performance Concepts says retailers too often discount the value of working within service groups or neighborhood groups. Networking groups that include members from a variety of professions and businesses – one in each category – also are helpful as a source of business and referrals.

And instead of waiting for new customers to come to you, think about how you can take the initiative.

“People open up a business, hang a sign and think everyone is going to show up,” Peterson says.

Maybe the key is to go to them.

Peterson shared the example of a woman who opened a grooming franchise in her neighborhood. As the owner of two large dogs, Peterson quickly became aware of the newcomer’s presence even before the place opened.

“She spent hours at the dog park,” Peterson recalls. “The way she went about it was absolutely genius, figuring out where her customers were, how to target them and how to become a part of their community, to focus on what’s important to them. Since she opened it takes weeks to get an appointment.”

 

 

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eileen@smartworkmedia.com (Eileen McClelland) Best Practices Tue, 19 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
By a Thread: Your Next Off-Duty Earrings http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/by-a-thread-your-next-off-duty-earrings http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/by-a-thread-your-next-off-duty-earrings

Just days ago during the Golden Globes broadcast, armchair fashion critics were giddy over the prevalence of outsized earrings. Especially popular were Gobstopper-sized emerald studs, candy colored opal drops and antique diamond pendants. But for those days when getting dressed doesn’t require double-stick tape or a squad of hired helpers, there’s revived interest in a less formal style.

 

Tanya Dukes

Senior editor, INSTORE and INDESIGN.
J

ust days ago during the Golden Globes broadcast, armchair fashion critics were giddy over the prevalence of outsized earrings. Especially popular were Gobstopper-sized emerald studs, candy colored opal drops and antique diamond pendants. But for those days when getting dressed doesn’t require double-stick tape or a squad of hired helpers, there’s revived interest in a less formal style.

Long earrings trailing links in silver or gold have an easygoing glamour that translates to the real world. Whether they’re composed of a single strand of metal that threads directly through a piercing or a cascade that dangles from a post, the pieces are lightweight and constantly in motion. Extra-long variations are playful and glitzy, while shorter ones will pass muster at the office and boho interpretations of the silhouette are throwback to the nineties, which is having its own fashion renaissance.

The pieces are easiest to show off—and less inclined to tangle—when worn casually with upswept hair and an attitude to match. Think of them as the no-fuss opposite of red carpet jewelry.

Finn 18K gold ruby drop thread earrings, $2,070 | finnjewelry.com
 
Lana Jewelry Tri Vista earrings in 14K gold, $695 | lanajewelry.com
 
Tilda Biehn 14K gold and black diamond Orbit drops, $2,445 | tildabiehn.com
 
Tate Jewels 18K yellow gold and ruby snake thread earrings, $1,190 | tatejewels.com
 
Jacquie Aiche rose gold, pink tourmaline and shark tooth chain earring chain earring, $1,250 | jacquieaiche.com
 
Kismet by Milka half star stud with chain in champagne diamond, $650 | kismetbymilka.com
 
Wwake linear chain earrings in 14K gold and opals, $1,461 | wwake.com

 

 

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tanya@smartworkmedia.com (Tanya Dukes) Designers/Jewelry Fri, 15 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
The Five Top Jewelry Trends at the 2016 Golden Globes http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/the-five-top-jewelry-trends-at-the-2016-golden-globes http://instoremag.com/designers-design-jewelry/the-five-top-jewelry-trends-at-the-2016-golden-globes

How surprised was I on Sunday night, while watching the red carpet of the 73rd annual Golden Globe Awards? In a word? Very. To put my amazement in perspective . . . I’m used to two things: One, fashion that’s so “movie-star safe,” it’s typically uninspiring. And, two, far too many “jewelry people” getting far too excited when they see a star draped in an over-the-top mega-diamond neck piece, a vintage bracelet from an iconic jewelry house, colorful chandeliers that border on gaudy, and so forth. For me, none of that cuts it -- what I want to see celebrities wearing is forwardness. Even more specifically, forwardness in real-woman wearable.

 

Lorraine DePasque

Contributing writer for INSTORE and INDESIGN.
H

ow surprised was I on Sunday night, while watching the red carpet of the 73rd annual Golden Globe Awards? In a word? Very. To put my amazement in perspective . . . I’m used to two things: One, fashion that’s so “movie-star safe,” it’s typically uninspiring. And, two, far too many “jewelry people” getting far too excited when they see a star draped in an over-the-top mega-diamond neck piece, a vintage bracelet from an iconic jewelry house, colorful chandeliers that border on gaudy, and so forth. For me, none of that cuts it — what I want to see celebrities wearing is forwardness. Even more specifically, forwardness in real-woman wearable.

That said, it would be absurd for me to ignore the number-one jewelry trend of the evening: “To-Die-For-Diamond Collars.” Because, indeed, so many weren’t what you typically see at such shows. But do read on after that, as the jewelry trend directions beyond that were, without a doubt, enticing enough to make me actually look forward to the next awards show.

Trend: TO-DIE-FOR DIAMOND COLLARS

The fact that Hollywood’s best stylists chose lots of collars and chokers for their A-list clients shouldn’t come as a complete surprise—after all, we’ve been obsessed with Seventies accessories for awhile now. Still, it was the mega-wattage of diamonds that dazzled. And, of course, putting them on top-tier A-listers like Jennifer Lawrence, Emmy Rossum, and Jennifer Lopez was the icing on the cake. The other thing that I found to be noteworthy about all those diamond-dripping collars was that each of the three I just mentioned wore them differently: JLo’s laying on top of the bodice of her dress, Ms. Rossum’s resting on her bare neckline, and JLaw’s looking as if (I said as if) it were actually part of her red Dior Haute Couture. So, if there’s a takeaway for jewelers on this trend, it’s that, today, there are different ways to style with an über-expensive diamond collar—making them more likely to be worn more than once or twice a year.

 

Jennifer Lawrence in 156-carat Chopard diamond collar and Dior Haute Couture gown (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Emmy Rossum in Van Cleef & Arpels diamond collar and strapless red Armani Privé (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Maxior Jewels smokey quartz and diamond ring in 18K gold, worn to 2016 Golden Globes by Angela Bassett (Credit: Maxior Jewels)


Trend: WITH A BOHEMIAN BENT

In the sense that some of the best jewelry seen at this year’s Globes was unconventional, then, yes, I’d have to say they were bohemian. Watching what came down the carpet was, honestly, fun at times: You’d go from not being able to take your eyes off a white ‘n  bright sparkler at JLo’s neck, to looking at a trail of colored gems dripping down Leslie Mann’s rose quartz-colored Monique Lhuillier-covered back--thanks to the creativity of a necklace by Irene Neuwirth. And although the word bohemian isn’t usually the first word one thinks of, on hearing names like Fred Leighton or Bulgari, when I spotted the colored stone collars worn on Sunday by Maura Tierney and Olivia Wilde, the descriptor seemed quite fitting. And despite that the Oscars tend toward being more traditional and straight-laced, given the current zeitgeist for special, I expect we’ll see more like this at the upcoming Academy Awards.

Leslie Mann in Irene Neuwirth collar with cascade of gems dripping down the actor’s back (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Maura Tierney in Fred Leighton gemstone collar (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Olivia Wilde in a vintage Bulgari collar-with-color (Credit: Bulgari)


Trend: APPLAUD-WORTHY GEMS IN GREEN

After the 2016 AGTA Spectrum Awards held its Media Preview in October, I blogged here about green gemstones being the leading color in entries. I really haven’t seen it discussed before or since on fashion sites, and perhaps part of that is because much of the color news has been around Pantone’s Colors of the Year, named soon afterward as a rose quartz and pale blue. Nevertheless, on Sunday evening’s red carpet, green gems popped as the leader in natural shaded sparklers. Emeralds especially.

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Jaime Alexander in emerald earring studs by Lorraine Schwartz (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Taraji P. Henson in emerald and diamond earrings by Kimberly McDonald for Gemfields (Credit: Kimberly McDonald for Gemfields)

Jennifer Lopez in Harry Winston diamond collar and mustard yellow Giambattista Valli with half-cape (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)


Trend: ENTER, EVENING PEARLS

Whether a woman is 18 or 80, thanks to this week’s Golden Globes, jewelry lovers of every age were gifted with the reality that pearls have gotten a seal of approval for red carpet wear. Fashion trend forecasters have been talking of even more blackened gold by the end of this year, and Zendaya’s Yoko London pearl-and-diamond earrings set in black rhodium were a great visual for why such designs will work well.

Jane Fonda in Chopard pearl earrings and Yves Saint Laurent Couture dress (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Cate Blanchette with pearl, diamond, and platinum earrings from Tiffany & Co. and wearing Givenchy (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Zendaya in Yoko London earrings of pearls and diamonds set in black rhodium, and wearing Marchesa multi-tiered dress (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)


Trend: DRAMA-QUEEN RINGS WITH COLOR

Most often, the high-theatrics of Sunday’s Golden Globe rings were achieved with gem color. Truthfully, the diamond designs tended toward traditional at this show. So when looking for uniqueness, ring color was really the crowd pleaser.

Julianne Moore in Chopard jewelry from its “High Jewelry Collection, featuring 18.32 carats of Paraiba tourmalines and 2.98 carats of diamonds set in titanium; blue sequin gown by Tom Ford (Credit: REX by Shutterstock)

Chopard ring from its “High Jewelry Collection, worn by Julianne Moore to the 2016 Golden Globes; featuring” 18.32 carats of Paraiba tourmalines and 2.98 carats of diamonds set in titanium (Credit: Chopard)

Sophia Bush in all Martin Katz Jewelry (Credit: E TV)

Angela Bassett in Maxior Jewels smokey quartz and diamond ring in 18K gold (Credit: Maxior Jewels)

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ldepasque@optonline.net (Lorraine DePasque) Designers/Jewelry Wed, 13 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000
How to Compete with a GOB Sale? Just Let it Ride http://instoremag.com/best-practices/how-to-compete-with-a-gob-sale-just-let-it-ride http://instoremag.com/best-practices/how-to-compete-with-a-gob-sale-just-let-it-ride

When Susan Eisen, owner of Susan Eisen Fine Jewelry and Watches in El Paso, TX, contemplated Christmas 2015, the mental picture was unnerving.

She had learned that two competing stores were planning major going out of business sales.

Eileen McClelland

Managing
editor at
INSTORE Magazine.

W

hen Susan Eisen, owner of Susan Eisen Fine Jewelry and Watches in El Paso, TX, contemplated Christmas 2015, the mental picture was unnerving.

She had learned that two competing stores were planning major going out of business sales.

“We’re all on Main Street here,” she says. “One is a quarter mile down the road; the other is a half a mile up.”

Too close for comfort.

She wondered how she could compete with GOB sales at such a crucial time of the year.

“A lot of us have to deal with that,” she says. “What do you do if you’re staying and everybody else is going?”

In fact, she’d been through it before, just three years ago when another competitor was closing up shop.

“I called 10 national and local marketing companies to try to find out what to do – should I ignore it? Do more advertising? You know what happened? I got 10 different answers, and when I was done I was back at square one. It was like, well, nobody really knows.”

She put her faith in consistency.

“So I just let it ride. The same thing I did on this one pretty much, let it ride, and do what I was going to do regardless. Luckily, for us, everything was fine.”

In fact, she noticed that her average sale went way up for Christmas 2015.

People who wanted to spend $200 to $400 went to the sale, she surmised.

People who expected to spend more, valued their retail relationships, and were looking for something special, came to her store.

“They were our loyal customers and new people, and bridal people,” she says.

She had made a few adjustments with marketing, investing a bit more in digital marketing and search engine optimization. One thing that’s always aggravating in that situation is that customers get confused and think Eisen is going out of business, she says.

“We were very conservative in what we were spending because I didn’t know what the future would bring. I didn’t want to overspend on advertising or merchandise.”

Now Christmas is over, but Eisen can’t rest easy.

Last time a competitor closed, three more moved into the area.

“But you do have an advantage if you know the customers and you know the market,” Eisen says.

 

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eileen@smartworkmedia.com (Eileen McClelland) Best Practices Tue, 12 Jan 2016 00:00:00 +0000