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Gems & Jewelry Buying Behavior Survey 2021

Part 4: Consumers’ jewelry style preferences revealed by plumb club research.




THE PLUMB CLUB recently conducted a survey of more than 1,000 jewelry consumers and asked their jewelry purchase preferences across a variety of style and subject categories.

To a great extent, consumers agree (67%) that when they wear jewelry, they wish to wear pieces that express their personality and mood. 64% of consumers say that symbols used in jewelry either do, or to some extent, have the power to convey emotion or to protect.


When it comes to expressing a consumer’s personality, 44% of consumers prefer traditional or classic styling, 20% prefer a minimalistic approach, while 14% prefer contemporary and 12% vintage. Trendy or fun styling preferences came in at 9%.


Overwhelmingly, 78% of consumers say that colorful jewelry lifts their mood and define colorful jewelry as jewelry that contains one color of brightly colored gemstones (43%) or jewelry with a mix of many colored gemstones.

When purchasing color gemstone jewelry, 41% of consumers prefer a neutral palette that might work for more outfits, while 31% want brightly colored gems. Multi-color and pastel preferences were split, each at 14%.


Consumers purchasing pearls prefer white pearls (53%) over color pearls (24%) and generally prefer their pearls in a classic strand styling (52%). 37% of consumers say that when they buy pearls, they like more modern styling.

Consumers’ Jewelry Style Preferences Revealed by Plumb Club Research

For watches, 70% of consumers say that they define their watch style as classic and 24% define their style as vintage. While 55% say they prefer to buy watches with an automatic movement, 42% prefer a classic wind. 37% say they want battery operated movements and 16% like watches with complications.

The findings above were part of an expansive multi-focused study initiated by The Plumb Club, a coalition of 45 best-in-class suppliers to the jewelry and watch industry. The study was conducted in the first half of 2021 with a sampling of 1,049 men and women from ages 25-60 with a focus on 10 test markets across the US. It was done with the help of Paola De Luca, The Futurist and Qualtrics.

Additional information from this expansive research will be shared over the next number of weeks. Any retailer wishing more information on The Plumb Club Industry & Market Insights 2021 should contact a Plumb Club Member. For a full list of The Plumb Club Members visit here or email




When the Kids Have Their Own Careers, Wilkerson Can Help You to Retire

Alex and Gladys Rysman are the third generation to run Romm Jewelers in Brockton, Mass. And after many decades of service to the industry and their community, it was time to close the store and take advantage of some downtime. With three grown children who each had their own careers outside of the industry, they decided to call Wilkerson. Then, the Rysmans did what every jeweler should do: They called other retailers and asked about their own Wilkerson experience. “They all told us what a great experience it was and that’s what made us go with Wilkerson.” says Gladys Rysman. The results? Alex Rysman says he was impressed. “We exceeded whatever I expected to do by a large margin.”

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