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Does Your Store Really Feel Like a Home? It Should.

There’s no place like home, unless it’s your local jewelry store.

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JEWELRY STORE OWNERS OFTEN say they welcome customers into their store as if they are welcoming them into their home. If you want shoppers to truly feel at home, it’s time to make your store look and feel more like it is a home.

The jewelry store marketplace is changing, and the interior design world is responding to these dynamics. The work, live, and play communities designed for today’s mobile, multitasking lifestyles are driving this change, making sterile, commercial environments look and feel out of touch.

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We are blurring the lines between our working, social and private selves—and interior design is evolving to meet this changing concept of what retail should be.

We all want to shop in a store that is more warm and welcoming than stuffy and cold. Coffee shops, casual restaurants, hotels and other retail locations are being designed with a residential touch. Jewelry stores are no exception.

In recent years, jewelry-store designers have been incorporating residential elements more than ever, to create a more homelike environment in which to shop, something customers have said they crave. For example, chairs and sofas should be a beautiful leather or a soft but durable material. When seated, customers should feel as comfortable and relaxed as they do in their favorite chair at home.

A residential touch — including offering food and drink — reduces stress and anxiety among harried or nervous shoppers. Drink areas, food service and full bars are increasingly popular, for good reason. Crocker’s Jewelers in Texarkana, TX, for example, makes chocolate chip cookies every day to appeal to the sense of smell and set a homey mood.

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To update your own store, consider adding warmer colors, brighter fabrics with a soft touch, wooden floors and porcelain tiles that look like stone or natural elements. Let in some natural light, too, and consider adding chandeliers. Whether they are classic or contemporary, chandeliers can become the focal point of the entire space.

Sometimes all you need is an accent wall of color to create interest in an otherwise bland area. The exciting part about painting an area is that you can change it out in three years and have a new look to your store with very little investment.

Jewelry stores draw inspiration not only from actual residential design, but also from other businesses that have a comfortable, residential feel. I had a client a few years ago ask me to design a “Starbucks” looking jewelry store, which became an INSTORE editors’ choice for interior design.

The new design concept led to sale increases well beyond the owners’ dreams.

Leslie McGwire, ASID Allied is an interior designer for jewelry stores. Learn more at lesliemcgwire.com

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When Sales Beat Projections, You Know Wilkerson Did Its Job

There are no crystal balls when it comes to sales projections. But when Thomasville, Georgia jeweler Fran Lewis chose Wilkerson to run the retirement/going-out-of-business sale for Lewis Jewelers and More, she was pleasantly surprised to learn that even Wilkerson could one-up its own sales numbers. “Not only did we meet our goal, but we exceeded the goal that Wilkerson had given us by about 134%,” she says. After more than 40 years in the business, Lewis says she decided a few years ago to “move towards retirement.” And she was impressed by Wilkerson’s tenure in the industry. Overall, she’d recommend the company to anyone else who may be thinking it’s time to hang up their loupe. “As a full package, they’ve done a very good job and I’d definitely recommend Wilkerson.”

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