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Outside the Box: Exploration of the Bridal Affair



Aaron Faber Gallery special event

This story was featured in the September-October 2014 edition of INDESIGN.

Aaron Faber Gallery, New York, NY

Aaron Faber Gallery held a “Groom’s Night Out” on a Thursday evening followed by “The Bride’s Day” on Saturday afternoon. The first event, which drew 60 men, featured a Scotch tasting and catering by a Brazilian steakhouse, with lessons on giving a best man’s toast and how to throw an epic bachelor party. The second event saw 100 to 125 people and featured trunk shows by Alishan and Simon G., along with presentations by Nevaeh Lingerie, Sofitel New York, Papyrus and Trafalgar Menswear. — T R A C E    S H E L T O N



How successful was the event?

“We have been selling designer bridal for decades, but it was time for us to reinvent what we were doing. From that measure, it was very successful. It was inspired by my nephew, who wanted to give his girlfriend a rough diamond ring for their engagement. I found Alishan, whom I had known for a long time, and he had just started making these rough diamond rings, which are small and can stack together. With the help of Lilian Raji (of The Lilian Raji Agency), it grew into a very big event.”

How did the men’s event go compared to the women’s event?

“We found a lot of guys came in to look at watches and enjoy our partners’ offerings. But no one bought a wedding ring. We had brought in a lot of men’s jewelry, including wedding bands that were different, combining oxidized silver with gold. They were interested to see it but were not actively shopping for a wedding ring, whereas on Saturday, the women were actively interested in looking for rings.”

What was the impact of having so many great vendors?


“If you’re doing something new and fresh, and you have other partners who are not jewelers, the event is bound to be a hit, and ours was. It’s not a trade show — those have an appeal, but it’s a whole different way to spend the day. This is much more intimate.”

How did you balance vendor needs and client needs?

“You do have to find that balance. A number of vendors decided not to do a presentation. It’s very difficult to speak to a store full of people. They decided the one-on-one time was more valuable. The guests wanted to go around to every station, anyway.”

What were some of the most popular aspects of the event?

“Anything interactive, from trying on watches to tasting Scotch. On Saturday, there was a lingerie vendor with a model. Having that kind of movement in the store was great.”

What was it like working with Alishan for both events?


“He came out for three or four days. He’s a studio jeweler who’s been making bridal jewelry for a long time. He knows the bridal market so well from his decades of doing more traditional bridal, and he worked seamlessly with the guests.”



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Hosting a going-out-of-business sale when the coronavirus pandemic hit wasn’t a part of Bob Smith’s game plan for his retirement. Smith, the owner of E.M. Smith Jewelers in Chillicothe, Ohio, says the governor closed the state mid-way through. But Smith chose Wilkerson, and Wilkerson handled it like a champ, says Smith. And when it was time for the state to reopen, the sale continued like nothing had ever happened. “I’d recommend Wilkerson,” he says. “They do business the way we do business.”

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