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Selling Design: Michael Pace

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Sales advice for designer jewelry.

[h3]Michael Pace[/h3]
VP Jewelry Marketing US for the World Gold Council

[dropcap cap=WE ARE ] at the beginning of a new golden age in which price has become the catalyst for consumers to discover just how precious gold jewelry is. [/dropcap]

Consumers are increasingly considering the intrinsic value, longevity and meaning of their jewelry purchases in a search for fewer but better things. And in this context, gold jewelry has everything going for it.

First, because it is malleable and un-tarnishing and can be fashioned into beautiful jewelry that will look as good in a hundred years as it does now, and second, because it is seen as a clever investment. A great piece of gold jewelry both demonstrates a woman’s investment savvy and allows her to express her fashion personality and individuality.

So what sort of design best enables you to build a compelling sales story?

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Look for designs where excellence in craftsmanship accentuates gold’s preciousness — for example, designs that have beautiful fi nishes. Hammered textures, such as those used by Gurhan or the silk fi nishes used by Marco Bicego, play on gold’s natural warmth as well as its organic and elemental qualities.

Consumers are moving away from large, ostentatious pieces towards smaller, heavier and more precious pieces, such as James Avery’s wonderful collection of tiny charms, which are both playful and beautifully made. Look for pieces that tell a story, building upon gold’s symbolic meaning, which has resonated throughout history. Mattioli produces a ring of wound gold wire, based on Tibetan culture, where each revolution represents a successful year of marriage. What a fascinating way to leverage gold’s history as a symbol of love!

Stories like these focus on the timelessness of gold and justify a higher spend. They also help women who are already relating to gold jewelry as far more than an accessory develop a deeper relationship with a piece, as well as with the jeweler who sells it to her.

[span class=note]This story is from the September-October 2011 edition of INDESIGN[/span]

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