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September Fair Brings the Jewelry Trade to the World

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(PRESS RELEASE) HONG KONG – Tens of thousands of professional buyers from around the world gathered at the 36th edition of the September Hong Kong Jewelry & Gem Fair to. They were there to get a firsthand look at the latest collections and solutions of the most creative and innovative minds in the market, spice up their inventories for the coming peak sales period and build fresh connections with their industry peers.

The September Fair brought together 3,730 suppliers from 54 countries and regions – its highest number of exhibitors to date – spread across two premier venues.

The weeklong fair, which kicked off on Sept. 12, drew 54,142 unique visitors. “Unique visitors” are only counted once regardless of the number of visits they make during the exhibition period.

“The recently concluded September Fair has once again demonstrated its unique position as the most professional and international platform for the gemstone and jewelry industry,” said Celine Lau, director for Jewelry Fairs at UBM Asia. “One can see the entire world of jewelry at the show, from colored gemstone suppliers and diamond manufacturers to pearl traders and fine jewelers. We have decision-makers, merchandisers representing major and independent retailers, wholesalers, importers and design houses regularly attending this show. What’s more, it’s all happening in the global city of Hong Kong, which is the springboard to the Greater China market.”

Occupying 135,000 square meters of exhibition space, the fair grouped its displays by product category and was tailored to buyers’ purchasing requirements. Diamonds, colored gemstones and pearls were showcased at the AsiaWorld-Expo (AWE) while finished jewelry collections, and packaging, tools, equipment and industry-related technologies were presented at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre (HKCEC).

Here were some of the September Fair’s major attractions:

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  • The AWE section of the fair featured more than 560 diamond suppliers, over 220 pearl companies and 800-plus colored gemstone specialists
  • More than 1,290 Hong Kong companies launched an unprecedented range of products at the show, making the September Fair the single-largest showcase in the world for jewelry manufactured by Hong Kong companies
  • Strong participation of 26 group pavilions and 17 theme pavilions dedicated to specific product categories and geographical areas
  • A Diamond Preview by ALROSA, the 75th Robert Wan Tahiti Perles Auction, the 65th Paspaley Pearl Auction and more than 10 insightful seminars were held on the show’s sidelines

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Incredible Brilliance

Diamonds sparkled at the September Fair as diamantaires and jewelers made the most out of the show to spread corporate and product brand awareness, generate new sales leads and build on their existing business relationships.

Mahiar Borhanjoo, managing director of India-based Venus Jewel International, shared that for the type of diamonds they polish, +1 carat to 5-carat rounds and fancy shapes – especially emeralds and ovals – fared well at the show.

“In general, we were happy with the footfall and traffic for the Hong Kong show in September. Given the religious observation and the typhoon that hit Hong Kong, we were closed for two days of the fair. But for the days that we were open, we saw good footfall of our customers from the Asian continent, as well as partners from the US, Europe and Australia,” Borhanjoo said. (The September Fair was closed for a day, Sept. 16, due to Typhoon Mangkhut – the strongest tropical cyclone to hit the region this year.)

Jose Batista, one of the driving forces behind fancy color diamond specialist Rio Diamond Manufacturing Corporation of the US, observed that “top pinks and blues, intense and vivids” were among his company’s “most popular items” at the fair.

“I personally feel that Asia is still the best market for fancy colors. The growth is holding steady, which I like because steady growth is better than quick growth in my opinion,” Batista pointed out.

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Another exhibitor that showed off its selection of loose fancy color and white diamonds was Israel-based Imreco Diamonds Ltd. The stones were available in sizes ranging from 30 points and up, and in round and fancy shapes. The September Fair also served as a launchpad for the company’s eternity bands and tennis bracelets.

Kiran Exports (Hong Kong) Ltd observed that demand for fancy-cut, melee, stars and Minus 2 diamonds at the fair had been “very good.” Stones in D-J colors and of VS-SI clarity grades, specifically 30/40/50 pointers, were in “high” demand, both for loose parcels and certified goods. Rounds in lower colors from I-L and of VVS2-SI1 clarity grades likewise generated good sales during the show, the diamond manufacturer noted. The company is known for its wide range of goods, from the smallest up to diamonds of 3 carats and above – both certified and non-certified.

Vipul Sutariya, director of India-based Dharmanandan Diamonds, noted the “very positive mood” at the fair. Dharmanandan is the parent company of Hong Kong-based Dharam Creations. “Overall, the goods that did especially well were stones of 30 points to 1.5 carats, in D-K colors and of VS-SI clarity grades. We have seen good demand in 1 carat up and 5 carats up in lower colors,” Sutariya shared. “We also launched the special cut collection – The Love Facets – that include the world’s ‘Brightest Diamond’ called Sirius Star. We are glad to report that the response to this collection has been extraordinary.”

Thailand’s Viva Collection dazzled September Fair visitors with its collections featuring the innovative illusion diamond setting. “This show is an ideal platform to launch our new collections and network with our target buyers mainly from the Middle East, Europe and the US,” the company said.

US-based Hueb also turned heads at the show with its Luminus Collection, which the jeweler said was inspired by the Rio Carnival. The collection featured diamond clusters in contemporary yet timeless designs.

For Mumbai-based fine diamond jeweler Studio Rêves, the September Fair served as the perfect stage for its statement necklaces, earrings, pendants, bracelets and rings perfectly set with fancy-cut and rose-cut diamonds. One of the studio’s standout creations is a handcrafted bib necklace made of dozens of diamond florets resting on an elaborate latticework in 18-karat gold. The necklace has a fabric-like feel and gracefully rests on one’s collarbones when worn. “Every diamond you see here is cut, polished and manufactured in our India factory,” said Niraj G. Menda, Director of Studio Rêves. “Even the gold is refined by us.”

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SKSM Dia Jewels shone the spotlight on its fancy color diamond jewelry, which uses the company’s proprietary C-Cube technique. C-Cube is “the process of cutting and assembling diamonds to form a composite diamond” with “enhanced brilliance and shade,” according to the jeweler.

Mumbai-based BNM jewelry drew raves for its red-carpet-worthy diamond, sapphire and rubellite suites at the show. “It’s our first time at the September Fair, and I feel this is one of the best platforms to meet international buyers,” said company director Binoy Shah.

Meanwhile, Evgeny Tsybukov, Deputy Director for Sales of Diamonds Alrosa, described the September Fair as a success for his company, which launched the True Colors collection at the show. Diamonds Alrosa is the Russian miner’s diamond cutting and polishing division. “We haven’t brought such a numerous collection of fancy color diamonds to the fair before. We saw great interest from everyone and we are totally satisfied with the results from sales,” Tsybukov said.

The True Colors auction generated US$9 million in sales. The collection consisted of more than 250 pieces of fancy color diamonds that were cut and polished to the highest standards. One of the “hero” stones was an oval-cut fancy vivid orangey-yellow diamond weighing 15.11 carats, which saw its price doubled during the course of the bidding, Tsybukov shared.

Exciting Collections

Loose colored gemstones and finished jewelry collections set with classic beauties such as rubies, sapphires and emeralds, and crowd favorites including Paraiba tourmalines, rubelites, opals, aquamarines, tanzanites, peridots and tsavorites to name a few were among the show’s head-turners. The natural elegance and grace of pearls likewise shone at the fair, with Akoya, South Sea, Tahitian and freshwater pearls across various quality levels and virtually all price points attracting thousands of buyers.

The September Fair also brought together some of the world’s foremost suppliers of top-quality fancy color diamonds, colored gemstones and pearls. Henn GmbH’s Axel Henn, a fourth-generation gemstone dealer from Idar-Oberstein, Germany, described the fair as “very important” since it marks that special time of the year when one will find a high concentration of “the very finest” gemstones in the world in one show.

Ammie Kang, Creative Director of Taiwan-based Top Kang Lapidary & jewelry Arts, impressed buyers with her refreshing take on jadeite, emerald, opal and ruby brooches, bangles, rings and earrings. The designer uses gemstones in unexpected tones and pairs them with unusual materials such as precious agarwood to express individuality.

“Bold colors have dominated jewelry design for some time now. We are seeing a combination of classic and intense colors, and rich color harmonies. Jadeite, ruby, sapphire and emerald are presented in unusual and stylish settings,” Kang said. “jewelry design is no longer limited to what is ‘typical’ and ‘traditional.’ In addition to the exaggerated luxury style, which we will be seeing more of in the coming months, a significant shift towards personalization is in the offing.”

Kenny Chan, Director of PIN (Hong Kong) Ltd, said his company’s tanzanite and colored gemstone jewelry series set at various price points did quite well at the show.

“We want to make our collections affordable to customers. Nowadays, people do not want to place a lot of orders; they only want to buy some stocks for their stores,” Chan said. “We met with buyers from South Africa, Kenya, the US, Tanzania and Bulgaria who purchased tanzanite jewelry in gold and silver.”

Zulu Ghevriya, Managing Director of Hong Kong-based Prism Group, said his team successfully captured buyers’ attention with their Madhubani Collection, launched by Prism’s fairly new brand, Vedantti, and The Connection. Madhubani is art-to-wear jewelry that is inspired by native art originating from a small community in India called Madhubani. Ten percent of the profit generated by this collection will benefit the town, Ghevriya shared.

“We also decorated our entire booth with Madhubani paintings to raise public awareness about this art form. Many visitors actually stopped by to ask what those paintings were all about. We are very happy with the success of our campaign,” he continued.

The Polish Investment and Trade Agency likewise pulled out all the stops to showcase Poland’s major amber jewelry producers. The Poland Pavilion’s key attractions included Polish Baltic amber jewelry in minimalist, bold and sculptural designs, and even accessories embellished with amber and gold.

“The most popular pieces among trade show visitors were jewelry collections that used amber in an unconventional way,” according to the trade agency.

In 2019, the September Fair is scheduled for 16 to 20 September at the AWE and 18 to 22 September at the HKCEC. The new show hours are from 10am to 6pm except on 20 September (AWE) and 22 September (HKCEC) during which the fair closes at 5pm.

What The Exhibitors Say:

“Overall, our participation at the fair was highly successful. We launched the much-anticipated GemLightbox smartphone jewelry turntable solution, which was very exciting for our existing customers and potential clients. We completely sold out and had to put a few customers on the backorder.” – Rocky Yu, Sales Manager, Picup Media, Australia

“We feel that the September show is the primary show globally for the gemstone and jewelry industry, and the ideal location for us to let people know the services that we provide to the industry globally – from education through gem identification and pearl identification.” – Ken Scarratt, CEO, Bahrain Institute for Pearls & Gemstones (DANAT), Bahrain

“This show marked the first time that we presented Shades of Love at the Hong jewelry & Gem Fair. We are very pleased to be here because the fair provides us with a very good platform to attract clients from all over the world, including mainland China.” – Fan Yang, Shades of Love, China

“Despite the ‘typhoon adventure,’ I will always recommend the September Fair to all my customers. I believe that this fair is a must-visit for every jeweler worldwide. Some of my customers from the Scandinavian countries, the UK, France, Belgium, Japan, Korea and Taiwan, among others, have already followed my recommendation and have been attending the September Fair. Our most popular collection at the fair was Morgenröte – the Sunrise Collection.” – Hatem Ben Ali, Sales Manager, AG Gerstner, Germany

“This fair is very important for us because our existing customers come to the September show to see the best of what we have. This is the place where people can buy what they need, from cut gemstones to finished jewelry.” – Imran Khan, Sparkle Gems Ltd, Hong Kong

“GJEPC represents 6,500 diamond manufacturers, colored gemstone manufacturers and jewelry manufacturers. We export all over the world and we take part in a lot of exhibitions. We are very proud to be here at the September Hong Kong show. It obviously is the largest show in Southeast Asia and our exporters depend on this market. It is great to be here.” – Colin Shah, Vice Chairman, Gem & jewelry Export Promotion Council (GJEPC), India

“For us, it is very important that we participate in the September Fair because it is one of the best shows in the world where we can meet with our overseas customers. It is also one of the biggest fairs where we can present our new collections in gold, diamonds, corals and turquoises.” – Michelle de Simone, Proprietor, De Simone Fratelli Srl, Italy

“We participated in this prestigious event, together with the State Diamond Trader, to showcase South Africa’s capability in diamond production, cutting and polishing. We brought with us 10 companies that are doing well in terms of diamond manufacturing in South Africa.” – Godfrey Oliphant, Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources, Republic of South Africa

“We are in Hong Kong to present our new collection, Eternal. Launched in Europe and China, this collection is entirely produced in Spain using the best-quality stones and handcrafted by our team. Everything is made in 18-karat gold, and set with diamonds and sapphires.” – Antonio Calvo Garcia, CEO, Magerit, Spain

“The September Fair is very important to us because we have customers coming from all over the world who visit us here. Here, we present our newest innovations and collections to our European, US and Asian customers.” – Iris Lin, Regal Jewelry Manufacture Co Ltd, Thailand

“[ICA] represents over 650 members – miners, cutters and gem suppliers – all around the world. Our members are here to exhibit in the September Hong Kong Fair. It is a great time of the year for retailers to come and stock up on inventory. We love this show.” – Gary Roskin, Executive Director, International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA), US

What The Buyers Say:

“It is the best show of the year for the trade. I’m always amazed by the quality and quantity of exhibitors, the wide price range, and the service from the organizer.” – Fabiana Fernandes, Executive Partner of New Era Gems, Brazil

“I am satisfied with the September Hong Kong jewelry & Gem Fair; it really serves as an important platform for my business. The network for future use is great. I’d highly recommend the September Fair to my friends or colleagues.” – Cathelijne Klomp, Environmental Projects Manager – Raw Materials & Supply Chain of LVMH Moet Hennessy – Louis Vuitton, France

“With its good mix of quality suppliers from different countries, the September Fair offers manufacturers a business opportunity that one cannot miss. I can always find new suppliers and collect market information at the fair.” – Nirupama Nair, Head of New Business Development of Swarovski India

“This is the most important jewelry show.” – Giovanni Palazzolo, Owner of Giovanni Palazzolo Joias, Italy

“Everything is perfect at the September Fair. The staff are friendly and the instructions are clear. Organizing an exhibition in Hong Kong is the best choice. As an international city, Hong Kong can attract the participation of many overseas exhibitors.” – A. Kharazi of Treding Co, Iran

“I can always find the most up-to-date technologies and modern product designs at the September Fair. There is a diversified range of exhibits from different quality exhibitors, and the pricing is good as well. I am definitely happy with the fair results.” – Kevin Adrian U. Canuto, Manager of Olouvin Jewelers, Philippines

“The fair is the biggest platform for the jewelry business. I can always find new suppliers, collect market information and source the latest seasonal products here.” – Morozkina Julia, Gemmologist at Gemstock, Russian Federation

“We do lots of raw materials sourcing at the AsiaWorld-Expo. The price range is good and fair. I’ll definitely visit again next year and recommend the September Fair to my friends.” – Nayas, Rahamath color Stone Co Ltd, Thailand

“It was very inspiring to see attendees from all over the world gather for the same passion in Hong Kong. It was a very well-organized expo. I recommend it to everyone especially because it is a great opportunity to network, meet amazing people and listen to their experiences and stories. I met very successful people who have been to this event before and they all told me how much they enjoy this exposition and how they come every year with the same energy and excitement. This is very important to hear! For the upcoming years, I would love to be a part of the expo and possibly be an exhibitor.” – Selda Akgul, Founder of Selda jewelry, Turkey

“The fair is well-organized, and the wide array of product choices dazzled me. I did almost 20% more in terms of business orders this year than last year. I’ll absolutely visit again next year.” – Ahmet Ince, Managing Director of Byzantium Collection Ltd, UK

“The fair gathers all kinds of stones and gems under one roof. The wide variety of products available at fair prices made my sourcing trip even better and more convenient.” – Earl Van Senus, Owner of House of Evans, US

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Press Releases

Diamond Empowerment Fund Announces Winners of Inaugural Millennial-Focused Proposal Contest

Winners hail from Tampa Florida.

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(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK – Diamond Empowerment Fund (D.E.F) announced the winners of the Inaugural ‘Real Stories. Real Diamonds. Real Impact’ video proposal contest. A second year of the proposal contest is now being planned.

The winning couple of this year’s contest, Robyn and Austin, hail from Tampa Florida and were engaged at a Balloon Fiesta in Albuquerque, New Mexico. ‘After 6 years together this ring represents our love and commitment, our promise to each other, and our promise of forever’ says Robyn.

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That ‘forever’ will include a trip to Botswana, one of the largest producers of gem quality diamonds in the world, to see firsthand the impact natural, mined diamonds have had on the country and to share their experiences through social media.

Videos were judged by digital media influencers @thediamondsgirl, @greenweddingshoes and @roamaroo with combined followers numbering over 1,200,000.

Propelled by strong retailer engagement in promoting the contest, millennial engagement was high and this success has spurred the Diamond Empowerment Fund to plan for a second year of the contest, to be announced later this year. “The contest is helping boost consumer understanding of the real, positive impact for communities of natural, mined diamonds” says Executive Committee member Rebecca Foerster, president of Alrosa USA.

D.E.F President, Anna Martin, senior vice president of GIA echoes, “Educating the younger generation on the good diamonds do and inviting them to engage in this narrative will help boost consumer confidence in, and ultimately demand for, diamonds”.

The winning video can be seen on DiamondsDoGood.com/myproposalcontest.

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MJSA Launches “Member Protection Package” of Best-in-Class Business Services

It’s aimed at helping its members take advantage of best-in-class business services.

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(PRESS RELEASE) MJSA, the trade alliance dedicated to professional success in jewelry making and design, has launched the MJSA Member Protection Package, a portfolio of member benefits aimed at helping its members take advantage of best-in-class business services.

“Our members face constant challenges, from securing supply chains to ensuring orders are delivered on time,” says MJSA president/CEO David W. Cochran. “They rely on MJSA to help them not only respond to these challenges, but also adapt to change and anticipate potential disruptions. That’s why we’ve assembled a portfolio of leading business providers covering a spectrum of services—from sourcing raw materials to delivering finished products to satisfied customers. We’ve done the due diligence necessary to ensure our members can access the best help available to protect their businesses and remain profitable.”

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The providers range from industry-specific experts to world-renowned brands. In many cases, MJSA members receive discounts as well as additional services—including support from MJSA staff, who can facilitate connections and answer questions.

Cochran emphasizes that the portfolio is by intent a dynamic offering: MJSA will continue to add to it as needs arise, to ensure its members have the best protection possible. Current Protection Package providers include:

  • Shipping Solutions: Parcel Pro. Offering a choice of carriers (including UPS and FedEx), Parcel Pro offers a full range of services, from Next Day to Ground to International. Its technologies enable industry-best procedures to mitigate risk and provide end-to-end protection for high value shipments. Plus, MJSA Premier members are eligible for exclusive rates far below industry average.
  • Precious Metals Leasing and Commercial Lending: TD Bank Group. When Scotiabank decided last year to limit lending by its ScotiaMocatta metals unit, many jewelry manufacturers, refiners, and metals suppliers faced a void. MJSA enlisted the TD Bank Group and its metals subsidiary, TD Securities, to help fill that void. TD Securities leases precious metals to users around the globe, and it has the expertise necessary to help members navigate the metals markets effectively. In addition, qualifying MJSA members who work along the Eastern Seaboard can take advantage of TD’s commercial lending arm (TD Bank N.A.) to simplify the leasing process.
  • Insurance Solutions: Jewelers Mutual Insurance Group. For more than a century, Jewelers Mutual has been the only insurer solely dedicated to serving the jewelry industry. It offers a range of coverage options for manufacturers, suppliers, custom jewelers, and designers, including Jewelers Block insurance and business owners policies. Their offerings range from custom policies for designers (starting at $500 annually) to a full review of a manufacturing operation. For many MJSA members, such consultations can lead to significant savings.
  • Trade Credit Insurance: One Source Risk Management & Funding. Over the past several years, as the jewelry industry has consolidated, many companies have seen their receivables become concentrated among a few core customers—a development that only increases their risk. To help mitigate that, MJSA has teamed up with One Source, the largest independent agent of the global insurer Euler Hermes. One Source offers MJSA members trade credit insurance from Euler and other firms to help protect their receivables in the event of defaults.

For a full list of providers, go to MJSA.org, or contact MJSA Customer Service Manager Betty Costa at 1-800-444-MJSA (6572), ext. 3050, betty.costa@mjsa.org.

To join MJSA and take advantage of this and other benefits, contact MJSA Sales Director Lucy Ferreira at 1-800-444-MJSA, ext. 3020, lucy.ferreira@mjsa.org.

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JA New York Announces Spring 2019 New Designer Gallery Designers

The program continues to foster emerging talent.

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(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK — JA New York announces the 8 designers participating in the spring, 2019 edition of the New Designer Gallery. Aimee Petkus, Julie Lamb, Linda Hoj, M. HISAE, Olivia B., Original Eve, Ravit Kaplan and S. Tree will be making their New York City fine jewelry trade show debut, March 10-12 at the Jacob Javits Center. Their work showcases a varied aesthetic that is certain to appeal to a wide range of retail partners.

“Supporting new designer talent is a primary tenet of the JA New York Show culture,” explains Drew Lawsky, show director for JA New York and PREMIER. “By offering these designers an opportunity to showcase their work in a turn-key booth that is supplemented by the show, as well as providing additional marketing support to highlight their participation, our hope is that we’re able to foster their on-going success.”

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The New Designer Gallery history dates back to 1977, when the then current director of the JA Show, Mort Abelson, saw a need to breath new life into his trade events and set out to find artists to showcase their work. With the introduction of the first New Designer Gallery, which included industry veterans such as David Yurman, the concept of “designer fine jewelry” was introduced into the marketplace. Today, JA New York continues to search the globe for designers in order to identify emerging artists and makers who can benefit from this opportunity.

“One of the highlights of curating this section each year is the sense of community that is created among the designers,” noted Liz Kantner, sales and designer consultant for JA New York Shows. “It’s so fun to be present while these lifelong friendships are being formed; the shared experience of taking the next step in their businesses together establishes a foundation that they continue to build upon for years.”

Designer Theresa Kaz, who formally launched her collection in the New Designer Gallery in Spring of 2018, reiterates this sentiment, “Every step forward in my business has been the direct result of a contact that originated while I was exhibiting in the New Designer Gallery. Friendships with other artists who continue to be instrumental to my business, connections with the media and, ultimately, relationships with stores, all began at the New Designer Gallery!”

The Mort Abelson New Designer of the Year will be presented this year on Monday, March 11 at 3:00pm. Anonymously voted on by a panel of experts, this year’s winner will join a prestigious alumnus of winners that includes Paul Morelli, Whitney Boin, George Sawyer, Eddie Sakamoto, Steven Kretchmer and Alex Sepkus.

For more information about the JA New York Show or the New Designer Gallery, or to obtain high-resolution images or press credentials, please contact Michelle Orman at (646) 302-5521 or via email at Michelle@LastWordComm.com

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