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Jewellery April 2011  

www.jewelleryfocus.co.uk   £4.95

FOCUS

Eternity rings in over 90 styles.

Outstanding quality and service.

Two to three weeks delivery for special orders. 5 Hatton Place, London, EC1N 8RU

t: 0207 831 8573

w: www.eternityrange.co.uk

Adding a touch of glamour with cocktail rings for spring and summer XX Preparing for sales floor sprucing with shopfitting advice from the experts XX The latest ring designs for those feeling inspired by the coming wedding season


CONTENTS

6

Jewellery FOCUS

April 2011 FEATURES Dazzling potential 

22

Hannah Scott follows up on last month’s look at window dressing, this time delivering insider tips from experts in shopfitting and shopfloor display

Marking the occasion 

27

A snapshot of the jewellery sector’s commemorative product offerings as this month’s royal wedding draws ever closer

Focus on wedding and engagement rings 29

22

As we enter the spring season, wedding and engagement jewellery is hot property. Jon Chapple explores some of the latest collections

27

A touch of glamour 

36

A showcase of cocktail rings to suit all customer tastes and budgets, and sure to add instant glitz to a plain outfit

Selling up? 

41

As we begin to move out of recession, Kelly Clark asks: how much longer is the scrap gold phenomenon likely to last?

36

29 41

Regulars 14 Editor’s letter  Roundup 

The latest news from the industry

38

44

Janet Fitch 

As the sun begins to shine once more, Janet takes a look at some of the jewellery designs that are ready and waiting to enhance spring and summer outfits

Keith Fisher 

This month Keith reports on an unfortunate by-product of recent consumer budget tightening – a fast expanding replica and fake watch market that is threatening the industry

8 Ones to watch  10 Trends in timepieces Sam Willoughby  14

20

Sam reminds us of the importance of ensuring that end consumers enjoy the buying experience and feel that their needs are being met

Michael Hoare  16

18 How do they do that? 

The internet holds vast opportunities for those in the jewellery trade, but tread carefully, cautions Michael

Designer of the month 

34

44

In the second of a new series of technical articles by the Birmingham Assay Office, technical director Dippal Manchanda explains the melting process

Taking stock 

46

Leonard Zell 

48

New offerings from the industry

If conducted professionally, cutting in on a sale can help you plug a common revenue leak

38 Events  Industry data  Voice on the highstreet 

With a background in biochemistry and engineering, Alexander Davis is adding a whole new dimension to jewellery design, to stunning effect

Diane Hall of Dower & Hall

49 50 58


8

EDITOR’S LETTER

Editor’s letter T here’s no denying it: February’s industry figures do not make pleasant reading. With the VAT rise fully integrated, and with January sales reduced to just a lonely few items, the month was always expected to take a hit on the highstreet; but the ripples are being felt throughout the wider jewellery industry, with hallmarking volumes dropping by a worrying 30 per cent for the month (as reported by the Birmingham Assay Office) as a result of continued precious metal price rises. Thankfully we are now entering spring, and some much-needed sun will soon be warming the faces of consumers and trade representatives alike. There can be no doubt that improving weather conditions and a plethora of bank holidays will lift the spirits, even if the economic situation itself is little changed. More importantly, with the new season come fresh stock opportunities to cater to the needs of customers with new outfits requiring jewellery enhancement. A cocktail ring for those balmy summer nights out perhaps? A special new bead for mums’ charm bracelets on Mother’s Day? An on-trend engagement ring for a surprise springtime proposal? Or a striking new silver set to glam up a plain outfit? You will find all these ideas and more in the following pages of Jewellery Focus. For further inspiration as you seek to set your business apart from its competitors in the face of adversity, turn to page 22 where you can find advice for considering and preparing for a store revamp, direct from shopfitting experts; and to page 20 where Sam Willoughby discusses the importance of going that extra mile for your customers – whether you are a retailer or supplier – and speaks with some of the companies that are operating innovative and successful loyalty schemes.

Jewellery FOCUS

Editor Louise Hoffman

louise@jewelleryfocus.co.uk

Editorial Assistant Jon Chapple jon@jewelleryfocus.co.uk

Production Assistant Lewis Bowes copy@jewelleryfocus.co.uk

Group Advertisement Manager Kelly Smith kelly@jewelleryfocus.co.uk

Accounts Maureen Scrivener

accounts@jewelleryfocus.co.uk

Customer Services 01206 767 797

customers@mulberrypublications.co.uk

Contributing writers: Dippal Manchanda • Hannah Scott Janet Fitch • Keith Fisher Kelly Clark • Leonard Zell Michael Hoare • Sam Willoughby Design Arthouse Publishing Solutions Ltd 01394 410 490 contact@arthousepublishing.co.uk

In support of:    

I hope you enjoy the magazine and the month ahead.

This month’s cover features

Jewellery Focus

is published monthly by:

ETERNITY RANGE

Based in London’s historic Hatton Garden, Eternity Range has been producing handmade eternity rings for over 10 years using G/VS diamonds and fine coloured gemstones set in 18 carat gold and platinum. The company aims to deliver the highest quality pieces accompanied with reliable, experienced and friendly customer service. After launching a successful range of new designs in 2010, the collection now boasts over 90 different styles, many of which are in stock and can be delivered the next day. A bespoke design service is also available to accommodate specific customer requests, with a delivery time of only two to three weeks and a one-year manufacturer’s guarantee on all rings. The complete collection is available to view online, where interested retailers can also register to view prices and receive a monthly newsletter. Alternatively, an Eternity Range representative can pay a visit to your store. Information: 0207 831 8573 or www.eternityrange.co.uk

Mulberry Publications Ltd, Wellington House, Butt Road, Colchester CO3 3DA Tel: 01206 767 797 Fax: 01206 767 532 www.jewelleryfocus.co.uk

The editor and publishers do not guarantee the accuracy of statements made by contributors or advertisers, or accept responsibility for any statement that they express in this publication. The opinion of the contributors may not necessarily be the opinion of the publishers. Articles are considered for publication on the basis that they are the author’s original work. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying or otherwise, without the permission of the publishers.


D for diamond Jewellery and keepsakes for little boys and girls

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10

ROUNDUP

And briefly New executive vice president at Tiffany & Co Tiffany & Co has named Frederic Cumenal, previously of the LVMH Group, as its new executive vice president, replacing previous post-holder James Quinn, who retired in early 2012. Cumenal, 51, will be responsible for the company’s businesses in Asia, Europe and emerging markets, and will report to chairman and CEO Michael Kowalski. “Frederic brings a wealth of luxury brand experience,” commented Kowalski, “and a highly developed global perspective that will prove especially important as Tiffany’s growth continues outside of the Americas.”

Pure attracts record numbers The Pure London and Pure Spirit shows closed their doors on the 15 February, with a record 22 per cent increase in visitor numbers compared to the previous event. International visitor numbers were also up 12 per cent, with more buyers from Europe and as far afield as Hong Kong, Australia, Japan and the US. Steve Newbold, Pure managing director, said: “The launch of Pure Spirit has been well received by the industry… it’s the first time Pure has had a dedicated young fashion event.”

Retail worker marathon in aid of CARE Workers from across the fashion and retail sectors are being invited to sign up for the Prima Solutions Adventure Challenge cross-country event in aid of overseas aid agency CARE International. The challenge, which will take place on the 21 May in Cannock Chase, Staffordshire, will see teams from across the industry cover a marathon distance by biking forest tracks, canoeing on a river and a trail challenge on foot. For more information or to sign up, visit www.carechallenge.org.uk/primasolutions

CMJ welcomes MeisterSinger The Company of Master Jewellers (CMJ) has added German watch brand MeisterSinger to its portfolio. “I believe MeisterSinger brings a real point of difference to the humdrum world of watches,” said CMJ chief executive Willie Hamilton. “MeisterSinger claims that the watch seems to slow the passage of time – with the lone hand moving in unhurried increments of five minutes around the simple, symmetrical, unfussy dial – and I reckon they are right.” MeisterSinger’s watches are inspired by sundials, and the original single-hand mechanical timepieces first developed in the 17th century. The brand is the second to join the CMJ in recent months, following the arrival of Skagen watches earlier in the year.

Goldsmiths’ Hall graced with official visit by Prince of Wales Their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall visited Goldsmiths’ Hall on the 23 February to meet apprentices, young silversmiths and jewellers and members of the Goldsmiths’ Company. Prince Charles is an honorary member of the Court of Assistants of the Goldsmiths’ Company, and has been a liveryman since 1981. During the visit, the royal couple were shown a demonstration on hallmarking and the new diamond jubilee hallmark, which depicts a young Queen Elizabeth wearing an oversized crown and is to be officially launched in July 2011 in celebration of her diamond jubilee in 2012. It will be available from all four UK assay offices in combination with a statutory hallmark from 1 July. His Royal Highness was also invited to strike the leopard’s head – the mark of the Goldsmiths’ Company Assay Office – onto a small sterling silver plate bearing a laser version of the diamond jubilee mark, which was then presented to the Prince as a souvenir of his visit. Dr Robert Organ, deputy warden and head of the Goldsmiths’ Company Assay Office, said: “We were delighted that the Prince chose to try his hand at hallmarking, to appreciate for himself the high level of skill involved. In effect, he has hallmarked the first piece of silver bearing [the Queen’s diamond jubilee] mark.” The Prince of Wales last visited the Hall in February 2005. This was the Duchess of Cornwall’s first official visit.

Jeweller thwarts armed robbers Chris Hopper, a partner in Harvey Daly Jewellers in Peterborough, has won widespread acclaim after throwing an armed robber over the counter and out of his shop, despite having a gun pointed at his head. Mr Hopper was opening the shop when two men came in – one claiming he was trying to buy a ring for his girlfriend. The other man then pointed a firearm at Mr Hopper’s head while the first reached into a cabinet and began stealing gold rings and jewellery. However Mr Hopper then struggled with his assailant and threw the second robber over his counter, before chasing the pair from the shop. “I looked out the corner of my eye and saw this gun. It is not the sort of thing you see every day but I just saw red and thought ‘how dare they?’” he said. “I thumped the one holding the gun but the other one was trying to grab a fistful of gold chains. I managed to throw him over the counter but I think he got some gold. I then chased him out shouting and screaming.” The robbers fled straight into the arms of passer-by Deivydas Jacikas, who managed to force the armed man to drop the handgun, before the thief shook him off and fled through the grounds of Saint Peter’s Cathedral. Police have released images of the jewellery stolen and appealed for anyone with information about the crime to come forward. Full CCTV video footage of the incident can be viewed on YouTube.

Bond St: seventh highest rent Prestigious London shopping street Bond Street, famed as the home of a number of high-end jewellers’ flagship stores, such as De Beers, Graff and Tiffany & Co, has been ranked the seventh most expensive in the world. According to commercial brokers Colliers International, average rents on the road rose 16.5 per cent last year to £600 per square foot as new developments are put on hold. However, the street did slip from fifth to seventh place on the list, as affluent Far Eastern destinations moved further up. New York City’s Fifth Avenue maintained its number one position, with rents of £1,494 per square-foot.

Trollbeads donates to tsunami fund Fable Trading Ltd, distributor of Trollbeads charm bead jewellery in the UK and Ireland, has announced a donation of 50p from the sale of each limited edition Trollbeads Kimono bead – designed by Japanese designer Nozomi Kaji – towards helping victims of the Japanese tsunami. It will donate monies raised to ShelterBox, a Cornish-based international disaster relief charity. “We hope to raise enough money to pay for at least five ShelterBoxes, which cost £590 each and contain vital items for disaster relief,” said Sarah Morfoot, Fable Trading managing director. Image: Michel Wal


Roundup

Fraud warning for JF readers

Celebrity endorsement

Jewellery Focus has been made aware of a worrying scam that appears to be using the magazine’s name. A few of our advertisers have now received a call requesting donations to charity, with the claim that Jewellery Focus is in some way involved in the scheme. Please be aware we have no idea who these people are and we in no way endorse their activities. We would advise that you do not part with any personal information or money to any such callers.

Firth continues Green Carpet Challenge at Oscars Livia Firth, the wife of award-winning actor Colin, has continued her ongoing ‘Green Carpet Challenge’, flying the flag for Fairtrade Fairmined jewellery at the 83rd Academy Awards on the 27 February. The Green Carpet Challenge, devised by Livia and journalist Lucy Siegle, is an effort to see if Livia can wear only ethicallysourced fashion and jewellery while accompanying her husband throughout the film industry’s awards season. Her jewellery at both the Golden Globes and Oscars awards ceremonies was provided by way of a collaboration between Brightonbased designer Annaloucah and Fairtrade specialist CRED Jewellery. Both sets of jewellery are to be auctioned at the end of March, with all profits going to Oxfam. Of her involvement, Anna said: “It is fundamental in this work to recognise the origins of the materials and the generosity and highly dedicated work of the suppliers involved. “The launch of the Fairtrade gold standard marks a monumental shift in the jewellery industry. It says that we as jewellers and consumers are taking responsibility for our impact on the lives of thousands, and starting to work together to ensure that through fairness and equality jewellery truly is a thing of beauty. I am very proud to have been a part of this project.”

High street looking to the future after somewhat stormy February The high street is looking forward to a ‘spring bounce’ after the latest figures from accountancy firm BDO LLP confirmed retailers were forced to weather a stormy February. With January sales and VAT-freeze promotions finished, and St Valentine’s Day the only event of any significance, mid-market retailers had been bracing themselves for an “ugly” February, said Don Williams, head of retail and wholesale at BDO. Overall, like-for-like sales in February were flat at +0.3 per cent. “Consumers’ nervousness about the future meant this was always going to be the toughest month in a tough quarter,” commented Williams. “With fewer trading days, February is a miserable month for retailers at the best of times. “However, there are chinks of light for retailers. First, although flat, sales are still growing. Secondly, in four weeks it will be April. That means brighter days and three bank holiday weekends in a row for people to hit the shops. “When we are looking back at 2011, the numbers won’t be inspiring, but they won’t be awful,” he added. Further evidence of the difficult trading environment is evident in the latest figures released by the Birmingham Assay Office, which show a dramatic 30 per cent fall in hallmarking volume during February. Economic uncertainty and continued rises in the prices of precious metals are among the factors held accountable.

Christina Hendricks, Vivienne Westwood The Palladium Alliance and Dame Vivienne Westwood have revealed Christina Hendricks as the face of the British fashion designer’s new ‘Get a Life’ palladium jewellery collection. The Mad Men actress lent her classic beauty to a series of campaign shots to launch the limited edition collection, which takes inspiration from pagan symbols and the natural world, featuring prominent oak, acorn and heart motifs to “represent strength, power and hope for change to make the environment better for the future.” “Christina is the embodiment of beauty, and we were delighted to have been able to involve her with this new jewellery collection,” commented Dame Vivienne. “Her style is just so complementary to my designs. She has proved to be the perfect model for the campaign.”

11


12

ROUNDUP

Houlden Group announces 2011 strategy at membership event Jewellery- and watch-buying organisation the Houlden Group has held a management and buying event for members in London in order to reveal its strategy for the year ahead. The meeting, which took place from the 21 to the 23 February, featured a number of discussion groups; high-profile guest speakers, including chief executive Stuart Laing, the National Association of Goldsmiths’ Michael Hoare and the Jewellery Show’s Julie Driscoll; and a suppliers’ exhibition, which showcased some of the latest jewellery collections from the Group’s roster of designers. The Group also announced that its membership fee will be cut, and new members are to benefit from six months’ membership free of charge. “2011 is set to be another tough year for the industry,” commented Stuart Laing, “but by attending the event, our members have been equipped with everything they need to plan for a positive and successful year ahead.”

inhorgenta reports increased visitor satisfaction for 2011 The organisers of the 2011 inhorgenta show, held between the 25 and 28 February, have reported the best ratings from exhibitors and visitors since the first post-event customer poll held in 1996. Sixty-four per cent of visitors rated inhorgenta ‘very good’ to ‘excellent’ overall, while an additional 32 per cent rated it ‘good’. With more than 32,000 visiting industry professionals from 79 countries, the trade fair also experienced a visitor increase of two per cent. “We are very pleased that exhibitors and trade fair visitors appreciated our efforts to develop inhorgenta into a marketand trend-oriented event,” said Klaus Dittrich, chairman and CEO of organisers Messe München GmbH. “We will continue to consistently expand inhorgenta’s position as the trend barometer for the entire jewellery and watch industry.” The 2012 show will be held from 10 to 13 February.

FT journalist to be keynote speaker at BJGF meeting Peter Marsh, manufacturing editor of the Financial Times, will be the keynote speaker at the British Jewellery Giftware & Finishing Federation’s (BJGF) annual general meeting, due to take place at the Birmingham NEC on the 23 June. Marsh will be focusing on the future of British manufacturing, examining the UK in relation to the rest of the world and explaining how the changes of the past few years might be making Britain a good place for manufacturing in the 21st century. The president of the Federation, David Metcalfe, said: “We are delighted to welcome Peter as our guest speaker. As manufacturing editor of such a prestigious title as the Financial Times, he’ll be able to help shine significant light on… the prospects of manufacturing in the UK and what it means for the members of the Federation.”

IJL offering prize draw to help get jewellers online International Jewellery London (IJL) has teamed up with internet marketing agency Adaptive to offer retailers and designers the opportunity to enter a prize draw to win the design of a new ecommerce site for their business. A new winner will be announced each month leading up to the show in September, with the final winner announced at the event itself, and the initiative is set to provide a boost for the lucky few at a time when the retail environment is evolving and many consumers are purchasing products online or at least researching trends and products before shopping in-store. “Over the last decade, the internet’s share of consumer spending has risen consistently year-on-year – something that is unlikely to change in the foreseeable future,” commented Markus Goess-Saurau, director of marketing at Adaptive. The prize draw can be entered via the IJL website at www.jewellerylondon.com/prizedraw, and is open to anyone with a product to retail.


ROUNDUP

Hong Kong International Jewellery Show sees worldwide attendance The organisers of the HKTDC Hong Kong International Jewellery Show have reported a record attendance of 37,000 buyers and 2,800 exhibitors at the five-day event, which closed on 8 March. As jewellery companies from around the world sought to cash in on the lucrative Asian jewellery market, the show saw its buyer numbers increasing by a total of 16 per cent. Guests came from a total of 46 countries and regions, with buyers from emerging markets such as India, Russia and the Chinese mainland out in force. “This is our first visit to the Hong Kong show,” commented Karri Pasqualini, a fashion jewellery and sterling silver buyer for Sears Canada Inc. “We’ve met many gracious people wishing to do business with us; so far, we’ve established contacts with four potential suppliers. Hong Kong is a valuable sourcing place for us.” Christopher Slowinski, president of US-based Christopher Designs Inc, another first-time exhibitor to the show, added: “We are very happy to be here, as the show brings us a large number of customers from across the world. We are negotiating with several new customers involving potential orders worth up to US$8 million.” The 2012 show will take place from the 16 to 20 February.

and briefly BGI appoints Alan Collins The British Gemmological Institute (BGI) has appointed Professor Alan Collins, emeritus professor of physics at King’s College London, as a special advisor to the BGI on diamond spectroscopy. Professor Collins has carried out research on the physics of diamonds for more than 47 years, and is recognised internationally as a leading expert on the origins of colour in gem diamonds. “His respected work in the field of diamond treatments is one of the world’s greatest contributions on the subject,” said the BGI.

Tensator launches ROI calculator Queue management solutions specialist Tensator is aiming to help retailers turn significant revenue losses into profit with the launch of a specialist ROI calculator. The calculator, at www.tensator.com, assists retailers in understanding and identifying potential revenue leaks and maximising sales opportunities from existing customers. Kevin Hickson, general manager at Tensator, stated: “We understand that there is increasing pressure on retailers to grow their sales and profit margins, particularly in the current economic climate. We’ve created our ROI calculator so that retailers know how much they needlessly lose annually from walk-aways. We’re giving them the information they need to stop this and turn losses into profits.”

WatchShop.com times X Factor auditions

New head office for H S Walsh Kent-based supplier of jewellery tools and equipment H S Walsh & Sons Ltd is to move its head office to new premises at Biggin Hill Airport. The company, which supplies tools, materials, clocks and equipment to the trade, has branches in London and Birmingham, but has for 42 years operated mainly from a Victorian building in Beckenham. “We see the move as a tremendous opportunity to capitalise on our very sound business,” the company said in a statement, “and with our user-friendly building we will be even more efficient and in a position to give our customers, from all around the world, an even better service. “All the current staff will be coming with us and bringing their vast knowledge with them, and we’re all looking forward to some country air!”

Thomas Sabo opens new store in the Lakeside shopping centre German jewellery brand Thomas Sabo has opened the doors to its 34th UK retail store. The 498 square foot shop, located in the Lakeside shopping centre in Thurrock, Essex, officially started trading on the 25 February. The company said it chose Lakeside for its “good customer base” and “fantastic footfall”. Jonathan Ainsley, director of asset management at Lakeside’s parent company Capital Shopping Centres, said: “Thomas Sabo has built a loyal fan base of shoppers with its high quality ranges, and further adds to an already strong portfolio of jewellery retailers within Lakeside.”

The first round of auditions for ITV talent show The X Factor, which began in London in the first week of March, are being timed by watch retailer WatchShop.com. The company is supplying The X Factor production team with Casio Retro Chronograph timepieces to enable them to log filmed footage of hopeful contenders for editing purposes. “We were contacted by the production team and were glad to supply the watches,” said director of WatchShop.com Kishore Naib. “We think it’s a great opportunity to assist the team as they develop this iconic series.”

Demand for fancy pink diamonds continues to grow The global demand for large pink diamonds is showing no sign of abating in 2011, with Christie’s of New York predicting offers of between US$12 and 15 million for the 10.09 cushion-cut ‘Fancy Vivid’ purplish-pink diamond it is planning to sell on the 12 April. “Collector demand for large coloured diamonds has never been stronger, especially where pink diamonds of this size and quality are concerned,” said Rahul Kadakia, Christie’s head of jewellery.

Seiko announced as FC Barcelona sponsor The Seiko Watch Corporation has announced that its Seiko brand has been appointed the official watch partner of the Barcelona football club. The brand will benefit from marketing and visibility rights for three years with FC Barcelona, known as one of the most successful football clubs in the world. Announcing the partnership, Javier Faus, the vice president of FC Barcelona, said: “We are convinced that this relationship will further encourage both brands to continue their work for excellence and success.”

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14

TRENDS

All things bright and beautiful As the sun begins to shine once more, Janet Fitch takes a look at some of the jewellery designs that are ready and waiting to enhance spring and summer outfits

W

hat an exciting month we have to look forward to – Mother’s Day, now as unmissable as Valentine’s Day, and Easter, another time for celebration and a welcome bank holiday. And then the build-up to the royal wedding, and the intense speculation about the dress and jewellery designers, not to mention an extra day off work for many, if not all of us. Meanwhile I’ve been trying to assess and process all the fashion and accessories information from the recent shows; everything from the Jewellery Show at Spring fair, to Pure, the fashion-led show where accessories continue to become ever more important, and of course the London, New York, Milan and Paris shows. At Spring Fair I was pleased to see Marisa Hordern, creative director of Missoma and winner of the Best UK Young Jewellery Designer of the Year 2008 award and the Coutts New Jeweller 2009 award. After a six month sabbatical, she has produced stunning new collections, also shown at Baselworld – the Deco and Serpent ranges in her signature 18 carat gold vermeil with semi-precious stones, and, by popular demand, a sterling silver range with retail prices starting from a competitive £29. Missoma is now in partnership with IBB, which aims to grow the business to an international level. (www.missoma.com)

Colour is the theme for the foreseeable future, as I said earlier this year. Penny Grivea, general manager of Folli Follie, says: “This spring is all about colour for Folli Follie. Our Match and Dazzle collection combines rings, bracelets, necklaces and earrings in an array of vibrant colours. Allowing customers to create their own bespoke piece, the collection is designed to mix and match through a variety of bold colour beads and charms. You can pile up beads and charms on hoop earrings, or stack them on a necklace or bangles to create one-off pieces tailored to your summer outfit.” Folli Follie is currently focusing on its ‘vertical families’ to offer co-ordinating accessories across bags, scarves, watches and jewellery, which will see collections like Match and Dazzle expand and evolve to suit consumer needs. (www.follifollie.com)

Folli Follie Missoma


TRENDS

Dower & Hall

Noor Fares Mix and match are trends that continue to sell well. Dower & Hall’s new Viva collection encapsulates this theme, with stacking rings, curled hoop earrings, the hugely popular beaded friendship bracelets, and ‘build your own’ pendants in powder blue, African orange, hot pink, intense indigo, flame red and crisp white enamel, all on silver. (www.dowerandhall.com) At the Pure London show, Nick Bartley of Lucas Jack enjoyed huge buyer interest in his new fluoro/neon range in vivid green, red and shocking pink resin, with 24 carat gold plate. There are big statement rings, bright stackable rings embellished with gold stars – a strong feature this season – and drop earrings. (www.lucasjack.com)

The catwalk shows, sadly for the jewellery commentator, rarely include jewellery, unless the fashion house has a range of its own. The autumn/winter show of Issa London (the label beloved of fashionistas, and now famous for creating the flattering blue dress worn by Catherine Middleton for the announcement of her engagement to Prince William) was a shining exception, with the fine jewellery of Noor Fares – a Lebanese designer whose work is influenced by her Middle Eastern background – adorning the brand’s catwalk models. The designs are striking and tactile, with long gold sautoirs and dark ebony cuffs, and each piece is identified by the mark of a tiny secret protective eye – the Eastern symbol of good luck – crafted in gold with a miniature sapphire iris. (www.noorfares.com) One of Britain’s rising young ethical design stars, Clementine James, showed her new collection, Beautifully Dismantled, at London Fashion Week. She has been selected by Selfridges to show her pieces in store and in a window display, as one of the UK’s top 20 up-and-coming designers. Little Glass Clementine weaves together once loved and discarded objects, like antique jewellery, watches, bones and old gems, to make unique, intricate and personal necklaces. (www.littleglassclementine.co.uk)

Little Glass Clementine Lucas Jack

15


16

Watch this space

Accept no imitations Keith Fisher reports on an unfortunate by-product of recent consumer budget tightening – a fast expanding replica and fake watch market

I

have just received some sad news. There is a dramatic resurgence in the purchase of replica watches. This disturbing trend, I am reliably informed, is in part being caused by the limited and restricted buying power that prevails in today’s cash-struck environment. Not just in watches, I hasten to add, but in handbags, jewellery and clothing. People I speak to on a daily basis are concerned that the purchase of replica watches has yet to peak, and that spells crisis in my book. Readers of this column know only too well my feelings on the matter. The world of watches alone reflects craftsmanship of the highest order, and for that to be devalued by cheap, imitation rubbish is a sad indictment and reflection of today’s values. But I had to discover for myself just what is going on, and lo and behold the internet is littered with a plethora of fake and replica watch sites, advertising imitations from every world class watch manufacturer, including Rolex, Cartier, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Franck Muller, Vacheron & Constantin. You name it and a close or exact replica watch is available to buy at a mere fraction of the cost of the original. I spent a few days researching these sellers, but what upset me the most was that some are actually fighting each other for ‘authenticity’. By that I mean they rubbish other sellers by claiming that they offer ‘inferior’ fakes. Not all replication is illegal (though it does still raise moral questions), but when it comes to the actual counterfeiting of watches, help is (thankfully) at hand in the great name of Chanel, which has made it a top priority to stop the sale of such products. Chanel continually monitors the internet and auction websites, and takes action where appropriate including filing civil lawsuits and lodging criminal complaints against counterfeiters.

In an exclusive to Jewellery Focus the company has issued this stark warning: “To the counterfeiters, bear in mind that we are watching and we are taking action!” The company continues: “Counterfeiters sell poor quality products. Customers may think they are getting a good deal but more often than not the product will quickly break, fade or just fall apart. Counterfeiters often engage in other unlawful conduct, such as identity theft and failing to deliver goods that were paid for. Counterfeiters may be part of organised crime networks or terrorist groups with profits often used to support their activities. Counterfeiters do not pay taxes, leading to millions of dollars in lost revenues that would otherwise go to cities and states from the sale of legitimate goods.

“Customers may think they are getting a good deal but more often than not the product will quickly break, fade or just fall apart” “Like many criminals, counterfeiters routinely ignore the law. While internet service providers and hosts claim to prohibit counterfeiting they generally do not pre-screen postings. Chanel has repeatedly requested that auction sites take direct responsibility for monitoring their sites and for ensuring that unlawful merchandise is not offered for sale.” There you have it. But the most severe, and yet most simple warning I would give to any customers buying a fake watch is this: if you are caught by the law enforcement agencies wearing a fake watch on your wrist you are liable to be prosecuted. Need I say any more?


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18

NEW TIMEPIECES

The Rock, new for spring from the Marc by Marc Jacobs collection, has a silicone-wrapped stainless steel bracelet and chronograph dial. Available in three sizes (men’s 46mm, mid-size 40mm and women’s 28mm), its distinctive graphic elements, large indexes and sporty bezel contrast with metal cases in rose gold, yellow gold and stainless steel. The collection also offers more low-key styles in all-black and gunmetal. Information: 0844 412 3277 or www.fossil.co.uk

Ones RRP: £200

to watch

The Altitude, new from Kennett watches, is a Type 316L stainless steel timepiece with Miyota quartz movement, dome mineral lens and black PU rubber strap with black PVD stainless steel buckle. Available in black and blue, black and Arctic white, black and pink, black and viper red, black and traffic yellow, black and coffee, and lava red and Med blue models, all Kennett watches come in a presentation box and are covered by a two-year warranty. Information: 0844 911 1853 or info@since1853ltd.co.uk RRP: £180

Taking inspiration from modern-day yacht building, the case of Breil’s Essence utilises the cutting-edge hull ‘shell’ structure, thus ensuring very high protection against impact and allowing for the use of materials not normally utilised within case construction, such as glass. The use of this unusual material adds an eye-catching luminosity and lightness. Available in 38mm and 40mm case sizes, and in black or white. Information: 01628 770 988 or www.breil.com RRP: From £225

In honour of legendary mountaineer and brand ambassador Apa Sherpa, Suunto is launching a limited edition outdoor sports instrument – the Core Extreme Edition Everest. Celebrating Sherpa’s world record 20th summit of Mount Everest, the Core Extreme Edition Everest reflects the determination and strength of one of the world’s greatest living mountaineers. Information: 01276 404 800 or www.suunto.com RRP: £230


20

Industry

Customer loyalty Whether you are a retailer or supplier, going that extra mile for your customers is imperative, says Sam Willoughby

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Images: Jersey Pearl

Sam Willoughby is event manager for International Jewellery London (IJL).

ontemporary customers have high expectations. End consumers want to enjoy the buying experience and they also want to feel that their needs are being met. The same goes for trade relationships – our UK jewellery industry is very connected and close, and people want to do business with people they like, and people who will deliver in terms of meeting and exceeding expectations. Customers have more choice than ever and the world of retail is just a click away, but I believe it’s still possible to maintain customer loyalty. Designer Kleshna hit the nail on the head when we spoke about customer loyalty, commenting that it’s important because “leaky buckets don’t hold water for long and are costly.” Many companies are now coming up with innovative ways to maintain customer loyalty in addition to providing good service during the initial sale. Communication is a great way to do this, and this can be done online efficiently. I would definitely recommend e-newsletters, with a word of warning that it’s best to avoid bombarding customers. Jersey Pearl had a nice idea when it launched its ‘Friends of Jersey Pearl’ initiative online last year. It allows loyal customers to receive updates about news, collection launches, and interesting pearly facts to inspire them – they can also support their retailers by announcing new stockists and local events. “We believe that it’s the experience we give our customers that will determine our relationship with them. From where they buy our jewellery, to how they feel opening our packaging and wearing the pearls. We also look to build on this experience by explaining where the pearls come from and what makes them special, as well as looking after them by guaranteeing the jewellery and offering to restring it for free after two years,” said Mike Taylor, wholesale director. I also asked Mike how the company works with its 200 stockists to further enhance the buying experience for customers, and he commented: “We develop these relationships in a number of ways, for example we recently

launched our retailer friendly shop-in-shop furniture. We have also initiated a full pearl training programme, which helps our jewellers, and their staff, to sell Jersey Pearl jewellery confidently by educating their customers. We run Jersey Pearl days with our stockists to help promote our brand locally, and we help our retailers advertise the event for a few weeks beforehand and work with their network of customers to get people in on the day.” Brands such as Jersey Pearl are obviously very pro-active in their approach, but I think it’s also useful for retailers to take responsibility for making sure there is a good dialogue with any designers and brands they stock. As the jewellery creators, they may have ideas and suggestions that could work well to promote their individual collections. Many jewellers are also focusing on their own loyalty schemes. Cove Jewellery in Hampshire, for example, has just launched a new Platinum Loyalty Card scheme at the start of the year asking customers to ‘refer a friend’, which will allow them to build up points. When they reach a certain point, Cove’s founder and goldsmith Marc Johnson will commission a piece of jewellery in either nine carat gold or palladium worth £500 for them. He told me: “Customer loyalty is of parallel importance to the products and services that any business offers, which is more noticeable in smaller businesses with a more select number of clients. However all businesses will experience repeat custom based on their credibility, quality of product and customer service.” Designer Kleshna summed up the reasons for focusing on customer loyalty perfectly: “Keeping existing customers is the lifeblood of a business and the cornerstone upon which we need to build our business. For us, if we can keep our existing clients happy and build on them it is the wisest method of growth for our business.” Kleshna was also straightforward in her approach, stating that “the only way to do this is to provide impeccable service, answer queries as soon as possible and be easy to get hold of.”


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Shopfitting

Dazzling potential Hannah Scott gets insider tips from shopfitting experts on how to make your jewellery store stand out from the crowd

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alking down any UK highstreet, colourful and attention-grabbing shop fronts catch the eye, but there is a certain aura emanating from an elegant jeweller’s shop; a suggestion of affluence made accessible. It is that hint of luxury among the common highstreet names that beckons passers by to feast their eyes on the glittering displays. A truly well-designed jeweller’s setup will also appeal to a range of customers to reflect the range of items it carries.

It is no exaggeration to state that the look and feel of a jewellery shop is almost as important as the stock it holds. The dazzling items require an equally attractive environment to invite customers and encourage sales. A shabby shop front and a substandard floor can really let down the sparkling jewels on display, failing to turn passers-by into customers. With this in mind, shop owners cannot afford to ignore the importance of the appearance of their shop. Whether opening a new store or simply planning to update an existing one, there are a number of areas shop owners should take into consideration when planning a refit. First and foremost it is hugely helpful to hire a full service shopfitter, who will be involved from the initial planning phase right through to delivery. This article has gained tips and advice from some of the key players in the jewellery


Shopfitting

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Clockwise from left: Fraser Hart, Davril and Michael Matthews all by Hallmark Design

“Branding is back in fashion, and this trend can be incorporated with adaptable showcases” shopfitting industry to provide practical guidance on this issue. The first consideration to be made is the importance of customer experience. David Griffin of Hallmark Design offers his viewpoint: “We appreciate that it is easy for shop owners to fail to recognise the potential of their space. One of our first tasks is to judge shoppers’ perceptions of the shopfloor and how what is on offer meets their needs,” he explains. “It is always a concern of our clients when refitting their stores that we might frighten away

their regular customers by trying to pander to the expectations of a newer clientele.” This is a worry noted across the industry, and one that shopfitters are keen to dispel. Lori Watts of Watts Design explains: “We aim to create a brand and shopping experience that suits existing customers, while enabling the store to draw in new interest.” Stewart Harding of Southern Gem Displays outlines his tips to appeal to a range of clientele: “Bright colour attracts old and new customers and is a great way to make the display stand out. We have found that regular changes to just a few items have enabled our clients to make great improvements in sales. A strong, well laid-out display also works well for smaller groupings with less clutter.” He goes on to describe how to make best use of space to put customers at ease: “Shop owners


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Shopfitting

really need to consider the best positioning of displays and cabinets, so there is good access in and around the store. For example, it can be helpful to provide areas for children to be entertained away from parents.” David suggests further ideas in terms of space: “Clients must separate volume sales from high-end sales, which can be achieved by creating exclusive areas where special customers can be cosseted.” It is this sort of inventive use of space that sets a well-planned jewellery store apart from its competition, allowing it to win that shopping Holy Grail – new customers. When aiming to pull in the new shoppers, fashion and trends also play a vital role. Stewart outlines display trends he has observed: “We have noticed that clients are particularly concerned with having something bespoke and not just a generic import. Our in-house paint shop enables us to create season display blocks to add colour throughout the year. Displays for charm beads are also of interest.” Lori offers her view on current trends: “We are seeing lots of ‘shop-in-shop’ at the moment, with branded design cabinets becoming ever more popular.” David has also noticed this trend for brands: “Branding is back in fashion, and this trend can be incorporated with adaptable showcases. If required we will also factor in the space needed for a brand’s furniture.” While accommodating current fashions, the distinction must be drawn between timeless style and passing fad. Lori has recognised that an adaptable style makes for an enduring design: “We like to create some form of flexibility in our shop fits to allow our customers to rearrange as trends change. Our shop fittings are expected to last some time so classic, timeless, highquality is key.” Back on the shopfloor, the function of the display furniture necessitates a theme of simple elegance that runs throughout the store, allowing the displays to do their job. Lori advises: “It is vital that clients do not over-design and engineer the displays and fittings; after all, the aim is to sell the jewellery – not the display cabinets! The shop fittings must enhance the jewellery products to their absolute best.” The practicalities of shopfitting require a number of basic areas to be considered, as Lori outlines: “It is crucial to ensure that each of our designs incorporates easy floor flow, good light and use of space, and plenty of storage. This makes the job easier for staff and in turn allows them to make the store efficient for the customer.” In fact, when it comes to jewellery shop fitting the beauty really is in the detail. It is the practical considerations that a shop owner takes into account that really allow the store to display its wares effectively. The more effort is put in behind the scenes, the more effortlessly stylish the store appears – ultimately it is the backstage planning that really carries the success of the store.

“Shop owners really need to consider the best positioning of displays and cabinets, so there is good access in and around the store”

Top and Bottom: Watts Design, Centre: Eric Ross by Southern Gem Displays

Supplier listing Apple Display & Shopfitting: www.appledisplay.co.uk Designing Interiors: www.designing-interiors.co.uk Hallmark Design: www.hallmarkdesign.co.uk IWM Designs: www.iwmdesigns.co.uk Jewellers Display Consultants: www.jewellersdisplayconsultants.co.uk Pearce Displays: www.pearcedisplays.co.uk Southern Gem Displays: www.jewellerydisplays.com Watts Design: www.wattsdesign.co.uk


quality comes from tradition ������������

������������������������������

Experience, innovation and production all based in England

Watts Design, Kingdom Fields, Bratton Fleming, Barnstaple, N. Devon EX31 4EN Tel: 0844 5611932 or 01598 710215 Email: info@wattsdesign.co.uk Web: www.wattsdesign.co.uk


Royal wedding

Marking the

occasion

With the royal wedding fast approaching, here is a snapshot of the jewellery sector’s commemorative product offerings ¬¬

Chamilia To commemorate the wedding of Miss Catherine Middleton and Prince William in April, custom jewellery company Chamilia has introduced a special royal engagement bead to its collection. This exclusive engagement bead features two large, oval Swarovski sapphires surrounded by a total of 32 Swarovski crystals.

¯¯

C W Sellors Available only from C W Sellors boutiques, this limited edition charm bead celebrates the greatest royal wedding for three decades. The mouths of the sterling silver wedding bell design are set with two British gemstones – Derbyshire Blue John and Whitby Jet. Meanwhile, the waist of each bell features an engraved C or W, and a wedding bow crosses the reverse, symbolising the union of the couple.

Information: 0844 811 2142 or www.chamilia.com/uk

¬¬

Claudia Bradby This and another necklace based on a design collaboration between Claudia Bradby and Kate Middleton now form part of Claudia’s heritage collection, which has been created to mark the royal wedding. “Kate has a great sense of style,” Claudia says. “She remains classic but with a youthful twist, so it’s a great compliment that she wears my designs.”

Information: 01335 346 561 or www.cwsellors.com

Information: www.claudiabradby.com

¬¬

Royal London Providing for jewellery and gift retailers looking forward to the great merchandising opportunities offered by the 29 April 2011 royal wedding, Royal London has created a limited edition commemorative pocket watch featuring HRH Prince William and his bride-to-be Miss Catherine Middleton. The watch is limited to just 500 and includes an image of the couple along with their names and wedding date etched on the front. Royal London’s new wedding themed charms are also fittingly commemorative, with designs including carriages, bouquets, tiaras, bells and wedding cakes.

Gift Time Gift Time Products of Reading has produced a limited edition State Coach Clock to celebrate the 2011 royal wedding. Presented on a piano-finished wooden plinth and boasting intricate gold and chrome plating, the clock is supplied with a commemorative certificate of authenticity/guarantee card showing the unique limited edition serial number of the clock. The polished plate is engraved with the details of the royal wedding.

Information: 0207 370 4300 or www.royallondonwatches.co.uk

Information: 0118 947 1405 or www.gift-time-products.co.uk

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27


1101CM 1/4pg JP.Qk:Layout 1

We’re now in London. Visit us in Hatton Garden from 1 May 2011 Plain Mounts

Diamond-set Mounts

Diamond Eternity Rings

Birmingham Office

London Trade Counter

303 The Jewellery Business Centre, 95 Spencer Street, Birmingham, B18 6DA

The Heart of Hatton Garden, LG Floor, Unit 4, 32 Hatton Garden, London, EC1N 8DL

Tel: 0121 523 1028 Fax: 0121 523 1098 Email: info@xmcworld.com

8/3/11

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Getting hitched

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wedding and engagement rings Focus on

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With the spring wedding season just around the corner, wedding and engagement jewellery is hot property again. Jon Chapple explores some of the latest collections

W

ith spring fast approaching, and, with it, the traditional time of year for weddings, retailers will be looking to keep ahead of the competition with a good selection of competitively-priced, on-trend wedding bands. Although the past few months haven’t been kind to the high street, analysts are predicting that the market should soon shrug off its post-Christmas gloom and pick up with the coming of better weather conditions, so retailers should be prepared for customers to spend a

bit more on that perfect ring, especially compared to this time last year. With the inexorable rise of palladium and silver showing no sign of slowing, it seems certain that 2011’s wedding market will be dominated by white metals, with simple, elegant, diamondset pieces, royal wedding-inspired sapphires and modern twists on the classic solitaire ring also in vogue. “White metal is very popular at the moment,” affirms Baird & Co, adding: “People want the brightness and colour of platinum, but without the price.”

Tru-White is Baird & Co’s solution; its own brand of palladium, made from 100 per cent pure platinum group metals, allowing the wearer to get the ‘platinum look’ for less than the cost of 18 carat white gold. The company says it has recently seen a steep rise in the sale of palladium wedding bands, especially for men’s rings. Baird & Co has also increased its Bianco patterned range by 50 per cent. In addition, some of its new designs are diamond-set, with many styles perfect for both men and women. All can be seen in the company’s new free catalogue, out now. Cymru Gold’s wedding rings are made truly unique by the addition of pure Welsh gold; the gold traditionally used for royal wedding rings. The Welsh gold is either incorporated into the

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Getting hitched

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nine carat or 18 carat alloy of the rings, or, in the case of its latest Pure range, layered as 24 carat into the patterns and inscriptions of ‘Forever’ wedding rings or Celtic-themed bands. Many of the designs have matching engagement or eternity rings, and all products come with a certificate of authenticity, packaged in the company’s trademark Welsh dragon boxes. Eternity Range is this year continuing to maintain its focus on the manufacture of handmade eternity rings. With an extensive collection of rings available from stock, from classic favourites to innovative new designs, the company is able to send out approval as quick as the next day. Eternity is also renowned for its bespoke design service, which can create a ring to custom specifications with a delivery time of two to three weeks. “The coupling of expert craftsmanship and our in-house design team is essential to our awardwinning success,” says Diamond by Appointment, which has created three new styles of on-trend platinum bridal bands designed to sit perfectly together.

“The use of platinum to mirror the brilliance of fine diamonds, coupled with precision setting and an exceptional bright polish are all hallmarks of our brand,” adds the company. The latest version of the Diamond by Appointment website has a striking new look, enabling stockists to dial into a full inventory for immediate purchase and fast delivery. XMC International is a specialist manufacturer of plain mounts, diamond-set mounts and diamond eternity rings. The company has an extensive range of mounts and designs, including its popular collection of matching wedding sets, plus rings, earrings, earring studs, pendants and bracelets, with new designs being released every month. All designs are available in a range of head sizes, in 18 carat gold and platinum, and a bespoke design and CAD service is available on request. Treasure House offers buyers a comprehensive range of quality rings in silver, platinum and nine and 18 carat yellow and white gold, with guaranteed next-day delivery. Contact Treasure

House for more information and a copy of its mounts, findings and wedding bands brochure. Based in the heart of Birmingham’s famous Jewellery Quarter, Hockley Mint manufactures an extensive collection of wedding rings, engagement rings, cast components, findings and precision-engineered jewellery parts. Hockley has recently added to its Wedfit Precious Bands range of plain and diamond-cut wedding rings, introducing more platinum and palladium to stock. “The last year has seen major developments at Hockley Mint, especially for wedding ring production,” says the company. “Our Wedfit mounts feature contemporary designs combined with the unique ability to fit flush against a standard wedding ring with no gap in-between.” Wedfit bands are available in all popular diamond shapes and sizes, and come complete with brochures and accompanying CDs, containing images for use on the web or printed materials. AML Wedding Bands has just released its fourth edition catalogue


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Getting hitched

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for 2011, displaying the new lines that have been added to its extensive range of traditional, plain, diamond-set and modern bands with a twist. To help its customers keep costs down in 2011, the company is giving away a free wedding ring box with each order, plus a free pouch to help the best man on the big day and an extended 90- and 180-day credit facility. MarryGold, located in London’s historic Hatton Garden jewellery quarter, offers a wide variety of both traditional and contemporary wedding and engagement rings, including intricate ranges of diamond-cut, dualcolour and Celtic-style designs, plus services such as diamond cutting and milling and hand engraving. Available in nine and 18 carat gold, platinum and palladium, Gemelite offers a great range of full- and 2/3-size eternity rings. “By keeping a large stock of these rings, we aim to give jewellers a

quick turnaround,” the company states, “and with our solitaire rings to go with these, you have the perfect combination to offer your customers.” Domino’s new wedding and bridal collection offers a broad and comprehensive range of designs in a range of alloys, including new plain profiles, diamond-set bands and shaped wedding rings, plus a men’s collection. The plain profiles now include a lighter-weight flat court profile, as well as a number of size extensions to the court and d-shape profiles, while its diamond-set collection has been extended with guaranteed carat weight bands, diamond-set shaped bands, diamond-set men’s designs and a selection of diamond-set eternity and duo rings. Domino’s men’s collection includes plain, diamond-set, textured and diamond-cut designs. Its finishing touches range has also been refreshed,

allowing the customer to personalise plain band designs. PH Wedding Rings is enjoying a busy year, with the company stating that it’s “beating the recession” with the introduction of its extensive 44-page A4 catalogue and fullyinteractive, newly-launched website. All PH rings, which come in a variety of classic and contemporary styles, are made from start to finish in the firm’s London workshops. Call now for a copy of the catalogue, or password to enter the PH website. Now in its 251st year in business, Betts Metal Sales offers a bespoke finishing service to its wide range of stocked wedding rings, including the latest palladium designs, which are proving very popular with men. The company has also recently established a complementary range of diamond-set rings; some complete, but some with the centre stone uniquely unset.

1) AML Wedding Bands: 01270 874 011 • 2) Baird & Co: 0207 474 7444 • 3) Betts Metal Sales: 0121 233 2413 4) Cymru Gold: 01242 239 163 • 5) Diamond by Appointment: 028 9024 0339 • 6) Domino: 0121 237 4937 7) Eternity Range: 0207 831 8537 • 8) Gemelite: 0800 023 2952 • 9) Hockley Mint: 0121 242 0042 • 10) MarryGold: 0207 405 8103 11) PH Wedding Rings: 0208 203 1919 • 12) Treasure House: 0207 400 0000 • 13) XMC International: 0121 523 1028


Where to find high quality wedding bands, mounts, findings, and finished diamond jewellery

contact us now for your copy of our brochure

45 Kirby Street, Hatton Garden, London,EC1N 8TE Tel: 020 7400 0000 Fax: 020 7400 0010

Wedding & Bridal ColleCtion Available to view at the London Trade Counter

The Heart of Hatton Garden Lower Ground 32 Hatton Garden London EC1N 8DL T +44 (0) 207 430 2914 E trade.counter@dominojewellery.com


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Comment

Unsocial networks The internet holds vast opportunities for those in the jewellery trade, but tread carefully, cautions Michael Hoare

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ight now, if my inbox is anything to go by, the most popular training courses are about getting the most out of social networking. Hardly a day goes by when I don’t get an invitation to attend a course where I will learn about the effective use of the internet and social media to drive business growth. The idea is to harness Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Google to create a community of interest, which will in turn lead to bigger sales. It’s one stage on from viral marketing – the current big thing in marketing – and it clearly works for those companies that have employed it to best advantage. Take Levi’s for example, which ran a crossmedia campaign in the summer of 2010 for its new collection that included encouraging people to become a fan of its Facebook page. It increased its fan base by 35 per cent and now has nearly 2.7 million, while its website traffic doubled 15 minutes after a 40 per cent off offer was posted on the page. Or Gap, which in December 2010 pledged to donate $1 to charity for every ‘like’ of its Gap Want campaign. The advert has had about 5,000 ‘likes’ so far, with more than 1.2 million people becoming a fan of the retailer’s profile since it joined Facebook. Or ASOS, which has nearly 400,000 Facebook

fans and posts ‘Daily Discoveries’ mined from its main site, as well as style competitions and ‘flash sale’ announcements. So it is clearly big business, not least for those selling the ‘how to’ courses and manuals!

The key objective, of course, is to create a ‘community of interest’ who buy into the idea, brand or lifestyle that is being promulgated The key objective, of course, is to create a ‘community of interest’ who buy into the idea, brand or lifestyle that is being promulgated, or share the same beliefs as those doing the talking. It’s the basis on which all trade associations work, so the idea itself is not new. Back in the olden days of my childhood, retailers had local highstreet shops, and they developed a community of interest by talking to their customers and understanding their lives. But because that’s no longer possible, and the ‘community’ may be flung far and wide, we need to use new tools to achieve the same ends, hence the internet. Jewellers have in the past relied heavily on a very personal approach to business, so it’s hardly surprising that recent ‘research’ by a software provider shows that jewellery brands and retailers are not cashing in on social networking. Clearly there is some catching up to do, and the NAG will be doing its bit to help, but before jewellers take the leap they should be mindful of some of the pitfalls inherent in this approach; once committed, there is no going back, and what at first might seem like a cheap and cheerful marketing tool may become an albatross around your neck if you don’t have the


resources to see it through. And by that I don’t just mean money! The internet is not the sole preserve of the young, but it is a fact that having been brought up in a computer-based environment they take more readily to the medium. So the age of your target ‘community’ will influence your success and how you communicate. Plus, social media sites aren’t a broadcast medium. The traffic isn’t all one way and they rely on action and reaction. So, ask yourself, are you comfortable writing persuasive informal text, and can you keep it up day after day and night after night? Considering the websites that haven’t been updated since the year dot, the evidence isn’t looking good! Take into account the amount of precious time wasted reacting to your email inbox, and the time commitment is pretty clear. And have you, personally, got heaps of sparkling ideas with which to entice your eager waiting community? Describing your breakfast every day simply won’t cut it! And, what happens when you want a break? Going silent for a fortnight isn’t an option, so wave goodbye to uninterrupted holidays; your life will never be your own again.

“Once committed, there is no going back and what at first might seem like a cheap and cheerful marketing tool may become an albatross around your neck if you don’t have the resources to see it through”

But these aren’t reasons not to proceed, just why you mustn’t assume it’s a cheap option. It takes resources, both human and financial, and there are reputational risks too. It’s all well and good when your community love you, your ideas, service and product, but what happens when they don’t? Or, more likely, when a vocal minority, or disgruntled customers don’t! In the olden times a retail mantra stated that ‘a happy customer will tell his best friend about you and an unhappy customer will tell everyone’. That was in the days of neighbourhood gossip, and today the internet has given rumour an exponential boost. Just look at current world events to see the power of social networks and the inherent risk if they disseminate unfettered and un-moderated comments about you. Finally, if you commit to marketing this way, you’d best also give some thought to what will be the ‘next big thing’, because as surely as night follows day, when the pioneers and devotees of social networking realise that the medium has been debased and exploited by marketers, they will move on faster than you can say Facebook. I guess that’s what we call progress folks!


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Cocktail rings

Ana de Costa

Ana’s designs have been influenced by a mystical set of Tarot cards, introduced to her by a spiritual lady and an important inspiration in Ana’s life. This special set of cards, called the Faerie Oracle, symbolises an expression of an artistic freeness of mind, and inner sense of calm – a story that is explored through Ana’s designs. Two of the main characters from this story are the muses for one of Ana’s collections, which includes two cocktail rings; the intricate design of faerie wings is seen across all of the pieces. Carefully sculpted white gold forms the setting for the intoxicating tanzanite stones, and each piece is delicately hand crafted to feel luxurious and decadent. Information: info@anadecosta.com or www.anadecosta.com

A touch of

glamour

Bold statement pieces can add instant glitz to a plain outfit, and with a vast range of designs and price points available there is a cocktail ring to suit all tastes and budgets, as demonstrated by the following selection…

Andrew Geoghegan

The Satellite joins an impressive collection of inspired engagement and cocktail rings by award-winning designer Andrew Geoghegan. The soft curves of precious metal and stone allow the wearer’s sense of touch to be stimulated, as well as providing a visual feast. The ring is available in diamonds, 18 carat gold and platinum, with many stones including fire opal (pictured), peridot, citrine, rutilated/ tourmilated quartz, ruby and sapphire. Information: 0113 307 0100 or www.andrewgeoghegan.com

Roberto Coin

Roberto Coin was founded in 1977 and operates with a central aim of bringing happiness to the jewellery wearer through good product design. Pictured above is a selection of its latest cocktail ring offerings, including the Mauresque peach gold ring with prasiolite. Information: sales@robertocoin.com or www.robertocoin.com


Cocktail rings

London Road

The Sloane collection is comprised of a selection of stylish cocktail rings sporting distinctive, cabochon-cut gemstones such as pale pink rose quartz, orange/brown rutilated quartz and grey/brown smoky quartz set in nine carat gold. The brand’s jewellery is designed by brother and sister team Ed and Suzanne Adams, directors of a third generation manufacturer of fine jewellery. Made in the UK, the distinctive and colourful collection seeks to pay homage to the excitement, colour and diversity of London. Information: 0844 871 8454 or www.londonroadjewellery.co.uk

Carat*

Luxury fashion jeweller Carat* was founded in 2003 and now has a number of prestigious boutiques in cities around the world. Its aim is to offer a quality alternative to natural gemstones, which can provide the wearer with a taste of glamour, as demonstrated by the ‘Midnight Cocktails’ collection, which draws inspiration from the cocktail party era. Information: sharon@carat.co or www.carat.co

SHO Fine Jewellery

The Clementina cocktail rings by Sarah Ho (left) were inspired by memories of the jewellery worn by her grandmother. They are available in silver and silver vermeil with a combination of blue lapis, black agate, green aventurine or brown tiger’s eye, each combined with complementary coloured sapphires. Meanwhile, the V-Seal cocktail rings (right) were inspired by the decadence of v-seals from the refined Victorian era. Geometric lines, a distinctive logo and explosive colours form these beautiful stylish designs. Each piece of quartz is specially cut and surrounded by sapphires to create a ring to be noticed. Information: 0207 436 6443 or www.shojewellery.com

Mancini

These oversized statement pieces are the perfect adornment for any dinner party, function or night on the town. The bold and glamorous Bellezza rings from Mancini are all made from sterling silver – some gold- or rose-gold-plated – with eye-catching semi-precious stones such as tiger’s eye, blue sandstone and onyx. The company adds that there are designs to suit every taste. Information: www.mancinijewellery.com

Lucas Jack

Offering a luxury feel at an affordable price, Lucas Jack has created these deep-hued stones set in chunky 24 carat gold-plated rings. Information: 0845 257 7418 or info@lucasjack.com

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DESIGNER

Mastering the science Question: what do you get when you cross biochemistry with jewellery design? Answer: an award-winning jeweller called Alexander Davis. Louise Hoffman meets the man himself… I understand you have a background in science and engineering, so what led you to a career in jewellery design? I got the bug for making jewellery during ‘silverwork’ classes at Eton College, where I had a music scholarship. I love hand-making things and trying to come up with ideas that haven’t been tried before, and experimenting with new concepts. After completing a degree in biochemistry at Imperial College London, I returned to making jewellery and drew influences from my scientific studies. I had already begun to develop the ideas behind my current Dendritic collection, focusing on molecular branching patterns, but it was during an internship at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, working for the founder of the Human Genome Project, when I first came up with the idea for a DNA pendant that depicts each wearer’s unique genetic sequence in its design.

I’m also keen on architecture and aviation, so some of my work takes stylistic cues from these. From the very beginning I have utilised unusual materials such as carbon fibre, which is used frequently in aircraft construction; its weave provides a great surface finish, which is durable and light, however it’s a pain to handle!

How does this understanding and appreciation of scientific and technical concepts influence your work?

Since I’ve neither been trained as an apprentice at the bench nor had a traditional art school training, my approach has always been different. I insist on making everything myself, so I’ve had to learn a lot of things as I go along. I tend to build pieces of jewellery as if I am constructing a building, and when I design settings for gemstones I think of the engineering issues behind the construction, and exploit these to produce slightly more unusual designs. I think it gives my work a structural quality and means that the piece looks equally good from every angle.

What kinds of design aesthetics do you look to incorporate into each piece?

I like to work in a number of different styles but I have principles and styling cues that I carry throughout all my designs. I like my pieces to be dramatic and flowing; I love sweeping between different forms. Colour is very important to me and I use a wide variety of gemstones to achieve different colour combinations. I think each piece must have an overall balance, which is hard to quantify, but you know when you’ve got it right or wrong.

Do you have a favourite combination of precious metal and stones?

I love atmospheric, violet shades in gemstones, such as tanzanite, purple tourmaline and amethyst – their colours are so luscious! They also work really well with 18 carat white gold, without rhodium-plating, so that the golden tones add life to the piece. Sometimes I contrast them with green tsavorite garnets or sapphires, to give a natural balance in colour.


DESIGNER

Are you currently working on any new designs?

I’m designing a new collection due out in the summer in collaboration with Amber Atherton of My Flash Trash. The collection is called Deadly Nightshade (above), after the lethal flower favoured by Victorian poisoners. I’ve taken its floral shapes as a starting point and it has developed from there. Although very stylised, it’s going to be quite daring, and I don’t know how all the pieces are going to work out. Some are going to be quite different from my previous work, so it’s a bit of an adventure for me.

What are the stories behind your collections to date?

As previously mentioned, I started gathering inspiration for my first collection – Dendritic (which is Greek for branched) – while at university studying biochemistry, although I didn’t actually make the pieces until several years later. I thought that the branching patterns of molecules could produce a varied, colourful and most importantly attractive range of jewellery (below right). I added to this collection with my DNA pendant (above); every time one is commissioned, we carry out a blood test on the client and send the sample for DNA sequencing in the lab. We look for a unique stretch of their DNA and assign colours to their four-letter genetic code, which become the four colours of gemstones that wrap around the platinum helix of the pendant. The theoretical chance of any two pieces being the same is 7.2 thousand billion to one! My second collection, Dark Romance (below), was inspired by medieval architecture and the regal jewels of the Middle Ages. While at school, I used to stare up at the cathedral ceiling during Sunday service and marvel at the vaulted arches. I used to read books chronicling the tales of the kings and queens of England in their velvet fineries. The luscious and vibrant colours informed my choice of gemstones for the collection, which features tanzanites, rubellites and amethysts, mixed with sapphires and tsavorite garnets.

What have been some of your most unusual or impressive commissions?

My research work in surface data mapping, which involved the application of a data stream to a metal surface, has led to some interesting commissions. These have included accurately mapping the surface topology of the Grand Canyon, Victoria Falls and Leaping Tiger Gorge onto gold bands, and all the buildings in Washington DC mapped onto a cross. The buyers can look down at them, saying: “I was there!”

I believe you’ve had a rather successful run of award wins recently. Can you tell us more? I was incredibly lucky to receive Design Innovation Awards for my DNA pendant and my Diadem ring (facing page), and then in the summer I won the New Designer of the Year Award at the UK Jewellery Awards 2010. I was really surprised and honoured, and it was a great way to launch my new boutique in Duke St, London.

Finally, what are your business plans for 2011?

My new boutique store in Duke St, London, near Selfridges, is definitely the focus of my plans in 2011. It is a cosy, Dickensian shop beside the beautiful gardens of Manchester Square and is the perfect environment for a by-appointment atelier, where I can meet with customers and design pieces especially for them. I’m also stocking the work of a few friends, such as William Cheshire and Jig Pattni. It provides my regular customers with some fresh work to see and buy.

39


Scrap gold

Selling up? As we begin to move out of recession, Kelly Clark asks: how much longer is the scrap gold phenomenon likely to last?

W

e’ve all seen the adverts on television in recent months, urging viewers to swap their unwanted gold for cash. We’ve watched queues gather at local market stalls where money is handed over for old and broken pieces of jewellery. And now, even supermarket giant Tesco is cashing in on the high price of gold by taking on the pawnbrokers. But what has sparked this phenomenon and how long can it continue? At a recent seminar, Michael Allchin, chief executive and assay master at the Birmingham Assay Office, put the issue in perspective. He said: “According to the Goldfield Mining Survey, the amount of gold scrapped in the UK in 2009 amounted to 59.4 tonnes. The year before that was 38.7 tonnes. How likely is it that this level of scrap coming back into trade can be sustained? If you look at the amount of gold hallmarked by the four assay offices in the UK between 1975 and 2010 – 1,154 tonnes – there would be a 19-year supply at that rate! Yes, there’s lots of gold out there, but that level of scrap is not sustainable.”

“How likely is it that this level of scrap coming back into trade can be sustained?” Mr Allchin said there are three different categories of jewellery in this country – bridal, special gifts and women’s self-purchase. “If you have bought jewellery for yourself, you will not hesitate to scrap it, but you will probably never get rid of sentimental jewellery,” he said, adding: “The challenge for retailers is to get those who do not need the money to scrap their gold. My wife has scrap gold, but doesn’t even think about selling it as she doesn’t need to.” He also believes certain parts of the market will continue to stay strong, regardless of the scrappage phenomenon: “The women’s self-purchase side of the market has changed and people are buying silver or costume jewellery as it is more affordable. The amount of new items of jewellery

41


42

Scrap gold

wanted is in decline as gold is very expensive, but the value of gold being sold has never been higher. What that seems to say to me is the sentimental market, to a certain extent, holds up. People are always getting married, and people are always having special birthdays and anniversaries, so from time to time people will buy something in gold which is expensive.” Simon Rainer, CEO of the British Jewellers’ Association, believes the cashfor-gold phenomenon is showing no sign of stopping yet. He said: “The cash-for-gold market is still strong. The fact that the likes of Tesco have got on board demonstrates a belief that there is more of a market out there. As the price of gold rises, people may decide to scrap those pieces of jewellery they were keeping back.” Mr Rainer urged people to be sure of who they are dealing with before handing over their gold: “As an association, we ensure retailers adhere to regulations and sign up to a code of ethics. Customers need to do their research before getting involved with any companies.” So, has the recession forced us to scrap our gold to make some easy money? Mr Allchin isn’t sure that’s the cause. He said: “The recession has made a bad situation worse. From 2002 onwards, we have seen the price of precious metals rise and the amount of gold going through our offices in decline. The recession followed that and created the perfect storm. “We are in a similar situation to 1980 when oil prices went through the roof as we went into recession. The amount of gold hallmarked that year halved compared to the year before. We are at the bottom of the cycle now, but we will come out of it.” Peter Roper, industry specialist, believes the recession has pushed people to hand over their gold to boost their finances: “The scrap gold phenomenon is likely to continue in the UK for as long as the recession, combined with a reluctance by banks to lend money. “Scrapping unwanted or broken items of jewellery is a very simple and straightforward way to get some muchneeded additional cash without getting yourself into serious debt. The alternative money providers, such as doorstep lenders, charge rates of interest that can see struggling families get deep into debt for many years. Selling unwanted jewellery items incurs none of those risks.” Whatever the true cause, the phenomenon could become a pivotal time for gold, according to Michael Hoare, CEO of the National Association of Goldsmiths. He said: “My view is the cash-for-gold phenomenon has brought the idea of realising the value stored in jewellery into the mainstream. A trade that was almost exclusively the preserve of the pawnbroking sector is now highstreet business. There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with that, in my view. As long as the customer uses a trusted jeweller and gets a fair price for the gold, then everyone’s a winner.

“ The cash-for-gold phenomenon has brought the idea of realising the value stored in jewellery into the mainstream” “Of course, current interest is driven by the desire to ‘cash in’; either as a consumer getting a few quid in return for a box full of broken bits and bobs, or as a dealer speculating on the gold price. But longer term, this phenomenon might just change our thinking forever. On the one hand, consumers will become habituated to churning or recycling their jewellery from time to time, rather than storing it away for posterity – which could be considered a good thing for the trade! On the other, there is the downside risk that gold becomes commoditised, in much the same way that diamonds have. Once the mystique of jewellery goes out of the window, it will be very difficult to sustain the pricing model we have relied upon for years.”

Images courtesy of Hatton Garden Metals: www.hattongardenmetals.com


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44

How do they do that?

Melting In the second of a new series of technical articles by the Birmingham Assay Office, technical director Dippal Manchanda explains the melting process

O

ver the past two years the jewellery trade has become accustomed to the fact that precious metal prices are rising on a daily basis, and many members of the trade have made a significant amount of money from buying and selling scrap. In 2010 an extraordinary 1,650 tonnes of fine gold was fed back into the global gold supply chain. But what happens to the scrap between the customer selling it and it being recycled back into the supply chain? Recovery of precious metals has always been an integral part of the jewellery industry. Despite involving very high value materials, the physical process is totally unregulated, although the commercial process is controlled by anti money laundering legislation. Melting scrap to recover the precious metal content is not an exact science and it is worth traders understanding the process to avoid financial loss. Scrap for metal recovery may be clean, even unworn fine jewellery, or precious metal articles mixed with base metal pieces such as watches or gem set pieces. At the other end of the scale are automotive catalytic converters containing a low level of platinum/rhodium and polishing mops and other process ‘sweepings’ discarded by manufacturing jewellers, which inevitably contain tiny amounts of gold and other precious metals. With fine gold at £28 per gram every speck counts. Whatever the form, the precious metal needs to be raised to its melting point to separate it from the other unwanted materials present. Broken crucibles, sludge, polishing dust, rag and mops etc bearing low percentages of precious metals need to be crushed, broken down or incinerated to reduce the bulk before being melted. The process varies from material to material. The actual melting is carried out in a furnace, which will heat the scrap material to above its melting temperature – 1,100ºC for gold, 900 to 1,000ºC for silver, 1,500ºC for palladium and 1,550 to 1,800ºC for platinum. Furnaces vary

Adding scrap to the furnace

Dip sampling


How do they do that?

Focus on the expert Dippal Manchanda MSc CSci CChem FRSC

Pouring molten gold into a bar mould

Dippal Manchanda is the chief assayer and technical director at the Birmingham Assay Office, responsible for maintaining high analytical standards and providing scientific and technical expertise in all divisions of the business. Dippal holds a master’s degree (MSc) in inorganic chemistry and has over 26 years of experience in assaying and the examination of precious metals and alloys. He is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and has attained the level of membership of ‘Chartered Chemist’. The UK Science Council has awarded him the status of ‘Chartered Scientist’, a recognition awarded to those scientists who demonstrate the application to stay up-todate in their field.

Melting scrap to recover the precious metal content is not an exact science and it is worth traders understanding the process to avoid financial loss from small ones, which will take a maximum of a kilogram of material, up to cavernous constructions, which will melt tonnes at a time. If a jeweller or pawnbroker wants their scrap to be melted as a separate lot to create an individual saleable bar, it is obviously important to source a melting facility with an appropriate sized furnace. Depending upon the apparent content of the melt, other substances may be added to improve the process. Copper collects precious metals preferentially from low value material. Flux will be introduced to make a slag to release trapped precious metal and to encourage the scrap to form a homogeneous mass. When the material becomes molten the slag rises to the surface and may be skimmed off, taking with it other non-metallic debris. Depending upon the type of material submitted for melting it may have to undergo two or three melts before it is sufficiently homogeneous to be assayed to obtain acceptable results. The objective of the experienced melter should be to create as clean a separation of the metal and slag as possible, and to create a homogeneous bar. This is a bar that

has the same precious metal fineness throughout, rather than patches of unmixed metal where the precious metal content may be higher or lower than in the remainder of the bar. The method of extracting a sample from the bar for testing or assaying in order to determine its fineness is extremely important. There are various options: small samples can be drilled from various points of the bar, and the results compared and averaged if necessary to offset the impact of non-homogeneity; while other melters may favour cutting samples from the corners of the bar. In ideal circumstances a ‘dip sample’ will be taken from the molten metal when it is being stirred in the furnace, providing the best opportunity to capture a truly homogeneous and representative sample of the melt. The Birmingham Assay Office conducts this process using vacuum-sealed glass tubes to gain the most accurate results. The resulting bar can be sold on to various different parties and will eventually reach a refinery where it will be refined back to pure fine precious metal and will begin its journey all over again.

The Birmingham Assay Office was founded in 1773 to provide a hallmarking facility to the rapidly expanding local silver trade. Over 235 years it has become established as the largest UK assay office. During the past decade the Assay Office has expanded its services further, far beyond its statutory assaying and hallmarking duties, and offers independent expert opinion on every aspect of the precious metal, jewellery and gemstone trade.

45


46

TAKING STOCK

¬¬

From sunny daisies to fluttering butterflies, the D for diamond 2011 spring collection includes delightful new jewellery and a new watch for little girls, in addition to its existing signature christening gift range. The Daisy locket and matching bracelet feature delicate engraving and cheerful enamel detailing, perfect for treasuring sunny summer memories, while the D for diamond watch features an eye-catching dial design that helps children learn to tell the time; the brand’s signature diamond set in the watch face; and a genuine leather strap. Information: 01376 532 000 or sales@geckojewellery.com

Takin Taking

stock ¯¯

¯¯

Made with a variety of precious and semiprecious materials, amalgamated with fine Czech crystal and available in a variety of eye-catching colours, the new range of bracelets, earrings, necklaces and rings from Tresor Paris aims to create elegance at prices everyone can afford. Information: 0203 355 4031 or info@tresorparis.com

¬¬

Chamilia has released a limited edition 2011 Mother’s Day bead – the ‘Infinite Love’ – as a perfect gift to either add to an existing piece of Chamilia jewellery or as the starting point of a collection. The bead is made of sterling silver with eight large cubic zirconia stones inside a heart-shaped setting, with a further six smaller, clear cubic zirconia stones. Combined with beads in mums’ favourite colours and styles, children of all ages can create a truly personalised Mother’s Day gift that can be worn throughout the year. Information: 0844 811 2142 or www.chamilia.com/uk

Valencia Silver is a family business that has specialised in sterling silver jewellery for over 35 years. Its collection consists of bangles, bracelets, cufflinks, earrings, necklaces and pendants in plain silver, genuine freshwater pearls and semi-precious stones with rhodium plating. The range is constantly updated, with many new designs due to be added to the collection this year. Valencia’s complimentary window display continues to be a big hit, and is available subject to minimum order terms, along with other point of sale material. The winter sale on selected lines has been extended to the 31 March. Information: 01342 718 777 or sales@valenciasilver.co.uk


TAKING STOCK

±±

¯¯

Charms UK has an extensive variety of exciting designs made in sterling silver with enamel, Murano glass, simulation pearl, coloured CZ, crystal, leather and gold plate. The company has a choice of over 350 clip-on charms to complement its necklaces and bracelets. Please call for a current brochure and more information. Information: 0117 968 3979 or sales@charmsonline.co.uk

London-based Pay4Later is offering a paperless point of sale finance solution that promises to make life easier for retailers. Customers fill out a simple online form, and then sign their credit agreement by clicking on-screen. Decisions are instant, so the retailer can complete the sale there and then. Pay4Later says the system helps retailers grow sales both online and in-store. Jewellers already using the system include the Diamond Store, Steven Stone and Neve Jewels. Discounted rates are available to Company of Master Jewellers and British Jewellers’ Association members. Information: 0800 021 7150 or www.pay4later.com

­­

Sema Sezen, designer and owner of Tezer, has this season taken inspiration from the unique texture of lace. Delicate and pretty jewellery is the focus, with the collection taking the delicate intricacy of lace and transforming it into a beautiful sterling silver collection of necklaces, bracelets, pendants, earrings and rings. The necklaces are adaptable to be worn either long or short, and are also available in gold plate. For more information, please contact UK sales agent Sharon Acton. Information: 07774 928 045

­­

Since its foundation in 1983, Apple Display & Shopfitting Ltd has established itself as one of the UK’s leading shopfitters. From initial consultation and design, through to manufacture in its 26,000 square foot workshop and installation by its experienced fitting team, Denton-based Apple provides standard and bespoke products with prices to suit all budgets. Information: 0161 335 0660 or www.appledisplay.co.uk

47


48

Selling

Help close that sale!

Cutting in on a sale is not necessarily a bad thing – if conducted professionally and with good reason it can help you plug a common revenue leak, explains Leonard Zell

I

Now is the time to increase your sales. Leonard will be scheduling seminars in the UK beginning in March and April. For details of his programme go to his website, , and click on the links in the left-hand column. You may email Leonard at or call him on 001 503 412 9521 (Pacific time). To increase your sales get Leonard’s best-selling 180-page sales manual on proven jewellery selling techniques. And for the perfect complement, order – a full day’s sales training seminar recorded live on three CDs. These are also available from the website.

have written before about sales that leak out of your store, and there is one particular leak that, when plugged, could result in your sales taking an immediate jump. Most jewellers have no idea how many sales could have been saved if only they were on the sales floor to assist their salespeople. I have been in many jewellery stores talking to owners and pointing out to them that a customer is about ready to leave without buying. They reply with: “I don’t want to bother him – it will stop the flow of the sale,” and: “I’m not cutting in – it’s too aggressive.” Also: “If I tell my manager to assist, my salespeople will think he is trying to steal the sale,” and: “If I have to spend all day trying to save their sales, what did I hire them for?” These reasons and more are why salespeople seldom get help in closing their sales. I never understood the logic of some storeowners; they spend all that money on advertising and promoting special events to bring more people into their store, and then let them walk out. If you are one of those jewellers it is not too late to change – just read on! To start with, you or your manager must be on the sales floor at all times to stop the leaks. If your manager is in the office or not near a salesperson ready to assist them if needed, then that manager is not worth much to you. Storeowners must continuously remind managers to be near the front of the store, nearby a salesperson to be ready to save those sales. Now comes the part that owners and managers avoid: cutting in. First I recommend you hold a store meeting, telling your salespeople that either you or your manger will

be up front to assist them. You will only do a complete takeover if they are in over their head. Do not wait too long to cut in, otherwise the salesperson may show almost everything in the store, leaving you nothing to show. You will wait for a pause in the sale, and when the salesperson sees you coming he or she acknowledges and introduces you. At this time it is most important you smile and show enthusiasm, otherwise it will look like you shouldn’t be there. The next step is for the salesperson to bring you up to date on what the customer has seen and what he or she likes. If the salesperson forgets to do this, then you should ask to be brought up to date. Failure to do this could lead to an embarrassing situation in which you may start showing the same piece of jewellery the customer has already rejected. Avoid the mistake of staying too long. The longer you stay in the sale the more awkward the salesperson feels. You should be there a short time to assist them and come in again if needed. If the salesperson is in trouble, then you should stay and close the sale. In this situation the salesperson should ask you to continue, before excusing him or herself but remaining nearby. The best way to implement this is to rehearse it with role-playing. I recommend putting a small recorder on the sales counter and practice assisting a sale with each salesperson. When you play back the recorder, you will know immediately what you want to correct. This is well worth the effort because storeowners I have taught this to, and who now use it all the time, have increased their sales by 25 per cent and more!


EVENTS and auctions

Events

6 February – 3 May Alternative Wedding Show Kath Libbert Jewellery Gallery Salts Mill Bradford www.kathlibbertjewellery.co.uk

25 March – 10 July In Time and the Mind of Others: The Modern Jewel mima, Middlesbrough www.visitmima.com

www.bada-antiques-fair.co.uk

www.mzexpos.com

12 – 15 May Jeweller Expo Ukraine KyivExpoPlaza Kiev, Ukraine www.jewellerexpo.kiev.ua

22 – 25 April Malaysia Jewellery Festival Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre Kuala Lumpur, Malaya

31 May – 2 June LUXURY Four Seasons Hotel, THEhotel & Mandalay Bay Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

www.bctf.co.uk

www.mij.com.my/MJF

www.luxuryatjck.com

24 – 27 March Jewellers’ Salon Exhibition Center Odessa Home Odessa Ukraine

5 – 9 April MidEast Watch and Jewellery Show Expo Centre Sharjah Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

22 – 26 April Golden Globe, Crocus Expo International Exhibition Center, Moscow, Russia

2 – 6 June Swiss Watch by JCK Four Seasons Hotel & Mandalay Bay Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

+380 482 372 936

www.mideastjewellery.com

24 – 31 March Baselworld Basel, Switzerland

14 – 17 April Jewelry Fair Korea COEX Seoul, South Korea

www.baselworld.com

25 – 28 March Malaysia International Jewellery Fair Spring Edition Mandarin Oriental Hotel Kuala Lumpur Malaya www.elite.com.my

www.jewelfair.com

20 – 24 April INACRAFT 2011 Balai Sidang Jakarta Convention Center Djakarta, Indonesia www.inacraft.co.id

www.eng.goldenglobe.ru

24 – 30 April International Gold & Jewelry Exhibition Kuwait International Fair Mishref, Kuwait

www.thomsonroddick.com

30 March Bonhams Art and antiques, including jewellery Oxford www.bonhams.com

1 April Wellers Auctioneers Jewellery and watches Chertsey Surrey www.wellersauctions.com

2 April Kent Auction Galleries Ltd Antiques and fine arts, including jewellery, silver and coins Folkestone Kent www.kentauctiongalleriesltd.co.uk

5 April Capes Dunn Antique jewellery, silver, watches, wares and coins Manchester www.capesdunn.com

20 April Christie’s Fine jewels South Kensington, London

www.bonhams.com

www.fellows.co.uk

www.christies.com

7 April Fellows & Sons Second-hand jewellery and watches Birmingham

15 April Wellers Auctioneers Pawnbroker and second-hand jewellery, Chertsey, Surrey

20 April Woolley & Wallis Silver Salisbury, Wiltshire

www.wellersauctions.com

www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk

16 April Kent Auction Galleries Ltd Victorian and later effects, including jewellery, silver and coins, Folkestone, Kent

21 April Fellows & Sons Second-hand jewellery and watches, Birmingham

www.bonhams.com

12 April Dreweatts 1759 Jewellery, silver, watches and coins Bristol www.dnfa.com

13 April Bonhams Fine jewellery New Bond Street, London www.bonhams.com

13 April Bonhams Art and antiques, including jewellery Oxford www.bonhams.com

www.nichetheshow.com

5 – 7 June Pulse Earls Court London www.pulse-london.com

www.ijk-fair.jp

14 April Fellows & Sons Antique and modern jewellery Birmingham

12 April Bonhams Jewellery, Oxford

4 – 6 June NICHE: The show Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino, Celebrity Ballroom Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

11 – 13 May International Jewellery Kobe Kobe International Exhibition Hall Kobe, Japan

6 April Bonhams Jewellery Knightsbridge, London

www.fellows.co.uk

www.jcklasvegasshow.com

www.kif.net/images/ brochures/2011jewelry.pdf

Auction dates

29 March Thomson, Roddick & Medcalf Antiques and works of art, including jewellery and silver Carlisle

www.jcklasvegasshow.com/ en/Swiss-Watch-by-JCK/

3 – 6 June JCK Las Vegas Mandalay Bay Hotel and Convention Center Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

Image: JewellerExpo Ukraine

23 – 29 March BADA Fair The Duke of York Square London

3 – 5 April British Craft Trade Fair Hall 1, The Great Yorkshire Showground Harrogate

22 – 24 April Colorado Mineral and Fossil Show Holiday Inn, Denver Central Denver, Colorado, USA

49

www.kentauctiongalleriesltd.co.uk

16 April P F Windibank Antique jewellery, silver, watches and clocks Dorking, Surrey www.windibank.co.uk

18 April Fellows & Sons Wrist- and pocket-watches Birmingham www.fellows.co.uk

www.fellows.co.uk

21 April Woolley & Wallis Jewellery Salisbury, Wiltshire www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk

27 April Campbells Jewellery, silver, clocks and watches Worthing, West Sussex www.campbellsauctions.co.uk

19 April Woolley & Wallis Clocks, watches and barometers Salisbury, Wiltshire

6 May Wellers Auctioneers Jewellery, watches, silver and clocks Chertsey, Surrey

www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk

www.wellersauctions.com

7 May Kent Auction Galleries Ltd Victorian and later effects, including jewellery, silver and coins Folkestone, Kent www.kentauctiongalleriesltd.co.uk

10 May Bonhams Jewellery Oxford www.bonhams.com

11 May Bonhams Jewellery Knightsbridge, London www.bonhams.com

12 May Fellows & Sons Second-hand jewellery and watches Birmingham www.fellows.co.uk


50

INDUSTRY DATA

Prices • Figures • Outlook Metal prices

Retail sales volume: January 2011 Despite the impact of the Christmas period’s extremely bad weather and the rise in VAT, the volume of retail sales in January grew by 1.9 per cent compared with December, and 5.3 per cent compared to the same period a year earlier. Taken with December, sales volume increased by 0.5 per cent. Year-on-year, predominantly non-food stores increased by 9.5 per cent, with rises across all sectors. Driven by computers and telecommunications equipment and sporting goods and toys, the largest rise was in other stores, at 15.8 per cent, while non-specialised stores saw the second largest rise at 10.7 per cent. Non-store retailing increased by a record 22.1 per cent. Between December 2010 and January 2011, total sales volume increased by 1.9 per cent. Predominantly non-food stores saw a rise of 2.4 per cent, with rises in all sectors save for other stores, which decreased one per cent. The largest rise was non-specialised stores at 5.7 per cent – another record – while non-store retailing increased by 2.7 per cent. The seasonally-adjusted value of retail sales for January 2011 was 8.2 per cent higher than in January 2010. For the three months leading to January, it was four per cent higher than the same period a year ago. Source: ONS

Jan. 11

Feb. 11

Mar. 11

Change

Sterling silver (£/Kg)

559.73

546.75

644.61

Plus 18%

Gold (£/g)

28.41

26.95

28.26

Plus 5%

Palladium (£/g)

16.00

16.50

15.81

Minus 4%

Platinum (£/g)

36.21

36.67

35.69

Minus 3%

Rhodium (£/g)

50.14

50.00

48.10

Minus 4%

Iridium (£/g)

16.44

18.22

21.42

Plus 18%

Ruthenium (£/g)

3.72

3.61

3.58

Minus 1%

Scrap metal prices

Jan. 11

Feb. 11

Mar. 11

Change

Sterling silver scrap (£/kg)

525.54

513.36

605.24

Plus 18%

9ct Gold scrap (£/g)

10.28

9.75

10.23

Plus 5%

14ct Gold scrap (£/g)

16.04

15.22

15.96

Plus 5%

18ct Gold scrap (£/g)

20.56

19.51

20.46

Plus 5%

22ct Gold scrap (£/g)

25.12

23.83

24.98

Plus 5%

Platinum (95%) scrap (£/g)

29.24

29.61

28.82

Minus 3%

Data supplied courtesy of Cookson Precious Metals. www.cooksongold.com All prices shown on this page enjoy indicative status only. Jewellery Focus and Cookson Precious Metals accepts no responsibility for their accuracy or for any use to which they may be put

Diamond prices

Jan

Mar

May

Jul

Sep

2010 Seasonally adjusted figures

Nov

Jan

2011

Weight

G/VVS

G/SI

J/VVS

J/SI

J/I1

0.05 Carat

1,412

947

1,188

844

758

0.10 Carat

1,606

1,055

1,594

945

708

0.25 Carat

2,671

1,476

2,232

1,255

856

0.50 Carat

6,206

2,853

3,656

2,425

2,140

0.75 Carat

7,301

4,546

4,907

3,444

2,893

1.00 Carat

13,350

7,173

8,717

5,977

3,852

The table above has been prepared by SafeGuard and is an average of the retail selling prices of round brilliant cut diamonds per carat including an average retail markup and VAT. There is no allowance for the mount but the prices have been taken from mounted goods prices. The table is also compared with International diamond prices for additional accuracy. Compiled at 1st March 2011 /Dollar Exchange Rate 1.6261


INDUSTRY DATA

Hallmark figures February 10

February 11

Variance

%

511

471

-40

-7.8

Silver 999 958

1,033

886

-147

-14.2

925

616,101

428,746

-187,355

-30.4

800

3

11

8

266.7

617,648

430,114

-187,534

-30.4

27

13

-14

-51.9

Gold 999 990

1

4

3

300.0

916

35,350

27,411

-7,939

-22.5

750

81,450

59,359

-22,091

-27.1

585

12,910

12,357

-553

-4.3

333,270

217,319

-115,951

-34.8

463,008

316,463

-146,545

-31.7

375

Platinum 999

27

7

-20

-74.1

950

21,200

18,091

-3,109

-14.7

900

19

6

-13

-68.4

850

0

17

17

100.0

21,246

18,121

-3,125

-14.7

1

-8

-88.9

10,088

-206

-2.0

Palladium 999

9

950

10,294

500

10,303

Total

1,112,205

84

84

100.0

10,173

-130

-1.3

774,871

-337,334

-30.3

February hallmarking figures further confirmed that January’s unexpected increase in volume was a result of disruption caused by the snow creating a backlog from December. After a 16.7 per cent increase overall in January, February’s volumes plummeted by 30 per cent against last year overall, with even silver down by 30 per cent, although it still represented 56 per cent of volume. The decline is undoubtedly a result of precious metal prices continuing to climb sharply and consumer and retailer confidence being eroded by economic uncertainty and rising fuel and food prices.

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Your views

Voice

onthe

highstreet

Diane Hall of Dower & Hall, London, Glasgow and Bluewater How did you first come to be involved in the jewellery trade?

I originally considered ceramics, but fell in love with the Middlesex University jewellery course at an open day with a friend. I met Dan [Dower] on the course and, after we’d both graduated, decided to set up Dower & Hall with a Prince’s Trust business loan. This was a huge adventure for us and one of our greatest and fondest memories; we didn’t know what the future held! Along with the risks, we’ve had some fantastic trips, such as stone buying in India and researching in Thailand. We’ve had some memorable parties over the years too; we used to do quite a bit at British Fashion Week – I remember we used to attend some parties for this at Number 10, along with Princess Diana.

You’re now up to three Dower & Hall stores, plus concessions in Liberty and Harrods. Could you tell us a bit about each shop? Each of our stores is branded and they have similarities, but also have their own character and layout; this was intentional and designed around the store locations and the different clientele. We have all our collections in every store, but there is a varied mix in all to cater for each individual customer base.

What are your best-selling products?

Pearls have become so popular and versatile, with women choosing to wear these on a daily basis – they’re no longer just something for a special occasion, which is fantastic! Our ‘Pearlicious’ collection has been a real success. Charms are still strong but

I believe this is starting to wane. It’s more about friendship bracelets at the moment, and they’re going to be a huge trend for this year. Our Misanga bracelets are still flying out of the door!

What makes D&H different to other designer-makers?

We have a fantastic sales team who really work to understand what each individual customer wants. With Dan and I still at the helm of the design process after 20 years, we truly offer unique and personal products and this is something our customers have always looked for and will continue to do so. People do truly appreciate that personal touch, and love that their jewellery comes from a London workshop where it’s tailored by a team of skilled jewellers to make it perfect just for them. Our clientele come back to us time and again because they appreciate the high quality of our designs and the excellent service that accompanies our jewellery.

Dower & Hall has a comprehensive online store; would you say the internet has had a positive effect on your business?

Definitely! Our website has been a fantastic success and we are working hard to increase and maintain such great sales. Christmas saw our web sales go through the roof!

What do you think are the main problems faced by jewellers and designers today?

Cash flow. A lot of really great, talented designers give up because of the problems of being in business and trying to make a living, which is very sad news for the country. There used to be an enterprise allowance scheme before I was in business, and I know that it helped a lot of people who graduated in the years above me. It was not much money, but some of these companies are now very successful and employ lots of people. It’s a shame we cannot get something like this reintroduced to help graduates. Today, jewellers have the added problem of metal price fluctuations and the dollar – changes in costs are

a huge added hassle and take a lot of work. A lot of our sales are ladies selfpurchasing a piece of jewellery to wear themselves. They don’t want to think about intrinsic value; they just want something nice to wear.

Do you have any favourite collections or designers?

H Stern jewellery is amazing – he made an appearance at Basel and was lovely. He was still making jewellery at his bench in his 90s. Very impressive!

If you had to start over, would you do anything differently?

I would want to change everything! I would probably even change the fact that I studied jewellery design. However, you learn by your mistakes, so I’m not sure that would be a good idea if I’m honest!

Finally, where do you see yourselves in another 20 years? What are your plans for the future?

We are currently trying to improve upon all aspects of our business: taking on more staff, refurbishing each of the stores, implementing a new EPoS system, and investing in lots of new marketing materials to make our whole operation smarter. We have just celebrated our 20th anniversary so we need to smarten up for the next 20 years!


Jewellery Focus April 2011  

Jewellery Focus is a magazine dedicated to all retailers in the jewellery trade. Targeting high street stores, this magazine caters for comp...

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