T H E
V O I C E
T H E
I N D U S T R Y
In this issue BaselWorld review, NAJ Education Awards, J&W and Inhorgenta show reviews, Pantone colours for 2016 and much more…
the art of expression winter pearl Âˇ design mari isopahkala
CONTENTS & CONTACTS
NAJ EDUCATION AWARDS 2016 Editor’s Letter
Michael makes his point
Spotlight on members
Feature — Talent Rewarded
J&W Show Report
Flying the Flag – Claire Troughton
Inhorgenta Show Report
Business Support: Finance
At the Bench
Enclosed with The Jeweller, this issue includes a review of this year’s Tucson show, a look at the myth, legend and controversy surrounding Preseli bluestone, Grenville Millington’s observations on oddities in diamonds, and much more…
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The Association’s JET graduates receive recognition for their hard work at Goldsmiths’ Hall
A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE Belinda Morris reports on jewellery as well as watch trends at BaselWorld
DON’T SPARE THE BLUSHES
The Pantone colours for 2016 – rose quartz and ‘serenity’ blue – brought to jewelled life
CHAMPIONING BRITISH CRAFTSMANSHIP A preview of the handmade jewellery to be showcased at the British Craft Trade Fair
The Jeweller is published by the National Association of Jewellers for circulation to members. For more information about The Jeweller visit: www.thejewellermagazine.com The NAJ is being created from the unification of the N.A.G. and the BJA. The National Association of Goldsmiths is a company limited by guarantee and registered in England and Wales number 00268728. The registered office is 78a Luke Street, London EC2A 4XG. The National Association of Jewellers 78a Luke Street, London EC2A 4XG Tel: 020 7613 4445 www.naj.co.uk CEO: Michael Rawlinson email@example.com Editor: Belinda Morris firstname.lastname@example.org Art Director: Ben Page email@example.com
Sales Director: Ian Francis Tel: 020 7749 1705 Fax: 020 7729 0143 firstname.lastname@example.org Publishing Enquiries: Neil Oakford email@example.com Contributors: David Brough, Michael Donaldson, Andrew Fellows, Sarah Jordan, Sandra Page
The NAJ is responsible for producing The Jeweller and, although every effort is made to ensure that the information supplied is accurate, the NAJ does not accept liability for any loss, damage or claim whatsoever that may result from opinions expressed by contributors. Information and ideas are for guidance only and members should always consult their own professional advisers. The NAJ accepts no responsibility for the content of Gems&Jewellery or any advertiser, advertisement or insert in The Jeweller. Anyone having dealings with any advertiser must rely on their own enquiries. The magazine is printed on paper and board that has met acceptable environmental accreditation standards.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 3
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LETTER TO THE EDITOR
EDITOR’S LETTER I
write this having just returned from a whistlestop tour of the endurance test that is BaselWorld. Twentytwo appointments over two days – obviously my brain is still spinning and my feet still sobbing. (It’s a truth
This issue: “While conversations on the watch front clearly concern themselves with technicalities… the aesthetics cannot be overstated…” Page 24
universally acknowledged that when it comes to exhibitions, there is no such thing as the right shoes…)
No matter, it was worth it, given the treasures spotted, information gathered and contacts made. I hope that it was the same for all others who made the trip. The general consensus is that the show was quieter than usual – but it didn’t really feel that way as I fought my way through excitable throngs of buyers, press and hangers-on, as I tried to get from the back of Hall 1.1 to the middle of Hall 2.2… in five minutes… in heels. See page 24 for my observations of the fair – the trends and collections that caught my eye. This issue obviously reflects the fact that we’re in the throes of a period of intense trade fair activity: a review of Jewellery & Watch in Birmingham and Inhorgenta in Munich, and a preview of the forthcoming British Craft Trade Fair in Harrogate. If you’ve never been to the latter and you’re not exhibitioned-out, I’d recommend a visit – particularly if you’re seeking something different, handmade and totally conceived and created in the UK. As an added bonus, many of the 180-plus jewellery designer makers showing are fellow NAJ members (p60). And while on the subject of celebrating the cream of British craftsmanship, we’re happy to draw attention to the achievements of a broad range of talented industry individuals who were honoured at the Goldsmiths’ Craft & Design Council awards. From mounters, setters, polishers and engravers, to jewellery designers, silversmiths and apprentices, the 124 winners across 25 categories lapped up deserved praise for their amazing work (p36). And yet more hard work was recognised at the NAJ’s Presentation of Awards for the latest crop of JET graduates (p16). Also taking place in the appropriately splendid setting of the Goldsmiths’ Hall, the extremely well-attended ceremony is encouraging testament to the continued importance placed on education and training among the Association’s retail members.
“Brits have so much quirky individualism. There is also a great appreciation of the handmade here and interest in the jeweller’s personal story….” Page 44
If you’re looking for further information gathering and networking opportunities, the EDF Congress and AGM are just around the corner… comfy shoes not required.
If you would like to comment on any of the issues raised in this edition of The Jeweller or any other trade-related matters, please email the editor at email@example.com
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 5
M A R K M I LT O N
MICHAEL makes his point
Do you know where you’re goin’ to? Do you like the things that life is showin’ you? Where are you goin’ to? Do you know?
o sang Diana Ross in the mid ’70s and these words are still relevant today, especially if you are running a business or leading a team of people. As I speak to business leaders in our industry I realise that many of you face similar issues and challenges. Taking your companies forward in a world that is ever-changing, where the only constant is that nothing is constant! So how do you lead your people, and all those that are dependent on you for their livelihoods, forward to build a strong and effective business? If we think of team sports we might get some ideas; knowing the rules of the game is important. For a jeweller questions to ask are: How does the market operate?
Where is my position in the market? Who are my competitors? Who are my customers? By way of an example just think about a ring. This could be made from a nonprecious metal and sold for a few pence or pounds, or a precious metal encrusted with very expensive, rare, fancy-coloured diamonds. Both are rings, but very different market positions and very different customers! Ensuring everyone in your business understands what you do, and who you are doing it for will be a great start. Having a plan and communicating this clearly within your business helps everyone pull in the same direction. Imagine a ball game where, on one side of the pitch, they are playing rugby, while the other team think they are playing football. The chaos on the pitch would be clear for all to see. You may regard this example as ridiculous, but too many members I talk to don’t have clear business objectives, a budget or any sort of business plan.
There are many simple and effective planning tools that can help you evaluate the business world in which you operate, and your own business, so that you can work out where you are going to and what you should be doing to make the journey successful. Many of these are discussed and used within the Executive Development Forum (EDF). They are not given fancy names and they are very accessible. For most business people just being shown them and how to use them is enough to help them on their way. And this is why so many members who belong to the EDF continue their membership year after year – because it helps them run their businesses more effectively and more profitably. If you need help or inspiration in your working life, why not book a day out of your business and come to the Executive Development Forum Congress taking place on 8th June.This year’s congress theme is leadership and there are some great speakers lined up for you. For over 10 years the EDF has been serving retail members with three meetings a year designed to support and guide independent business owners. We are planning to launch EDF for manufacturers and designer-makers at the June event, so the congress will be a great way for you to dip a toe in the water and see how invaluable this programme could be for you. The congress will be followed by the NAJ’s AGM and a drinks reception, so it will also be an ideal way to network with both supplier and retailer members all in one location.
“Having a plan and communicating this clearly within your business helps everyone pull in the same direction.” On another positive note we received a very good response to the idea we proposed of the Retailer Support Kit – consumer-focused leaflets covering a range of topics you have prioritised. The first set of leaflets will cover: why you (the consumer) should buy from an NAJ member; buying diamond jewellery and what to consider; why have an insurance valuation and why use a professional valuer; caring for your jewellery; and the importance of regular maintenance and checking. These leaflets will be made available both printed and as PDFs so that you can host them on your website for customers to download. We will be introducing more practical support for our members in the coming months so please do continue to read the weekly newsletter and visit the Association website for more information.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 7
SHAUN LEANE JOINS IJL’S BRIGHT YOUNG GEMS JUDGING PANEL in its eleventh year, N ow the IJL Bright Young Gems
(BYG) initiative has invited British fine jewellery designer Shaun Leane to join the selection panel. The NAJ’s Centenary Trust is providing sponsorship support through travel and accommodation bursaries worth £200 for each of the five nominated BYG designers. Leane, who replaces retiring panellist Bec Astley Clarke MBE, joins judges Hilary Alexander OBE, editor at large of Hello Fashion Monthly magazine; Vivienne Becker of the Financial Times - How To Spend It magazine; Claudia Mahoney, executive fashion and beauty director of Glamour magazine and Annabel Davidson, jewellery editor of Vanity Fair. Sam Willoughby, event director, comments: “Every year the BYG
programme offers five young innovative designers great exposure and an unparalleled opportunity to access their first commercial platform to showcase their work to such an influential audience. IJL welcomes over 10,350 industry professionals from 64 countries during the three days of the show. And it is particularly rewarding to see how many of these young designers have then gone on during the past 10 years to become leading stars in the industry.” She adds: “We are extremely grateful to have the support of all the major UK universities and colleges, together now with Shaun, one of the UK’s most creative contemporary designers, and the NAJ. We are also very appreciative of Bec Astley Clarke’s support and guidance over the years.”
Commenting on his new role as a panellist, Leane stresses the importance of the industry supporting Britain’s emerging design talent: “Platforms such as Bright Young Gems are essential. They allow our flourishing young designers to grow in all areas of their careers. It is so important that we nurture their talents and aspirations as they are the future of our industry.” NAJ marketing manager Lindsey Straughton adds: “BYG attracts applications from right across the country and this newly established NAJ bursary will financially help the nominated designers take their first steps into the commercial world. As existing supporters of IJL’s very successful KickStart mentoring programme, we are delighted to now be part of this initiative. Several former BYG designers
have gone on to become high profile KickStarters – and we want to encourage more young designers to take advantage of these two unique, yet seamless, schemes, as part of fast-tracking their careers.” The BYG are selected from final year students at colleges and universities across the UK and details of how to apply can be found at: www.jewellerylondon. com/brightyounggems. The closing date for BYG 2016 is Friday 20th May 2016.
NEW DESIGN DIRECTOR BOUTIQUE.GOLDSMITHS FOR ALLUM & SIDAWAY LAUNCHES NEW AD CAMPAIGN
vonna Poplanska, creative director of UJT and Boudici London, is to join independent jewellery retail business Allum & Sidaway as jewellery design director. She takes up the role this May and will be based in the group’s new Salisbury store, which is due to open later this year. The new luxury destination boutique will have a private bridal and bespoke area. Poplanska will be responsible for promoting
8 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
and working on the bespoke jewellery design commissions across all five Allum & Sidaway stores. Jason Allum said: “Ivonna’s amazing portfolio and extensive high jewellery design experience will add another dimension to our customer offering, and will offer both new and our valued existing customers an unrivalled experience into the world of jewellery design.” “I am extremely excited about this opportunity and look forward to working with customers,” Poplanska told The Jeweller. “Designing a bespoke engagement ring or redesigning the customer’s heirloom jewellery will give me an opportunity to take them on a journey when they are at the happiest times of their lives.”
he concept store boutique. Goldsmiths has unveiled an impactful new campaign, ‘We Are Boutique’ – a showcase of on-trend fashion jewellery and watches for men and women. Emphasising individualism and celebrating the expression of personal style, the campaign aims to encompass a broad range of tastes, incorporating watch brands such as Emporio Armani, Nixon and Unknown, as well as Michael Kors, Olivia Burton and Marc Jacobs for women. The jewellery, from brands like Swarovski and Daisy London, highlights the season’s key trends of layering delicate necklaces and stacking statement rings for maximum impact.
With 14 stores in the UK the ‘We are Boutique’ campaign launches another new chapter for the Aurum Holdings brand as it continues to enforce its growth strategy and widened product offerings.
CMJ ADDS DISTRIBUTION, DESIGN AND DATA ARMS W
illie Hamilton, CEO of The Company of Master Jewellers (CMJ), took the opportunity of the buying groups recent ‘Stars in Their Eyes’ Spring Trade Event to introduce a new string to the business’s bow – CMJ Distribution. Headed up by Stephen Reece-Raybould the business’s first brand, which was launched at the show, is Dollie Jewellery, a competitively-priced, trend-led silver range of rings, charms and bracelets. Other UK and international brands are in the pipeline The brand is the brainchild of Karen Webb-Meek, from CMJ retailer ‘In The Pink’. She started creating her own silver jewellery after identifying a demand from customers, and she has had phenomenal success with the Dollie brand in the two years since she started it. CMJ is distributing and marketing Dollie with PR and social media strategies provided by Facets PR. Further expansion, outlined by Hamilton, includes the acquisition of IT business HBS Consultants, with the aim of improving data collection. “Data is the new oil – it will run businesses and you have to drill down to get it and then refine it to make it work,” he told The Jeweller. “This will be the first independent sales data (Pandora already has it from its concept stores) but we will have to work with those retailers who want to give it.” The ‘refined’ data (on all items sold, regardless of supplier) will be fed back to CMJ members or sold to organisations, such as research companies like Mintel. The CMJ has also bought Design Unique, a business that has been supplying the buying group’s members with design and marketing services for several years.
WB DESIGN COMPETITION WINNER ANNOUNCED S
tephanie Holt, a mature student studying for an HND in Jewellery and Silversmithing at the School of Jewellery at Birmingham City University, has won Weston Beamor’s annual jewellery design competition, with her elegant and unusual design for a matching wedding ring and engagement ring set. Presented by Andrew Morton, MD of WB The Creative Group, Stephanie receives a cash prize of £500 and a week’s work experience with the company. Stephanie’s design, entitled ‘ONE’, has a strong, minimalist and highly contemporary feel and physically joins together the wedding ring and an engagement ring in an unusual and distinctive way while still allowing for the two pieces to be worn separately.
S N I P P E T S New moves for Jewellery & Watch 2017 The February 2017 Jewellery & Watch show at the NEC, is to include ‘Birmingham Jewellery Quarter Live’ – a celebration of and showcase for the skills and talents that can be found in the increasingly vibrant Quarter. This will be found in the centre of Hall 17 and the catwalk, which normally occupies this space, will move to the end of the Boulevard, to create a new focal point. Meanwhile, the growing Retail Solutions area will move to the top of Hall 18, with Fine Jewellery receiving a distinct edit within Hall 17.
Cooksongold launches platinum powder Precious metal and jewellery-making supplies business Cooksongold has introduced a platinum advanced metal powder suitable for 3D printing. Launched at BaselWorld, the Pt/Ru alloy will offer a viable commercial opportunity for the platinum jewellery industry when combined with Cooksongold’s existing Direct Precious Metal 3D printing system, the Precious M080. In collaboration with Platinum Guild International, Cookson has created 3D printed platinum jewellery which was showcased on the stand at Basel.
Gerard Butler stars in Festina ad The Spanish watch brand Festina has launched a new advertising campaign featuring the world-famous Scottish actor Gerard Butler. Launched during BaselWorld 2016, the ‘Time to Live’ campaign features the ‘life in 24 hours’ of the new brand ambassador, highlighting working moments, sports practice, leisure time and romantic moments. Recorded in different LA locations, the ad also features actress and Miss World Denny Méndez.
Wire weight calculator app developed The bullion dealer and precious metal refiner Capella has developed a free mobile app that allows customers to calculate the weight of precious wire required. The new software, available from the App Store and Google Plat, allows both iOS and Android users, who wish to buy silver, gold or copper wire of various weights and sizes, to do so with ease and speed. The results are produced in just a few steps, allowing the user to provide exact total mass when calling for a quote.
SalonQP 2016 dates SalonQP, the public exhibition of luxury watches, will be held at the Saatchi Gallery in London from 3rd – 5th November. Now in its eighth year, the event, aimed at timepiece connoisseurs, will host specially curated exhibitions, a seminar series, watchmaking workshops and demonstrations… as well as an exhibition of luxury brands. SalonQP 2015 saw a record number of visitors over the three days, with over 8,000 attendees.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 9
VAN CLEEF & ARPELS UNVEILS NEW LOOK T
he French fine jewellery house Van Cleef & Arpels has reopened its doors on London’s Bond Street following a complete renovation of the boutique. Fifteen years after the store opened, the three floors of the premises have been given a refined new look with an emphasis on light and contrasting materials. A façade of grey polished stone with alcove-like window displays, makes way for an interior of subtle colours, fluid lines
(highlighted by a curved staircase) and soft textures contrasted by the mother-of-pearl effect of gold leaf and silk-clad walls. A wall dotted with display cases – designed like jewelled paintings – draws visitors to the upper floors. In addition to the high jewellery collections, the ground floor is dedicated to watches and bridal pieces, while the Alhambra®, Cosmos™ and Lots collections can be found on the first floor, and the third houses an intimate and cosy private salon.
SCHOOL OF JEWELLERY’S GAY PENFOLD RETIRES 24 years at the School A fter of Jewellery in Birmingham,
Gay Penfold is stepping down from the role of centre manager at Jewellery Industry Innovation Centre (JIIC). She joined the School in 1992 as industry coordinator and over the years she has been instrumental in the success of many projects which have led to the growth of the School’s reputation as innovators in cutting edge technology, and played a significant role in the UK jewellery industry specifically, but also internationally.
“I have been privileged not only to enjoy my job, but to also play a part in many innovative initiatives and projects, and to meet and work with some very talented and dedicated people within our industry,” she says. The recently developed Technology Hub within the School will be managed by Frank Cooper, ensuring that the facility and capability of the JIIC becomes more integrated and a visible part of the School.
DESIGNER OPENS BIRMINGHAM GALLERY British A cclaimed contemporary jewellery designer maker and gemmologist Michele White held a launch party last month to celebrate the opening of Artisan Alchemy, her first retail outlet. The gallery, in Caroline Street in the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter, is home to bespoke and handmade furniture as well as White’s own bold and unusual fine jewellery, created by hand and designed around featured gemstones.
GERMANY TO BE IJL’S ‘MARKET FOCUS’ F
ollowing the launch last year with Italy, IJL has selected Germany as its Market Focus for 2016. This international business initiative aims to facilitate links and boost trade between UK jewellery industry members and their international counterparts. Fifteen German companies are already set to showcase their new collections at the event. Of particular note are Hans D. Krieger, a family firm with decades of expertise and renowned for classic design
10 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
with a twist; Richard Hans Becker producing distinguished and classic jewellery; Manu Werkstatt für Schmuck creating hand-crafted designs, and Fine Gems Collection, the leading manufacturer of gold and silver jewellery, using diamonds and natural coloured gemstones. Market share for German brands and designers has been steadily on the increase. In 2013 to 2014, a 61 per cent growth rate in jewellery imports from Germany was recorded* – in line with the UK’s overall imports of
silver jewellery growing from just US $7 million in 2009 to US $274 million in 2014*. Johannes Weege, Manu jewellery and IJL 2015 exhibitor, commented: “We met 80 per cent of our UK customer base at IJL last year. For us it is the meeting point for the industry.” “I’m exhibiting at IJL, because this show opens the gateway to the UK market for me. In the classy and stylish atmosphere it is easy for vendors and buyers to make contacts on the highest level,” said
Richard Hans Becker, during IJL 2015. The German Market Focus is supported by a comprehensive, proactive online and direct marketing campaign in the lead-up to the show, during and post the event. All participating German exhibitors will also be featured in a catwalk scene on the Sunday Late Night Shopping event and thereafter within the catwalk shows for the duration of IJL 2016. *Source: RX analysis of UN Comtrade data 25 November 2015
Book YOURE PLAC now
BE INSPIRING BY BEING INSPIRED “Around half of small businesses themselves cite poor leadership and management as a key barrier to growth” – Mark Sayers, Deputy Director at the Department of Business Innovation and Skills. The theme for this year’s EDF Congress is, yes, you’ve guessed it, Inspiring Leadership. At this unique event, you can hear from inspiring leaders from both the jewellery and non-jewellery industries who will be sharing their views on leadership, how leadership works best for them and highlighting the three most important things about how to lead others. CONFIRMED SPEAKERS Anna Blackburn – Beaverbrooks As CEO of Beaverbrooks the Jewellers Anna has achieved two firsts in the family business’s 97-year history: the first female CEO and the first non-family CEO. This year Beaverbrooks was named in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list for the 13th consecutive time. Steve Bennett – Genuine Gemstone Company In 2012, The Genuine Gemstone Company won the Fast Track 100 Award as the fastest growing privately held company. As Richard Branson says: “Steve has created a great company, one built on principles and not a bunch of policies. We both believe to achieve lasting success one needs to provide your staff with purpose and values everyone can believe in”. Adrian de Courcey – Travel de Courcey Having grown revenues from £5m to £17m in just four years, in 2015 Adrian’s company was, for the second time, named one of the ‘Top 1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain’ in a survey by the London Stock Exchange, Lloyds Bank and the British Growth Fund.
EDF CONGRESS BIRMINGHAM WE DN ES D AY
J U N E
2 0 1 6
T H E M A R K O F S H A R E D K N O W L E D G E A N D E X P E R I E N C E
After six illustrious years with Pandora, in 2013 Jesper launched Endless Jewelry, leading to Jesper being named one of the industry’s top 50 influencers on JCK Magazine’s ‘2015 Power List’. In 2016 Jesper is poised to launch the revolutionary concept of Amazing Jewellery. Find out more about all of our speakers by visiting www.naj.co.uk/EDFcongress16 The 2016 EDF Congress, Novotel Birmingham, 70 Broad St, Birmingham B1 2HT. Wednesday 8th June. 09.00 registration; 09.30 start; 16.30 close. Tickets £225 per person. To book your place contact Amanda White on 0207 613 4445 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Followed by the NAJ AGM, free to all members, at 17.15.
EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT FORUM
Jesper Neilsen – Amazing Jewellery
THE EXECUTIVE DEVELOPMENT FORUM Actively delivering value through shared knowledge, experience and expertise since 2005
EDF CONGRESS – INSPIRING LEADERSHIP The EDF Congress (8th June, 2016) is the perfect opportunity for jewellery retailers to sample the EDF experience before joining. And this year the event promises to be especially revelatory with four highly successful business leaders taking to the podium in Birmingham. “Around half of small businesses themselves site poor leadership and management as a key barrier to growth.” So says Mark Sayers, deputy director at the Department of Business Innovation and Skills. What better way to learn about leadership than hearing from those who have quite literally been there, done it and got the t-shirt.
STEVE BENNETT – GENUINE GEMSTONE COMPANY The Genuine Gemstone Company is one of the largest jewellery retailers in the UK, employing over 500 members of staff. In 2012 it won the Fast Track 100 Award as the fastest growing privately held company, and in 2013 Steve Bennett won the EY UK Turnaround Entrepreneur of the Year. Having left school with minimal qualifications, Steve completed a computer training course before working in a number of office based computer roles. After losing his job, Steve decided to go it alone and set up his own company selling computers and software; he later went on to establish jungle.com which he sold for a staggering £37 million at the height of the dotcom boom and bust. Several more successful ventures into the worlds of ecommerce, retail and entertainment followed before he set up Gems TV in 2004 and The Genuine Gemstone Company in 2007. When Steve is not working or spending time with his family of eight, he is usually to be found planning his next adventure – he has already sailed across the Atlantic, trekked to the North Pole and is planning to fly in space on Virgin Galactic with Richard Branson, who says of him: “Steve has created a great company, one built on principles and not a bunch of policies. We both believe to achieve lasting success one needs to provide your staff with purpose and values everyone can believe in”.
12 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
These inspiring heads, from both jewellery and non-jewellery industries, will be sharing their views on leadership, giving examples on how it manifests itself in their organisation and highlighting the three most important things they have personally learnt about taking the controls.
JESPER NEILSEN – AMAZING JEWELLERY Over the past 14 years Jesper Nielsen has been a vital player in the global jewellery business. Since 2003, the Nielsen Family has been a part of the creation of major jewellery brands, opened up more than 40 markets on five continents, generated billions of dollars in revenue, and left significant footprints in the industry. In 2004 Nielsen’s Kasi Group was appointed exclusive distributor of Pandora Jewelry in Central Western Europe (CWE) and in 2010 the Nielsen Family and Pandora Jewellery established the European distribution company Pandora CWE to carry the brand forward in CWE markets. In 2013 Jesper Nielsen launched Endless Jewelry, which is forecast to become the fastest growing jewellery brand in history. Following the rapid growth of the colourful concept of leather wrap bracelets with charms, Jesper Nielsen was mentioned as one of the industry’s top 50 influencers on JCK Magazine’s 2015 Power List for his work with Pandora and the creation of Endless Jewelry. In 2016 Jesper Nielsen and the Nielsen Family will launch the revolutionising concept of Amazing Jewelry.
ADRIAN DE COURSEY – TRAVEL DE COURCEY Adrian started his career as a strategy consultant and worked in North America, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and in China. After returning to the UK in 2011, he joined the family business Travel de Courcey. In recent years the business has grown strongly through contract wins and high levels of organic passenger growth. Between 20112015 Travel de Courcey grew annual revenues from £5m to £17m and the company was the first in the UK to use fast-charging electric vehicles as profiled on BBC news.
ANNA BLACKBURN – BEAVERBROOKS Anna joined Beaverbrooks the Jewellers as a graduate trainee in 1998. Fifteen years later she was appointed CEO, achieving two firsts in the 97 year-old family business – the first female CEO and the first non-family CEO. Beaverbrooks has been named in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For 2016 list for the 13th consecutive time, out of the awards’ 16-year history. Widely recognised as the most comprehensive guide to workplace engagement in Britain, Beaverbrooks was acknowledged by employees for providing inspirational leadership, its open and honest company culture and for its strong company ethos and commitment to the wider community. “We’re delighted that this year we achieved our highest ever response rate to the Best Companies engagement survey, which means we’ll be able to really identify what’s important to our people, which in turn will make Beaverbrooks an even better place to work where our people are inspired to be the best they can be,” says Anna.
In 2015, the company was named, for the second consecutive year, as one of the ‘Top 1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain’ in a survey by the London Stock Exchange, Lloyds Bank and the British Growth Fund. In his spare time Adrian likes to keep fit jogging, hiking and climbing and he is a long-suffering supporter of Coventry City (the ‘Sky Blues’).
The EDF Congress will be held on Wednesday 8th June, 2016, at the Novotel, 70 Broad Street, Birmingham, B1 2HT Registration is at 09.00 for a 09.30 start. The Congress finishes at 16.30, to be followed by the NAJ AGM at 17.15 in the same venue. Tickets cost £225 pp for NAJ members and industry colleagues. To book your place contact Amanda White on: Amanda.email@example.com
SUBSCRIBE YEARLY FOR ONLY £850!
• REGIONAL GROUP MEETINGS — to discuss the issues and opportunities they face, as well as develop new business skills
You and your business can benefit from the shared knowledge, experience and expertise of the EDF via:
• NEWSFLASH SERVICE — receive relevant business and Industry articles straight to your inbox
• MONTHLY PERFORMANCE REPORTS — enabling you to benchmark your business against other retail jewellers
• MEMBER BUSINESS SURVEYS — on topics identified by the members
• ONLINE Q&A FORUM — whether you have a business issue or just seek guidance. You ask the question and the members answer
• PLUS: the opportunity to influence and shape the content of the Annual Oxford Congress
• EDUCATIONAL STORE VISITS — allow you to see and hear what other jewellers are doing
For more information visit the NAJ website at: naj.co.uk, call Amanda White on 020 7613 4445 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 13
ASSOCIATION ESTABLISHES STEERING GROUPS T
he NAJ has established six steering groups to provide focused guidance and recommendations to the National Committee in key areas of the Association’s work. The steering groups will also provide industry input to products and services the Association develops over the coming months and years. If you would like to be considered for any of the groups, now or in the future, please do not hesitate to contact either the group chairperson or Michael Rawlinson NAJ CEO. The group chairpeople are as follows: Membership (Standards) – Helen Dimmick, Green + Benz; Education – Harriet Kelsall, Harriet Kelsall Designs; Public Affairs & Ethics – Judith Lockwood, Hockley Mint/Arctic Circle; Institute of Registered Valuers – Frank Wood, Braithwaite Jewellers; Marketing – Simon Johnson, Maramalde Jewellers and Technical Standards – Robert Organ, London Assay Office. Over the coming months we will feature each of the steering groups, setting out their agenda and focus and allowing members to feedback on the agreed agenda and direction.
NAJ AWARDS 2016 I
t may seem a long way off, but now would be a good time to start thinking about the prestigious NAJ Awards, which will be announced during the Benevolent Ball on 1st December, 2016. Sponsored last year by Continental Jewellery, the Awards celebrate excellence across the industry and we hope that as many members as possible will give consideration to nominating themselves this year.
IMPORTANT DATE FOR THE DIARY – NAJ’S AGM T
his year the NAJ’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday 8th June, at The Novotel, Broad Street, Birmingham. It will commence at 17.15 – just after the EDF Congress closes. During the meeting current vice chairman Simon Johnson, of Chiswick-based Marmalade Jewellery, will be handed the chairman’s chain of office and the vice chairman will be announced. The chairs of the steering groups will also be introduced to the membership and after the AGM a drinks reception will provide an opportunity for attendees to meet the heads, as well as fellow members.
The categories for the competition are: NAJ Service Supplier, NAJ Jewellery & Watch supplier, NAJ Retailer (two categories: one shop/gallery and chains), NAJ E-tailer, NAJ Designer and NAJ Member… of the Year. As well as nominees, of course, we would also be happy to hear from anyone interested in sponsoring any of the categories, or the event itself. Contact: Ian Francis on email@example.com for sponsorship and visit www.naj.com for more on the awards themselves. Full details of the 2016 Awards and fundraising dinner, will be announced in a forthcoming issue of The Jeweller and in an NAJ newsletter.
JEWELLERY AWARDS DISCOUNT FOR NAJ MEMBERS T
he winners of the UK Jewellery Awards 2016 will be announced on 29th June 2016 and this year there is an exclusive discount available for all NAJ members when booking via phone only. To take advantage of this discounted rate contact Hannah Boag on: 020 3033 2634.
For those attending the NAJ AGM, but not the EDF Congress, the Assay Office Birmingham is offering the opportunity to take an hour-long tour of the new AOB premises. To book a tour contact: xxxxx
The evening, dedicated to recognising and celebrating industry excellence, will be held at the London Hilton on Park Lane and will include a three-course dinner, networking, entertainment and an after show party… as well as the awards themselves. The shortlist for the Awards was announced during a drinks reception – sponsored by the NAJ – during Jewellery & Watch. To view the full list visit: https://awards.retail-jeweller.com/shortlist-2016
14 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
Simon Johnson and his wife Nadine Meegan, owners of Marmalade Jewellery
Lindsey to provide The Clogau team at UK Jewellery Awards 2015
MEMBER TO MEMBER OFFERS J
ewellery Photo Studio specialises in image retouching. Typical clients are jewellers wishing to achieve quality images from photos that they have taken themselves. This is a time- and costeffective solution for those for whom professional photography is an impractical option. The service is also of huge value to any jeweller or retailer looking to add consistency between their professional photos and the images they have taken in-house. Best Creative Stand winner Suzy Alexander (second from right) of Alex Monroe, with Alan Springall, Jo Henson, Michael Rawlinson and i2i’s Julie Driscoll
NAJ SUPPORTS J&W DISPLAY AWARDS T
he NAJ’s CEO Michael Rawlinson was one of the three judges chosen for this year’s Display Awards at Jewellery & Watch in Birmingham. Along with visual merchandiser Alan Springall and jewellery consultant Jo Henderson, he revealed the shortlist and announced the winning designs during a reception held at the close of Day One of the show. The Creative British category saw Alex Monroe receive the award for a nature-inspired stand; diamond and gemstone specialists UJT took the prize in the Best Small Stand category; the Best Watch Stand went to Bering and Hockley Mint took home the award for Best Large Stand. To view the winning stands and interviews with the winners themselves, visit: www.youtube.com/watch?v=iGzLJ3pyF_s
Jewellery Photo Studio also offers additional services such as metal and stone colour change, which allows a jeweller to present variations of products to a client without needing to invest time and money into physically making the variations of the piece. All members are entitled to a 15% discount. The NAJ has also negotiated great room rates on a selection of hotels that are in convenient locations. Our latest deal will be of interest to members who visit or exhibit at the Jewellery&Watch Show Birmingham and Autumn Fair. With its rooftop cocktail lounge, the Park Regis Hotel is the perfect place to unwind after a hectic day at the NEC. Members receive 10% off. Visit: www.naj.co.uk/members area for all deals and offers
NEW MEMBER APPLICATIONS As of March 2016 all new member applications will be published in the members area of the NAJ website as well as within the NAJ’s weekly newsletter. The newsletter is sent out on a Thursday and any comments must be expressed within a two week period.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 15
FOCUS ON EDUCATION
NAJ EDUCATION AWARDS 2016
Nicola Acton and Gary Wroe
The splendor of the gold leaf-decorated Livery Hall in Goldsmiths’ Hall, was once again the fittingly opulent backdrop for the presentation of the NAJ’S Jewellery & Education Training Awards on 16th March.
A very tangible demonstration of why Beaverbrooks is frequently listed in The Times Top 100 best UK companies to work for, was that the multiple retailer was there to celebrate the work of 25 members of its staff. Allum & Sidaway and Peter Jackson were other stores that could also boast multiple staff achievements during 2015.
NAJ president Patrick Fuller
t was, as NAJ president Patrick Fuller pointed out, only a couple of weeks since jewellery industry folk had gathered in the magnificent Goldsmiths’ Hall for the Goldsmiths’ Craft & Design Council Awards. Now, here we were again – this time with an even greater throng – to acknowledge and celebrate yet more achievements, this time those of the Association’s graduates. He began his opening address by reminding us that we were in “the spiritual home of our trade”, which was completely fitting “for such an important evening”. Directing his comments at all those who had worked so hard to further their education, he said that he was heartened to see that so many had chosen to attend the award ceremony. “You play a major part in the future of our trade,” he said. “You’re incredibly important to it and you’re a credit to yourselves, your families and your employers.”
16 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
Fuller also honoured the ‘unsung’ people behind the scenes – in particular the course tutors. In the room that evening and rising to take a bow, were: Mary Garland, Mark Houghton, Anne Kings, Michelle McCormack, Eddie Stanley and Don Taylor. Before handing over to NAJ CEO Michael Rawlinson to read the impressively long roll call of graduates of the Professional Jewellers Diploma, Fuller introduced the NAJ dignitaries on the top table – co-chairmen Gary Wroe, MD of Hockley Mint, and Andrew Hinds, director of F Hinds, and Kate Madelin, the executive in charge of education. To get the ball rolling, Chris Garland, MD of Bransom Retail Systems, presented Bransom Awards to those who had been chosen as the best JET1 students for the 12 months of 2015. Then Andrew Hinds, took to the stage to hand out the certificates for Professional Jewellers Diploma.
Taking their jewellery education a stage or two further, a number of graduates came forward to accept certificates for the JetPlus Diploma, JetPro Diploma and Certificate of Appraisal Theory (CAT). And Leona Fish of The Guild of Valuers in Bath and Andrew Lamputt, silversmith and jeweller from Hereford, both stepped up to accept their certificates confirming their fellowship of the Institute of Registered Valuers. One person who had particular reason to feel pleased with herself was Nicola Acton, of Christopher Evans, Poynton, who was handed the much-coveted
Greenough Trophy this year. The silver trophy – which was first given in 1946 – is bestowed upon the individual with the highest aggregate marks having completed the most outstanding project in the PJD programme. Speaking to The Jeweller after the ceremony, Nicola said that being awarded the Greenough Trophy was a really proud moment for her, “but what made it all the more special was how pleased and proud Chris my boss was of my achievement. It was through his encouragement that I decided to do the course in the first place,” she added. “I really loved doing JET2 because the subject matter was very interesting, it gave me something to get my teeth into. I was so fired up that it was easy to put the effort in. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t a walk in the park, but I would say that I found the course to be more taxing than difficult. The questions are designed to make you think and they certainly did that.
Beaverbrooks’ graduates with CEO Anna Blackburn and chairman Mark Adlestone
“The confidence I gained from doing both JET courses has meant that I have achieved a greater level of sales, been able to handle more technical enquiries...”
“Research was important and at times it was tough going to sort through all the information you find, but with the help of Chris, suppliers, customers and the course literature, I was able put it into a workable, presentable assignment. No one at work had done JET2 so I didn’t have anyone to confer with. Our suppliers were really useful and more than happy to talk to me when I explained what I was doing, so my best advice is to ask everyone and anyone
questions and use your tutor, as they are a great support.” Nicola is in no doubt as to how furthering her education has made a difference to her working life. “The confidence I gained from doing both JET courses has meant that I have achieved a greater level of sales, been able to handle more technical enquiries and been able to answer customers questions in a more knowledgeable way, which has given them greater
confidence in not only myself but the company as well,” she explained. “I am now going to embark on the Certificate of Appraisal Theory, with future plans to become a registered valuer.” Meanwhile, the trophy itself, with Nicola’s name engraved upon it, is going to take pride of place in Christopher Evans’ shop window for a week or two. It will then be moving inside to a display case so that her customers can enjoy it as well.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 17
FOCUS ON EDUCATION
THE FIRST 2016 BRANSOM AWARD WINNERS Congratulations go to the Bransom Award winners for January and February
Cherie-Anne Sassoli-Walker Cherie-Anne Sassoli-Walker of Beaverbrooks, who joined the jewellery industry just 15 months ago, has received the coveted Bransom Award for January. While considering a new career after a second child, she visited Beaverbrooks, Whiteley, as a customer and fell in love with the jewellery. “During the interaction my passion for jewellery must have come through, as I was encouraged to apply for a job,” she explains. “Within a month I had successfully got it, been on my induction training and was straight into the Christmas season! I’m a bit of a magpie, attracted to sparkles and love working with all the wonderful jewellery and watches… and I’m very lucky to work with such amazing and enthusiastic people.
Nicola Jackson The JET course had initially been recommended to Nicola Jackson, our February Bransom Award winner, by a colleague, while she was working at Robert Gatward Jewellers. (She is now an assistant manager at Robert Gatward’s first Pandora store.) “They had mentioned the benefits of the course; the valuable information you gain throughout, and also the confidence gained when selling,” she explains. “The online content was easily accessible and structured with detailed information on each of the different sections and overall I found that it was relatively easy to fit in studying while working full time; taking the course at my own pace.” She enjoyed all aspects of the course – in particular the
18 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
showered with gifts and praise and it has been very emotional. I feel particularly proud since it proves that you can change your career and succeed at any point in your life.”
“Winning the Bransom award means a lot. I hadn’t studied for over 15 years and I’m a part-time mum of two, so it took a lot of work and juggling to complete the JET1 course, but it was definitely worth it. My colleagues have been so supportive and were thrilled for me; I’ve been
“The online content was easily accessible and structured with detailed information on each of the different sections...” gemstones and hallmarking sections. “They enhanced my confidence when selling, because I can reassure customers that they can trust the information that we give them when they’re making a purchase,” she explains. “I initially found hallmarking a bit tricky, but reading the Bradbury’s guide to hallmarking, and researching online made the subject clearer. While working at Robert Gatward’s, hallmarking knowledge came in particularly useful when explaining different repair options to customers. Now, at Pandora, I am able to identify
Cherie-Anne found that the course challenged her, but also helped confirm what she’d learnt on the job. “I particularly loved talking about my customer interactions, whether it was recognising buying signals, or explaining the 4Cs. The Hallmark section was invaluable and one of the most useful to me in my everyday customer service,” she adds. “The course helps you collate your information and thoughts, and encourages you to research and find out more about your industry. I think it’s a great way to give you confidence and knowledge and I would most definitely recommend it to others.”
“The course helps you collate your information and thoughts and encourages you to research…” Cherie-Anne’s tutor Michelle McCormick suggested her for the award for having “embraced her studies and producing five outstanding assignments. Her answers demonstrate her positive attitude to delivering exceptional customer service”. Moderator Eddie Stanley praises her for “a very clear explanation of the 4Cs and coverage of the details, content and use of a GIA diamond certificate; good sound advice and a range of possible options for the client to consider are detailed.”
counterfeit items and explain about the hallmarks to customers, to reassure them that the quality we hold in store is genuine.” Nicola feels that JET1 has had a positive impact on her working life, allowing her to engage with Robert Gatward customers who also visit the new Pandora store. “I can now explain the benefits and features of products, while having knowledge of gemstones and different metal types. I’m now able to advise and explain the relevant care instructions for their jewellery. Given the opportunity I’d very much like to continue onto the JET2 course to further my knowledge,” she adds. “Although Pandora doesn’t sell fine jewellery, many charms are set with gemstones and some are in 14ct yellow gold. From the point of view of working in a new store, the course has been
invaluable – it has encouraged me to create a motivational inspiration board for the training and development of new staff. For instance we’re focusing on areas such as birthstones for each month, and link-selling with associated meanings and feelings. When staff understand these elements, it becomes more personal to the customer and may encourage a sale,” she says.
JET. THE MARK OF HIGH QUALITY EDUCATION AND TRAINING The JET programme offers the jewellery industry’s most prestigious professional development courses tailored for you, wherever you stand on the career ladder. Which means that, from sales assistant to business owner, we can help you make a mark in your career or business. JET courses are long-established, meticulously developed and supported by experienced tutors. Courses are completed online so they won’t disrupt your working day. And you don’t even need to be a member of the NAJ to enrol although membership entitles you to a generous discount. No wonder over 1000 students make their mark with a JET course every year.
JET1 FOUNDATION CERTIFICATE For anyone in jewellery sales or wanting to improve their jewellery product knowledge. Topics include customer service and complaints, gemstones, precious metals, hallmarking, jewellery types, design and manufacture, rings, silverware and gifts, watches and clocks, selling and personal development.
JET 2 DIPLOMA For students who have completed the JET Foundation course and want to gain the Professional Jewellers’ Diploma. Covers building consumer confidence, display, valuation, security, diamonds, the history of jewellery, service and repairs, pawnbroking and the law.
PROFESSIONAL JEWELLERS’ MANAGEMENT DIPLOMA For supervisors, junior managers, managers, proprietors or business owners, covering market awareness, financial variables, customer management, maximising potential, operations management and promoting your business.
A modular programme with a self-learning approach teaching the theories, methodologies and working practices required to become a jewellery valuer.
“I’m very proud to say that all of my team are JET qualiﬁed and they are also equally proud of that fact. Their performance increases exponentially with every course they complete.” Simon Johnson, Marmalade Fine Jewellery.
Find out more about our courses, email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 020 7613 4445 or visit najeducation.co.uk @UKNAJ
The National Association of Jewellers, Federation House, 10 Vyse Street, Birmingham B18 6LT.
JET JEWELLERY EDUCATION & TRAINING
CERTIFICATE OF APPRAISAL THEORY: CAT
IRV DATES FOR THE DIARY This year the Association is offering a number of opportunities to increase knowledge and expertise through the NAJ’s Institute of Registered Valuers and the Education Department.
DAVID WILKINS AWARD
Plans are well under way for the NAJ’s popular annual event, the Loughborough Conference – a must for existing and aspiring professional valuers/jewellers. Whether you’ve just joined the trade, or been in it for more years than you care to mention, this is a must-attend event. The Conference is one of a kind in the UK that endeavours to appeal to all sectors of the industry; it offers something for everyone involved in valuing/ selling jewellery, silver, watches, gemstones, etc., not only from the UK and Ireland, but also the rest of the world.
The NAJ’s Institute of Registered Valuers is now calling for nominations for the 23rd annual David Wilkins Award, which is given in recognition of exceptional skill, dedication and service in the field of jewellery appraisal and valuation. Awarded by the NAJ’s National Committee, the trophy is presented at the Loughborough Conference each year, and may be referred to by the recipient only in that relevant year.
Hugely popular, Loughborough provides an opportunity to expand knowledge and make new contacts. A friendly and welcoming affair, it’s certainly not a relaxing one – the business sessions are full-on and delegates work hard to benefit fully from all that’s on offer. Each year we welcome back many familiar faces and, indeed, many new ones. This is one of the Association’s most successful events and if you have not been before we hope we will see you this year. Taking place from Saturday 17th to Monday 19th September inclusive, the conference is held in Loughborough’s University of Technology, with accommodation and meals provided by the campus’s four-star hotel. The packed programme includes a mix of main presentations from leading names in our trade (including John Benjamin and Richard Drucker), plus open discussion sessions, and this year we have managed to find space for six of our popular 90-minute workshops, with sessions from lecturers covering a variety of topics. Introduced this year will be 45-minute sessions to introduce valuing to delegates who are new to the industry. These delegates are welcome to come for the Sunday afternoon only or for the whole day. A brochure and booking form containing full details of the costs (for residents and non-residents) will be available in June, but if you would like to register your interest (a copy of the brochure will automatically be sent to all IRVs and non IRVs who attended the 2014 and 2015 Conferences) please contact the conference organiser, Sandra Page, on 029 2081 3615 or email email@example.com.
20 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
The trophy itself, which was first presented in 1994 and honours a past chairman of the NAG’s Valuation committee, comprises an Elizabethan-style silver dish, which is inscribed with the winner’s name. It is complemented by the award of £100 in book tokens, for supplementing the winner’s personal reference library. • An IRV may nominate himself/herself or any other individual they feel merits nomination. A nomination may also be made by an NAJ member. • Completed nominations for the 2016 award must be sent to the NAJ Cardiff office to be received no later than 30th April 2016 • The selection of the winner from the nominations received will be by ballot of the NAJ’s IRV Who is likely to qualify for the David Wilkins Trophy? There is no official list of criteria that will enable a nominee to fulfil the citation, but the following examples of conduct may provide some guidance: • Consistently producing valuations of exceptional standard • Demonstrating high integrity • Giving help and guidance to colleagues or to members of the public • Working to promote and further the aims of the NAJ’s IRV • Providing information/resources for IRVs • Achieving exceptional results in training and/ or examination. • Showing diligence in research and information gathering • Displaying general conduct likely to enhance the reputation of IRVs Nomination forms can be obtained from Sandra Page. Call 029 2081 3615, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or you can download a form from the David Wilkins Award page on the IRV website at www.jewelleryvaluers.org ➥
MOUNTED DIAMOND ASSESSMENT SEMINAR The NAJ/IRV is delighted to announce that we have established a new Diamond Grading Course, to include assessing the grade of mounted diamonds. We are extremely pleased to confirm that we have engaged the services of Eric Emms, one of the world’s most qualified lecturers in diamond grading. His credentials are impeccable and this is an unmissable opportunity to either learn diamond grading, or refresh your expertise at the hands of a true expert.
IDENTIFYING SYNTHETIC AND TREATED DIAMONDS In Birmingham on the 16th and 17th May there will be a one-day seminar run by the renowned diamond specialist Dr Branko Deljanin GG DGA FGA DUG, president and head gemmologist, CGL-GRS Swiss Canadian Gemlab, Vancouver, Canada. He will be assisted by George Spyromilios, CDG of the IGL, Athens, Greece.
Above all this is a practical course. You will learn theory through the notes provided, and by discussing relevant topics with Eric and your fellow participants. However most of your time will be devoted to handling diamonds, simulants, man-made diamonds and treated diamonds and assessing mounted diamonds using a 10x loupe and a gem microscope. The course will be held at The Gemmological Association’s London headquarters from Monday 25th to Friday 29th July 2016 inclusive. Examination to be held on Friday 29 July 2016. It’s also worth noting that: • Completing the course will qualify as the ‘Diamond Grading Training Certificate’ pre-requisite required for valuers wishing to become IRVs • No prior diamond experience is required • The course is also an ideal refresher for the more experienced participant The cost of the course is £950 plus VAT. NB: accommodation is not provided. Places are very limited so please contact the NAJ Education Department immediately to sign up: email@example.com. There are still a few places available for this workshop, which is designed for gemmologists and valuers. An Advanced Diamond Programme Seminar, it will look at the screening and identification of synthetic and treated loose and mounted diamonds (using standard instruments), and offers participants an opportunity to learn how to identify different types of diamonds and separate natural from synthetic and treated diamonds using gemmological equipment. Details of the programme for the day are as follows:
Morning session: SYNTHETIC DIAMONDS – standard instruments Diamonds could be grown in laboratory (HPHT or CVD process) and synthetic diamonds could be colourless (type IIa), yellow to orange (type Ib) and blue (type IIb and type IIa).
Afternoon session: DIAMOND TREATMENTS – standard and advanced instruments After testing and screening with standard instruments, the diamond in question may then also be sent to an advanced lab for further testing and ID of colour origin with advanced instruments.
• Theory of plastic deformation and relation to types, natural and synthetic • Causes of colour in synthetic diamonds (HPHT-grown, CVDgrown and treated • CPF method of type detection and instrumentation (technical instructions and set up) • UV lamp – reaction of different types of synthetic diamonds under LW and SW UV light • Testing of mounted diamonds for synthetic origin, indications and limitations
• Colour enhancements – unstable (coating) • Colour enhancements – stable (irradiation, annealing, HPHT, multistep treatments) • Testing and screening methods for treated diamonds with standard instruments • Identification methods for treated diamonds with advanced instruments at labs • Post treatments of HPHT-grown (irradiation) and CVD-grown diamonds (HPHT) Practical workshop with NATURAL, TREATED and SYNTHETIC DIAMONDS • Microscopy – metallic inclusions for synthetic and graphitisation for HPHT treated • UV lamp – colours of fluorescence are giving indication/proof of treated/synthetic origin • Cross Polarized Filters - screening for diamond types and ID of synthetic diamonds
Images courtesy of CGL-GRS Swiss Canadian Gemlab, Canada
There will also be tools to take home: hand-outs, portable polariscope/light set, at an extra charge of £70 per set. A Certificate of Completion will be issued to all participants.
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The cost of the one-day seminar is £270 plus Greek VAT at 23% for IRV, NAJ and Gem-A members, £300 plus Greek VAT at 23% for nonmembers. To place your booking please contact George Spyromilios at firstname.lastname@example.org by 15th April at the latest. n
Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (No. 306522)
© Baselworld 2016. Courtesy of Baselworld.
A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE Hang a right off BaselWorld’s watch floors and you’ll find yourself wallowing in a different world of wonder. After checking out timepiece style trends, Belinda Morris went walkabout along the jewellery aisles, lapping up the luxury. Nanis ‘Transformista’
Bayco – emeralds and diamonds
24 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
s we go to press BaselWorld has two more days still to run… so no final attendance figures. However, the word on the aisles was that it was quieter than usual, in the jewellery halls particularly, but even on the watch floors. Smaller buying teams was one explanation, ‘no-shows’ by some stores was another. While understandably elevating the
fair (1,500 global brands, 3,000 media members, luxury, trendsetting, etc.). Sylvie Ritter, MD of BaselWorld, added a touch of gloom to the press conference by acknowledging that they had “felt the uncertainty” of some of the smaller exhibitors, given the current economic and political climate – could they prevail in times of low demand in the mid-term?
“there are still some retailers who are ready to be a little more adventurous, and not just tow the line that the big brands lay down…”
“The general mood was one of stoicism,” Neil Duckworth of Veritime (MeisterSinger, Anonimo and Utopia) told me, after several days of trading. “No one was in denial about how difficult the last year has been, and expectations for 2016 are not high. But most retailers are prepared for this, and most will weather the storm. I would say in general, retailers are being safe in their choices. But there are still some who are ready to be a little more adventurous, and not just tow the line that the big brands lay down. And this could prove to be a wise strategy – by offering something new, exclusive and different,” he added.
generally associated with pearls. Inspiration for the new collection is as diverse as the bubbles in champagne, 1970s disco nights and ballet dancers. Articulation, open work and customisable elements all feature, offering obvious commercial potential as well as creativity.
Those prepared to put in the legwork would have been able to find all three. And although watches may well define BaselWorld, the show is, by no means, limited to them. While the main entrance floor presents visitors with monumental and opulent edifices to the glory of the major international watch brands, straying off the beaten path reaps other rewards. The upper two levels of Hall 1, and the hinterlands of Halls 2 are, to use a well-worn phrase, an Aladdin’s Cave of inspirational jewellery treasures – the epitome of luxury and glamour – that ought not to be missed. As a fine example of British craftsmanship, Birmingham-based diamond jewellery manufacturer Charles Green designed and created ‘Wonders’, two one-off pieces, for the show, specifically to showcase the quality of its diamond setting. The stunning halo design rings feature yellow diamond – one fancy and one intense – centre stones, and drew the desired attention! Away from the main drag there’s always the chance that you will fall upon a new name or two… as in the case of Utopia. In fact the Milan-based luxury pearl house is very well-established in Italy, but now coming to the UK for the first time via Veritime. The emphasis is on design, utilising a mix of gems with South Sea/ Tahiti pearls and straying away from the expected tradition
Links of London ‘Sweetie’ watch
Halls 2 – an Aladdin’s Cave of inspirational jewellery treasures – the epitome of luxury and glamour – that ought not to be missed
Also looking to get a foothold in the UK is Italian 18ct gold jewellery brand Nanis, which last year celebrated its 25th anniversary. Signature aspects of the Vicenza-based label are: the hand-engraved, satin effect of the gold, the addition of diamonds, the use of trend-led coloured gemstones and then the versatility of some of the pieces. One ‘Transformista’ bracelet can, with a quick twist, take on three different looks, while another, with a flick of the wrist, turns from a bracelet to a necklace. Beautiful and clever!
Utopia ‘Night Fever’
Anonimo ‘Militaire Alpini’
Folli Follie ‘Santorini Flower Twist’ Charles Green ‘Wonders’
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 25
‘Clever’ certainly describes the signature chain by fellow Vicenza brand Fope, with its special, patented 18ct gold links, which have been developed further for 2016. ‘Phylo’ is a very fine, light, silky version for necklaces and bracelets, with the chain also found wrapped around chunky, diamond set rings. The ‘Solo’ collection also features new diamond rondells for extra sparkle, while ‘Eka Tiny’ now includes coloured stones as well as chains of various lengths that work well when layered together.
Jewellery Theatre ‘Lace’
Rodney Rayner ‘Pod’ collection
26 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
Also hailing from Vicenza, Marco Bicego incorporates fine handengraving to create a textural look for 18ct gold elements of its collections. The new ‘Lunaria’ line features the flat pebbleshaped gold discs pavé set with diamonds and also featuring lapis, emerald and rose quartz for 2016. Another line of very unusual gold disc necklaces incorporates faceted ‘landscape’ jasper and ‘opalised’ wood – each piece a one-off, naturally. Which can also be said of the amazingly detailed, extravagant and richly coloured pieces from Old Bond Street, London-based Jewellery Theatre – whose precious gem-set miniature works of art are largely inspired by nature – although this year they also pay homage to traditional lace-making.
Marco Bicego ‘Lunaria’ Storm ‘Crystana’
British jewellery designer Rodney Rayner, whose collections using special and irregular-cut stones are equally luxuriant in detail and intense colour, explains that his inspiration comes purely from the stones themselves – if he happens to capture the current trend zeitgeist it’s a happy accident. The names for the collections come after they’re created, and so you have ‘Pods’, rings which happen to look like blownup details of pomegranate seeds; ‘Via Roma’, a new casual version this year with grey and silver moonstones and black diamond beads on iron (yes, iron!) and 18ct gold chain; and ‘Sea Urchin’, a gorgeous statement ring with silver moonstones and icy diamonds. ➥
Swarovski ‘Crystalline Hours’
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Eurosafe UK presents Security Safe and Vault Standards - Part 1
INVEST WISELY IN YOUR SECURITY When buying a burglar resistant safe always ensure that its been independently tested to a European standard EN14450, EN1143-1 or EN1143-2. This ensures that your safe, strongroom or security cabinet has been tested by experts with relevant knowledge, skills and tools. Production is regularly audited to ensure that the safe you buy will give the same level of security as the model that was tested.
HOW IS THE CASH AND VALUABLES RATING GIVEN? Insurers match a cash value to the European standards as an windicator of insurance coverage. If your insurance cover is important always check with your insurance company before purchasing a safe. Eurosafe - The voice of the Industry For more information visit: eurosafeuk.org
Eurosafe The Jeweller Ad.indd 1
GRADE EN14450 EN14450 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1 EN1143-1
S1 S2 Grade 0 Grade 1 Grade 2 Grade 3 Grade 4 Grade 5 Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8 Grade 9 Grade 10 Grade 11 Grade 12 Grade 13
£2000 £4000 £6000 £10,000 £17,500 £35,000 £60,000 £100,000 £150,000 £250,000 £400,000 £650,000 £1,000,000 £1,500,000 £2,250,000 £3,500,000
£20,000 £40,000 £60,000 £100,000 £175,000 £350,000 £600,000 £1,000,000 £1,500,000 £2,500,000 £4,000,000 £6,500,000 £10,000,000 £15,000,000 £22,500,000 £35,000,000
Grades 11 to 13 apply to vaults only
Robert Demeglio ‘Joy’ collection
Autore ‘Metropolitan’ collection
A visit to BaselWorld for me would not be complete without looking in on Autore, the Australian South Sea pearl people, which this year celebrate their 25th anniversary. This is another brand that “challenges traditional concepts of pearl design” and always delivers the wow factor. Inspiration invariably comes from nature or architecture and for 2016, following on from 2015’s award-winning ‘Orchid’ collection, Autore has looked to iconic and monumental buildings across the globe, for its ‘Metropolitan’ pieces. Other than a cheekily kitsch homage to the Eiffel Tower, the references to edifices such as Versailles, the Art Deco
Chrysler Building and the Taj Mahal, are subtle – a play on a garden design here, a detail from fancy ironwork there. However, with diamonds, gemstones and – for the first time – enamel, enveloping and enhancing the pearls, the effects are always dramatic and different. The calm, luxurious ‘town house’ feel of Garrard’s stand was the perfect backdrop for its display of high jewellery. Following the recent appointment of new CEO Joanne Milner, the house is in the process of ‘regrouping’ in terms of branding and marketing, with a focus on the UK market and e-commerce, with an aim of reaching a younger demographic. A key part of the strategy is the introduction of ‘Twenty Four’, a very different look for Garrard, with a ‘friendlier’ price point (starting at £1,900) and a
Garrard ‘Twenty Four’ collection
directional feel, with gold and diamond stacking rings, ear jackets and chains of different lengths, designed to be worn together. There is though a nod to Garrard’s royal connections – the ‘dot and diamond’ motif, borrowed from the Queen’s ‘Girls of Great Britain and Ireland’ tiara – is subtly referenced in the designs. ➥
JEWELLERY STYLE DIRECTIONS Green stones – emeralds, tsavorites, green topaz Yellow gold Oversized stones Statement earrings 1970s and ’80s revival – particularly chunky chains
Festina ‘Chrono Bike’
Multi-function – versatile jewellery
Yoko (Euro Pearls)
Movement – such as articulation and spinning parts Archive pieces reworked Stack rings Fine necklaces, pendants and bracelets for layering Openwork and filigree-type effects Pavé setting Ear cuffs, ear jackets and double-ended studs
Oris ‘Artix Skeleton’
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Edox ‘Mini Lady’
New ways with pearls
For further information please contact email@example.com - Veritime Ltd, 60 Pembroke Road, London W8 6NX Exclusive distributors for Anonimo for the UK and Ireland
effect is created by the Clous de Paris detail on the top ring and bracelet links of Versus’ ‘Brick lane ‘ model, while at Ferragamo, the ‘Signature’ collection is inspired by colour (a key theme for the house) with a palette that includes orange, burgundy, turquoise and brown.
Patek Philippe ‘Nautilus’.
WATCHES – STYLE AND FUNCTION While key conversations on the watch front clearly concern themselves with technicalities like calibrations, complications and chronometry, the aesthetics cannot be overstated. For many (ok, for me) a watch is an accessory that happens to tell the time, so how it looks is pretty crucial. Anyone embracing shades of grey this season would appreciate one particular Maurice Lacroix Eliros model with its anthracite face and stainless steel bracelet, with a touch of yellow gold. Other models come with quick release leather straps for ‘on-the-go’ colour changes. Examples of watches as sparkly as jewellery, designed to sit alongside jewellery and with details and elements borrowed from jewellery, were everywhere. Take for instance Swarovski’s first automatic for ladies – rose gold encrusted with 4,000
Chantecler pink coral
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black crystals on the dial. British gemstone jewellery brand Lola Rose has introduced its first collection of watches, with dials created from stones such as agate and Links of London recognise that women want a jewellery-feel to their watches (that can also be stacked with bracelets) and so have updated their ‘Sweetie’ watch, giving it a weightier feel and adding white topaz to the oval face,
for added femininity. Never ones to shy away from daring to be different, Storm’s ladies’ watches are becoming chunkier, but as always detail is everything – bright colours for NATO straps, Swarovski crystal faces, mesh straps and flat cuff-like bangle watches… And just as versatility and customisation is a continuing jewellery trend, so too with watches – Folli Follie’s ‘Santorini Flower Twist’ comes with two extra straps, while an easy turn of the dial releases the strap already in place. The ‘Diaphanous’ model, meanwhile, picks up the trend for transparent cases, in this instance with crystal stones for extra sparkle. A subtle jewelled
Ferragamo ‘Signature’ collection
watches as sparkly as jewellery and designed to sit alongside jewellery were everywhere… Maurice Lacroix ‘Eliros’
Messika ‘Madison’ cuff
AESTHETIC WATCH TRENDS
J&W Domino ‘Starla’
Strong colours – particularly deep blues, greens, browns, reds, orange Pale neutrals – nudes, taupe, biscuit, silver-grey Matching strap and dial colours Black-on-black – strap, dial, indices Webbing and NATO straps Mesh straps Jewellery-look watches Small ladies models for layering Lacquered, enamelled, gemstone and MOP dials
military – as seen in the very masculine collection by the Italian brand Anonimo. New for this year is the use of bronze, which takes on a darkened, ‘distressed’ patina after a few weeks. A more subtle use of green can be seen in the form of the case edge of Mondaine’s new Gotthard model
Georg Jensen ‘Viviana Bangle’ watch with black diamonds
Black diamond – crystal details Slim v chunky profiles Versus by Versace ‘Brick Lane’
Skeleton details Transparent cases Archive revisited Stone-encrusted
The striking use of colour was a strong story for many of the brands at Basel, and while deep blue, shades of red and brown were ubiquitous, the stand-out colour for 2016 was green. It might be ultra vivid like de Grisogno’s New Retro Lady set with over 400 emeralds, or the more wearerand wallet-friendly, slender-cased ‘Phanero’ by MeisterSinger, with its intense racing green dial and strap to match. Alternatively the shade might be closer to khaki, in keeping with the ever-popular trend for all things
and the numerals on Nomos’ ‘Tetra Neomatik’ with its square dial and deep blue face. The unusual choice of ‘champagne’ coloured leather straps is further proof that Nomos likes to do things differently (and playfully). Vintage, retro, archive… however it’s termed there’s inevitably a feel for looking back in the watch world. It might be 1960s and ’70s funky styling (square dials with
softened corners for instance), old iconic aircraft (see Aviator), or, in the case of Seiko’s ‘Presage’ collection, drawing inspiration from the company’s hundredyear heritage in mechanical watchmaking. The two limited edition automatic chronographs boast innovative mechanisms, but also lacquer and enamel dials employing traditional Japanese artistry. Form and function in one. n
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 31
SPOTLIGHT ON MEMBERS
MEMBERS MAKING A MARK OF QUALITY Jewellery & Watch’s Buyers Power List saw Allison Aldridge of Neil & Barker walk away with the Best Individual Buyer Award for 2015. She spoke to us about what has made the Widnes store so successful. What is the history of Neil & Barker? My great grandfather Horace started Sextons, firstly with a horse and cart selling coal and paraffin and then a stall on Widnes Market. Eventually he opened a number of businesses including a furniture store, furniture removals and a secondhand yard. After the war, with his four sons, he opened stores in St Helens and Warrington selling furniture, carpets and then prams.
Then in 1972 my father built an extension to the store and opened his own furniture business with his own name, Duncan Sexton, over the door.
My father joined the business but with so many siblings, it was decided he’d be better setting up his own business and in 1964 he bought Neil & Barker, a wellknown pawnbrokers. At first they sold musical instruments (their claim to fame was selling a tambourine to John Lennon).
The new customer lives in a modern home and has money to spend on affordable branded jewellery.
Neil & Barker
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My first insight into retail was pricing up the goods my mother had purchased from the wholesalers in Manchester, and then working on a Saturday in what had become a mini department store selling jewellery, gifts, furniture, carpets and soft furnishings.
When did you start working for the store, in what position and how has your role changed over the years? I worked as a secretary until at 24 I became bored and my father offered me a job in the shop. I concentrated on the furniture and began accompanying my father to exhibitions and eventually took over all the buying. As with all family businesses your role is to work in all areas and as the shop was departmental I spent time working in the jewellery part of the business gaining knowledge of products and processes. In 1994 a shopping centre was opened in Widnes and by this time my husband Michael was working in the business and we decided to move the jewellers
to where it is today – a prime site giving a higher footfall and also protecting the business we had built and allowing it to grow further. My parents retired in 2000 and my sister decided to leave the business. It was at this time I moved over to run Neil & Barker Jewellers and suddenly realised I needed more jewellery knowledge. I quickly completed my JET1 & 2 and gemmology courses, giving me what I needed to understand the basics of fine jewellery. How has the store itself changed over the years? What developments have there been in terms of stock and the look of the shop? Over the past 10 years our business has changed dramatically. Furniture became difficult due to brand discounting and customers moving away from ‘lifetime’ furniture to cheaper ‘throw-away’ furniture. We decided to come out of that area altogether in 2006 and sadly closed Duncan Sexton Furniture to concentrate on Neil & Barker. In 2008 we started selling more branded jewellery and Pandora was the beginning of our move into that dramatic change. Pandora gave the jewellery trade the opportunity to increase sales and improve businesses and made us think in a way jewellers had never done before. What is your customer demographic today? Our traditional customers, who were once given long-term service awards by their employers and lived in terraced houses which were furnished like palaces and adorned with expensive giftware and collectables, have now almost disappeared. The new customer lives in a modern home and has money to spend on affordable branded jewellery. They are now our target market as they purchase regularly, but many have no loyalty and surf the internet for what they want… at the best price.
...we now have many repeat customers who enjoy the Ti Sento experience of being able to browse with a glass of Prosecco... Although we don’t have our own working jeweller on the premises we still have a good jewellery and watch repair business.
Ti sento shop, Trafford Centre
How are your two franchise stores doing? Do you have plans to open more? Our Pandora store in St Helens has gone from strength to strength and we relocated and refitted the store last year. The same hard work goes into the success of any store but Pandora’s way of training and running their business ensures we have a great team who are very passionate about being the best at what they do to achieve their goals for the store. Ti Sento in Manchester Trafford Centre was always going to be a challenge; the opening hours and staffing are somewhat difficult at times. A fairly new brand is always going to take time to develop and but we now have many repeat customers who enjoy the Ti Sento experience of being able to browse with a glass of Prosecco – it seems to have become a bit of a trademark! As a family business, we try to keep a bond between the staff in the stores. This is very important to us and we have a very hands-on approach, visiting the stores regularly. Katherine, our daughter, heads up training
and merchandising as well as staff incentives, and produces our monthly company newsletter, ‘Internally Flawless’, which has details of what’s going on in all stores. We are looking to expand the business shortly. Opportunities are always around but you have to wait for the right time and make sure you take the best way forward for you and your business. How long have you had an online presence/e-commerce side and how important is that to the business? We have a website which has also changed and developed and we have invested time and money to give our customers the opportunity to purchase or browse on line before visiting the store. My fears for today’s jewellery businesses, especially with the internet, is the discounting brands bring. Retailers and suppliers alike need to protect their businesses and in this competitive world, with mobile apps and social media, it’s important not to kill off our trade by discounting products to such a degree that independent jewellers end up having to shut their doors.
Is N&B mostly about brands? How important is unbranded fine jewellery and bespoke? Brands are important to drive footfall into the stores. Customers see our store as a destination as we have been part of the fabric of Widnes for so long and they know and trust us to deliver a service and a certain quality of product. Our fine jewellery offering has suffered over the past few years, making way for more affordable trend-led brands, but we still make sure we have a good range of diamonds and wedding rings.
Finally, what does winning the award mean to you?! I was shocked to receive it as there are so many buyers and dedicated individuals whom I hold in great esteem. I still have no idea who nominated me – it would be good to know so I could thank them! The award means so much, not only to me but to everyone that has helped me and my company to become what it is today. I love this industry, it is built on relationships and I am very proud to be part of it. I would like to thank everyone who has supported Neil & Barker over the years and helped make it the successful business it is today. I only hope that I can put back into the jewellery industry as much as I have had from it.
Allison Aldridge of Neil & Barker with Julie Driscoll and Kirsty Broere of i2i and Peter Anderson of Pandora
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SPOTLIGHT ON MEMBERS
MEMBERS MAKING A MARK OF QUALITY Having enjoyed a record-breaking 2015 and with a clutch of awards already under its belt, Clogau Gold has been shortlisted for a further three gongs at this year’s Jewellery Awards. Managing director Ben Roberts throws some light on the secret of the brand’s success.
The awareness of Clogau outside of Wales has certainly grown. Has this been a steady, deliberate increase, or has it been more recent. What is behind this? How fast are you growing? The increased brand awareness is due to our successful, longterm strategy. We started our re-brand in 2011 and have been working on it steadily since then. Firstly, we created a set of objectives that cascaded into key performance indicators for every area of the business. We simultaneously examined every brand touch point – logo, point of sale, campaigns, brochures, customer experience, partnerships and of course our jewellery. Clogau has always had a wonderful story and heritage. It’s something that sets it apart from the clean-slate brands that deliver a temporary fashion fix. There is a sophisticated amount of authenticity that is at the heart of everything we produce. Our team has doubled in the last five years, in line with our turnover.
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What are Clogau’s best-selling collections/pieces and how easy is it to go more ‘off-piste’ with designs? Are you still best-known (by retailers and consumers) for your more classic designs? ‘Tree of Life’ is Clogau’s most iconic and enduring design. Over a third of our jewellery, including best sellers, features elements of this most distinctive design handwriting. We’re also recognised for adding rose gold to all of our jewellery. This serves two purposes; firstly it gives us the freedom to create new collections away from traditional or classic designs while maintaining a signature visual element that customers recognise. Secondly, it creates a signature tangible element that forms an immediate connection between the customer and our jewellery. When they touch the rose gold, they’re touching rare Welsh gold, the rarest gold in the world.
Clogau shop in Westfield
Storytelling through jewellery is another facet to our brand proposition. Every piece is inspired by a story or theme. We understand that the Clogau customer loves the inspiration behind the jewellery as much as the jewellery itself. We spend as much time developing and communicating the story as we do on creating a fabulous piece of jewellery. Working in partnership with Historic Royal Palaces has given us a wealth of opportunity for new design ideas. You have won plenty of awards recently! How important are these to you? The awards deliver on many levels. We have an amazing team at Clogau. Every award is a tribute to a collective effort towards making the brand successful. We love a party, so every win is celebrated in true Clogau style. Then, it’s straight on to the next objective. The
awards also spark interest in the brand, opening a window of opportunity. We have an evolving prospect list across all channels. Our two most recent awards – Brand of the Year and Bridal Collection of the Year – have helped to secure new business. What was the reaction at J&W to the introduction of Fairtrade gold for Clogau Compose? What was the impetus behind this? It was a soft launch so feedback has been limited but all of it positive. We believe that Clogau Compose is, quite simply, the most innovative and exciting thing to happen within the engagement and bridal jewellery industry in recent years. [Wedding and engagement rings can be tailored to taste and budgets of customers
Every piece is inspired by a story or theme. We understand that the Clogau customer loves the inspiration behind the jewellery as much as the jewellery itself.
by using an iPad app or in-store tower counter.] We believe that using Fairtrade gold with rare Welsh gold offers the consumer something that is truly special. Clogau has its roots in Snowdonia and the early-19th-Century Welsh gold rush. Wales has small-scale mining history that dates back to the pre-Roman British Iron Age. We feel that the wonderful work done by the Fairtrade foundation to help artisanal gold miners is something that deserves our wholehearted support.
rings since 1923. Welsh gold was also used in the investiture regalia for Prince Edward in 1911. We use the same rare Welsh gold in every piece of Clogau jewellery. One of the reasons our partnership with Historical Royal Palaces is so successful is that we work within the parameters we are given, with a good understanding of the sensitivities surrounding British Royalty.
The fact that all Clogau pieces contain some Welsh gold seems to be less promoted than it once was. Our PR has increased in recent years so the brand messages are more consistent and more widely known. There are fewer occasions where the brand is asked to make a statement about the Welsh gold content, as consumers understand that every piece of Clogau contains a touch of rare Welsh gold.
How important is Clogau’s royal connection and how far are you able to work with this historical link? We are scrupulous with how we deal with the historical Royal connection. We make sure that every piece of collateral, press release and communication from the brand is factually correct. Welsh gold, taken from the Clogau St David’s Mine, has been used by some members of the Royal family for their wedding
When did the last two shops open, how are they going so far and are there any more in the pipeline? We opened stores at Westfield White City, London, and Resorts World, Birmingham, in November 2015. Both stores are performing in line with expectations and indeed, our objectives for opening in those locations. There may be more mono-brand stores in the future but right now our focus is on developing our business with our UK retailers, shopping channels and travel retail.
‘Tree of Life’ diamond earrings
CAD DESIGN RAPID PROTOTYPING DIAMOND MOUNTING OPTICAL SETTING
FROM CONCEPT TO COMPLETION T 0207 608 0058 E firstname.lastname@example.org
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 35
TALENT REWARDED On 29th February the glitterati of the UK jewellery and silversmithing industries gathered at the beautiful Goldsmiths’ Hall to celebrate British craftsmanship at its best.
Samantha Rose being presented with her award by the NAJ’s Michael Rawlinson, with Prime Warden Timothy Schroder
t’s not uncommon to hear various awards in our trade described as ‘the Oscars of our industry’, but in the case of the annual Goldsmiths’ Crafts & Design Council (GCDC) competition, this is certainly apt. In fact, as Timothy Schroder, Prime Warden of the Goldsmiths’ Company said in his welcome address, these particular awards are the Oscars, Baftas and Grammys all rolled into one.
Silver teapot by Brian Williamson.
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Why so important? Simply because this unique competition rewards excellence across the entire UK trade, recognising as it does the often unsung heroes as well as the familiar and/or celebrated names. The Council actively encourages craftsmen and designers, apprentices and students to enter their work and in doing so highlight the amazing technical skills and
Platinum rose brooch by Chloe Lightfoot
creative design (in precious metals and related materials) that this country has to offer. Proving just how inclusive and comprehensive the competition is, this year a total of 124 winners were honoured in 25 categories. There were 700 single entries, which increased to 1,000 from multiple entries – a marked increase on 2015. The diversity of categories required the assessing skills of 100 industry judges. This year the event was hosted by Joanna Hardy, fine jewellery specialist, author and expert on BBC’s Antiques Roadshow. The proceedings began with a presentation of the Lifetime Achievement Award Medal – sponsored by Thomas Fattorini – to David McCarty, who has won the Jacques Cartier Memorial Award five times. So stringent are the criteria for receiving this prize that for the last two years it has gone unbestowed. A liveryman of the Goldsmiths’ Company, McCarty is joined in his business by his son and daughter and the company’s unique objets d’art are as in demand now as ever.
For the second year the NAJ was a patron of a Special Award – for Creative Jewellery, which was won this year by ethical jeweller Samantha Rose for her interchangeable jewellery links. Inspired by daisy chains, her ‘Leinks’ are an interpretation of a charm bracelet, with the twist that the links are interchangeable and can create different pieces without the need for specialist tools or skills. So… ‘creative, distinctive and commercially viable’ as the award’s brief demands. It was a double
Woven silver trace chain and pearl necklace by Sian Evans.
Silver ‘Leink’ jewellery by Samantha Rose
White gold and tanzanite pendant by Ornella Ianuzzi
which took a Gold award in the Diamond Mounter’s category and Brian Williamson for his winning silver teapot in the Silversmiths category of the Craft (3D Finished Pieces) section.
Silver and diamond necklace by John Moore.
whammy for Samantha as her jewellery also won the Vipa Design Gold Award in the 3D Finished Pieces section. This year saw two Special Patron Awards – in the Craft (3D Finished Pieces) section, Brown & Newirth was the sponsor of a new prize for jewellers, which was presented to Ornella Iannuzzi for her 18ct white gold tanzanite crystal pendant, which took 207 hours to create. Meanwhile insurance broker Primassure offered a prize in the 2D Designer section – another
new award, which was given to Sian Evans for her woven silver tracechain and pearl necklace. This design was also a joint gold winner in the Pearl Jewellery section, sponsored by Raw Pearls. Three Major Awards are also bestowed. At the discretion of the Council, a Junior and Senior are recognised ‘for a piece of work that is judged to have achieved the highest standard of craftsmanship and/or design’ and this year’s recipients were, respectively, Chloe Lightfoot, for her platinum rose brooch
The IJL-sponsored Special Award for Precious Jewellery (Silver) was won by John Moore for his silver and diamond ‘Verto’ necklace, adorned with 29 diamonds, which was acclaimed by the judges for its “beautiful craftsmanship, fluidity and striking visual aesthetics”. So beautiful in fact that it received one of the Council’s two Premier Awards – the Goldsmiths’ Company Award ‘for exceptional and outstanding design in 2D and 3D entries’. The necklace will be on display at IJL this September.
A measure of how high the GCDC’s standards are and how tough the judging process, the highest awards are not necessarily given for each and every category. However, as the Council’s chairman Jos Skeates commented, a good number of entries met the benchmark Gold, Silver and Bronze standards. “The Council is dedicated to working for the industry it seeks to serve in raising standards and promoting excellence in creative design and craftsmanship. It’s been a good year with much to celebrate and enjoy.” Images of work by Sian Evans, Chloe Lightfoot, John Moore, Samantha Rose, Ornella Ianuzzi and Brian Williamson, by Richard Valencia.
John Moore receives his award from the IJL’s Sam Willoughby with Prime Warden Timothy Schroder.
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 37
J&W SHOW REPORT
…notes on an exhibition…
Debuting brands, ground-breaking launches and names to watch – Belinda Morris offers a personal overview of Jewellery & Watch.
espite being a show that felt decidedly quiet at times – for whatever reason – exhibitors at Jewellery & Watch in Birmingham were, in the main, upbeat during and after the event. As we go to press the organisers, i2i Events, were unable to release attendance figures (the parent company Ascential has recently floated and restrictions are apparently in place…). However, regardless of the exhibition in question, footfall statistics are usually taken by most with a lorry-load of salt. What really mattered, regardless of numbers, was whether suppliers saw the buyers that they wanted
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to see, took the orders they needed to take and notched up a few new contacts over the period. And in turn, visiting retailers hope to find what they are looking for, discover new talent and learn something new. Certainly, from an editorial point of view, the five days were almost not enough to check out the first-time exhibitors, brand and designer launches and new collections, sit in on a few seminars and generally information gather (feature material for the year ahead…). And sometimes excitement can emanate from unlikely quarters.
NAJ co-chairman Gary Wroe and deputy chairman Gary Williams were very impressed with Paskell Tools, a new business set up by experienced jeweller Lawson Carr who sources and supplies quality and affordable tools and machinery to the trade. Altruistically, he is particularly keen to help students coming into the trade, and independent jewellers, with equipment that will “assist, save time and keep overheads down”. His stock ranges from steel burrs and saw blades to a complete setter/engraver microscope kit, engraving machine and soldering unit.
The Promise of Created Elegance
was recently appointed as creative director of Arctic Circle), the line offers innovative new profiles for petal-inspired, fourclaw and cross-over Fairtrade gold engagement rings.
‘Arctic Flowers’ by Artic Circle
It is all about gold at Mark Milton, with Classic and Essential as well as design-led Collection lines in yellow, rose or white. The very popular 9ct Glitter range, featuring the surface finish that gives a textural sparkling effect, has been extended; while the fashionable, curated Mark Milton Collection majors on a multitude of chain styles, ’80s feel sleek bangles and chokers with a harder edge and textured pieces. In white gold with diamonds, the ‘Fleur’ ring uses twists of diamonds around a central stone to give a statement feel. On a purely selfish level, having lost an earring within the first hour of the show, I was particularly interested to discover Lox – a start-up UK business selling secure locking earring backs. The clever little push-on, squeeze-off device was designed by Gary Bryant after his wife lost a favourite stud earring. Prize for most-talked-about launch should arguably go to You Fine Jewellery’s The Promise of Created Elegance – contemporary fine jewellery designed by Sarah Jordan and created using Fairtrade gold and lab-grown coloured diamonds from Madestones®. The brainchild of Judith Lockwood and Gary Wroe, the directors behind Arctic Circle Diamonds, ‘The Promise’ targets the self-purchasing woman, and includes stack rings, bangles, drop earrings and pendants incorporating Jordan’s signature fluid lines.
This is the first time that Antwerp-based Madestones® has been directly involved in the launch of a new fine jewellery brand. Each diamond comes with an IGI certificate grading the diamond, while the 18ct Fairtrade gold is sourced from fully accredited mines in Peru. For diamonds grown below the ground, visitors stepped across the stand where Arctic Circle’s new bridal collection – ‘Arctic Flowers’ – was being unveiled. Also designed by Jordan (who
Meanwhile, a (gem)stone’s throw away, Continental Jewellery reported that the best selling pieces in 18ct gold that have been brought out in 9ct, have been proving very popular – the openwork, multi-row rings in particular. Also selling like hot cakes were double halo dress rings – one channel set, the other claw set – as well as
vintage-feel eternity bands, twisted gold diamond set bangles and halo rings with coloured central stones. At Tankel, a very different cluster ring featuring high-colour sapphire and ruby with diamonds in a petal design, has been well-received for its ‘big effect’. If knock-your-socks-off colour was your quest, the place to find it was on Niquesa’s deluxe stand. The Italian-born, Belgravia-based, family-run fine-jewellery business was launched three years ago and used its debut at J&W as a brand-building exercise. The first collection inspired by the Venice carnival was displayed in all its opulent glory, along with the romantic, petal-like ‘Amore’ line and ‘Ophidian’ with its organic, serpentine qualities. In all cases white, yellow and rose 18ct gold is set with diamonds and multicoloured gemstones. ➥
Niquesa Venice Collection
Mark Milton Collection
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 39
J&W SHOW REPORT
The Design Quarter always provides creative inspiration for visitors – from both new and established brands and designer makers... Also combining creativity with conscience, Cornerstone Creations, conceived by goldsmith Paul Spurgeon, revealed its sleek new branding – along with new silver and gemstone flowing designs – at the show. Alongside an ongoing contribution in terms of time, design and support for the Cornerstone Project in South Africa, the team introduced its new sterling
silver and rose gold plate ‘Hope’ pendant (evolved from the bestselling ‘Cradle’ collection), with all proceeds going directly to the project. The Design Quarter always provides creative inspiration for visitors – from both new and established brands and designer makers. Istanbul-born, Londonbased designer Nilufer Kizilkaya was among the first-timers, with her GfG brand of precious metal and gemstone jewellery. She left behind a successful career in the City to retrain as a silversmith, and the result is a wearable, feminine collection incorporating different hammering and cutting techniques. ➥
Sepanta ‘Parria’ earring and double ring
If you diligently walked every aisle, from A to U, you may have been lucky enough to come across another interesting newcomer to the show. Britishmade Sepanta is created by a design team headed up by architects Yevgeniya Pozigun and Reza Esmaeeli, whose first collection of strikingly bold, contemporary statement pieces, is inspired by Persian carpet motifs. Intertwined loops of 18ct white, rose or yellow gold are set with coloured sapphires or diamonds for oversized earrings, rings, pendants and cuffs. Colour was also the name of the game at Manja’s new ‘Freedom’ collection of silver bangles, earrings and rings inspired by the emotive Vango Vango bracelet – a traditional symbol of freedom from Madagascar. Each open-ended piece is tipped with two gemstones and Manja took the opportunity of the soft launch at
40 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
the show to discover the most popular of the possible colours. The result? Haematite, followed by lapis and turquoise – all three will be offered to retailers this month. Manja will be donating 20 per cent of all proceeds of the sale of items to help fight poverty in Madagascar.
GfG ‘Dafna’ earrings
Manja ‘Freedom’ Collection
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J&W SHOW REPORT
Some jewellery grabs your attention immediately... Similarly, Yvonne Kostiak is leaving behind a career in trend forecasting in London to follow in her father Mark’s jewellerymaking footsteps and has launched her own collection of solid silver charm-based pieces – kitsch takes on mother nature. Meanwhile Mark Kostiak has introduced ‘Dwynwen’ – a range of stacking rings, charm bracelets and pendants inspired by the Welsh patron saint of lovers – to sit alongside his designer pieces incorporating slate as well as natural raw gemstones. Some jewellery grabs your attention immediately (Isabel Moore’s amazing handmade, stainless steel chainmail and mesh bracelets, necklaces, earrings and body chains, and Sara Preisler’s oxidised silver earrings with central drops in gold, come to mind), while others require closer inspection. Stelios Karantonas’ deceptively simple pieces – 18ct gold tube chain encasing pearls, ultracontemporary linear rings tipped
Mark Kostiak Dwynwen ‘Anchor Spoon’
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Yvonne Kostiak Ring Stack
with 18ct gold, and peridot and gold wire loop earrings threaded with a baroque pearl – are fine examples. Offering signature Scandinavian understatement was another J&W newcomer – Drakenberg Sjolin from Sweden. The cleanlined, elegant jewellery, in silver as well as 18ct gold with diamonds, is inspired by “Nordic light and darkness” as well as the seasons and “the constant
movement in nature”. Fellow Swedish business Edblad has extended its lifestyle collection (including the ‘Charmentity’ chain and letters/symbols line) with the introduction of watches – chunky, trend-led models aimed particularly at men. Jewellery for men might be, still, a relatively niche area, but for those sourcing it the show had plenty to offer. With new lifestyle images, reworked
displays and the biggest collection to date, Unique reported that its stainless steel men’s jewellery has been very successful – the leather, steel and carbon fibre bracelets and detailed cufflinks particularly so. Also worth mentioning in despatches should be Unode50’s rings, bracelets, key chains and cufflinks, and Fred Bennett for bringing back tie clips and collar pins. n
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FLYING THE FLAG One of the designers flagged as ‘British Born & Made’ at Jewellery & Watch, Cheshire-based Claire Troughton was also chosen to show on the BJA’s design debut stand at IJL 1996 – later reborn as KickStart. As she celebrates 20 years in the industry, we learn about her career path, her passions and the plus points of patriotic production! Where did you train and when did you establish your business? I completed my degree at Edinburgh College of Art in 1995 under the fabulous Dorothy Hogg. It was a fantastic course and I was thrilled to be accepted, as at that time there were limited spaces for nonScottish students. There were only 10 in all in each year group, which meant there was a great ratio of tutors to students. After graduating I was accepted onto the Taylor/Burgess business fellowship (created by Peter Taylor who is now director of the Goldsmiths’ Centre) in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter. This provided a free workshop space for one year along with business training to enable new jewellery designers to establish their businesses in the Quarter, which I duly did in 1996.
and made with love in the jeweller’s workshop. They also have an appreciation of British craftsmanship. Customers from outside the UK are mostly buying into the quirkiness of British design and they want their products to be genuinely British and not masquerading as British. How much of your production is done by you – has that changed over time as orders have increased? I still produce each original master for the silver collections by hand, working directly with the metal, rather than wax carving. This is the bit I love as way too much of my time is spent away from the bench these days. In the early days most of my time was at the bench, but now I guess it’s only about 40 per cent. A casting house makes the rubbers and produces the castings for me. There is a lot of hand finishing to be done afterwards and most of this is done in-house, although certain processes like stone setting is done by outworkers. How easy (or difficult) is it to find British craftspeople when you need to outsource work? Are there certain manufacturing processes that are more difficult to source than others and if so, why is that? I’m lucky that I spent 10 years in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter after graduating, so I still have a lot of contacts there. I’m also constantly being approached by new graduates for bench work, so that side of it is covered.
My designs have always been influenced by nature... I’m always looking at different plants and flowers, always noticing something new...
Did you always want to be a jewellery designer-maker? I always knew I wanted to do something creative, but I wasn’t sure exactly what. My pre-BA art foundation course gave me the chance to experiment with different media, but this didn’t include jewellery. However, everything I made was small and intricate, concentrating on detailed elements, which led me towards a jewellery degree and as soon as I entered the workshop at Edinburgh I felt like I had arrived home. Was it always important to you to work in the UK and to promote Britishness? Why? To be honest with you I never wanted to work anywhere else! I love travelling and discovering new places, but I also dearly love coming home. We have so much beautiful countryside here, which never fails to inspire me and the Brits have so much quirky individualism. There is also a great appreciation of the handmade here and interest in the jeweller’s personal story. I once exhibited in Hong Kong and the only questions the buyers wanted answered were “How heavy is it?” and “How much per gram is it?” I’m pleased that people here have a greater appreciation for the design and craftsmanship of a piece. Are you aware of your customers (retail and consumer) appreciating ‘British made’? Is it mostly UK customers that think this way or does it have kudos abroad? My customers definitely appreciate the ‘Made in Britain’ tag. There is so much jewellery flooding in from elsewhere, but many of them actively seek out a brand that they can feel the authenticity of. They want a more personal feel, knowing that the jewellery has been designed
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What are the main materials that you use and have you looked into ethical sourcing? The collections are mainly made in silver with accents of gold plate. I’ve looked into using recycled silver, but as the casting isn’t done in-house controlling this side is quite difficult. For the one-off commission pieces I use a lot of recycled gold and silver. I often get approached to make new pieces, especially engagement rings, using heirloom jewellery and gems, and the customers really appreciate the personal touch this gives the jewellery.
Shimmering ripples ring in 18ct yellow gold and diamonds
There are certain more traditional processes that are becoming harder to source, such as hand engraving. My hand engraver is 84 and is struggling to still hold his tools now. I do know a few other engravers, but they are in high demand because there are fewer people entering their profession.
Are you finding that UK jewellery retailers are becoming more interested in the work of contemporary designers? How does the future feel for you? Yes, absolutely! My work used to be pitched more to galleries, but now larger retailers are looking to offer their customers something different too. With the rise of the internet, bricks and mortar shops need to offer something new to make them stand out from the crowd, so they’re taking more of an interest in designers like me. What does the future hold for Claire Troughton? At the moment I’m really busy with commission pieces for the wedding season. I’m also working on a new summer silver collection, which will be launched online soon, as well as new designs for the British Bee Keepers Association. Alongside this I’m very excited about developing a collection of wedding and engagement rings in 18ct gold to sell to retailers. The rings have been influenced by some of the most successful commission pieces and will see combinations of white and yellow gold alongside coloured diamonds and sapphires. Retailers have been asking me for a collection of rings for a while now, so I can’t wait to hear the public’s reaction.
I guess this is because it is not easy to take on apprentices. I recently attended an engraving day in Liverpool, where engravers were discussing this matter. Many of them are not employed by large firms today and are sole traders. Therefore although they want to share knowledge they haven’t got the time to be teaching an apprentice, while their work goes undone and they are not earning money. What elements of your pieces have you no choice but to source from overseas suppliers? And again, why is that? I try wherever possible to use UK businesses. However, over the last few years I have found certain sizes of freshwater pearls hard to source. This has meant either changing designs or finding overseas companies who can supply them. I use a UK family-run business to supply my chain. They manufacture chain in the UK, but also source some styles from abroad, so it is inevitable that sometimes chain from outside the UK will be used. What inspires you in your design? Has that altered over time or is it a constant? My designs have always been influenced by nature. I was brought up in Yorkshire by parents who loved to walk. They would take my brother and me on long walks in the country and point out different leaves, flowers, birds and birdsong. Consequently I’m always looking at different plants and flowers, always noticing something new that I would like to work with. At university I experimented with making vessels out of twigs and moss and necklaces out of rhododendron leaves. I then progressed to making my interpretation of leaves out of silver and mokume gane [a Japanese metalsmithing technique involving fused or soldered layers of metal]. I never just cast the actual organic material. My fascination is with interpreting the theme rather than just producing a copy.
Medium forest fern earrings in rose gold plate
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 45
INHORGENTA MUNICH SHOWCASES INNOVATIVE DESIGNS The German fair takes place against backdrop of global economic uncertainty and surging precious metals prices, reports David Brough.
Hall C2 was the focal point for design innovation, incorporating unusual raw materials and stones, extraordinary shapes, and inspiration from themes as diverse as the Undersea World and Botany to Meteors and the Jazz Age. “Inhorgenta Munich is a ‘trade show for discoverers’ – for people who discover new creations and ideas,” said Klaus Dittrich, chairman and CEO of Munich trade fair. Jenny Llewellyn was one of the many innovative designers at the fair. Her brightly coloured silicone jewellery is durable despite its gentle flowing look. Representing the space-age theme, Atelier Gilmar showcased its ‘Celeste’ collection, and Cara Tonkin, shortlisted in the Designer category at this year’s UK Jewellery Awards, presented her ‘Orbit’ line. Meanwhile, Farah Qureshi, who lives near Kew Gardens, showed off her silver jewels inspired by botany – leaf and twig shapes abounded.
Cara Tonkin art deco ‘Vesper Full Swing’ interchangeable bracelet-necklace
urnout was strong at Inhorgenta Munich, one of Europe’s biggest jewellery trade shows, which presented an array of cuttingedge designs, but the event was overshadowed by concerns over global economic uncertainty. Futuristic and retro themes dazzled visitors to the 12th – 15th February show, with space-age styles, inspired by the latest Star Wars movie, and Art Deco looks conspicuous among the variety of design themes showcased at the fair. Footfall was brisk as retailers restocked after Christmas, but the gloomy economic environment – sliding share, oil and commodity markets – was an overriding concern. Visitor numbers were stable year-onyear – some 26,000 trade visitors
46 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
from 75 countries came to find out about new products, trends and industry developments. Some exhibitors said that soaring precious metals prices, with gold acting as a safe haven at near one-year highs, augured for less weight of metals in some designs and a less opulent look to reflect a more austere mood. The backdrop for trade in Germany has been resilient so far, but retailers and suppliers expressed concerns over the future. Watch sales rose six percent in Germany in 2015, and jewellery sales were up 0.5 percent, according to the jewellery and watches business federation. “So far we have not felt directly the impact of global economic
volatility on our business, but we will have a better idea after Baselworld in March,” said Alexander Corolli, CEO of fine jewellery brand AL CORO, in fine jewellery Hall B1. He said he expected rose gold to remain popular in high-end pieces and that some customers would seek reassurance from bigger stones, possibly seeing them as a store of value if confidence deteriorates.
“Inhorgenta Munich is a ‘trade show for discoverers’ – for people who discover new creations and ideas...”
The organisers of Inhorgenta had created an appealing environment for business. The fine jewellery hall, B1, was adorned in shades of warm gold and bronze. “We have created an optimum environment for retail traders here, where they can establish interesting contacts, and place orders in a relaxed setting,” Dittrich said. UK retailers Catherine Jones of Cambridge, Wave Jewellery and Alexander Davis, among others, attended the show again this year.
Neola jade ring
THE BRITS AT INHORGENTA
This year 13 jewellery makers – some debutantes among the veterans – presented their latest collections on the British pavilion. Organised by British Jewellery & Giftware International, and supported by UK Trade & Investment, the group stand demonstrated the diversity of British creativity. We spoke to a few participants to gauge the success of the event.
“This year was my first time exhibiting at Inhorgenta. I showcased my current collection made from recycled silver and brightly coloured resin. It was well received and I made a lot of new contacts, including galleries from Madrid and Prague.” Ruth Hollywood
“This was our second time and it was a fabulous show. We met lots of interesting new contacts and so far have secured three new stockists in Germany. We launched two new collections, ‘Equilibrium’ and ‘Charleston’. The geometric and minimalist designs have a very distinctive design aesthetic and got the most interest. “Being part of the British Pavilion gave us the opportunity to showcase on a leading international platform, accessing a broad range of European stockists. It’s great to exhibit as part of a joint stand, meet fellow designers, share insights and brainstorm.” Andrea Hauer
ANCHOR & CREW
“We specialise in designing and manufacturing exclusive silver and amber jewellery, inspired by Britain’s wildlife. We showcased our latest collection of garden birds and familiar flowers and insects.
NEOLA (see opposite bottom right)
“We will attend again as we found it extremely useful for finding new and potential retailers, and for the contacts made.” Andrew Warner
“Inhorgenta exceeded our expectation and I’d definitely exhibit again. It was not only a great opportunity to open new international doors, but also good for networking. We’ve already received our first orders from Germany and Austria.” Anna Emmett
KATE WOOD JEWELLERY s “This was my first time at Inhorgenta; I exhibited a range from all my current collections and the gemstone and pearl beaded pieces were very well received. My newer pearl ‘Row’ bracelets and necklaces and beaded ‘Tassel’ pieces were particularly popular, as was the rose gold vermeil (with pearls or pink tourmaline). I met a lot of new contacts and secured eight orders, seven of them from new accounts in Europe.” Kate Wood
“This was our first showing in Germany and our brand went down very well. We received many orders from new stockists from Germany, Austria, Northern Ireland and Canada, building on the success that we had at Bijorhca Paris. As well as our original collection we showed new rope and leather colours, two new bracelet styles and one completely new collection.
“We had an amazing response. Vibrant colours of additional stones in our jewellery – such as turquoise, coral and amethyst, alongside detailed design and great quality – attracted a lot of interest from potential buyers.
“We showcased our new ‘Love & Kisses’ collection along with a taster of our silver and gemstone jewellery. The show was quiet, but we opened a couple of new accounts and made some new contacts. We realise we need to work hard and develop this new territory. I know it will require a few years of exhibiting to build a network of European retailers and we’re willing to put the effort in to achieve the end result.” Barry Mislin
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 47
– ROSE QUARTZ – This year the colour authority people at Pantone have decreed that ‘the’ colours for 2016 are ‘serenity’ – a pale powder blue – and ‘rose quartz’. In the absence of any gemstone known as serenity, Gem-A’s Andrew Fellows FGA DGA CDG considers rose quartz in this issue.
ound in many parts of the world, the best coming from Brazil, rose quartz is the pink variety of quartz (from pale to medium-dark), and as such has many of the same gemmological properties. A hardness of seven on the Mohs’ scale means that it can be faceted and used in jewellery (as it has been for thousands of years) without worry about it being easily damaged, and the vitreous lustre gives an almost glasslike appearance to the surface. A refractive index of 1.54 to 1.55 can help in identification, but not really with the sparkle of scintillation of the stone. Indeed, most rose quartz has a translucent to opaque appearance, caused by a myriad tiny intergrown crystals and microscopic inclusions. At first this may not sound attractive, but these inclusions give the stone an ability not seen in many others.
Rose quartz stones from Maygems
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Under the right circumstances, some gem materials can show a star effect (known as asterism) on their surface (rubies, sapphires, garnets), and this is the same with rose quartz. In this case, a six-rayed star can be seen when a spotlight is directed at stones with domed or rounded surfaces. Where rose quartz differs though, is that not only does this star appear in reflected light, but also in transmitted light, when the stone is lit from behind. In fact this diasterism (created with transmitted light) can be stronger than the more regular epiasterism (created with reflected light). A prime example of this can be found in the Smithsonian, which has a 915 ct rose quartz sphere that exhibits both forms of asterism.
‘Whispering’ rose quartz drop earrings by Fei Liu
In order to show this asterism (if it’s present), the stone has to be cut as a cabochon, which is how you see most of the stones used in jewellery. The domed surface emphasizes the star, or, in non-star stones, provides a reflective surface to show the colour. Faceting most opaque rose quartz wouldn’t enhance the fire or brilliance of the stone, but curved surfaces add to the sheen. Rose quartz forms with what is known as a massive habit, which in gemmological speak means that it forms as tiny crystals, but which all intergrow to create a mass without any defineable shape. These can be very large formations, but lack the transparency seen in other gems. Translucent gem material can be found, and this too can be quite sizeable – the
Smithsonian for instance has an emerald-cut stone weighing 84 ct. Well-formed crystals are exceptionally rare, and are usually slightly different in their cause of colour, earning them the name ‘pink quartz’. Historically, rose quartz is also considered to be a very romantic stone, being thought of as a stone of love, emanating feelings of well-being and contentment. It’s considered by some as a receptive gem, able to attract positive energies – such as peace, love and harmony – and calm aggression! It was also believed by the Egyptians to be able to halt the ageing process, and in more recent times has been used as the stone to celebrate the fifth wedding anniversary. The jeweller Fabergé even used rose quartz in the creation of the Imperial eggs, such as the ‘Lily of the Valley’… so from such humble beginnings as the most common mineral on earth to the heights of Fabergé fame, rose quartz is a stone that can offer something different for, and to, everyone!
Don’t spare the blushes For the first time the colour experts Pantone have given the waiting trend watchers not one, but two ‘colours of the year’ – ‘rose quartz’ pink and ‘serenity’ blue. It’s a calm pastel pairing that can be exploited extensively by the jewellery industry – the pale pink tone broad enough (with a little artistic licence) to encompass gems such as morganite, kunzite, pale pink diamonds, pink tourmaline, pink topaz and pink pearls… as well as rose quartz!
Purity 925 by CL Edwards
London Road s Rose quartz drop earrings in 9ct yellow gold
‘Paradis’ conch pearl and diamond ear studs
50 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
GfG ‘Niki’ ring in 18ct yellow gold vermeil with rose quartz stone
Rose quartz and rose gold plated pendant
And ‘serenity’? Well, aquamarine might be pushing it a little, but chalcedony is a pretty good fit and only colour purists would say no to a watery blue opal or pretty baby blue topaz. Pinks or blues, either way we’re thinking inspiration for window dressing, trade stand displays, photo shoots…
The Promise of Created Elegance from You Fine Jewellery
Fairtrade gold rings set with lab-grown pink and blue diamonds
‘Lara’ double ring in 18ct yellow gold vermeil with blue topaz
Sterling silver necklace with blue chalcedony and rose quartz
18ct rose gold plated bronze ring with cubic zirconia stones and faceted pink quartz
‘Enchanted’ rose quartz ring in 18ct white gold set with ruby and pink sapphire twists
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 51
Carved mother of pearl and chalcedony pieces from the ‘Tuberose’ collection.
‘Shine Your Light’ copper bangle with ‘Blossom’ shade bead
‘Fly by Night’ Crystal Haze 18ct rose gold earrings set with pink opal and white diamonds
JCM London s
18 ct rose gold doublet ring with rose quartz complemented by pavé set pink sapphire and white diamond
Drop earrings with chalcedony, druzy, hematite and Swarovski crystal
52 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
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‘Amelie’ gold vermeil chandelier earrings with chalcedony and rose quartz
Carbon ring set with pink and white diamonds
‘Enchanted Blossom’ rose gold plated pendant with pink tourmaline flower pattern set with cubic zirconia
Kunzite and diamond, 18ct white gold ring
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Silver double bangle set with rose quartz and blue topaz
54 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
18ct white gold bracelet with pink sapphires and diamonds
For sponsorship enquiries contact Ian Francis at email@example.com or on 0207 749 1705. The NAJ Awards 2016, presented at the Benevolent Ball, St. John’s Hotel, Birmingham. Tickets £77 + VAT per table, tables for 12 £850 + VAT. This year, all tickets include half a bottle of wine per person. For tickets contact Gill Price at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0121 237 1138.
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BUSINESS SUPPORT: FINANCE
A BUDGET FOR ‘THE NEXT GENERATION’
– but what about NOW? Rather than look at budget proposals planned for the future, it might be more useful to consider what you need to know NOW, while still coping with the National Living Wage and auto-enrolment costs, says Steve Clemence, chartered financial planner at TH March. NOW (06/04/16) • Personal Allowance and Tax Thresholds: The Personal Allowance is £11,000 and the basic rate limit is £32,000, giving a higher rate threshold of £43,000. • Dividend Tax Changes: If you draw a small salary, and a large dividend, you need to talk to your accountant to discover the best way of drawing your income. The dividend tax credit has been replaced by a new £5,000 tax-free dividend allowance for all taxpayers. Dividends that exceed this allowance will be taxed as follows: - Basic rate band – 7.5% - Higher rate band – 32.5% - Additional rate band – 38.1% • Personal Savings Allowance: Up to a £1,000 interest is taxfree for basic rate tax-payers and £500 is tax-free for higher rate tax-payers. For some there is now no need for an ISA. Your interest from banks and building societies will now be paid gross. • Pension Annual Allowance Reducing: Current or future high earners, in this tax year, could find their Annual Allowance reduced to as low as £10,000 from £40,000. • Pension Life Time Allowance Reducing: The maximum you can have in your pension pot (without tax charges) is now
56 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
£1M. If you are approaching (or over) this limit and haven’t paid anything into a pension yet in this tax year, don’t pay in until you have looked at Fixed Protection. If you have already paid into a pension in this tax year then it is too late for Fixed Protection, but not too late for Individual Protection. Get advice. • Capital Gains Tax (CGT) Rate Reducing: For individuals the rates of CGT have reduced. The 18% rate of CGT has reduced to 10% and the 28% rate to 20%, except in relation to gains on residential property (that do not qualify for private residence relief) and carried interest. • Entrepreneurs’ Relief (ER) Extension to Long-term Investors: Shares are assets for the purposes of CGT, with gains on disposals being chargeable to CGT. Where shares qualify for ER, the first £10M of gains accrued on the disposal of shares in a trading company, by an individual who has worked for the company and owned at least 5% of the ordinary shares in the company, are taxed at a rate of 10%. Extending ER to external investors should provide a financial incentive for individuals to invest in unlisted trading companies over the long term.
2017 AND BEYOND (06/04/17) • ISA Allowance Increasing to £20,000: Don’t forget to use this year’s allowance of £15,240. Tax free low interest may not be as good as taxed high interest. Think about ISAs for longer-term investments, particularly if your Annual Allowance for Pensions is being reduced or you are stopping pension contributions because you are up against the Life Time Allowance.
Work with your accountant and financial planner now, and calculate your best strategy. • Introducing the LISA, the Lifetime ISA: Only for 18-40 year olds, but could be better than a pension. Unlike a pension your company can’t put money in, or if you are putting money in yourself, you won’t get tax relief on your contributions. Employees thinking about opting out of workplace pensions and saving into a LISA instead, will lose the tax relief on their own contributions (which may be higher) and the employer’s contribution. Is this the future for pensions? • Personal Allowance and Tax Thresholds: The Government wants to raise the personal allowance to £12,500 and
the higher rate threshold to £50,000 by the end of this parliament. The personal allowance for 2017/18 will increase to £11,500, and the basic rate limit will increase to £33,500, giving a higher rate threshold of £45,000. • Abolition of Class 2 NI: If you are self-employed this may save you on average £134 a year. Some changes to Class 4 NI are expected • Further Reduction in Corporation Tax (CT) Rates: Future CT rates are set as follows for each year commencing: - 1st April 2016 – 20% - 1st April 2017 – 19% - 1st April 2018 – 19% - 1st April 2019 – 19% - 1st April 2020 – 17%
SUMMARY The number of Higher Rate Tax Payers has grown substantially in recent years; advice on planning strategies will keep tax to a minimum. Work with your accountant and financial planner now, and calculate your best strategy. Written on 17/03/2016, for publication after 06/2016, and for general information only, not individual advice, representing our understanding of law and HMRC practice as at 17/03/2016. Seek competent professional advice before taking any action.
AT THE BENCH
HAND ENGRAVING Angus McFadyen, chairman of the Hand Engravers Association (HEA) and a master of the craft, talks about the process. Is hand engraving better than machine engraving? It would be very arrogant to say so; they are different things. It’s horses for courses and both have their advantages. I’d say a hand engraved line has far more scope for versatility and expression. The weight and thickness of a line can be changed as it is cut,
seal engraving, pictorial engraving, engraving for printing, gun engraving and the much broader area of ‘art engraving’ which includes anything else. The techniques used in all these are pretty much the same. Engraving is fundamentally very simple – it’s the removal of metal using a sharp hand-held cutter, the shape
London, but only a very few, and it’s no longer taught in colleges. The HEA runs classes in an attempt to partly address the situation, but it’s limited. Much can be taught via short courses or evening classes, but to set up in the trade, by far the best way to learn is by apprenticeship. This is obviously very expensive for the master, and the apprentice is never going to earn a fortune. So it’s a huge commitment for all concerned, but the best way to learn the many different aspects of the job to a high standard. An apprenticeship typically lasts between three and five years. What qualities are required? The ability to draw; patience; being prepared to apply yourself to seemingly endless hours of repetitive practice; a large degree of self-criticism and a willingness to accept constructive criticism. Engraving is a solitary business and you need to be very selfmotivated.
Example of hand-engraved lettering by Eric Royle
to add to its flow and elegance. Hand engraving is drawing relying on the skill and understanding of the engraver to make the best work. I think the greatest advantage hand engraving has over machine engraving is its potential for artistry.
of which determines the shape of the cut. You select the tool as you would a paint brush or pencil. Traditionally, for example, when cutting letters, a square section graver is used, which is highly polished so that the resulting cut is as reflective as possible.
What are the different types of engraving and do engravers tend to specialise? Engravers do often specialise. The main areas are lettering/ inscriptions, heraldic work,
How does someone train to be a hand engraver? The training of hand engravers is high on all our agendas currently as it’s hardly taught at all. There are a few apprenticeships in
58 THE JEWELLER MARCH/APRIL 2016
How can someone commissioning an engraver help make the job easier (and how can things go wrong)? The very nature of engraving is to put something very specific in a very specific place, and usually there isn’t much room for manoeuvre. It helps if an inscription is written out by a customer to avoid misspelling names, and so there can be no debate as to what was actually asked for. Other than that, please give us as much space to work on as possible. Obviously one of the most common things to go wrong is slipping. We can all do it! Spelling is also something to watch out for.
Angus McFadyen engraving a beaker
It’s worth considering the value placed on engraving. There’s absolutely no question that a beautifully engraved inscription or image can absolutely make a piece. There are many jobs that can only be done properly by hand, like engraving the inside of rings, and yet still you often hear, “Can you just put some lettering on here for me?” There’s no such thing as just doing some engraving. It’s a skilled job which takes time and patience and which adds value to a finished piece… like almost nothing else can. The relationship between engraver and client is one that, with understanding from all sides, can and should benefit all concerned.
I think the greatest advantage hand engraving has over machine engraving is its potential for artistry.
Example of hand-engraved scrollwork by Ken Hunt
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For those actively seeking truly British-made jewellery, a visit to Harrogate is a must. We preview a handful of designer makers who will be showcasing their collections at BCTF (10th–12th April).
hat makes the British Craft Trade Fair stand out from other industry-focused UK exhibitions is that all those taking part are guaranteed to be offering products created in this country. It’s a pretty major selling point – evidenced by the fact that buyers from the likes of Liberty London, major galleries and the key heritage and museum shops are regular attendees… along with jewellery retailers of course. As well as making jewellery for the trade, Clare Hawley also wears a retail hat. “In our gallery we supply only British-made jewellery, so BCTF is essential for us to buy as well as exhibit at,” she explains. “The only problem is deciding which designers to add to our current stock; there is just so much stunning jewellery to choose from, with such a diversity of collections and talent.” Brit appeal aside, the pieces being showcased are largely hand-made (and certainly hand-assembled) and represent a marriage of individuality, creatively and genuine craftsmanship, so it’s no wonder that the show has its devotees. Among the 460 or so exhibitors, there are, this year, around 180 jewellery designers (several of them NAJ members),
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however BCTF is also renowned for its wealth of stunning glass makers, silversmiths, ceramicists and sculptors – all food for thought for retail jewellers looking to broaden their portfolio.
...the pieces being showcased are largely hand-made and represent a marriage of individuality, creatively and genuine craftsmanship...
Clare Hawley ‘Sherwood Forest’ necklace (stand 147)
Kate Chell ‘Sparkle’ necklace (stand 316)
Jonathan Deer ‘Matrix’ brooch (stand 124)
coming back for over 10 years. Everybody is so helpful and friendly, I sometimes feel like it’s a holiday, and I’ve made some very good friends over the years.” Included in the new ranges that she will be launching will be jumbo jewels, large flashy stones, chunky silver rings, gold settings and gold nuggets and the opal and hare pendant shown below.
Natalie Vardey oxidised silver ‘Ellipses’ necklace (stand 165)
For several years the BJA (now the NAJ) has presented an award at BCTF for ‘Excellence in Jewellery’. Open to all exhibitors – members and non-members alike – the criteria for winning take into account well-designed/ well-made product, stand design and marketing material. With such a wealth of diverse talent to choose from, designers have invariably won for different reasons over the years; previous recipients have included Claire Troughton, Phoebe Jewellery and Chiara Bet. This year the competition will be judged by jeweller Jo Butler from @Work Gallery Sited at the Great Yorkshire Showground, the fair is popular with its exhibiting makers. “I really like BCTF and I’ve been showing there for many years,” says Natalie Vardey, who will be showing more linear work this year. “I look forward to this break from the studio, as it’s so friendly and well-run, the location is grassy and quiet
and all facilities are nearby. We are all hardworking individual companies and there is a great atmosphere. The displays are as varied as the work and there is a creative energy.”
The fact that contemporary jewellery is enjoying a resurgence in the marketplace sees jeweller Jonathan Deer deciding to show at BCTF for the first time this year. He will be presenting bold, abstract lines incorporating photo etched design, demonstrating his use of new technologies applied to traditional fabrication techniques. Father and son business John Garland-Taylor is also a newcomer to the show: “We feel this is an excellent venue to showcase our handmade jewellery collection and trial new collections and designs,” says David Garland-Taylor. “In the last 12 months we have taken on new staff members and are keen to build the business based on employing young UK talent.” ➥
Charlotte Lowe ‘Man’s Best Friend’ necklace (stand 153)
Fi Mehra agrees: “I love exhibiting here. It was my first trade show and I’ve been
Fi Mehra opal and gold hare pendant (stand 384)
John Garland Taylor ‘Squiggles’ earrings (stand 481)
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While adding to her key collections with their distinctive, organic style, Kate Chell will be bringing her new ‘Sparkle’ charm range to the show (see photo on page 60). The charms and stones, inspired by “the Bohemian lifestyle of wanderers, adventurers and vagabonds” can be worn individually or layered together. Her pieces in hammered silver, occasionally with gold highlights, are often complemented with roughcut gemstones. Textural, hammered work also appears in newcomer Zoe Ruth Designs collections, along with a mix of metals and stones.
Hazel Atkinson anodized aluminium jewellery (stand 246)
Hazel Atkinson’s anodized aluminium, lightweight jewellery in striking colours; or Essemgé’s urban, industrial work… is in stark contrast to Clare Hawley’s work that uses real leaves from Sherwood Forest as templates for hammered or engraved silver pieces or Amanda Cox’s retro
Amanda Cox ‘Vogue’ gold lily ring (stand 240)
jewels drawing from nature and modern, delicate collections with freshwater pearls. Between them they all exemplify the diversity of style, craftsmanship and talent n at the fair.
Yulan Jewellery ‘Quadra’ bangles (stand 150)
Essemgé mixed media jewellery (stand 355)
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Zoe Ruth Designs ‘Hammered Circles’ collection (stand 402)
WHY MILLENNIALS SHOULD MATTER TO YOU
The socio-economic impact of Generation Y may sound like a topic reserved for dry business conferences, but even the most basic understanding of how these customers think, shop and live could bring benefits. Sarah Jordan, freelance journalist and content marketing specialist, explains…
he problem with research, and its facts, stats and complicated looking pie charts, is that it’s rarely relatable. But what struck me about the proliferation of research on Millennials was that I was one of those being studied, poked and prodded for information. As a 27-year-old professional living in rented accommodation, I am the very definition of your average Millennial, yet it was amazing how much I didn’t know about my own generation. If you’re feeling equally clueless, here’s what you need to know. Millennials are defined as anyone born between 1980 and 2000, meaning their ages vary wildly and individuals can’t be tarred with the ‘social media-obsessed tween’ brush. They are the most educated generation in history, lumbered with the most debt and the first generation to be poorer than their parents.
I know what you’re thinking – nothing about this is sexy, or trenddriven or fashion forward. So you have to do both. Be transparent, honest and present a clear mission statement that defines you as a brand. Promote a lifestyle over a simple product transaction – no one returns to a store because the till rang with a pleasing sound, they return because of the atmosphere, the staff or the music. Of course, there’s plenty more research to draw from, like the way three in four customers would rather pay for an experience than a product (Forbes.com), or the way 85 per cent of Millennials are more likely to buy a product if they can watch a video about it first (Animoto.com). The trick is to dive in head-first, learn what you can and make incremental changes to your business one step at a time. If in doubt, ask a Millennial, because they are most definitely all around you. My Flash Trash’s blog © myflashtrash.com
Sarah Jordan at Jewellery & Watch, Birmingham, speaking about selling to Millennials
Millennials have grown up in a world of sharing; from social media posts to streaming movies on Netflix. All of these work via the medium of recommendations, and research shows Millennials trust their peers above all else – especially when it comes to spending their money. They are wary of crass promotional material, inherently look instead for the bias in features, writers and editorial positioning… on sites such as Northskull and My Flash Trash. The solution is to ask not what you can do for your customer, but what your customers can do for each other. If you can get your most loyal, communicative consumers to talk to others (through social media, in-store events, etc.) you’ll be on the path to success. If you can get these loyal customers to package issues of financial investment, value for money and ‘conscious capitalism’ around your products in video format, there will be a Wizard of Oz-style Emerald City at the end of your path.
Crucially they are the first digital natives who’ve seen only glimpses of a world without laptops, iPads and social media. Why does this matter? Well Millennials are 24 per cent of the adult EU population and the majority are about to enter their peak spending years – if you want their money you need to get wise. According to a Goldman Sachs report, Millennials are putting off key milestones like marriage and home ownership, with the median marriage age climbing to 30 in the 2010s compared to 23 in the 1970s. What this means for jewellers, therefore, is that customers are approaching one of life’s biggest luxury purchases – a diamond engagement ring – older, wiser and more fiscally aware than previous generations. Arguably, this flies in the face of the media’s common portrayal of Millennials as irresponsible and self-absorbed. For retailers, the gut reaction to attract Millennials has been launching onto social media and scrambling to put together a mobile-responsive website. This certainly isn’t wrong, but it’s not the end of the story.
Northskull’s #shareyourstyle © www.northskull.com
THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY 63
Panellists Willie Hamilton (left) and Alan Frampton (right) with Ruth Faulkner, discussing supply chains at Jewellery & Watch
WHAT IS THE INDUSTRY DOING ABOUT ITS SUPPLY CHAINS? More consumers today are asking about provenance, which means that the sourcing of jewellery and materials is increasingly important for retailers and suppliers. A lively seminar during Jewellery & Watch discussed this issue and its impact on our trade; here two of the panellists Alan Frampton and Willie Hamilton, expand on the debate. ALAN FRAMPTON, DIRECTOR OF CRED JEWELLERY You say the jewellery industry is “30 years behind the fresh product sector in terms of sustainability and transparency”. Please explain. In fresh produce you’re dealing with a product that has to get to market very quickly and sell it. While growing the product you are susceptible to pests and disease. So, since the 1960s, we have had traceability on young plants grown in Africa and the Canary Islands, which tells you everything about a small cutting with a value of 2p.
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The supermarkets got involved with retailing flowers in 1984 and demanded traceability in the supply chain. They wanted to ensure the products would be good value for money and were responsibly grown. They also wanted to retain the trust of their customers. When I came to the jewellery world in 2010 I was amazed that 99 per cent of jewellers had no idea where anything came from. Given the corrupt and opaque nature of the gold and diamond supply chain we wanted to change that system and make it more professional.
What can the jewellery industry learn from other industries in this matter? From a supply chain point of view the jewellery industry is fragmented and unprofessional. Jewellers must ask their suppliers to demonstrate due diligence in all that they supply. By that I mean their auditing process has to be robust and transparent.
“The skills required for a successful business in the future will include supply chain management…” Currently there are accreditation systems in the jewellery industry that are no more than a whitewash. If I was to cite them as evidence to Sainsbury’s or Waitrose they would laugh at me.
There are professionals in other industries who could sort out these issues very quickly given the right support. Best practice is achieved by just asking. Ask yourself the question: “How is it that there is more traceability on the wood in a garden shed from B&Q than there is in a diamond ring worth £5,000?” How can the industry remain price-competitive while also being mindful of traceability? The margin aspiration in the industry is too high. Efficiency and innovation in production and sales will create a more competitive environment. Already we are seeing branded shops on the high street getting rid of the middleman. You only have to look at what happened to other independent retailers and family businesses on the high street to see what is going to happen next. High quality specialists will survive, those that are not adding value or not niche will struggle.
It will no longer be enough just to be a good designer or retailer. The skills required for a successful business in the future will include supply chain management, finance, team management, marketing and sales, etc. What is the situation now regarding the availability of Fairtrade gold? Availability of Fairtrade gold is growing every year. This year we will have up to 100kg a month, next year we will get to 250kg a month. There is interest throughout Europe, the US and the Far East. World gold comes from the established supply routes. There are good companies and bad, small and large. The issue with gold is that when you buy it from the banks they cannot tell you where it came from or how it was produced. Sainsbury’s has over 100,000 SKUs in over a 1,000 outlets and can tell you where everything came from backed up with professional supply chain management. So to those in the industry who say it can’t be done I say it can – it’s just you don’t want to.
WILLIE HAMILTON, CEO OF THE CMJ You mentioned that 9ct gold is ‘under-explained’. How ‘wrong’ is this in your view? Firstly, I must commend the UK assay system for the exceptional disciplines and control that they enforce on the precious metal supply chain; we have the most envied and revered procedures that set the standards to be achieved throughout the world. With these standards enforced within an industry that prides itself with these regulated procedures, I do not believe it’s fully transparent to omit the rest of the metal content from a product’s ‘label’. Consumers don’t need the full disclosure up front and in their face, but there must be more transparency with an honest labelling policy for consumers, retailers and manufacturers to refer to.
Almost every product we buy that hasn’t got a 100 per cent pure content will be clearly labelled with the additional contents, perhaps with a percentage content against the principle ingredients. A carton of ‘orange juice’, if it isn’t 100 per cent juice of an orange, may say ‘with added water, sugar...’ somewhere on the packaging. With 9ct gold jewellery we do not mention the additional metals included, nor do we openly state that the gold content of that metal is 37.5 per cent. I believe that if consumers were polled on their understanding of the descriptions used on gold, they would feel confused and even misled once the actual content was explained to them. UK independent jewellers are the most trusted retailers on our high streets and they should be backed up with honest labelling procedures. Currently we don’t even have a labelling policy other than the reference to the assay regulations. It isn’t just 9ct that we need to be more transparent on, it’s all of the marks and the other precious metals too. Is it a challenge for the industry to remain competitive on price while also considering the social and environmental issues of its supply chains? Yes, it’s a challenge, but it’s an important ‘Challenge to Change’. As an industry, we can’t just carry on consuming product, dismissing the social and environmental issues that impact upon the sourcing and manufacturing of that product, and then expect that consumers will trust and honour the jewellery they have bought. Common sense and experiences in other industries prove that educated consumers will not demand, but expect, that the jewellery industry is ensuring that it is aware of the social and environmental issues in its supply chain. These educated, informed and socially conscious consumers expect us to be operating at the highest standards.
Re-engineering of the supply chain will have some upfront costs, but the cost of being found out to be unsocial and un-environmental in our supply chain will be far more expensive. Business leaders in the industry cannot keep passing the buck on making investment on social and environmental issues, to the next generation or the next CEO. In order to improve the social and environmental issues they have; they must recognise it is incumbent upon them to invest now.
“Educated, informed and socially conscious consumers expect us to be operating at the highest standards…”
What can the industry do as a whole to increase consumer awareness of ethical issues in the supply chain? Firstly let’s look at what we are good at and tell the consumer about it. Then let’s sort the social and environmental issues that we have and tell them what we have done. Every consumer on the planet is better educated than ever before because of the tutorials in schools on social and environmental issues, as well as information available at their fingertips via social media and the worldwide web.
It has been said that Generation Z (those aged 21 and under) are far more conscious of ethical issues than their parents. How can the industry connect with these ‘consumers of tomorrow’? We need to accept that Generation Z is not just the consumer of tomorrow but that it is also influencing the consumers of today by asking questions that current generations have not asked before. By openly and honestly educating and informing our current consumers (their parents) we will be able to fully connect with future generations.
Liz Earle Fairtrade gold earrings for Cred Jewellery
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LAST WORD Multi award-winning jeweller Paul Podolsky, a liveryman of the Goldsmiths’ Company and the man behind the Goldsmiths’ Craft & Design Council Podolsky Award, offers a snapshot of his illustrious 70-year career. Personal profile The son of Ukranian parents who moved to Britain in 1915, Paul Podolsky joined his father’s Hatton Garden jewellery business at the outbreak of WWll, where he made wedding rings, then fine diamond and platinum jewellery. Employing drawing skills he developed as a teenager, he began designing the firm’s products and in 1964 won the inaugural De Beers competition for diamond engagement rings. In 1987 he received the first Garrard gold medal for services to the trade. Over the years Paul has served in senior positions on almost all of the UK’s major trade bodies; his overriding concern has been to stress the importance of good technical and design education.
Who has been the biggest influence on your life? My father. He was a superb craftsman, better than any I have known, and I have known some who excelled. Certainly I was never anywhere near to him in the mastery of skills. As a child I spent time in his Hatton Garden workshop, got friendly with the craftsmen and was encouraged to carry out simple tasks. My father encouraged my interest in art and had many social contacts. He was a devoted family man. What led you to follow a career in the jewellery industry? In 1939 at the age of 16 I did not wish to be evacuated with my school. I got myself a job in a commercial art studio, but could not start work as the onset of WWll meant that the studio closed down. So my father conscripted me into his work shop to learn diamond mounting. By the age of 19 I was training several women… they gave me a really hard time!
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...my biggest grumble is that there isn’t much original new design. Retailers seem to prefer to stick to conservative designs... During the war we switched production over to components for aircraft and munitions – assemblies that needed the sort of dexterity that regular engineers would not have had. My father was such a brilliant craftsman that he was naturally able to apply his skills to this type of work. What three words describe you best.... in your view AND according to others? Relaxed, cheerful and lazy… in both cases! Looking back at your career, what one thing would you do differently if you had your time over? I would have liked to have been an artist but the jewellery trade has given me many moments of pleasure and I do not regret my career in it.
You attended the first Spring Fair 40 years ago – what are the most significant differences between jewellery trade fairs then and today? Forty years ago trade fairs were more modest and mostly British. Now they are bigger, international and more sophisticated. I don’t think [as some others do] that there are too many brands and not enough fine jewellery manufacturers exhibiting; my biggest grumble is that there isn’t much original new design. Retailers seem to prefer to stick to conservative designs that are safe and will sell. Pre-WWll there was the yearly British Industry Fair – it wasn’t brilliant and covered lots of other categories as well as jewellery. In 1949 it was reinstated and everyone went as businesses were trying to re-establish themselves
after the war. At that time we had 100 per cent Purchase Tax which was levelled at point of sale. It led to a lot of hardship – the Inland Revenue came after you hell for leather if you didn’t pay. If you could change one aspect of the jewellery industry today, what would it be? I would like to see greater recognition and appreciation given to craftspeople who produce the goods. A workbench prominent in a retail shop might help as the public would be able to witness the craftsmanship done under their noses. Tell us something not many people know about you.... People usually get my measure. I am reticent, even shy on occasions. It’s possible that not everyone knows that I have continued to paint. I attend an art class, where I am sometimes called upon to tutor others. I enjoy experimenting with lots of different styles that inspire me. Any plans to retire…? Although I officially retired in 1996 I do get commissions from time to time. The last one was about three months ago, from a client of 35 years standing. I do the rough designs with the client then pass the hard work on to someone else! If not this one, what might your alternative career have been? As mentioned earlier, I would have been an artist. Probably starving in a garret!
Brooch design by Paul Podolsky, c. 1939. Image courtesy of The Goldsmiths’ Company
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