is the subject of numerous recent
articles. The stories have appeared in both fashion and jewelry publications
. Some are derived from
market research interviews. Some are based on analysis of consumer panel choices, and some
appear to be the author/craftsperson's personal preferences.
I review the various writings, attempt to judge the validity of
the opinions or projections, and make trend projections for my own business. As
usual, I find that some jewelry pieces fit into more than one category. Here is
my list of...
Jewelry Fashion Trends For 2012
- Reminiscent of Art Deco, Art Nuevo, and even Victorian jewelry designs, this
category features seed pearls, small colored gems, and filigree textures. Volume
manufacturers seem to be gravitating to this trend.
subject matter for these jewelry pieces range from animals and plants to
geometric shapes. Original designs and near duplicates of famous pieces will be
available for the new year.
Another writer gave the Studio name to this category, and it seems very
appropriate. This trend is characterized by handmade artisan jewelry pieces, often with a brushed or frosted finish on the metal
pearls and colored gems are the featured accents.
Many of the designs in this group can be
labeled as nostalgic - without being vintage. Post World War Two design
influences (1950's Vogue) can be seen in many of the jewelry pieces exploiting
Many of these pieces are one-of, or limited,
hand fabricated pieces by local craftspeople. They too, often draw inspiration
Urban - I
suppose that if I were in New York I would have called this one
"Metro" or "Urbane.". This trend will remind many of the
Techno fashion trend of twenty years ago. Of course most of those who will
gravitate to this trend were just being born then.
The designers exploiting this trend are disciples
of the Minimalist persuasion. The look is architectural, geometric, or even
Earth tone colored gems set in stainless steel, titanium, copper, or other metals
tend to soften and add visual interest to pieces within this trend. Volume
manufacturers are best equipped to produce these pieces.
- As in chains featuring large links. Chains for the neck and wrist with a bold
look is a trend for many. These bold chains are already available, and in a
variety of metals and link styles.
neck chains in an anchor link design may be to your taste and budget. Or
possible a fancy chain in yellow gold, silver, or possibly brass with rhodium plating may be in
your future. Steel or brass chains with black plating are also part of the Linked trend.
setters see a bright future for this versatile accessory with appeal to a wide
variety of personal styles.
Pop - This jewelry trend reflects the influence of movie stars,
popular singers, and other celebrities. The growing re-emergence of the science
fiction genre also fuels the Pop design trend.
Some designers embellish their creations with
brightly colored gems, while others favor black and white gems. The Pop trend
embraces a range of styles, from celebrity bling to hip elegance.
Green - The
green, or environmental trend, is spreading into every corner of our lives. Fueled
by the popular media and political figures, this trend, as it encompasses
jewelry design, promises to be with us for a while.
The green trend makes use of larger or
multiple strands of beads, cabochon gems, wood, and a variety of other natural
materials. Metal parts, if any, are usually silver or copper. Wire wrapping or
bead embroidery is often employed
Jewelry fashion trends for 2012
the marketplace now, If the prognosticators are correct, these looks are
destined to be very popular soon.
Top - Geometric design from the Studio trend. A bezel
set color change spinel really makes this piece!
Next - Reproduction of a famous 1940s flamingo brooch is
a beautiful example of the Retro trend. (I used my existing photo of the
- Yellow gold plated stylized leaf pendant with natural gemstones
represents the nature theme within
the Studio trend.
Next - The Urban trend example features stainless steel
and multiple rows of garnet gems.
Next - A gold neck chain with 7 mm wide Figaro links is
a bold example of the Linked trend.
Next - Beautiful sterling silver earrings set with black and
white natural colored gems is a grand example of the Pop trend.
Next - Cabochon gems, beads, and pearls combine in the
stunning example of the Green trend.
Special Offer - Opal
Lower -Graceful open heart pendant with gemstone.
A Google search using keywords such as opal doublet or opal
play of color can return some very interesting
information and websites.
Readers have requested that I offer a special deal on a
different gem, or occasionally, an easily affordable finished
jewelry piece in each newsletter.
We keep gem prices low by buying quality gemstone rough
worldwide, and having the rough material cut by our gem cutters in Asia.
We purchased a parcel of nice opal doublets in the size we
needed for a project. We have a few left over from the original project. We'll
make you a great deal on one.
Doublets are a slice of fine opal married to a stronger
backing material. An opal doublet gives the gem strength and more durability.
These gems are suitable for use in rings and other jewelry.
For those who missed out on the April
special, I now have received several matched pairs from the cutter. The
April feature was a matched pair of flawless and colorless (white) zircons,
the recognized natural substitute for diamonds.
Gem Industry News
Costlier Than Platinum
continues to cost more than platinum. It's been that way for weeks now. A recent
sampling of spot market prices revealed that gold was selling for about $1600
per ounce, while platinum was selling at $1456.
This circumstance leads some to believe that platinum jewelry should
also cost less than gold jewelry. That's
true in most cases. Gold jewelry in 14 karat contains 58% gold, plus 42% of
other metals. 18 karat gold jewelry is 75% gold. Platinum jewelry usually
contains 85 to 90% platinum, and is alloyed with other rare earth metals.
Platinum is also more difficult to work with.
Affluent to Drive 2011 Holiday Shopping Season as
Spending Slows for 80 Percent of Consumers
That is the headline on a recent report from The Nielson
Company, an international consumer research firm. It's a scary headline for
retailers... even our "vest pocket jewelry dealers."
Major takeaways from the report are:
20 percent of consumers already holiday shopping
is a year to market early
winners include makers/retailers of gift cards, value products, technology
The report also states that "online,
club, dollar, toy and consumer electronics retailers, as well as categories such
as gift cards, technology, vacations and toys, will all perform well this
all income levels, only five percent of U.S. households plan to spend more this
year, with affluent households (those earning $100,000 or more) leading the way.
Among households earning $100,000 or more, consumers ranked online merchants,
club stores and dollar stores as the top three channels where they plan to spend
more this shopping season. Among households making $50,000 or less, consumers
plan to increase their spending at dollar stores, online merchants and
Dealers can buck this trend by getting out there now and talking with
existing customers... and it never hurts to ask them for referrals. It's a good
way to find new customers. By offering affordable jewelry gifts... and even a
few "stocking stuffers" you can help your customers and
Pitching higher-end custom jewelry that is an excellent value can be
effective with some customers. You need not make up more than a couple of
high-end pieces. Conversation, sketches, and your scrapbook or photos of
previously sold jewelry pieces should get you the order.