Every jeweler has a creation story. Usually that story involves a teacher, mentor or designer who had a big impact early in a jeweler’s career. Those stories, taken together, tell a larger tale of who is shaping the contemporary jewelry industry and where it is headed.
Marlene Richey, author of “Profiting by Design,” is known for helping jewelers build successful business strategies, but this fall she is shifting her focus from business to design. In a new series for The Studio, Rio Grande’s blog, she explores industry influencers and trendsetters who are shaping (or have shaped) the contemporary jewelry landscape in the last century. Instead of a one-way conversation, she hopes to initiate a digital conversation with jewelers and designers.
“In recent conversations with some of my colleagues in the industry, I’ve come to realize that many jewelers have a story to tell about individuals who have had the greatest influence on their area of the jewelry world,” says Marlene. “This has been a subject of great personal importance to me. I majored in jewelry in college during the late ‘60s and have been lucky enough to observe first-hand many of the extraordinary and momentous changes to happen in this field since that time.”
The first in the series of articles posted at The Studio on August 29. It invited jewelers to join the conversation by leaving comments about who has had the biggest impact on their work. Over the coming months Marlene will write an article each month about an industry influencer. Some of the people she profiles will be drawn from her own experience in the industry, but most will be in response to comments left by readers.
“My goal is to create a showcase for past and contemporary makers, influencers and trendsetters in the jewelry world,” says Marlene. “I want to discover how the world of metals and jewelry has changed due to the invaluable contributions of these talented artists. But here’s the really interesting part: I can only tell each person’s story from my own perspective. So I encourage and welcome input from everyone!”
The new series can be found at riograndeblog.com.