An explosion’s going on in fashion and it’s everywhere! The runways are vibrant with a riot of color, pattern and texture. Deep jewel tones - purple, tangerine, emerald - reign in vivid patterns including mirrored prints and blocks of color, layered with a plethora of fabrics from leather and lace to animal prints and faux fur.
Sparkle and bling is ubiquitous, including jeweled and sequined necklines suggesting layers of necklaces. The vintage influence remains strong with its rich detail including ruffles and peplums. A“lady-like” look is emerging, including a retro nod to the polished presence of suits with matching accessories - shoes, bags, evening gloves - but projecting a strong modern confidence. Pick up any fashion magazine or pop into any boutique and the new sensibility is unmistakable.
How does this affect you? Here’s a hot tip - jewelry is fashion! On the runways, in magazines and stores, the new styles are interwoven with the latest trends in jewelry - bold statement necklaces, layers of chains and bangles, bold cocktail rings in vibrant color. Your customers, especially self-purchasing women, already view jewelry as fashion. They’re picking up the latest trends from TV, magazines, celebrity influences and clothing stores. Merchandise displays often include coordinating jewelry which is also often for sale.
If you’ve not yet tapped into the growing trend of designer jewelry, now’s the time to take the plunge. Confident professional women are accustomed to spending regularly on clothing and accessories such as handbags, shoes and scarves and consider upscale jewelry a fashion accessory. Younger Gen X and Y women are not restricted by taboos of older generations who consider it appropriate to only receive fine jewelry as a gift. Why not tap into this lucrative and expanding market?
Some of the hottest jewelry trends reflecting today’s fashion include:
- Bold statement necklaces. Add instant drama with oversized pieces featuring large colored gems in striking styles. A form of personal expression - jewelry as art - statement necklaces command attention. Often paired with the little black dress or pants and top, the statement necklace instantly cinches the look.
- Long on layers. Look for chains with charms, multiple bracelet bangles and long necklace chains with stations of gems and pearls which may be doubled or tripled. These versatile fashion favorites may be worn casually, with a suit or for dressy evening wear.
- Bold color. The rich palette of fall’s jewel tones demands striking accessories. Choose cocktail rings with a single, large, unusual colored gem such as chalcedony or prasiolite. Necklaces, earrings and bracelets with striking colored stones add the perfect accent. They need not match the color of the outfit, but should complement it in color and style.
- Mix it up. Multiple textures, forms, colors and mixtures of metals are perfect with today’s opulent fashions. Go organic with the natural look of a touch of on-trend leather, blackened steel or even feathers. Add druzy for sparkle. Look for slices of gems including large thin faceted transparent gems such as rose quartz.
Be the go-to fashion savvy store. Make a person on staff your resident fashion diva, in touch with all the latest trends and celebrity sightings. Encourage staff to wear the latest styles of clothes and jewelry to suggest possibilities. When you show a piece, suggest how it could be worn - casual, paired with a suit or dressed up for evening. Encourage clients to bring in the outfit they’ll be wearing for that special occasion to see how pieces work with it.
Display a dramatic new statement necklace in your front window as the hot new trend. Stock the best selling new pieces your vendors recommend. Take advantage of stock balancing and memo opportunities from vendors to always feature something new and exciting.
Educate customers about the difference between fashion jewelry and designer, fine jewelry and the many advantages of fine jewelry - quality, lasting value, pride in ownership. Why settle for a merely trendy piece that will be discarded after a season or two when you can build your jewelry wardrobe with beautiful, distinctive pieces you cherish that will be passed on to future generations?
After a period of austerity there’s a new exuberance in the air. Ride the wave into the holidays and beyond. Enjoy and share the fun of fall fashion!