Let’s face it. Christmas is the single biggest holiday event in the jewellery world. For US jewellery retailers, this highly commercialized holiday typically accounts for 30-50% of the yearly business. Now is the time to prepare for this important selling season. Of course fine diamond jewellery is a holiday staple and you need to be sure that you have sufficient inventory of your basic styles. But Christmas is also the time when people buy gifts for friends, often looking for that different one of a kind item. People will be shopping at every conceivable price point; from cheap stocking-stuffers to world class jewels. This is the perfect opportunity to start adding more colour to your offerings.
This year the fall fashion trends are leaning toward big, bulky, retro-hippy-beatnik styles…sometimes with a modern twist. Look for Byzantine and Gothic motifs to come into fashion. Coloured stones make these fashions really pop as bold colour combinations come into play.
Pantone releases colour forecasts each year. Study them and find stones to fit those colours. The folks at GemEwizard, the computerized colour communication system, have matched gemstones with this year’s predictions here.
For the very high end customers, try to find vintage Art Deco and Art Nouveau jewellery. Sapphire, Ruby and Emerald are common in these vintage goods but you can also find almost any gemstone being used. Emphasis was on colour and design. The sky is the limit for fine vintage prices especially for the big names like David Webb, Erte` or Van Cleef & Arpels. Many un-signed vintage pieces can found priced at just slightly above materials cost creating a nice profit opportunity. Look for quality workmanship and good condition. Restorations are fine as long as they are performed by an expert craftsman.
At the middle price-points you have an amazing array of stones and styles. Find gemstones to match the Pantone forecasts and set them in custom mountings. Let your creativity shine. Don’t be afraid to try different colour combinations, you might be surprised at some of them. Big, chunky necklaces and bracelets made with different shaped gemstone beads are still hot. The bigger and bolder the design, the better. Use texture as a design element. Better quality coloured gems can be used as centre stones in traditional designs and smaller sets of colour as side stones. This is a great way for over-the-counter buyers to use their break-out stones. Have fun! Experiment!
For the lower end of the scale, simple silver jewellery set with colourful gems is always a big hit. This is where you can take advantage of inexpensive synthetic stones to fill the fashion need for large, flashy jewellery at a very affordable price. Don’t be afraid to have some really cheap, colourful rock-shop jewellery in base metals. Kids love giving and receiving them as gifts. You can make Christmas colourful this year, but you better get started soon.