November 2009

The Celebrity Jeweler Trend Continues

Oh what to do with your time when you're a rich and famous celebrity?  Savvy celebs know that the best way to fill their spare time is with ways to become even more rich and famous, and the favorite expansion of brandingdu jour is jewelry.  2009 has seen several famous faces lend their names to a jewelry collection, from Nichole Ritchie designing for Bebe (aiming at youngfashionistas not averse to whipping out their platinum cards for the latest bling) to Jessica Simpson who opted to create a line of affordable jewelry to be stocked in department stores such as Dillards and Macy's (created with middle-America firmly in mind.)

This week saw a flurry of announcements of other celebrities jumping on the jewelry bandwagon. 

Jeweler Interview: Aurora Palesca

Understated yet chic is the best way to describe Aurora Palesca's jewelry collections.   Her designs have an effortless attention to detail, which is mirrored in her business and branding philosophies; each necklace is tagged with a stamped leaf, and every piece of jewelry comes in a beautiful handmade hemp and silk pouch.  But beauty isn't her only concern, her business has a strong conscience too, and she takes great care to source materials that are both socially and environmentally responsible.  Here, she answers some questions about her work. 

You seem to have a strong ethic about using fair trade products in your work. How has this affected your designs and pricing?

Jeweler Interview: Peggy Li

Simple, feminine and elegant, it's not surprising that Peggy Li's jewelry collections have been seen on TV shows such as The Practice, as well as being featured in fashion magazines such as Oprah, Lucky and Teen Vogue.  Her jewelry uses high quality and unusual elements in stylish designs and her uncomplicated and highly wearable range is a testament to her keen business sense. Here, she talks to The Jewelry Report about her work.

Doubly Dazzing Engagement Rings

If there is one type of jewelry that I have utterly fallen in love with it's the cocktail ring.  Once only worn by wealthy old ladies, royalty and heiresses theseoversized rings have become not only a statement about a woman's sense of style, but of her independence.  Worn on the ring finger, a large gem is a symbol of a strong, sexy and confident woman.   Made popular by celebrities such asBeyonce and Jennifer Lopez, these rings are now influencing women's choices about engagement rings, with many opting for a lower grade stone or even a cubiczirconia in a large size over a smaller, higher quality diamond.

NEW Jewelry Interview: Beadiful Accessories

Over the past few months I have had the privilege of interviewing some highly successful and establish jewelers, and I always enjoy hearing about how they got to where they are now.  However, last week I had the pleasure of networking with lots of creative individuals just embarking on their careers as jewelry designers.   I asked Brittany Long, of Beadiful Accessories,  about some of her feelings about launching her new line of jewelry, and not only were her answers thought provoking but also provided some inspiration and ideas for other "newbies".

Keeping It Simple

I am just returning to the jewelry design business after a few year break to renovate my old farm house.

Last I remember there was a sea of incredible talent, fabulous design and original work.

I think the slow economy is taking it's toll on designers. So many claim to offer original designs, but it is really looking like they are playing it safe. Trying to appeal to the masses in an impulse price point.

I too have been scaling things down a little and I really don't want to do this. My work as always been over the top fabulous and I feel a tad intimidated my the economic climate and the natural need to get things sold.

I am a single mother after all and I have to get the bills paid.

I really need some input and I struggle to get my footing.

Jewelry Designer Wins Place on Red Carpet

I'm not sure what it says about the state of the jewelry design industry when so many jewelers are launching contests to find other designers to work with.  I can't quite decide whether such competitions are acts of genuine philanthropy to help out new artists, a blatant marketing ploy designed to generate some free column inches, or a symptom of a drought in the inspiration pool. 


I'm reserving any kind of judgement though, as these contests are a win-win for everyone involved.  Brand names get fresh ideas, new designers get a foot in the door and the public gets an interesting story that raises overall awareness of the jewelry design industry.

New Jewelry Contest Uses Facebook to Promote Brand

This piece of jewelry news is particularly appropriate this week, as I work on a series of articles tackling the topic of how jewelers can leverage the power of social media to raise awareness of their brand and increase sales.  David Kodner Personal Jewelers have launched a design contest to come up with a new piece of jewelry centred around the focal point of a large moonstone.  Ok, nothing new there, we see jewelry design contests all the time.  The twist is that all entrants must not only visit the brand's Facebook page to find full details about the competition, but must also become fans of the page.   The entries will also be judged on Facebook, with the winner being the design which receives the mo

Imperfect pearls: The new trend in luxury jewelry

I have never been much of a perfectionist.  My own worst critic, yes, but someone who strives tirelessly for perfection, no.  This is possibly due to the fact that I never tend to stick at anything that I don't have a natural ability for, which is just a way of saying that I am selectively lazy.  However, there are many instances in design where imperfections, (or shall we call them unintentional design elements?) become not only part of a design but enhance it.  Picking up the wrong crystal in poor light has led to many a discovery of interesting color combinations and I am a huge fan of anything that suddenly turns asymmetrical at the slip of a saw.

Healthy Work Habits for Jewelers

It can be startling how much time can pass while you sit working at your bench.  One minute you have finished your morning coffee, and before you know it, you glance at the clock and find to your amazement that it is almost lunchtime.  While it is great to be able to sit focused for long periods of time, working at your bench day in and day out can take it's toll on your health.  Here are some tips to keep healthy:

Stretch Out

Take time once an hour or so to get up and stretch.  This will not only ease any tension in your muscles, but will fend off fatigue and cramp.  Sitting for long periods of time hunched over your bench can cause your muscles to contort into unnatural positions and result in stiffness and soreness.  Studies have also shown that people who sit at desk leaning slightly forward may be putting strain on their internal organs, causing long term damage.