LAS VEGAS — There was plenty of action at the recent Couture Jewellery Collection & Conference in Phoenix and the JCK Show in Las Vegas, as companies of all stripes bustled to find their place in the crowded world of baubles and gems.
Here, some of the new and established players looking to gain a bigger foothold in the jewelry scene.
Two fashion brands not usually associated with jewelry made their Couture debut. Upscale handbag company Judith Leiber and Vera Wang, best known for bridal dresses, came to the Couture show to give jewelers a look at their new offerings. Leiber, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this year, sells its jeweled creations in only a handful of jewelry stores, and new president and chief executive officer Margaret Siegel believes this channel is ripe for the company.“We have a strong brand name that we think can work well at independent jewelry stores,” Siegel said. Among the offerings on display was the new gilded cage handbags, including a one-of-a-kind style in 18-karat white gold with diamonds and semiprecious stones, as well as more widely available versions in four color variations. A range of the firm’s handcrafted minaudières and other styles were also being shown. Diamond firm Rosy Blue was at Couture to present the new Vera Wang jewelry collection, which it is producing under license. While few details of the collection were revealed and merchandise wasn’t even at the show, Vera Wang jewelry is slated to bow this fall and will include plenty of platinum, gold and diamonds and both bridal and fashion elements, according to a company spokeswoman.The Vera Wang jewelry business is overseen by Koichi Takahashi, the former chief operating officer at Mikimoto who is now president of Rosy Blue Fine Inc., a new luxury-brand division of the giant Antwerp-based diamond concern. Takahashi declined to give prices or sales information for the Vera Wang line.
Among those checking out the new offerings at JCK was Samuel Getz, the former president and chief executive officer at Mayors Jewelers, who has now opened a salon in Coral Gables, Fla., under the name Samuel Getz Private Jewelers & Designers.“It’s all about the stones,” Getz said of his new business, which sells upscale gemstone and diamond jewelry. Prices start around $500 and can range up to $1 million. First-year sales are estimated at around $3 million. The 2,100-square-foot salon is designed to evoke feelings of comfort and serenity, he said.
Designer Scott Kay, best known for his upscale platinum bridal jewelry, introduced his new silver division at JCK. The line includes rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings, many of which have a basketweave theme. Retail prices range from $300 to $1,000, and some pieces have 18-karat gold and diamonds, as well as gemstones. Kay, who has been in business for 20 years, wanted to reach out to a wider audience, said a company spokeswoman, who declined to give sales projections for the line. Two former David Yurman executives are overseeing the Scott Kay Sterling division: Dawn Pearson is president of sales, while Janet Hayward is president of corporate affairs.
Among the new watch offerings was brand Philip Stein Teslar, which is distributed and marketed out of ViewPoint Showroom. Retail prices range from about $595 to $1,995 for the watches, which feature a special chip designed to shield the body against electromagnetic fields that come from computers, cell phones and other electrical sources.“This watch brings a new technology to the watch industry and it also combines fashion elements,” said Jim DeMattei, president of ViewPoint. Both ladies and men’s styles are available and come with interchangeable straps in leather and high tech fabrics. Some are available with diamond treatments. Distribution is aimed at independent jewelers and better departments stores, and first-year sales are projected to reach about $5 million, DeMattei said.
At Couture, accessories and jewelry designer Barry Kieselstein-Cord showed diamond jewelry from his new joint-venture company called Kieselstein-Cord Premier, which is a collaboration between Cord and New York diamond firm Premier Gem Co. Set to debut this fall, the collection includes bold gold and diamond jewelry, including cuff bracelets with flower motifs.“This is an opportunity for me to showcase the designs we are famous for and incorporate high-quality gems,” said Kieselstein-Cord, who made his first appearance at the show, although this was the third time his company has exhibited. He said later collections will include diamond-only pieces. Wholesale prices start at around $700 and range up to $250,000, and Cord projected that first-year sales could reach about $10 million.
At Couture, the winners of the annual 2003 Couture Design Awards were announced at the annual gala event. Harold Tivol, the longtime industry executive and chairman of Kansas City-based Tivol Jewels, received the Gerald Goldwyn Couture Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions to the industry and to his community. Also recognized were Mark and Robin Levinson of Levinson’s Jewelers, who received the new award for Retail Marketer of the Year. There were two other award categories introduced at this year’s gala: Henry Dunay received an award for Outstanding Public Relations, while Jewelry firm David Yurman was honored as Outstanding Advertiser/Marketer. The Editor’s Choice Award went to Marilisa Zen, who exhibited as part of the Design Atelier. The Best of Design Awards honor jewelers in a number of categories. Here are the winners of the event, which is sponsored by Town & Country magazine:
EXCLUSIVE: @tomford is opening its first-ever beauty store. The boutique, which opens November 20 in London’s Covent Gardens, was designed with the over-the-top glam Ford is known for. Read the full story on WWD.com, link in bio. #wwdbeauty #wwdnews (📷: Simon Wagner) #TomFordBeauty
New York-based DJ @harleyvnewton threw a party to celebrate the holiday collection of her dress and pajama line @hvn at the Ladurée Beverly Hills. It Girls @katebosworth, @rashidajones and more joined in on the fun, which included cocktails, croque monsieur sandwiches and a photo booth. #wwdfashion (📷: Owen Kolasinski/BFA.com)
For the holidays, @Burberry partnered with 20-year-old artist @blondeymccoy on a series of three outdoor murals in downtown Manhattan. The murals are McCoy’s interpretation of a Christmas eve party, the idea of charity and the spirit of family. His third mural, pictured here, is the most personal. The image depicts McCoy’s grandparents and father in London’s Trafalgar Square in the Seventies. “My work often features lots of sentimental objects.” #wwdeye
For spring 2018, designers applied bold colors and cartoonish motifs on everything from sneakers and belts to key chains. See all the top men’s accessories trends on WWD.com. #wwdtrends (📷: George Chinsee; Prop Styling by @rnasti; Market Editor: @luiscampuzano)
The @dior-sponsored @guggenheim international gala pre-party has a history of drawing cool-girl musical acts to serenade the crowd –– and last night was no exception. @haimtheband performed songs both new and old, and lured a star-studded audience with the likes of Rebecca Hall, Kate Mara, Mamoudou Athie and more. #wwdeye (📷: @lexieblacklock)
In a partnership between the @metopera and the @englishnationalopera, “Marnie” was born. The opera, with costumes sponsored by @mrporterlive, is an adaptation of the 1961 thriller by Winston Graham. Arianne Phillips, who created the costumes, is no rookie: She’s styled Madonna for her tours and created costumes for a myriad of films in the past. Read WWD’s interview with Phillips, where she talks about her inspiration for the opera’s costumes on WWD.com #wwdfashion
@barneysnyc took a different approach to their holiday windows this year. Instead of Christmas decor, Barneys tapped @thehaasbrothers to tell a story of positivity, gratitude and inclusivity via heartwarming silliness and humor. “It’s about kids and it’s about coming together and being family and loving each other,” said Simon Haas. #wwdfashion (📷: @joshuascottphoto)
Beauty influencer @kandeejohnson makes her foray into hair care with a collaboration with @ogx_beauty — making it the first time that OGX has teamed up for a product creation. The collab includes shampoos and conditioners in three scents. At 39 and a mom, Johnson is a different profile than the emerging social media stars, but is considered one of the pioneers of the digital beauty influencer world. Read WWD’s interview with her on wwd.com, including the strangest beauty product she’s ever tried #wwdbeauty