Noémie wants to be the new modern family jeweler offering pieces direct to the consumer at a fraction of the cost at a retail door.
Founded last year by Yuvi Alpert, Noémie is a direct-to-consumer brand. First up is a Web launch at HelloNoemie.com, which is accessible today. The brand focuses on luxury jewelry, with pieces in its two collections in 18K gold. Alpert also founded accessories firm Ruby Kobo in 2008, the brand that participated in the first class of The Council on Fashion Design of America Fashion incubator. He also began Men in Cities in 2013.
Alpert said he is using the direct-to-consumer model for Noémie in order to provide quality pieces, but at a fraction of what it might cost at a retail door.
The brand’s name represents its targeted customer — a woman who spends her summer at a house in a small town off the coast of Maine. She’s also a traveler, spending part of the year in Tangier. She can be collecting fabrics from Ghana, or visiting an obscure monastery in Mongolia. She also has an apartment in New York, but can’t be tied down to any one place. And while she knows the best place to dine or shop, she’s not interested in the latest trends.
Alpert used a small angel run to get the business off the ground. Headquarters and showroom are a loft in SoHo between Lafayette and Grand Streets. Its manufacturing partner is a Los Angeles-based company operating a factory in Bangkok. The vertical operation includes a sourcing network that allows Alpert to obtain the best materials, the founder said. A small test run on some designs was done over the holiday selling season, with invites sent to “300 friends and family. We learned by seeing what questions people were asking,” the designer said.
Alpert says he has more freedom with the current brand: “I design the collection. I can melt the 18K gold if the line doesn’t sell to make something new.”
He doesn’t expect to seek a seed or Series A round anytime soon, and said he prefers to grow the business slowly.
The average price points for the Classic Collection are between $1,500 and $6,000, which Alpert said is 70 percent lower than price points in a retail door. The Elephant Collection, comprising elephant logos, is priced between $750 and $3,000. All pieces include an International Gemological Institute certificate that details appraisal value and color, as well as the use of conflict-free diamonds. A limited-edition line called The Entangled Collection will be available to celebrate Valentine’s Day.