In the fine jewelry sector, 2011 hinges on one single element: gold. That said, Philip Newman of the London-based GFMS, an independent consulting firm for precious metals, noted as long as gold prices remain elevated, silver, along with mixed metals including steel and tungsten, will continue to gain traction. When designers do go for the gold, Newman said, they’ll likely opt for open, elaborate styles that show more skin (read: less gold), as well as plenty of precious and semiprecious stones.
This story first appeared in the January 10, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Jeweler Melissa Joy Manning said that means she’ll be bumping up her rough and textured stone count, while Fred Leighton, which is launching a vintage-inspired bridal collection come spring, will be looking to diamonds in classic silhouettes. “The scale is still going to be oversize,” said Leighton chief Greg Kwiat. “And a lot of Sixties and Seventies glamour is coming back into play.”
But expect the spotlight on gold to shine on. Yossi Harari believes its skyrocketing price tag will ultimately split consumers, driving some to alternatives, but making it “even more desirable” for others.
“The allure of investment will keep gold selling,” he added. “I believe that the rising price of gold will actually help the fine jewelry market.”