When JCK Events partnered with Uncommon Goods, a Brooklyn, N.Y.–based catalog merchant and e-tailer of wares such as fine jewelry, at JCK Tucson 2016, the design community at the show was enthusiastic. After all, exhibitors had a chance to sell to the firm known for carrying offbeat but cool objects such as Himalayan salt tequila glasses and Judi Powers’ A Tree Grows necklace in the JCK Tucson Uncommon Goods Design Challenge.
Uncommon Goods jewelry buyer Sharon Hitchcock and two others—Jacqueline Stone of Salt + Stone and yours truly—viewed the works of several artists to determine a grand-prize winner and two runners-up. Currently, one winning item is for sale on the Uncommon Goods website and another will soon be available. The Pop Top ring in silver (a runner-up) from Ayesha Mayadas is now live and retails for $180. The piece intrigued Hitchcock because of its origin—handmade in New Jersey—and backstory: Mayadas got the idea for it from discarded milk carton pop-tops.
Another ring, Love and Protection from Majestic Art Jewelry, will be online soon. That piece features a cage-inspired design containing either an emerald or a pink tourmaline set in silver and 14k gold for $995 or all silver for $650.
Hitchcock tells JCK that Uncommon Goods ordered inventory for the Pop Top ring, while Love and Protection sales will be fulfilled through drop shipment.
As for the competition itself, Hitchcock says it was the first time that Uncommon Goods partnered with an outside entity. “We used to do our own in-house design challenge with outside judges, but this is the first time we’ve collaborated on a larger scale,” she explains. The biggest challenge? Uncommon Good’s price points. “Our customer is pretty price conscious,” she says. “Our average sale for jewelry is $85, and JCK is all about fine jewelry. Still, we were very pleased to have a different platform than we normally do to meet artists.”
And while plans are not yet in place to duplicate the contest at JCK Tucson 2017, jewelry artists interested in being considered for sale on UncommonGoods.com can reach out to Hitchcock through an online application. Click here to submit images of your jewelry to be considered a vendor. What does Uncommon Goods look for in a vendors beyond lower price points? Sustainability and a story.
“We offer a jewelry assortment that is more fun than what’s typically found in stores,” says Hitchcock.
The Pop Top ring in silver from Ayesha Mayadas