2009 Tucson Shows: What to Expect?


I’m heading to Tucson today for my second round of trade shows for the year. I love this week in the desert because the shows are a bit more relaxed than others (and the nice weather doesn’t hurt either). 


Centurion Jewelry, an upscale venue of finished goods, runs from January 31 – February 4 at the Westin La Paloma, followed by some 42 individual shows of loose material during the AGTA GemFair Tucson, from February 4-9. These shows are scattered all over Tucson, and require a rental car and comfortable shoes in order to work them. I won’t get to all of the shows, gang, but I will attend enough to write my annual Tightwad’s Tour of cool cheap gems.


I’m really not sure what to expect in terms of traffic—as in buyers (that means you, retailers!). Many designers have reached out to me, inviting me to stop by their booths at Centurion (and I will, thank you very much).


As far as new styles, gem materials, and cuts, I’m anticipating fewer completely new looks because I think designers will save those for Basel and JCK Las Vegas, the latter which my colleague, Carrie Soucy, thinks will be a great show for sales. As far as new loose goods, I’m hopeful that I’ll see a plethora, which will in turn entice designers to get inventive.


I’ll keep you all updated on this blog as far as what I’m seeing and hearing. Also feel free to ‘follow me’ on Twitter (user name jenniferheebner). These short, one-sentence updates will be show observations, including good buys, innovative styles, overheard remarks, and more. Then each night, I’ll post updates and photos of all the goodies I’ve seen during the day. And for those of you having a really good time during these events, I’ll probably snap your photo and post it on the JCK Facebook page, your source to keep up with all the fun and festivities that happen at the shows.


If you’re in Tucson and see something wonderful, let me know! Post a comment on this blog, or give me a shout on Twitter so I can share the insight.


I encourage everyone who heads to Arizona this week to do a little more than kick tires. Buy something new to help keep the industry chugging along until flush times return. I’ll do my part, likely dropping some cash at one of the G & LW shows, and perhaps I’ll even spring for a new piece of jewelry at Centurion. [If this journalist can help a little to get the economy moving, I know you retailers can do even better.] Bring a great attitude and a bit of cash to desert and let’s have some fun.


See you out there!