Here we go again. For those of us in the jewelry trade, the end of July means one thing and one thing only: Market week (round two) is just beginning. Here are five reasons I’m excited:
1. LUXURY Privé
The third annual LUXURY Privé New York show opens today at the Pierre Hotel on Fifth Avenue. As far as I’m concerned, however, the show began last night, at the opening cocktail reception, a Great Gatsby–themed soirée that provided the perfect kickoff to the fun, sophisticated event. This year’s show will feature a more pointed designer focus, thanks to a new designer balcony with first-time exhibitors such as Lisa Black (who came to New York City all the way from Australia) and Chicago-based Meredith Marks. I hope to see you there!
Lisa Black Jewellery is making its stateside debut at the LUXURY Privé show with a collection of tribal-inspired pieces such as this 22k gold pendant.
2. WJA Gala
It wouldn’t be summertime without the Women’s Jewelry Association’s Awards for Excellence gala. The 30th annual event takes place tonight at Pier 60 at Chelsea Piers. I’m looking forward to seeing all the usual suspects there—particularly the three main honorees: Hall of Fame Award winner Candy Udell of London Jewelers, Ben Kaiser Award winner Darwin Copeman of Jewelers Mutual Insurance Co., and the Corporate Award winner, Standard Chartered Bank. Look for me in a blue dress and quite possibly sunglasses (after last night’s Gatsby shindig, I’m already feeling a little fragile…God help me!).
3. AGS Circle of Distinction Awards
Tomorrow night, the American Gem Society celebrates its Circle of Distinction honorees at the historic Plaza Hotel: Lifetime Achievement Award winner Beryl Raff, chairman and CEO of Helzberg Diamonds, and Triple Zero Award recipients Howard Hauben, CEO of Centurion, and the Bromberg family: Frank Bromberg, Jr., Ricky Bromberg, and Clayton Bromberg of Underwood Jewelers (Florida) and Bromberg Jewelers (Alabama). Congrats to all!
4. Impromptu meetings
From run-ins at the Javits Convention Center, home to this week’s Jewelers of America show, to the myriad events that take place around town this week—like the Whiting & Davis preview on Thursday—the best thing about NYC market week is the opportunity it provides for introductions, impromptu reunions, and discoveries. On Saturday night, for example, I had the pleasure of attending a dinner party at Myriam Gumuchian’s incredible home in Forest Hills—the trade’s hottest ticket, I learned—and meeting Lou Guarino and his daughter, Amie, of Pittsburgh’s Louis Anthony Jewelers. As we sat across from each other in Myriam’s tree-filled backyard, we talked about everything from jewelry to pop culture to Twitter etiquette. Sitting at a table with plenty of delicious food and drink to fortify the conversation—we all know that’s where the real deals get done.
5. The follow-up
Sure, most of us saw the jewelry industry’s newest lines and talking pieces just a couple months ago in Las Vegas, but don’t underestimate the importance of having a little time to soak up the trends and consider what works and what doesn’t work before diving back into the buying. Some retailers consider this week clean-up time—it gives them the chance to check out exhibitors they didn’t have time to see in Vegas, and check back in with those they saw but needed more time with—while others count on it as a vital opportunity to buy into the trends that promise to have legs through the holidays. Christmas in July, indeed.