The VicenzaOro jewelry fair wrapped up today in Vicenza, Italy, leaving visions of brilliant gemstones, innovative gold, and Italian intaglio and cameo dancing in this reporter’s head. It was a whirlwind event, as usual, with an emphasis on must-have merchandise for jewelry retailers to stock throughout 2018.
Walking the spacious aisles, it was clear that although new trends are emerging—Alexander Calder–esque linear pieces and gender-fluid designs among them—several of 2017’s fashion-forward dalliances are positioned to go mainstream this year, including enamel and inlay jewelry, pieces with rainbow (or boldly multicolored) gems, and edgy pearl confections.
Perusing the many exhibitor booths, these five trends popped out as ones to watch—and, depending on your location, stock—this year.
Netali Nissim Fortuna bracelet
INLAY & ENAMEL
In urban U.S. markets, both enamel and inlay are nearly staples already, propelled by brands with buzz including Retrouvai, Foundrae, and Jacquie Aiche. In Italy, the colorful look was popular with brands including Nikos Koulis and Italy’s Netali Nissim, which displayed its chic-and-affordable Fortuna bracelets strung with enamel evil eyes.
Noor Fares earrings
If the number of Technicolor-bright baubles at VicenzaOro are any indication, the craze for pieces colored in a rainbow of gems won’t be abating any time soon. Earrings, bracelets, and necklaces so profoundly colorful they match everything (and well, nothing) were spotted everywhere. But London-based Noor Fares—which showcased an especially eclectic mix of jewelry this time out—was among the trend’s best practitioners; the brand mixed geometric forms with multicolored gems in notably new and creative ways.
Roberto Demeglio Dama expandable bracelet
Expandable rings and bracelets in precious materials and jewelry-grade ceramic were popular with vendors and buyers alike at the show. “Ninety percent of our new customers come for our expandable collections,” said Umberto Picchiotti of Italian fine jewelry house Picchiotti, which showed stretchy rings and bracelets incorporating colorful fine gemstones and diamonds. Fellow Italian brand Roberto Demeglio’s top-selling collection was also a line of expandable pieces, according to sales manager Paolo Pacifici: the casual-luxe Dama range of ceramic rings and bracelets.
Brumani earrings from the Baobab Bubbles collection
Cabochon-cut gemstones looked especially fresh in the hands of Brazil’s Brumani—which loaded earrings, rings, and necklaces with multicolored cabochons for its Baobab Bubbles collection—and Mattioli, which showcased elegant gold rings topped with colored cabochons.
Fernando Jorge Stream 18k gold bracelet
In the tradition of this year’s Andrea Palladio Awards Lifetime Achievement recipient Elsa Peretti, there was definitely a return of fluid, organic-feeling forms wrought in precious metals, without gems. Fernando Jorge’s Stream collection, which the designer showcased in the Design Room, is a perfect example of that aesthetic, modernized.
(Top: Noor Fares earrings from the brand’s Rainbow collection)