Fiera di Vicenza officials will hold the third annual About J buying event in Venice this year instead of Milan. The invitation-only affair is an intimate and luxurious opportunity for some of the world’s top jewelry retailers to shop a variety of tony Italian (and other) brands. The show takes place May 19 – 21, 2010, at the Arsenale of Venice, a 12th century shipyard in the eastern Castello district of the city.
Exhibitors include Roberto Coin and Marco Bicego, but not designer brands like Bulgari, which aren’t interested in expanding wholesale sales. “Buyers can have those brands if they have the criteria,” says Cristina Salvi, the fair’s international marketing manager. “But [About J] is about building intimate relationships where [buyers and vendors] know each other and feel safe with each other,” adds Salvi. Some 250 international and 350 Italian buyers are invited, and some 66 jewelry makers exhibited last year (numbers on this year’s exhibitors were not available at press time).
The reasons for the move include city aesthetics (Venetian canals trump Milanese concrete) and a decidedly more Italian venue. “Everybody knows Milan, but Milan represents a city of fashion,” says Salvi. “Venice is more our culture–the art, architecture, it’s a unique place in the world.” Additionally, a costume jewelry lab similar to Vicenzaoro First’s Glam Room, but even higher end, will debut in 2010 in an effort to inspire creativity through cutting-edge designs fashioned out of glass, plastic, paper, and more.
For more information, log onto aboutjevent.com.