In his roundtable luncheon presentation on Thursday, Doug Hucker, executive director of the American Gem Trade Association, advised jewelers to get their staffs to combine fashion with colored stones. “Your staff should be prepared to talk about gems, but they are more comfortable with fashion,” Hucker said. And customers will more easily relate to fashion as well. “Your customers want to be a part of the fashion experience,” he added.
Hucker cited Laura Gibson as one of a dozen designers who are using inexpensive colored gems, mixing them up, and creating wonderful fashion statements. In the fashion world, they use jewelry to accessorize clothes on the runway, and Hucker suggested that retailers help their customers accessorize.
Big color is popular. Big citrines, topaz, light-colored tourmalines, and big bright pastels can be mixed and matched, said Hucker. “If you need help, look at fashion magazines,” Hucker suggested. He also told his audience to look for colored bridal jewelry to begin making inroads.
The American Gem Trade Association’s new slogan, “Add more color to your life,” will be the focus of an all-out ad campaign to increase consumer awareness of colored gemstone jewelry and let them know which jewelers they can go to for colored stone jewelry.
After The JCK Show, AGTA will launch its newest Web site, AddMoreColorToYourLife.com. On it, consumers will find information about color and fashion that jewelry store staffs will also want to know.
“Consumers will be reading this, and they will be coming into your store to ask about colored stone jewelry,” Hucker said. “Get your staff to read it.”