From Aug. 24 to 30, The Venetian Resort & Sands Expo will play host to Luxury and JCK. Don’t forget to pack your sequins.
After a 15-month hiatus, JCK and its sibling event, Luxury, are back at The Venetian Resort & Sands Expo! Both events open to all registered buyers Friday, Aug. 27, and conclude Monday, Aug. 30. (Luxury opens on an invitation-only basis Tuesday, Aug. 24.)
Health and safety are, of course, top of mind. As public health guidance continues to change, check the show website (lasvegas.jckonline.com) for the most up-to-date information about masking and social distancing guidelines.
To help you shop the floor’s 1,500-plus exhibiting companies, network with industry colleagues and friends, and eat, drink, and be entertained like it’s 2019 (with a few pandemic-era provisions), we’ve put together a handy guide to what’s new and what’s returning during 2021 Las Vegas Jewelry Week. Now dust off your heels, suits, and sequins—it’s show time!
The JCK show is going all out on the design category this year with the debut of the Design Collective, a new neighborhood that unites the show’s designer contingent in a single pavilion. Located near the show entrance, across from Plumb Club, the pavilion is home to three types of exhibitors: Rising Stars, jewelers who’ve been in the business for less than five years (Tariq Riaz’s collection of luxe diamond jewels inspired by the landmarks and traditions of Arabian culture is a standout); Residents, established designers with recognizable aesthetics (New York City–based Lina Caballero makes her JCK debut here); and Luminaries, a new category of upscale jewelers known for their unique designs and exceptional craftsmanship (also new to JCK: playful Parisian brand Djula). The pavilion will also showcase a cohort of designers from Greece as well as an area dedicated to designers who belong to the Women’s Jewelry Association. “We wanted to make it easy to find all aspects of design in one place,” says Sarin Bachmann, group vice president of RX USA Jewelry Group. Mission accomplished!
Redesigned with flexibility in mind, the JCK Talks education program will now span all four days of the show instead of just one pre-show day. Attendees can participate in the seminars live or watch them from viewing pods located throughout the Sands. New features include a live Podcast Zone featuring top industry podcasters and two new bootcamps: one dedicated to succession led by industry expert Bill Boyajian and another on content creation presented by The Smithee Group.
The high-end show will have the same timing as prior years (opening Tuesday, Aug. 24, to invited guests before welcoming all JCK attendees Friday, Aug. 27), but its location is changing. Luxury will now take place in ballrooms on the fourth and fifth floors of The Venetian. Expect to find new collections heavy on the season’s surefire blue-green combo (Lauren K), colossal cabochons (VTse), endless diamond necklaces (Facet Barcelona), and stacks of colorful tennis bracelets (Roberto Demeglio). Remember: Opulence is back!
The Breakfast Club
Both Luxury and JCK will once again kick off with breakfast events guaranteed to inform and inspire. The Luxury address is Wednesday, Aug. 25, from 8 to 9:30 a.m. in the Casanova Ballroom. Titled “The Cartiers: Overcoming Adversity,” the session features Francesca Cartier Brickell, great-great-great-granddaughter of legendary jeweler Louis Cartier and author of The Cartiers: The Untold Story of the Family Behind the Jewelry Empire, recounting how her ancestors transformed a small Parisian store into one of the world’s leading jewelers.
On Saturday, Aug. 28, from 8 to 9:30 a.m., join your fellow jewelers in the Palazzo Ballroom for the JCK opening keynote, a thought-provoking panel discussion about what we’ve learned over the past 18 months. What did the pandemic teach us about consumers? Which changes are we keeping for good? And where do we see the jewelry industry in the next five years? Calling all aspiring futurists—this one’s for you.
When you stroll through the Sands Expo next month, all your favorite JCK neighborhoods—including Bella Italia, Bridal, Currents, Clockwork, Diamond Plaza, Essentials & Tech, First Look, Gems, Hong Kong, Lab-Grown, Passport, Plumb Club, and Retail Innovation—will be there (the show is welcoming back more than 80% of its exhibitors). Note: Gems moves to a new third-floor location and opens one day early, Thursday, Aug. 26, at 9:30 a.m., giving early birds access to notable gems (dealer Evan Caplan’s selection of rarities never fails to enchant).
The Main Events
It wouldn’t be Vegas without the marquee events that define the show, all of which are on next month’s schedule, beginning with Jewelers for Children’s (JFC) Rings of Strength event Thursday, Aug. 26. Whether you choose to run, bike, or skip, be prepared to start early (kickoff is at 5:30 a.m.!).
You’ll want to block off plenty of time Sunday, Aug. 29, for a host of gatherings, including the Rapaport Breakfast from 8 to 10 a.m. in the Palazzo Ballroom, a Rapaport session on social responsibility from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Titian Ballroom, and JFC’s Facets of Hope gala dinner from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Venetian Ballroom.
Last but not least, the Le Vian Red Carpet Revue 2022 Jewelry Trend Forecast & Fashion Show is Sunday, from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Veronese Ballroom on Level 2. Festivities officially begin at 5:30 p.m., but come early to watch the red-carpet arrivals starting at 4 p.m. Just pace yourself—an after-party at TAO Nightclub is bound to go into the wee hours.
Top: Delia 18k Vanilla Gold ring with 5 ct. cushion Neon Blue Paraiba Tourmaline, 1.05 cts. t.w. Vanilla Diamonds, and 0.01 ct. Chocolate Diamond, $37,997, levian.com
Sarin Bachmann, group vice president of the RX USA Jewelry Group, on the JCK show’s new tech-driven year-round vision
Last year at this time, the organizers of the JCK show were in the throes of preparing a virtual event to bring the industry together in the midst of the pandemic. This year, thankfully, they’re busy planning the live event.
But virtual gatherings remain top of mind. The events of 2020 accelerated JCK’s digital evolution, best represented this year by the debut of Jewelers Source by JCK, an online platform that includes state-of-the-art video conferencing powered by Boss Logics, allowing buyers and vendors to connect 24/7/365.
“JCK has always been where the industry buys, networks, and celebrates,” says Bachmann. “And now…we are bringing the industry together throughout the year.” —VG
What did you learn in 2020, when the JCK show went virtual for the first time?
We wanted to be available to our industry throughout the year, in between face-to-face events and in between being able to see each other at offices and stores. We’ve taken those learnings and turned them into new technology solutions that we’re really excited about.
The launch of JCK Pro in February is one solution. Tell us about that.
JCK Pro is a trend and education resource in partnership with JCK magazine. It’s a subscription service to gain access to articles by JCK’s amazing editorial staff. Through JCK Pro, we’re able to bring information, videos, and different speakers to talk about those trends online throughout the year.
How are you helping retailers with product and vendor discovery online?
One of the things that’s challenging for the jewelry industry is that Zoom doesn’t really do the product justice. So we’ve created Jewelers Source by JCK, a marketplace for the entire jewelry industry, not just exhibitors in our shows. The platform enables a brand to promote products all year long.
How does Jewelers Source work?
You can search for specific products. You can filter by price range or materials or things that are important to you. The meeting technology replicates a face-to-face meeting as close as possible to real life. It allows vendors to push across a virtual tray of jewelry to a retailer on the other side of the meeting.
How does it coexist with the physical show?
As we learned from all the virtual efforts, nothing replaces face-to-face. We see people using it ahead of the show to source product. And a follow-up tool for after the show.