Holiday on Ice: Jewelers Get a Bright Christmas

Solid demand for basics, bridal, brands, and beads added up to a happy holiday season for most—but not all—jewelers.Independents surveyed by JCK provided mixed but generally positive reports, with some of the happiest seeing gains of 10, 20, and even 30 percent.Among the trends this year:The consumer mood is getting (somewhat) better: Consumers were “defiantly optimistic,” says Ben Mullen, manager of Mullen Bros. Jewelers in Swansea, Mass. “Even though the indicators aren’t all that great, people are still committed to getting out there and spending money.”…but it depends which consumers you are talking about: “The economy is very top-heavy,” says Van ­Alexander, owner of Alexander’s ­Jewelers in ­Texarkana, Texas. “Those who have it, spend it. That $1,500 purchasing range—I’m just not seeing that anymore. It seems to be either high or low.”Shoppers are s

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