Hustle and Flow: Editor’s Letter, May 2015

About a week before I descended on Basel, Switzerland, in mid-March to attend my (cough, cough) 13th Baselworld fair, I spent a few days in Mexico City with my boyfriend, Jim. We made the most of our long weekend—we admired the Diego Rivera murals at the Palace of Fine Arts; ate 602-day-old mole at Pujol, one of the city’s finest restaurants; and, best of all, visited the nearby pyramids of Teotihuacan, the remnants of a pre-Columbian civilization that reached its zenith around A.D. 500.

By the time I arrived in Basel, however, my brush with the ancient world was all but forgotten; everyone was talking about smartwatches. The future was barreling down on me faster than a speeding processor. So you can imagine my surprise and delight when I found myself at the De Bethune booth admiring the avant-garde brand’s new DB25 Quetzalcoatl timepiece, a tribute to the mythical deity of ancient Mesoamerica.

Jim and I climbed the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan, the ruins of an ancient civilization north of Mexico City.

At the center of the watch’s solid gold dial—hand-carved by the engraver Michelle Rothen—is a coiled snake, a reference to Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent of Mesoamerican culture whose name in the Nahuatl language combines the words quetzalli (the large, precious green feathers of the sacred quetzal bird) and coatl, meaning snake. The serpent’s head indicates the hours and its tail the minutes. That’s not all: The hour markers are carved into tiny gold pyramids, not unlike the ones Jim and I climbed. It’s odd, eccentric, and really cool.

See for yourself. The DB25 Quetzalcoatl is the opening image for a roundup of 28 of the best new watches from Baselworld (“All About That Face”). I’m proud to say every single one of them is dumb.

So when I saw the pyramids on the dial of De Bethune’s $120,000 DB25 Quetzalcoatl timepiece, I flipped!

We’ve reserved our smarts in this issue for the feature pages, which brim with stories to help you prepare for the fall season. If you read one fashion preview, make it contributor Venessa Lau’s fun and informative “Fall Fashion Peek,” where she declares that the season’s guiding ethos is “about motion and movement on the runways—not unlike the free-spirited vibe of the ’70s when bouffants tumbled down into natural waves and silhouettes relaxed and just flowed.”

To see that flow in action, check out an accessories still life (“The Extra Files”) that will have you obsessed with excess. Not a bad thing if you’re heading to Las Vegas at the end of this month for the LUXURY and JCK Las Vegas shows. Before you go, peruse contributor Kristin Young’s cheat sheet on what retailers plan to buy in the desert (“Buy & Tell”).

Once you’re home and have a chance to assess the goods, consult senior editor Emili Vesilind’s feature double-hitter, a guide to creating great-looking jewelry print ads (“Art of the Sell”) and a primer on photography (“Make Sparkling Print- and Online-Ready Jewelry Photos a Snap”), so you have plenty of compelling shots to fill them.

The May issue celebrates frivolity—but we also know when it’s time to get serious, which is why we commissioned Whitney Sielaff to research the lending landscape and find out if cash is flowing (“How Independent Jewelers Are Banking on Capital Loans”).

Happily, he found that it is—so, like we said, relax, go with the flow, and enjoy the read!

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