Our Day-by-Day Guide to JCK Las Vegas 2017

Over seven steamy days in June, JCK Las Vegas and its sister show, LUXURY, command the jewelry industry spotlight. This year, showgoers must contend with a later-than-usual start (due to the Jewish Shavuot holiday) and a different date pattern. But fret not: To help ease the way, we’ve created a fun cheat sheet to the daily happenings. From Friday, June 2, through Thursday, June 8, here are all the events, talks, and trends you won’t want to miss. P.S. Don’t forget to hashtag it up! Tag your tweets and Instagrams with #JCKBound, #JCKLasVegas, #LUXURYbyJCK, #JCKTalks, and #JCKRockstheBowl to stay in touch.

June 2

June 2 / 8:30–10 a.m.
Kathy Ireland, chair, CEO, and chief designer of Kathy Ireland Worldwide, delivers a keynote breakfast presentation (South Seas ballroom, Level 3) that traces her journey from supermodel to supermogul.

June 2
/ 10 a.m.

LUXURY opens for business with—what else?—trays of passed Bellinis. Discover up-and-coming designers including Basch & Co., BM Designs, GuitaM, Joon Han, Ed Levin, and Lindsey Scoggins in the show’s New Designer area, located in the Oceanside ballroom. Enjoy complimentary tea in the Mandalay ballroom. Peruse the high-end goods at Prestige. And bask in brand heaven at one of four private ballrooms commandeered by Tacori (pictured), Forevermark, Scott Kay, and Michael M. Cheers to a fantastic show!

June 26–8 p.m.

Clink glasses—featuring diamond-shape ice cubes, no less!—with your fellow all-access badge holders during happy hour at Libertine Social in Mandalay Bay as “modern mixologist” Tony Abou-Ganim helps you wind down from LUXURY day one.

June 3

June 3 / 8:30–10 a.m.
New York Times best-selling author and neuroscientist Robert Cooper draws on groundbreaking research to help retailers connect with prospective customers. At his breakfast keynote, “The New Neuroscience of ­Reinventing Retail and Doubling Sales,” (South Seas ballroom, Level 3), learn how simple shifts in language, tactics, and ­mind-set can grow your ­business. Heady stuff!

June 310 a.m.–12:30 p.m., 2:30–6 p.m.
Renowned for her up-close paintings of diamond facets, Angie Crabtree has become something of an unofficial artist-in-residence in the gem trade. Watch her in action in the LUXURY ballroom, where she’ll be raffling off mini portraits each day.

June 4

June 4 / 5:30 a.m.
Las Vegas may not strike you as the most obvious place to get your fitness on, but Jewelers for Children’s fifth annual Rings of Strength event provides an unbeatable incentive. Cycle 50K through scenic Red Rock Canyon, bike a more moderate 15K, run a brisk 5K, or walk 5K along the Strip. Fundraising by participants helps support JFC’s numerous causes. Sign up at ringsofstrength.org for a bright-and-early start at Mandalay Bay.

June 48:30–10 a.m.

The 2017 LUXURY Retailer of the Year will be unveiled at an awards ceremony in the South Seas ballroom. Learn the tricks of the luxury trade from the masters, and enjoy some breakfast while you’re at it!
(Pictured: VTse earrings)

June 410 a.m.

Time starts ticking at LUXURY Watch, which opens today and runs through June 7. Take advantage of the lounge’s complimentary cappuccino cart to ensure you stay on track for the day’s appointments.

June 410–10:45 a.m.

Decisions, decisions. The show is hosting two competing seminars that shed light on how to operate in an increasingly sophisticated marketplace: “How to Omni-Channel: Insights From the Industry’s Best” (Tradewinds A/B), led by Jack Gabriel, CEO of Gabriel & Co., and “Retailer Roundtable: Keys to Attracting Consumers” (Tradewinds E/F), with Dana Friedman, owner of Petite G Jewelers, and Dawn Hendricks, owner of Peridot Fine Jewelry. Whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong with these savvy presenters.

June 42–2:45 p.m.

If you’re a research person, don’t miss “The Retail Revolution: Understanding Shifts in the Luxury Market” (Tradewinds C/D). The NPD Group’s Desiree Hanson and diamond industry analyst Edahn Golan are coming to Vegas armed with spreadsheets, graphs, and stats that shed light on what’s selling in watches, jewelry, and diamonds.

June 43–3:45 p.m.

When we want to know how the trend winds are blowing, we look to New York City–based consultancy PSFK, known for offering some of the most compelling retail analysis around. See for yourself at “Multi-Generational Shopping Habits and Marketing Tips” (Tradewinds C/D), led by Scott Lachut, president of PSFK’s research and strategy division.

June 44–5 p.m.

Throw back a drink (or five) at LUXURY cocktail hour in the Mandalay Bay, Oceanside, and Reef ballrooms.

June 46:30–8:30 p.m.

It wouldn’t be JCK Las Vegas without the Diamonds Do Good Awards. To join this year’s honorees—Helzberg Diamonds, former first lady of ­South Africa and Mozambique Graça ­Machel Mandela, and actor/social justice advocate David Oyelowo (pictured)—at the Four Seasons Hotel to support the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s mission of education empowerment for youth in global diamond communities, visit diamondsdogoodawards.org. No good deed goes uncelebrated!

June 5

June 5 / 9:30 a.m.

The 26th annual JCK Las Vegas begins!
(Pictured: Melissa Spencer pendant, Mira Style ring)

June 5 12–12:45 p.m.

Have you ever wondered what the American Gem Society is, and how it differs from other trade ­organizations? During today’s “Afternoon With the Associations” (Tradewinds C/D), learn how the nonprofit group of fine jewelry professionals promotes the most stringent standards of ethical conduct, educates its members, and stages a highly anticipated Conclave in a different city every year.

June 51–1:45 p.m.

Rob Bates, JCK’s very own news director, dishes on “The State of Retail” on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1) at this informative session about the big-picture forces shaping the jewelry retail sector.

June 52–3 p.m.

Pick up tips and tricks from stylist-to-the-stars Erica Cloud—who works with Sophia Bush, Lake Bell, and This Is Us star Mandy Moore—at the “JCK Talks Trends” panel on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1). Each day, June 5–7, at 2 p.m., Cloud will tackle a different trend: big and bold, street style, and multi-generational—all using live models and jewels plucked right from the show floor. After the discussion wraps up, stick around for passed cocktails and networking.
(Pictured: Moore at the 2017 Golden Globes in a Naeem Khan caped gown and Neil Lane vintage jewels)

June 54–4:45 p.m.

Marketing consultant Jennifer Spivak, aka “The Facebook Ads Girl” (pictured), reveals everything you ever wanted to know about Facebook advertising but were too afraid to ask at this “Hands-on Social Media—Facebook” session on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1). Be sure to bring your tablet, smartphone,
or laptop so you can learn by doing.

June 510:30 p.m.

Close out the first day of JCK Las Vegas with a dance party at the appropriately named Jewel, a 24,000-square-foot nightclub at Aria Resort & Casino. Your JCK badge gets you complimentary and expedited entry until 1 a.m.

June 6

June 6 / 8:30–9:30 a.m.
See who among your fellow ­retailers is a designer jewelry ­maven at the annual Design Center Top 50 Retailer Awards breakfast (located at the convention center’s third-floor triangle space).

June 6 10:30–11:15 a.m.

Want to know which wedding traditions are trendy and which are passé? Attend the Bridal Industry Trends presentation (Showcase Stage, Bayside, Level 1) by Jeffra Trumpower of WeddingWire to get the scoop on ways to help engaged couples create the weddings of their dreams.
(Pictured: Sylvie ring)

June 61–1:45 p.m.

In “How to Protect Your Store From Burglary, Robbery, and Theft” on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1), John J. Kennedy of the Jewelers’ Security Alliance offers practical advice to jewelers focused on staying safe and reducing losses.

June 64:30–5:30 p.m.

Cocktails are appropriate at any hour in Sin City, but in the show floor lounges, happy hour happens at a more respectable time of day. Bring cash—drinks
and light snacks will be available for purchase.

June 610:30 p.m.

Let’s dance! Omnia, the 75,000-square-foot neon-lit multilevel destination nightclub at Caesars Palace, is free for JCK ­badge-holders until 1 a.m.

June 7

June 7 / 8–10 a.m.

Martin Rapaport (pictured), one of the trade’s best-known prognosticators, delivers his annual “State of the Diamond Industry” breakfast presentation in the South Seas ballroom (Level 3).

June 79:30 a.m.–6 p.m.
You’ve done your ordering for fall, but what about those last-minute summer sales needs? Hop the free shuttle to the Tropicana for JIS Exchange—the jewelry week incarnation of the popular Miami show—for all things cash-and-carry. Your JCK Las Vegas buyer badge gets you into the JIS show (and vice versa!), which runs through June 8.

June 71–2 p.m.

Want a glimpse of the next big technology to influence the jewelry industry? At the 2017 edition of “JCK Think Tank,” watch six vendors pitch their tech products and services on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1) to a panel of industry judges. Once the seven-minute presentations are complete, the audience votes to determine the winner.

June 74–4:45 p.m.

You’re an expert on Facebook and Instagram, but what about using other platforms to grow your business? The Smithee Group’s Ben Smithee gives you the lay of the social landscape in this informative “Hands-on Social Media—Twitter/LinkedIn” session on the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1). Bring your devices—laptops, tablets, smartphones—to get the most out of the session.

June 7
/ 6 p.m.

If you can snag an invite to this year’s Le Vian Red Carpet Revue (Lagoon ballroom, Mandalay Bay), you’re in luck. The annual jewelry and fashion trend forecast is a cheat sheet to the jewelry colors and styles that will prevail in the year ahead.

June 76–10 p.m.

The jewelry industry’s most important fundraising gala, the annual Jewelers for Children Facets of Hope dinner (South Seas ballroom), honors Forevermark US president Charles Stanley and JCK’s own Yancy Weinrich (pictured), senior vice president of the Reed Jewelry Group. Ticket information is available at jewelersforchildren.org.

June 7
/ 8 p.m.

JCK’s traditional “Rocks the Beach” concert is transformed into a “Rocks the Bowl” night, thanks to its hot new venue: Brooklyn Bowl, at the Linq hotel on Las Vegas Boulevard, a short taxi ride from Mandalay Bay. Whether you’re prone to strikes or gutter balls, you can count on having a super Bowl.  (To follow the action on social media, check out #JCKRockstheBowl.)
[Ticket required for admittance. Must be 21-plus to attend. On June 2 and June 4, get early access to tickets at the LUXURY concierge, one ticket per badge (limited availability). First come, first served. Badge and photo ID required for ticket pickup. No reentry allowed.]

June 8

June 8 / 9:30 a.m.–4 p.m.

If you haven’t already, take the escalator down to the South Pacific and Islander ballrooms at Mandalay Bay to the AGTA GemFair at JCK Las Vegas—aka gemstone heaven. You’ll find nearly 200 exhibitors of loose stones, strands, and finished jewelry in every color, shape, and size imaginable. Remember: Keep your eyes peeled for all shades of pink, cool blue combinations, and anything and everything green.
(Pictured: Akiva Gil and Philip Zahm rings)

June 89:30 a.m.–4 p.m.

JCK has teamed with the Jewelers’ Security Alliance on a new pavilion, located near the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1) and populated by about 20 exhibitors—including Protective Technologies International, 3SI Security Systems, and FacialStats.com—offering security solutions for independent jewelers.

June 8 9:30 a.m.–4 p.m.

Every jeweler knows it takes more than great jewelry to run a successful retail operation. Discover exhibitors—including Yelp!—who offer everything from website design to customer relationship management solutions at the Retail Experience neighborhood, located near the Showcase Stage (Bayside, Level 1).

June 810:30 p.m.

It’s the last night of JCK Las ­Vegas: Let loose at Hakkasan at the MGM Grand Hotel & Casino. Entrance is ­complimentary with your JCK badge until 1 a.m.

Smooth Operators

We asked five JCK Las Vegas veterans: “What’s your fantasy ­jewelry market week?” Not surprisingly, they value getting things done in a timely manner—with a little champagne to ease the way!

“My fantasy market week would be short, organized, and to the point. There are only so many vendors we need to see in Vegas. It would be great if we were able to only work with those….I would love to fly in at 8 in the morning and leave the next night by 5 and get everything done efficiently. LUXURY has helped to do this for us, for sure.”
Bob Woolsey, owner, Jones Bros. Jewelers, Peoria, Ill.

“My fantasy jewelry market week begins with a nonstop flight. My luggage comes around on the carousel when I arrive. The taxi line is nonexistent and my hotel room—complete with Strip views—is ready. I change and head straight to the shows. The floors are packed with buyers. New designer sections are mobbed with retailers looking for new talent, and they are willing to pay for the collections instead of expecting consignment. The energy on the floor is positive and retailers take that energy back to their customers, which leads to booming sales. Killer events are icing on the cake.”
—Amanda Gizzi, director of PR and special events for Jewelers of America,
president of the Women’s Jewelry Association
New York Metro Chapter

“My dream week would include a fresh smoothie bar, a cappuccino bar, a chocolate bar…and a shuttle with In-N-Out Burger would be good! You get the point—food makes me happy.”
Suzanne Pritsker Salomon, co-owner, Providence Diamond,
Cranston, R.I. 

“As I step off the plane from my early arrival at McCarran International Airport, I discover that I have a new superpower for JCK this year: teleportation. That’s right: no more rushing from meeting to meeting, no more blisters on my ever-aching feet, no more running from the convention center to the hotel for a quick wardrobe change for the evening’s activities. I’d be able to go from place to place in a quick snap of my fingers, always looking poised (and extra moisturized, despite the desert climate), ready to meet and greet passionate industry members, and, hopefully, at my end-of-the-day teleportation, it includes a glass of champagne! I’d need to face the fact that when the show was over, I’d have to relinquish my new favorite superpower.”
—Katie Dominesey, industry vice president, JCK

“First off, after setup, a long stay at the pool…some chill music, good company, relaxed conversation about the state of our world. A moment to dream big, make plans, and envision our fantasy. Then a kickoff party to end all parties! The best people in the business—mind you, not influential or powerful, just the best of the best—great energy, and amazing tunes. Then, finally, seven days of realizing our dreams and making plans with our clients on how to fulfill them throughout the year. Then finally one more whole day at the pool…limited group, a massage or three, and a mellow trip home to the ones I love.”
Manos Phoundoulakis, sales specialist, Omi Privé

(Pictured at top) Diamond ear climbers: A.Link, alinkandco.com; arrow ring: Artistry, artistrylimited.com; Paraiba ring: Philip Zahm, philipzahm.com; pendant: Frey Wille, freywille.com; bangle and coiled ring: Nanis, nanis.it; colored stone earrings: Sutra, sutrajewels.com 

(Ireland: Admedia Inc./Birdie Thompson/AdMedia/Sipa USA/Newscom; Crabtree: Nick Benson; David Oyelowo at the Forevermark-sponsored premiere of A United Kingdom; cocktail: Shutterstock; Salomon: Rachel Hulin; Moore: David Edwards/Newscom; iPhone: Anatolii Babii/iStock; drinks: GoodLifeStudio/iStock)

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