Silver Lining: Retail Jewelers Discover Affordable Jewelry

As sales of diamond pendant necklaces and midrange inventory continue to soften, jewelers are bringing on more affordable products. But it isn't just less-expensive inventory that's new. Fashion jewelry for female self-purchases is ushering in fundamental changes in the way jewelers buy inventory, display jewelry, and manage their staffs. The high price of gold has pushed much gold jewelry over the $1,000-and-under threshold for women who occasionally indulge in a guilty pleasure at a jewelry store. Meanwhile, silver jewelry has gained ground over the last four to five years, while the number and variety of fashion jewelry have kept pace with always-changing clothing fashions. Factor in a recessionary economy, and a perfect storm of market conditions is forcing jewelers to consider more-affordable jewelry. In 2005, Craig Husar, president of Lyle Husar Designs, in

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