What Woman Want in Jewelry Today
Historically, marketers of fine
jewelry have targeted their
advertising campaigns primarily towards men, but times have changed.
With powerhouses like Debeers leading the way with their famous
right hand ring campaign, jewelers have realized that the modern
woman is now the target consumer and the rest of the industry is
taking notice. Men still tend to purchase the higher ticket items,
but they buy for special occasions, namely engagements,
anniversaries, birthdays and Christmas. The workingwomen today have
strong purchasing power and equally strong opinions of what they
like. And what the modern woman wants, the modern woman buys. In
fact, according to the JCK magazine, 80% of all jewelry purchasers
today are women.
What are they buying? What is it that women are buying and not buying today? The first thing they want is "Big" with a lot of bling. They are doing this by sometimes sacrificing the quality of stone for size, other times by choosing pieces with multiple diamonds that give the illusion of a big look. The days of women being satisfied with a plain gold wedding band is gone. Anything paved, basically small round diamonds set everywhere, with minimal metal showing is in hot demand.
And the second thing they want is color...lots and lots of it. In fact,
They are opting for alternative semi-precious stones set around diamonds, rather then going for the traditional pricier precious stones. Sales of the traditional sapphires, emeralds and ruby stone jewelry have plummeted and have been replaced by the colorful and "cheaper" alternative semi-precious stone jewelry. All colors sell and the popularity of a certain color will vary with the season and fashion. Beryls, rubellite, rhodolite, garnet, topaz, citrine, garnets, jade, tourmalines, periodot, amber, carnelian, jade, the selection and colors are endless. Pink and blue-green are always hot colors.
Not only are stones big in rings but also gemstone bead strands have been the hot ticket item the last few years. Tourmaline, peridot, topaz, iolite, jade, lapis, onyx, beryl mixed with gold beads, pearls and accented with big centerpiece pendants have been popular. After enduring a decade of the white metal and diamonds minimalism look, women revolted and the "bigness" of size and color became the flavor du-jour for women's necklaces. During the minimalist period where necklaces were all worn short, the necklaces of today have evolved to the belly button length. These necklaces are usually 32" or longer and worn long or doubled for a layered look.
Thus the designs of fine jewelry offered in the market today are as varied as each designer's imagination. Even the traditional industries of diamonds and pearls have had to use modern technology and upgrade their designs to keep up with the demands of the female consumer. These consumers are no longer satisfied with the status quo; they don't want just the round white diamond or the round white pearls. Diamonds are being color treated to come in blue, green, pink, yellow, brown and black. They are being cut with names like the asscher cut, cushion cut, radiant cut, criss-cut, lily cut. In fact, now that laser is cutting diamonds, many firms are out there putting their own spin on traditional cuts and renaming the cuts after themselves.
Also, pearls are hotter then ever. Some of the biggest name in jewelry designer made their mark specializing in pearl designs. Pearls are now being dyed every color under the rainbow and laser treated to turn them chocolate brown. The cast offs that used to be thrown away are being turned into designer masterpieces. Every part of the oyster is used to make all different shapes and size pearls. Cultured, Tahitian, south sea, fresh water, mother of pearl, mabe pearls come in all shapes and sizes. In the past, the Japanese dominated the industry with their traditional akoya pearl strands, but then the Chinese, Australia and many of the South Sea regions came up with their own farming techniques to make their mark with their own pearl specialties.
Women today want fashionable jewelry, they follow not only the fashion runway trends, but also their fashion icons. A diamond circle of life necklace worn by an icon such as Oprah Winfrey can start a major frenzy that can last up to 3 years. Women want versatility in their jewelry. They want jewelry they can wear to the office as well as go out to dinner and just plain live in. They want anything that gives her a feeling of change from day to night or that she can color coordinate with different outfits.
So whether it is a ring, earring, bracelet or necklace, it is all desired as long as it is accented with diamonds, stones or pearls. The price point that woman buy for themselves is still a lot less then what men spend on average, but there is something to be said about volume sales. Also where men have usually purchased traditional designs, women have forced the jewelry industry to evolve and revolutionize in a short period of time. This is the power of what women want.
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