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Show session outlines what’s hot for fall

By Hannah Connorton

July 30, 2013


This Bochic cuff is carved black jet with 18-karat white gold and diamonds ($41,850). Black-and-white jewelry is a predicted trend for fall 2013.

The hot trends for fall 2013

New York--Industry professionals got the inside scoop on jewelry trends for the fall season at an educational seminar held Monday afternoon at the JA New York Summer Show.

Amanda Gizzi, Jewelers of America’s director of public relations and special events, conducted the session, outlining the predicted trends as well as what shapes those predictions and how jewelry professionals can forecast trends on their own and pass them on to their customers.

The seminar came on the second and final day of the show’s JA-sponsored educational program, which kicked off with high attendance and enthusiasm on the first day of the show.

Gizzi identified seven major trends for fall 2013.

--Opal opulence. “Consumers know opals, and often think of them as old-fashioned, but designers are changing that now. It’s all about being able to play off many different colors. Every stone tells a different story, so look for opals with different characteristics, not just your traditional opal,” Gizzi said.

--Glorious gold. “With gold prices before, there was a scale back--designers used lighter weights, more cut-out designs. But the gold prices are dropping. The media is talking about it and designers are getting excited. We’ll see the heavier gold pieces coming back, styles will become chunky, and there will be a lot of texture, pieces that look antique or hand-worked,” she said.

--Colorful engagement. “We’re seeing an increase in color for engagement rings, primarily with colored diamonds. As women get married later (in life) they are more established, they know what they want and they want something different. They may not want to be traditional, so this is where the colored diamond comes in. It’s not only colored center stones; colored side stones serve as a bridge into engagement ring color,” she said.

--Geometrics. “We’re seeing a lot of the open cut-out design and repetition of patterns. The geometric trend also goes back to the Art Deco style, but takes a modern turn on it,” she said.

--Pretty punk. “This is very wearable, very feminine. It’s nothing too crazy or over the top. But looking at skulls, spikes, accents of these motifs are very big for the fall season,” she said.

--Black and white. “This is one of the biggest trends on the runway. Black and white can be all black, it can be all white, but primarily it’s the black and white coming together. Look for blackened metals and stones being offset with white,” Gizzi said.

--Fashion forward. “The line between fashion and fine jewelry has definitely diminished over the past five to 10 years. Metal prices and customer buying habits have affected consumers’ overall understanding of what jewelry is, so being that source of jewelry for them is important. Finding lower-priced alternatives and making those pieces fashion forward--like cuffs and edgy rings--that will get women into the store for the things they will buy for themselves,” she said.

This is also a macro trend, which means it is comprised of smaller micro trends. Stacking sterling silver rings or bracelets would be an example of a micro trend within the fashion-forward trend, Gizzi said.

When it comes to color, Gizzi named color authority Pantone as the go-to resource to see what hues will be trending each season. Pantone releases a spring and fall color fashion report each year, highlighting the 10 major colors for each season, and also identifies a color of the year.

“Play off this. Consumers are talking about it; everyone uses Pantone for trending colors. Take a look at what these colors are to see what your consumers are going to want this season,” Gizzi said.

She also advised attendees how to become a trend authority.

-- Read style magazines, watch E!. This will make it easy to pick up on trends, like noticing people wearing statement necklaces everywhere, or stacking with bangles.

-- Pay attention to stars and their weddings. What celebrities wear trickles down to what non-celebrities want.

-- Watch awards shows. All the stars gathered in one place makes it easy to spot what’s “in,” both in the sense of style--necklaces, drop earrings, cocktails rings--and metals, such as platinum, yellow gold or white gold.

-- Pay attention to cultural events, exhibits and auctions, such as the Christie’s auction of Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry collection in 2011

-- Be knowledgeable about the price of metals. The drop in the price of gold is bringing the metal back in a big way.

-- Use technology and social media. A good way to find out what’s happening in trends, quickly. Follow Twitter hashtags during awards shows to get engaged in the conversation of what kind of jewelry the stars are accessorizing with.

-- Know what’s on the runway. Jewelry trends follow what is seen on the runway. Many of the trends Gizzi predicted for fall--geometrics, color in bridal, punk looks--were all part of the fashion shows of major clothing designers.

Visiting and keeping up with fashion and jewelry websites, as well as blogs, also are a way to get information as a trend predictor, Gizzi said.

“Trends aren’t always really clear to the customer. If you’re trying to be seen as a trend forecaster or a trend expert, what you want to be able to do is tell that story and explain it to them,” she said.