20 Oct 2020
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De Beers releases its 4th Flash Report
This month’s consumer insight survey shows a recovery in confidence versus the previous month, when many states saw a sharp increase in COVID-19 infection levels
By: Diamond World News Service
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Sep 30 2020 9:19AM
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Reference: 25179  

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The most significant shift observed is that both men and women are more likely to purchase and/or receive diamond jewelry in the next 6 months, and women indicate they are wearing more diamond jewelry – particularly their engagement rings and diamond necklaces – relative to previous waves. We have seen a significant increase in women saying that they feel safe shopping for diamond jewelry in person, with a decrease in feeling safest shopping online. Many also say they are spending more time connecting with friends and family outside the home, giving back through partaking in charity and community activities and taking on new hobbies. With this new level of optimism, we see an increased comfort level shopping, with consumers opting for pieces that represent enduring value.

ADORN INSIGHT TREND REPORT
Adorn Insight is a global consultancy providing market intelligence and consumer insights that influence strategic decision-making to drive brand growth and future-proof jewelry businesses. Adorn has identified the following three jewelry trends as we head into the 2020 holiday season.

CRAFT’S NEW COOL FACTOR
During lockdown it was fascinating to see crafting become one of social media’s top trends. Remembering the nostalgic comfort of homespun activities and the satisfaction of DIY pursuits, keen amateurs shared their embroidery skills, jewelers ran competitions rallying followers to design their dream jewel and luxury brands such as Loewe and Alexander McQueen launched crafts-focused initiatives to inspire their fans to get creative.



Silvia Furmanovich combines delicate marquetry and bright colours in these drop earrings which succeed at being both nostalgic and modern

Whilst craftsmanship has long been championed by brands as a means of telegraphing history, pedigree and savoir faire, the current focus on all things artisanal is inspiring a raft of innovation, not least in the jewelry sector. In terms of aesthetics, for example, we are seeing the emergence of fine jewelry designs that echo fabric applications such as quilting, weaving and even tie dye – the inspiration behind Dior’s latest high jewelry collection, Tie&Dior.

Opportunities for jewelers to capitalise on this trend abound, particularly for those who wish to underscore that they are makers as well as retailers. When wooing young customers for whom authenticity is a major draw, for example, jewelers offering bespoke services can see this as a brilliant opportunity for relationship -building and storytelling around the hands-on nature of their work.

Working collaboratively with non-jewelry craft specialists is another approach that can lead to exciting synergies, such as that between Piaget and feather artist Nelly Saunier, who together create jewelry pieces that dazzle with diamonds and kaleidoscope-like arrangements of feather marquetry. In a similar vein, Silvia Furmanovich’s signature marquetry technique was developed in collaboration with artisans who specialise in making large screens from salvaged wood in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest.

As customers seek greater transparency and accountability, brands that pay due recognition to the craftspeople with whom they collaborate are those that stand out. Alice Cicolini does just this when highlighting the work of Kamal Assat – one of the last Jaipuri meenakari master craftsmen trained in the enamel traditions of Persia, and the man responsible for the delightful meenakari work that features in many of Cicolini’s beautiful designs.

Where we see thrilling potential for jewelry crafts right now is in the possibilities that emerge when age - old techniques are combined with advanced technology. RCA graduate Gearry Suen’s graduate collection Transboundary is the perfect example, and pieces such as his “bold, futuristic, cyber baroque” Conversation earrings break new ground, showing what can be achieved when digital technology and handcrafts work in synergy. “The hand skill presents the soul and emotions of humanity to me,” explains Suen of his vision. “The AI skill presents accuracy, logic and futuristic possibility.”

The result is jewelry that feels absolutely right for the times in which we live and those into which we are headed.

NATURAL BEAUTIES
Environmental concerns around climate change and biodiversity loss are nothing new, but it took a global lockdown to show us how reducing activities such as air travel could have such a rapid and measurable positive effect on the world in which we live. Suddenly, we were reminded of our precious connection to nature as it flourished all around us, and real change felt like a possibility.

Little wonder we are seeing a boom in jewelry designs that reference flora, fauna and natural phenomena (rainbows, water, the elements) and whose aesthetics are organic and freeform in style.

A stunning recent example is Nuage en Apesanteur, a cloud -like necklace from Boucheron’s latest high jewelry collection that took two years (and a mind-bending algorithm) to develop, and consists of nearly 10,000 titanium threads capped with 4,018 diamonds and glass beads simulating droplets.

Arriving hand-in-hand with these naturalist tendencies, a sharpened focus on sustainability has done much to ignite consumer interest in materials of organic origin such as wood, seeds, fossilized ivory, leather and mother of pearl – all of which are becoming regular and welcome features in luxury jewelry.

The inclusion of less orthodox materials in jewelry of the highest quality encourages us to reframe ‘preciousness’ – typically defined by price and scarcity – in order to acknowledge the value of thoughtful design and appreciate the meaning inherent in the materials themselves.

Melanie Georgacopoulos, for example, has for some time now incorporated mother of pearl into her work as a way to use the oyster shells that are considered by -products of the pearling industry. Her superlative Oval Facets line, which is made from golden, lavender, peacock and white mother of pearl, shows just how luxurious ‘non-precious’ materials can be.

Designers looking to work gemstones into this ‘as nature intended’ mood can introduce all-important character and uniqueness by incorporating stones that are left rough or included.


De Beers Vulcan Earrings

The De Beers Diamond Legends collection includes a series of remarkable Vulcan pieces in which rough diamonds
in vibrant yellows and browns are juxtaposed with round brilliant and marquise-shaped fancy colour diamonds. Also playing with colour, Nina Runsdorf’s sensational designs combine flashes of slick enamel – fire engine red, rich mustard, icy white – with included, irregularly shaped diamond slices that demonstrate how perfect nature’s so-called imperfections truly are.

INVEST IN THE BEST
Successful fashion wardrobes are often built around key seasonal staples: a perfectly tailored pair of trousers, a timeless bag, that head-turning coat. The trick is to identify those items that have enduring appeal and which also feel fresh and relevant.

When it comes to investing in jewelry, the same considerations apply, but we are seeing them assume greater importance in the current climate where – when so many are suffering economic hardship – showy excess seems inappropriate and consumers who are still able to make purchases at a higher level are being mindful of how, and on what, they spend their money. Epitomising the ‘Buy less, buy better’ mantra, they still wish to indulge, but with greater scrutiny, investing in items that stand the test of time and which represent value in multiple ways: financial, emotional, practical.

Astute customers who purchase a significant piece of jewelry are looking for a design that has a unique point of view, and ‘classic-with-a-twist’ designs are a great place to start.

Suzanne Kalan’s exuberant spin on the iconic eternity band, which features diamond baguettes asymmetrically clustered in her signature ‘Firework’ setting, is a joyful case in point. So, too, are Lizzie Mandler’s to-die -for hand made chains whose classic oval links are updated with her signature knife edge detailing. Not only is her jewelry “timeless and of its time” says Mandler – whose fans include Rihanna, Madonna and Beyoncé – it can also “melt into the identity and style of the wearer, making it a versatile and truly unisex choice.”

To read more visit https://www.debeersgroup.com/reports/insights/diamond-insight-flash-reports


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