Modern Jeweler magazin has an article on that subject in it’s
current issue, and I’m writing one for the next issue of Jewelry in
Fashion Trends. Ask 10 different people what sells, you’ll probably
get 10 different answers. Here’s my 2 cents in an overview. There’s
been an appearance of a new, niche market. It’s quality merchandise
and service. Think I’m being cute? I’m dead serious. There’s a lot of
junk out there, even expensive junk. I’ve never seen so much bad
design, bad use of materials, etc., and I’m getting horror stories
from new customers about the hack jewelers and chain stores that just
don’t give a hoot about service.
My best advice is, don’t try to find out “what sells”. Everything
and anything sells, just look at Ebay. Do the best work you can, take
care of your customers like they’re lifelong friends, and find the
market for what you’re good at and enjoy making. Create a network of
jeweler friends and get a digital image inventory of your wares to
exchange. If you don’t have it and so-and-so does, have them drop
ship it to you, split the margin between you. This takes a lot of
trust and good will among you, but we need to pull together in this
very flakey market. High end store sales are up, but right behind
them are the designer/craftsperson independants. Our turn to shine.
Good luck this season, everybody.
David L. Huffman