Maybe the people using the CAD are translating the designs poorly,
or are CAD operators, and not jewellers. Or maybe it's a problem
with the economy, and not CAD at all.
Decline in revenue can be explained by bad economy. However increase
in cost of revenue indicates internal issues. It means that for every
dollar of revenue they have to spend more and more resources. You can
read their financials for detailed figures.
As far as translating designs poorly. All computer based graphic
systems (CAD included) have difficulties in handling curves. Claims
of ability to produce organic shapes are only true if aesthetics are
removed from judging consideration. Yes, it is possible to make
organic shapes in CAD, and yes these shapes are ugly. The fault is
not necessarily with operators, but with software itself. CAD was not
designed for that and no matter how long one shall torture it, CAD
cannot produce required artistry. Go to Tiffany website and look at
Elsa Peretti Open Heart bracelet. I remember these hears very well.
They gain a lot of weight recently and there are no elegance in
If you want another example, take a look at Picasso Palm pendent.
CAD design at it’s best and ugly as sin. No balance, no composition,
no unity, total and complete dearth of any artistic qualities. One
can only get away with something like this selling jewellery on flee
market, next to a pretzel stand. Used to such shapes were refined and
graceful, but now they are boorish and gauche.
No reason to leave Frank Gehry out of our discussion. His Leaves
look like someone lost his breakfast and tried to cover it up with
paper napkins. No wonder that they have decline in revenue. I am
amazed that they have any revenue at all.
I am not the one to look at jewellery as some claim “the work of
Art”. Some pieces are, most are not. But there is implied aesthetics
like silhouette refinement, proportionality, compositional balance,
and etc., which are part and parcel of the basic jewellery craft.
CAD cannot produce it. It is like asking someone to carve a grain of
rice with woodsman axe.