By Randi Molofsky
With the leading jewelry event in North America—JCK Las Vegas—just around the corner, we’d like to take a look at another big jewelry show that happened this past March: Baselworld.
Held annually in the Swiss town of Basel, close to both the French and German borders, Baselworld does everything big: the massive booths that look like Fifth Avenue boutiques; the rare and exceptional gemstones for sale; and even the supersized beers and brats available on nearly every corner.
So how does someone not on the front lines make sense of such a huge show? We went straight to some of the biggest names in U.S. jewelry publications to find out their favorite trend from Baselworld so we can get a glimpse of what’s to come, then we paired those trends with AGS member jewelry and watches. Here’s what they were loving:
Victoria Gomelsky, Editor in Chief, JCK magazine
Watch brands across the price spectrum embraced black-on-black styles, mostly through the use of matte black PVD coatings, for an overall effect that was stylish and vaguely futuristic.
Michelle Graff, Editor in Chief, National Jeweler
One trend I noticed with both the watch brands and jewelry designers was this whole idea of designing jewelry and watches that can work for both day and evening wear —something that’s not too flashy to wear around your office during the day but will still get noticed at night. I realize this is probably not a brand-new trend but, in my opinion, it was mentioned more than ever before at Baselworld this year, particularly among the watch brands.
I think this trend is a by-product of two factors: First, our society overall is more casual and people rarely, if ever, get dressed up anymore so they are seeking more casual jewelry; and second, the fact that there are more women in the workforce than ever before. In other words, whatever women put on in the morning is what they are wearing out that night, so it needs to work all day.
Tanya Dukes, Senior Editor at InDesign and InStore magazines
What I loved was the unrestrained use of color. From big time brands to independent designers, there was a surfeit of stones in upbeat colors virtually everywhere. It was great to see them in unexpected places, liked mixed with pearls or used as a watch’s dial. And plenty of jewelry brands and watchmakers introduced designs with a rainbow’s worth of hues in a single piece, but with totally sophisticated, un-kitschy results.
If you’re looking for jewelry designs like those displayed above, visit our Find a Jeweler search for an AGS credentialed jeweler near you.