I often compare this exciting and colorful category to the wide ties, narrow ties, mini-skirts, long skirts, concept of jewelry design. You could easily sum it up with “what goes around, comes around”. This sometimes happens at what most would consider lightning speed. Fashion Jewelry is the fastest changing segment of the entire Jewelry industry. It has to be. And for good reason.
Remember when Fashion Jewelry was referred to as Costume Jewelry? Although the name is still used you have to admit the phrase Fashion Jewelry has a lot more appeal. Marketing experts and department store buying departments came up with an even more precisely defined term.Trend Jewelry. Trends and new trend-setting is really the whole point to this segment of the jewelry industry. The “why” is affordability. With retail prices in the single and low double digits you must have a super-fast turnover in inventory in order to have a profitable market. Rapid style change is necessary for creating a need, or at the very least, a desire to buy.
A few of the many ways these trends or fads get started are major manufacturers with talented designers who continue to create new and exciting styles. Also, costume designers and stylists behind the scenes of the television and film industry can sometimes be the real trend-setters in our pop culture environment. These people usually are the first to see new designs because vendors are literally kicking down their doors daily with the latest and hopefully “hottest” merchandise looking for exposure to huge audiences. In addition, major celebrities have personal shoppers that are seeking the very latest designs, usually in Fine Jewelry, for their clients. Soon after we see that $10,000.00 piece photographed on a celebrity in “Cosmo” it’s translated to the $10.00 version available at your nearest department store. As an example, the “Y Neck” enjoyed tremendous popularity just a few years ago. That particular style made it’s debut on the TV show “Friends.” This design was so red hot….. it’s back! Just change the name to Lariat and here we go again. Another winner!
Affordability of fashion jewelry is accomplished by mass production and the use inexpensive raw materials. Base metal (an all inclusive term for non-precious metals e.g.Tin, Lead, Nickel) is utilized. Beaded pieces may include anything from resin, wood, shell, seeds, crystals, glass and more. Style and color with perhaps a designer name is what you are paying for. Fashion or Trend Jewelry is fun. Wear it and enjoy! But like those skirts and ties….hang on to those pieces and in no time at all you’ll be right on top of the latest trend right in your own jewelry box
Just a Tip: When purchasing Fashion Jewelry Earrings always look for hooks or posts made from surgical steel.