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Vegas Trends: Living in a Material World
Jewelry Scene


This year at the Couture, JCK, and Luxury shows in Las Vegas, the mainstream jewelry industry took its first steps beyond gold and platinum. Silver, alternative materials, negative space, and creative techniques to minimize the use of the pricey precious metals are the strongest trends from the shows.

The overall look is large and light, with dramatic scale made practical with lots of open space and a wide range of interesting materials: rough gems, ornamental gems, minerals, wood, mother-of-pearl, bronze, resin, leather, stingray, rubber, ceramic, crystal, titanium, lava, steel, even fossils.

The use of rough gems and unusual gems and minerals is also driven by the organic, earthy, one-of-a-kind feeling these materials give to jewelry designs. Even high-end designs are contrasting precious with raw materials.
Companies launching new silver lines include Alishan, Gurhan, Stuller, Lalaounis, Nikos by Tache, Tycoon, Sugarman Frantz, Raymond Hak, JMC, John Christopher, and many others. Novell launched a line of men’s wedding bands in Argentium silver. Stephen Webster and Leslie Greene’s silver collections, launched earlier this year, continue to attract retailers too.

Some exhibitors are taking the alternative materials trend one step further, creating new branded metal alloys, like Platina 4 by Star Ring and Precious3 by Tache Jewelry, which combine precious metals like silver, gold, and platinum with base metals resulting in a more affordable jewelry metal.

Interestingly, pearls, the only precious material that hasn’t increased significantly in price, are noticeably strong this year, especially in jewelry or in place of chain. Attractive baroque pearls are so popular that they are selling at a similar price to round pearls in coveted sizes.

If you’ve been reading Modern Jeweler for the past year, you already know the other jewelry trends that matter most: texture, sea life and nautical motifs, rose cuts, status links, blackened metals, coins and intaglios, dimensional design, hoop earrings, and cuff bracelets.

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necklace of 16-15mm baroque South Sea cultured pearls with 190.38 carats of black rough tourmalines and 12.30 carats of pavé diamonds
“Midnight” necklace of 16-15mm baroque South Sea cultured pearls with 190.38 carats of black rough tourmalines and 12.30 carats of pavé diamonds by Mikimoto, suggested retail $74,000, (212) 457-4663.
Titanium and diamond brooch
Titanium and diamond brooch by La Reina, (213) 623-8482.