by Jake Woolley, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

We're back from the fashion trade shows in Las Vegas and energized from all the brilliant concepts, cutting edge designs and informative fashion seminars. It was wonderful to visit with so many of our customers, discuss how their businesses are doing and find ways to enhance the products and services we offer you.

Making the trip from Oregon, the Fire Mountain Gems team was busy visiting with customers and exhibitors.


After three full days of participating in the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, we are pleased to see that business is booming for jewelry makers and our industry has big plans for 2012.

MAGIC Marketplace featured a collaboration of approaching jewelry trends that will soon be surfacing to consumers across the globe. AccessoriesTheShow displayed numerous one-of-a-kind design pieces that will be essential over the next year. The PoolTradeShow showcased a combination of upcoming artisans along with established brand names providing a well-rounded viewpoint of what will be seen in boutique shops and community businesses. Combined, these shows make up the top trade events in the international fashion industry, hosting thousands of buyers and sellers of men's, women's and children's apparel, footwear, accessories and sourcing resources.

At the PoolTradeShow we caught up with several Fire Mountain Gems and Beads' customers including Cara Lyndon of Vintage Recrafted Jewelry. Regarding her experience as an exhibitor, Cara stated, "The shows have been great for me. I'm able to write down new orders and get instant feedback from my buyers." Like most experienced jewelry artists Cara is a visual person and has taken advantage of her Fire Mountain Gems' catalog, "I'd have to say the catalog is very well done. I love flipping through the pages and looking at the large variety of products and options."

We observed many of the most popular ongoing trends as well as upcoming fashion styles and key jewelry-making components being used for the next year. Here's a quick rundown of the top trend elements we saw throughout the three trade shows:

Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011 Cocktail Rings
Oversized statement rings are taking center stage focusing on a bold and energetic style. Rings were created with a variety of materials including Swarovski crystals, rustic metals, feathers, glass components and colorful gemstones. Rings are primarily on stretch bands in order to easily fit any finger size.

Chain
Still a leading factor for popular designs, chain plays a dominant role in trend-setting styles.
  • Aluminum Chain creates a large, bulky look that is lightweight and wearable.
  • Lantern Chain, with its slinky motion and hollow design, is used as a pivotal component for both long strands and to create large looped links.
  • Base Metals are all the rage, often seen intermixed for bold statement pieces. Smaller chain was seen on long dangle earrings, ranging from 6 to 12 inches in length.
Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011

Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011 Metals: Mixing and Fading
Whether it's chain, jumprings, findings or focal pieces, mixing of base metals was a predominant design style. Accessories cleverly fade light and dark base metals as well as systematically combine traditional metallic colors.

Feathers
Giving a sense of movement to designs, this flock of fashion components is truly taking flight. Able to handle color well, feathers are embellishing everything from hair extensions to clothing and are displayed on a variety of jewelry pieces. Whether organic or metallic, the feather continues to gain momentum.
Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011

Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011 Antiqued Metals
Get the vintage-look of worn and rustic accessories using metals, namely brass and antiqued silver, along with antiqued gold and gunmetal. The various colors of antiqued metals are combined for a muted and darker style as well as accentuated with bursts of fun color for added appeal.

Wire-Working with Gemstones
The look of larger, natural gemstones is enhanced by the intricate details of wire-working. The complex twists and tight turns of wire-working express an artist's experience and personalized style.
Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011
Artisans we met:

Cara Lyndon

Cara Lyndon Jewelry
www.caralyndon.com

Gina Burns

GinasOriginalAZ
www.ginasoriginalaz.com

Elisa Gonsalves (left) and Chris Freedman (right)

Elisa Gonsalves Designs
www.eli-collection.com

Customer Comments

We would like to share some of the customer comments we received in response to the article, "Jewelry and Accessories Trend Review from the MAGIC Marketplace, AccessoriesTheShow and PoolTradeShow, August 2011," featured in the a newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

"This resource is great-nice to see what other people are making."
- Nellie

"Great to read your newsletter. Australia is usually about 12 months behind the states, so it tells me that I am on line for what I am making, and gives me other ideas as well. Thanks"
- Bernadine

"I love this site so much. The prices are so great, and the search is just getting better by the day. One thing I haven't been able to get a good variety of though is real feathers. As you mentioned in a recent news letter, they are a huge trend this year. It would be nice to see a little more variety in the feather department. I have been particularly looking for some good peacock feathers. Thanks for all your great service,"
- Silvia

"I loved the article (Magic) and the pics and ideas, info given were invaluable to my jewelry orders to come for the next year! Thank you so much!"
- Jo Ann

"Great newsletters."
- Barbara

"I enjoyed this and would like to go to some of these shows sometime."
- Keith


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