Got vintage? Estate jewelry? How about a 100,000 year old necklace? Recently discovered Nassarius shell beads from the Skhul rock shelter in Israel are believed to be the oldest necklace ever found – 100 millennia! It stretches our imagination to visualize life over such a vast expanse of time. But we now have evidence that we share a basic primal impulse with our predecessors – the desire to create ornamentation and decorate ourselves.
Why do we wear jewelry? It’s a distinctively human impulse, a use of symbolism that separates us from other species. Some ancient craftsman punctured holes in the Nassarius shell beads with the intent to connect and wear them. Was that craftsman the first jeweler? What was the driving impulse that sparked the imagination?
- Jewelry signifies wealth, power and status, throughout the ages, from the crowns and regalia of royalty to the extravagant collections of the rich and famous. We mimic the famous jewelry of royalty and celebrities – remember Lady Diana’s wildly popular blue sapphire and diamond engagement ring? – to bask in an aura of elevated status. That Rolex watch or 3 carat diamond in your display taps into this basic impulse. A diamond engagement ring that equals two month’s salary is a direct display of net worth. Tap into this elemental desire of your customers. They’re instinctively drawn to magnificent jewelry to enhance their image. Let them know what a spectacular reflection that special piece will project.
- Jewelry is sexy! What instinct could be more primal? Men and women throughout time have adorned themselves to attract the opposite sex. Sparkling jewels, long dangling earrings and lustrous pearls enhance our natural beauty. Was that ancient Nassarius shell necklace worn by a tribal leader as a status symbol or given to his mate as a sign of affection to glorify her beauty? Just glance at the covers and ads in any top jewelry magazine to see the same principles at work today. Appeal to this basic instinct. Let your client know how stunning that special necklace or ring makes her look!
- Good luck charms, warding off evil. Jewelry worn as a spiritual talisman is as ancient as humankind. The Egyptians created elaborate pure gold funerary pieces for their pharaohs to accompany them and ease their path in the afterlife. Currently this trend is enjoying a resurgence. In addition to the ever popular crosses and good luck horseshoes, today’s jeweler can offer a wide display of charms ranging from peace symbols to ankhs, offering positive affirmations from cultures across the ages throughout the globe. This current hot trend is truly universal.
- We wear jewelry to bind us together, to connect to each other. From the most popular engagement, wedding and anniversary rings, to Celtic friendship rings, mother’s rings, lockets with pictures of loved ones and school class rings, these pieces reaffirm our connections. From ancient times, gifts of jewelry have had a deep emotional appeal. What could be a more powerful gift than a token to wear, a constant reminder to yourself and outward display for others? The smart jeweler recognizes and promotes this universal appeal.
- Express yourself! Ancient Lascaux cave drawings confirm a primal artistic impulse to create, to express ourselves. A current very hot trend with timeless roots is the desire to express individuality. From causes – pink ribbons and livestrong bracelets – to charm necklaces with uplifting messages – hope, dream, believe – to personalized “add a bead” charms, it’s all about making a personal statement. This basic human desire spans the ages, from that distant ancestor 100,000 years ago who crafted and wore a necklace of shells.
So the next time you pull a necklace from your case to entice your client, remember you’re appealing to powerful primal impulses as ancient as humankind. Tap into these motives and you’re sure to achieve success!
Mia Katrin is an award-winning, internationally celebrated couture jewelry designer, specializing in one-of-a-kind and limited edition high-end necklaces with precious gems in 18-24 karat gold and platinum. Her Collections, which have been worn by A-List Hollywood celebrities, are featured in many top galleries and stores throughout the country, where she regularly hosts Trunk Shows. Contact Mia via her website, http://jeweljewel.com, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call (877) JEWEL-MY.