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“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others” ~ African Proverb
The Fall, 2016 edition of the Atlanta Jewelry Show has wrapped, and I have lots of details to share with you from the show floor!
I spent a good part of the Atlanta Jewelry Show talking to both retailers and vendors to get their thoughts on the show, why they attended, what they enjoyed, their general opinions on the industry at large, and everything in-between.
Those of you who read this column on a monthly basis know that I am a huge proponent of attending the Atlanta Jewelry Show. As regional shows go, it’s simply the best the Southeast has to offer. I know some of you think I am biased because of my long-standing relationship with the lovely ladies who run the show, so I decided to make the rounds and talk with both longtime vendor/clients of mine who exhibit in Atlanta, and some new retail friends I met for the first time at this show, and asked them to share their opinions with me, and in turn, with you.
As you might be aware, the Atlanta Jewelry Show has a fabulous “Certified Jeweler Program.” To achieve Certified Jeweler status, retailers must attend two Atlanta Jewelry Shows per year, and at least two seminars during each show, for a total of four seminars a year. To maintain that status, retailers must then attend at least one Atlanta Jewelry Show per year and a minimum of two seminars per year.
I had the opportunity to connect with Trish Parks, owner of Corinth Jewelers in Corinth, Mississippi. Trish shared with me that Corinth Jewelers is preparing to celebrate their 10th holiday season in business, and said she feels that this will be a strong year for them. She picked up a couple of new lines at the show, including Vahan, and said she believes two-stone merchandise will be a big seller for their store. She also mentioned that she bought a lot of yellow gold, because she is seeing a big yellow gold comeback in her area.
The thing that impressed me the most about Trish is her dedication to both her customers and her staff. Twice a year, Trish closes her store, and brings her entire sales staff to the show so her “girls” can take advantage of the show atmosphere, and most of all, the seminars and training that is available. She encourages them to shop the show, share thoughts and ideas with her on new trends they might spot, and truly seems to care about their opinions by inspiring them to get involved on every level. What a wonderful perspective to take! What can I do to motivate more of you take the initiative when it comes to exposing your staff to the trade show experience and “Be like Trish”?
On Sunday night after the show we stopped in for a quick (and free!) drink at the Atlanta Jewelry Show Mingle. Mingle is a popular after hours gathering, known as the place to make real connections. Attendees meet at the end of each day to gather together for music, drinks and great conversations with good friends and business associates.
Since there truly are no strangers in our industry, I quickly began chatting up our table-mates and found myself seated with Marcia Dowd, owner of Dole and Dowd Jewelers. What a treasure she is, and boy does this fascinating lady love the Atlanta Jewelry Show!
Marcia was effusive in her praise of the Atlanta Jewelry Show and its staff, telling me, “It’s more than just the ‘Southern Charm’ that makes this show special. The show staff, the vendors, everyone I deal with here at the show is genuinely warm and friendly. People here are more than just vendors or retail acquaintances, they have become my friends.”
Marcia, who stays at the Waverly, also told me how much she loves the location, the ease with which she can get around, the reasonable hotel rates (and convenient parking!) and the overall sense of security she feels when attending the Atlanta Jewelry Show.
The fall edition of the Atlanta Jewelry Show is always fun for me, because I get a chance to visit with my vendor clients, and see all the new products they are introducing for the holiday buying season. Of course, ALL my vendor clients are my favorites … but two special, shining stars stood out for me this time.
Morris Spil of Samuel Spil & Co, showed me the “Black Friday Specials,” flyer, and it is loaded with a great selection of price point items, including black diamond jewelry and two-stone rings, as well as diamond basics. If you aren’t doing business with Samuel Spil, you should be! Aside from their large selection, they have wonderful deals on close-outs, and a recent supplier-side change on their two-stone jewelry line side means they are now able to offer their two-stone jewelry collection at much lower prices.
I encourage you to get a jump on the holidays, call my friend Morris, and get ready to ring in the holidays and profits for 2016! You can find more information about Samuel Spil online at www.SamuelSpil.com.
And no visit to the Atlanta Jewelry Show would be complete without me getting to spend some time with the gorgeous and insanely talented designer Nina Nguyen. Fresh off a successful summer launch of her new “Heritage Collection” line, Nina is dazzling industry insiders and retail clients alike with her winning line of trendsetting styles in 14 karat yellow gold that marry shades straight from the palette of Pantone’s Fall 2016 color report with a storyboard of classic gemstones, including lapis, aquamarine, turquoise, opal, moonstone and moss chalcedony. If you haven’t had a chance to view her latest collection, you’ll find more information online at: https://nina-nguyen.com/
Have some thoughts or questions about the Atlanta Jewelry Show you’d like to share with me? I’d love to hear your comments on this subject! E-mail me at Ann@SouthernJewelersGuild.com or call me at 504-615-1191.