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My New Jewelry Agenda

Sep 9, 2021 4:14 AM   By Avi Krawitz
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RAPAPORT... During the recent Las Vegas jewelry shows, I had the opportunity to do something that has been surprisingly inaccessible to me in the more than 14 years I’ve been covering the industry — I got to try on some jewelry.

I attend the shows primarily to assess the economics of the diamond market and to get a sense of sentiment among designers and jewelers. I tend to discuss design on a superficial level, but I rarely have cause to use expressive adjectives that sufficiently describe the beauty of a piece. And never have I dared utter those five daunting words that my female colleagues seem to use so freely: “Can I try this on?”

But this year was different. First, as the only Rapaport journalist attending, and in the absence of our esteemed Editor in Chief Sonia Esther Soltani, I was on the design beat by default. Secondly, there was a notable presence of men’s jewelry on display.

Yep, I identified a trend: Men’s jewelry is growing. And the offering has become more diverse, ranging from traditional hard-metal bracelets, rings and necklaces to those with a more feminine design for men, or modeled to capitalize on the shift toward gender neutrality in fashion and society.

So, when Davidor Gusky, the 29-year-old CEO and creative director of Davidor, was explaining the intricacies of his patented arch-cut diamonds and the use of arch shapes in the company’s jewelry, I found myself blurting out that previously elusive sentence.

And there I was, at the Couture show, asking Gusky how I looked, as if out shopping for a new suit. While I quickly reminded myself that I was not there on a buying spree — there were plenty of others at the Vegas shows for that reason — I started to understand the empowering feel of the elegant 18-karat gold bracelet and the creativity behind the repeating arches.

The French brand drew inspiration from the architecture of Italy’s Palladian villas and France’s Place Vendôme to arrive at its flagship arch motif. “Everyone sees a different perspective through an arch,” Gusky notes. “It also represents strength and stability.”

Building on those ideas, the L’Arc De Davidor is a unisex collection, which comes in several colors and has a higher-jewelry option that includes diamonds set along the arches. The brand’s other collections home in on the same theme but feature the arch-cut diamond more prominently.

Presenting a slightly different twist on men’s jewelry, Messika Paris — another French brand exhibiting at Couture — has introduced a masculine line of its Move collection. Similar to the women’s line, the menswear features rings, necklaces and bangles in light titanium, each with the brand’s signature moving diamond that slides along the center of the piece.

Michael Schwartz, the senior account director for fashion at Purple, a public relations company that represents Messika, notes a blurring of the lines between men’s and women’s jewelry, mirroring the trend toward gender fluidity in the broader fashion space.

“Men are starting to take more of an interest in jewelry, and they’re taking inspiration from the women’s collections,” Schwartz said. For its part, Messika is giving consumers the option to create their own looks, with some 300 combinations of colors and metals available in the broader Move collection.

At that point, I wondered if my newfound confidence would allow me to push the boundaries and try on those pieces that enable wearers to express themselves freely — regardless of their gender.

I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. Suffice to say, my Instagram account is still looking rather bare. It doesn’t quite seem that I’m ready to be the next “it” influencer. But as I made my way back to the diamond pavilion to catch the latest dynamics of diamond supply and demand, I realized the jewelry I dared try on and the many designers who tempted me had enriched my show experience. I expect that’s a trend that will continue for years to come.

Images: Avi Krawitz; a bangle from the L’Arc De Davidor collection; matching men’s and women’s rings and bangles from Messika’s Move collection. (Ben Kelmer, Davidor, Messika)
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Tags: Antique Watches & Jewelry Show, Avi Krawitz, Couture, Davidor, JCK Luxury, JCK show, las vegas, Messika
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