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Balancing Old and New : "A lot of companies are already experimenting with this blending concept but it is important that the resulting jewellery while keeping in mind traditional reverence and meaning, should not look very ethnic. Wholesale Labradorite Jewellery Here branding and packaging plant an important role in linking a new-look piece to its traditional inspiration", says Vyas. She cites the successful Nakshatra brand that was launched by De Beers. "Floral designs have always existed in Indian culture with different communities interpreting them in myriad different ways. But the traditional jewellery was heavy and worn only a weddings or for religious ceremonies Most of the time it stayed in safety deposit lockers. Nakshatra successfully re-introduced it by modifying it into light everyday-wear designs".
Payal Kurian, Banglore-based design consultant for Peakok Jewelry, elaborates, "Any sensitive designer today in trying hard to establish a balance be tween tradition and trend. The interplay of traditional technique and international design trends is apparent in todays kundan (traditional 24-karat gem-seg) jewellers some designers have already incorporated the linear earning design, which is a global trend today, into their kundan-studded earrings".
Rajiv Jain of Sambhav Gems in Jaipur cites a classic example of the mangalsutra, the traditional beaded necklace wor y women to signify their married status - a social symbol that has remained unchanged in design for miennia. "the basic concept of black of gold beads with a pendant in the centre remains the same, but one can now have an interplay of black white and gold beads. Wholesale moonstone Jewellery As for the pendant the beads were first replaced by diamonds but have now made a comeback. The variations in design are actually asked for today by young brides".
Apart Asavari Lagu, director of the retail outlet Lagu Bandhu in Mumbai, reaffirms there is a demand for modified or improvised traditional patterns in the market. she cites traditional armbands, which are also now available in designs that enable them to be worn as necklaces as well. Rhea Nasta, another Mumbai designer who heads Rhea's Studio the design centre for the Popley jewelery retail group says, "The Indian jewelery market is a blend of traditional and modern tastes. There exists a traditional Indian women within every modern woman and jewellery has to appeal to both".
Apart from the subtle changes in the traditional jewellery market, most designers observe that more and more people today are intereted in horoscopes, chanting mantras, yoga and alternative therapies. According to Jain, todays consumer have a strong interest in Birthstones and the beneficial properties of gems. Consequently, spiritua and auspicious motifs have seen a great comeback in fashion, including the jewellery segment. Wholesale turquoise Jewellery Thus the rudraksha, Ganesha and Religious swastika motifs, the traditional nine -gem or navratna cobinations nd many other auspicious concepts have become very popular in the Indian jewellery mrket over the last couple of years, Indian designers incorporate these motifs into current fashion so harmoniously that they are as current as the latest trends.
The Indian USP
Unlike many other fashion markets in the world, which are more homogeneous in character, the Indian market demonstrates a great segment of duality, particularly in traditional product segments like jewellery. As Vyas puts it, "Indian consumers operate with two contradictory mindsets when deciding to buy a piece of jewellery. At heart, we remain quite roted in culture and tradition and continue to revere and alue jewelery as a time-honoured possession. On the other hand, the same consumers exhibit contemporary urban traits and see trendy jewellery as an extension of their personality and lifestyles. They opt for brands thereby emphasing their perceived worth accorded to a piece of jewellery. The jewellery buying pattern in the Indian market is also changing. For instance, the Indian woman today is economically independent and does not seek approval from her further or husband to buy jewellery as was the case earlier".
Indian fashion does not surrender to the burdens of 'fall-winter' or 'spring-summer' influences, says Mantri. "One sees a uniform look on the streets of Europe. but here, we stick to our persona tastes and do not kowtow to the imposed opinion. It could also be because most of us cannot afford the routine makeover of our wardrobes!".
Another interesting feature is that the Indian consumer looks for the longevity in a product. Hence he product supersedes the season. "Also, we might see tough competition from other luxury items like high-end mobile phones travel, and the like" says Shreeevi Deshpande Puri, a Bangalore -based design consultant for Ganjam Nagappa and Sons, but she adds, "Indians have a rich culture and heritage, which we continue to respect and follow despite changing modern attitudes. Jewellery is far too integrated into our lifestyles to get affected in one generation. This could all change some two generations. Down. The good part is that we still have the luxury of time to work on it, unlike the west.
Jain, however, has another take on it. He feels that during a receission, jewellery comes in last and goes out first. "While buying, jewellery is last on the list. Although mobile phones are a luxury item, they have become a necessity".
Nonetheless, the Indian market is getting stronger by the day, according to Vijay Chordia of Valentine Jewelry a Jaiput-based firm. He says, "We will see a big change in thetastes of the Indian consumer within three or four years". And while many point to the growing use of diamonds in Indian jewellery, he feels a complete makeover is still a way off. "Rural India still has a mindset for plain gold jewellery, as it is easily traded as compared to diamonds (meaning investment is still a big jewellery purchase driver). And rural India accounts for a major chunk of jewellery consumption."There are several trends running parallel in the Indian market as far as the design life cycle goes. While in the traditional jewellery market, change is gradual, spread over years, in the urban segment, it is quick and ongoing. Moreover, Puri says, "In precious jewellery the evolution is much slower and most often, jewellery in the high-end segment tends to have long-term appeal. However in the fashion segment, it is very important to tie it to trends, as the price points for these re much more affordable, and this is where the consumer is able to experiment".
The product life cycle in India is much longer because of the high value costs involved. Other lifestyle products undergo four fshion cycles a year but jewellery cannot follow this pattern. Only between one and three per cent can afford to buy so frequently, says Vyas. Trends in jewellery change at much lower rest of the luxury market due to the high costs involved.
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