Bigger stones and more of them are shaping wedding jewellery demand.
When writing our bridal special in February last year, we were faced with a very different climate to the one that greeted us we put together our 2012 report.
In February 2011 manufacturers and retailers spoke to us of trends that pushed brides towards vintage styles with more demure stones, or some second-hand purchases or remodelled family heirlooms. What was required were lighter profiles and smaller styles. Nostalgia ruled the day, but it carried with it underlying frugality.
In 2012 there has been a sea change in the market. No longer are shoppers trying to cut corners; instead there is an air of confidence with consumers demanding more and larger diamonds and requesting heavier metals.
Vintage styles are still important in the bridal market but overtaking this is the desire to be different, something that is bolstering bespoke services at retail and manufacturing levels. Even shoppers who do not want a full commission still want to feel they have had input by asking for extra diamonds or a slimmer band width.
As James Maxwell of CMJ-exclusive diamond jewellery brand MasterCut tells me, when the jewellery market is starting to regain confidence it will always take seed in the cultural imperative that is bridal jewels, and it would seem, from the stories we’re hearing, that it has well and truly started.