CEO on solitaires, gold and why it’s getting serious about bridal.
The February 2013 issue of Professional Jeweller is dedicated to the wedding jewellery market and the emerging trends and market evolutions that will shape it in 2013. Here Steve Wright, chief executive of Alfred Terry, talks to us about eternity rings being used as wedding bands, the enduring appeal of four-claw solitaires and strengthening Alfred Terry’s bridal offer.
Professional Jeweller: What are the most popular engagement rings at Alfred Terry?
Steve Wright: Brilliant-cut solitaires are still very much the first choice, followed by princess cut. As far as coloured gems are concerned, Alfred Terry has always had a great offering in quality, good-value gemstone and diamond engagement rings. A good quality four-claw solitaire that shows the diamond off to its best advantage is always a popular choice. Our 1909 Crown Jewel Ring introduced in 2012 is creating much interest.
PJ: What have you found to be the most popular metal for wedding bands and engagement rings?
SW: White gold is still the most popular but we have seen platinum edging towards it recently due to the closing of the price gap between these metals. We do not sell many palladium wedding rings, however we have seen a small but steady increase in palladium ring production.
PJ: Have you noted an increase in demand for diamonds on wedding bands?
SW: We have seen an increase in purchases of diamond eternity rings to be used as wedding rings.
PJ: Is a flush fit for wedding bands and engagement rings important to Alfred Terry customers?
SW: It seems that it is becoming increasingly important to women that their wedding ring should fit flush against the engagement ring, with the design of the engagement ring being tailored to suit the wedding ring, rather than the other way round which was the more traditional approach.
PJ: The jewellery design market is being revolutionised by new technology, allowing designers to create things like flush fit rings with greater precision. Is Alfred Terry taking advantage of any new manufacturing technologies?
SW: We have always looked to new technology and new manufacturing processes, and in creating the 1909 Origins collection have combined traditional mount-making skills with high-technology equipment to create this most luxurious collection.
PJ: What new bridal products will Alfred Terry bring to the market in 2013?
SW: We are constantly looking to improve and strengthen our bridal offer. 2013 is an exciting year for us and will see The 1909 Origins collection introducing new bridal ring designs and bridal jewellery.