museums&MORE Spring 2017
Bold and bright trending in jewelry and accessories By Zeke Jennings

We polled several designers on what colors and styles are trending in the world of jewelry and accessories. Here’s what they had to say.

“Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the reassurance we year for amid a tumultuous social and political environment. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate and revitalize, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose.”

That was how Pantone Color Institute executive director Leatrice Eiseman described Pantone’s color of the year for 2017 back in December. It certainly seems Pantone hit the nail on the head in terms of jewelry trends, according to the designers we recently asked.

“Overall, I see a much bigger demand for color in brighter combinations then before, colors that feel happy and fresh and new,” said Anna Balkan of Anna Balkan Jewelry in Norcross, Georgia.

We polled several designers on what colors and styles are trending in the world of jewelry and accessories. Here’s what they had to say:

What sort of colors and styles are in demand right now?

“At the recent trade and retail shows, customers were drawn to slate, turquoise, emerald and lapis. We are market-testing a line that incorporates burgundy-dyed leather with our beadwork and received very positive responses to that color. It’s another rich jewel tone that will accessorize well for the fall and holiday seasons. — Sharon Herrick, Illuminated Me

“I have embraced the fresh shade of Greenery as the color of the year and introduced it in my collections using peridot and green cat eye. As part of the addition of these green and to balance the colors, I have added a lot more brightness and luster to our color combinations. We have noticed a very good response from the market to these soft green accompanied with varied shades of blue (topaz, Tanzanite quartz, aqua chalcedony) and pinks (ruby, cherry quartz and peach pearls). … We also noticed a trend towards more geometrical and cleaner lines designs, but with color. We have incorporated a lot of bubble shapes accented with color and also a new custom cut triangle shape gemstones.” — Anna Balkan, Anna Balkan Jewelry

“The one showstopper is grenadine red, which our studio will express in Swarovski and Preciosa crystal beads and stones for our seasonal and holiday collections for Winter 2017-18. Rose and crystal quartz plus amethyst stones have a timeless appeal within both our traditional collections and our emerging contemporary line, the Natalie Clare collection.” — Nancy Neill, Nancy Neill Designs

“We are known for color. And our classic bright multi for spring, Fling and our other soft summer color, Zephyr (which means summer breeze) were what many buyers selected at the just completed winter shows. … We are liking more neutral, subtle palates and our customers are liking them as well. We introduced a beautiful color for fall of 2016 called Champagne. It was well received and had great sell through for most of our accounts. For spring 2017, we introduced a color called Sugar. It is basically a white/clear crystal palate and our customers at the winter markets loved it.” — Patricia Locke and Deborah Rethemeyer, Patricia Locke Ltd.

What sort of things do you look to for inspiration when it comes to new designs?

“Shapes and colors I create are all about balance — colors, texture and shape. If I layout some colors next to each other and they make me smile — then I take that queue. My inspiration gets fueled by nature and my international travels because there is nothing like clearing your mind and heart from everyday hustle and commercial marketing influences.” — Balkan

“In terms of color, I am deeply influenced by the Byzantine era, Islamic art, contemporary American art and architecture. We also use Pantone’s color forecasting as a reference tool. … The stories of each piece are equally important to the process. Our mission is to make change with beauty. We believe that referencing past and present accomplishments of people, places and events only deepens our sense of connection within and across cultures.” — Herrick

What else would you like to share?

“People want authentic connection. They want to know about the artist and the story behind the piece and be able to share that in conversation with family and friends. Now, more than ever, people are using jewelry as an outward expression of what they hold true for themselves and what they want to see/be in the world. They also want pieces that feel comfortable to the touch and make just enough of a visual statement so they can wear it often.” — Herrick

“I feel femininity is very much part of new trends — ready-wear and textile colors that we have seen over the last two years are all about softness and elegance, the combinations makes us feel lighter and more feminine. … This year and into the next it is going to be about a bolder feel mix of these colors, where pieces encompass both strong structure and feminine bright colors.” — Balkan

“Having been in business for 40 years it is safe to assume we are not exactly a trend line. We are a collection with a certain look and style but we do have to be aware of what is going on in the market to see where we can slip in a more trend-driven style. … Our stores are really liking mixed metal pieces, combinations of gold and silver. The other trend we noticed is a desire for pieces that can be worn in a variety of ways. We just introduced a long necklace that can be worn either as a choker, long channel or y-neck. Customers loved it!” — Locke and Rethemeyer

Zeke Jennings

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