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Impressions from Feninjer, London, About J

By Pooja Agarwal

Departure: Singapore: 13th Feb

Arrival: Singapore: 26th Feb

In this period, to cover  two jewellery trade fairs in different continents and manage to walk down Bond Street in a totally different location is no mean feat. But, it was great for my sense of style trends. The global amalgamation of fashion and culture was exhilarating.

Indian-inspired earrings by Brumani

14-18 Feb, São Paulo

Organised by IBGM (, the 48th Feninjer, Brazilian Gems and Jewelry Show, in São Paulo was simply joyful with so many colours. From February 14th to 17th, some of Brazil’s leading design houses launched jewellery collections. Brazilian style as a brand is a force to be reckoned with in the international markets.

It’s official: Bold, colourful, eccentric adornment is in. It has been a bonanza from gemstone jewellery designers in Brazil. The striking pieces of coloured stone jewellery that they have created is proof that the resurgence of colour is in full swing.

Currently, Indian-inspired jewellery design is very popular in Brazil due to a major 9- month long TV show shown six times a week, a Brazilian version of a Bollywood soap opera. The love story begins in Brazil and then moves to Jaipur in India. The entire cast of this soap opera is Brazilian though their looks and costumes are one hundred per cent Indian!


Having traveled far and wide from Tokyo to St Petersburg, Riyadh to Paris and Mumbai to San Francisco, I have yet to come across anything like Daslu ( It is a maze-like structure of more than 60 labels plus 30 store-in-stores, which did astound me. Little wonder the boutique is known as the "fashion designers’ mecca" of Brazil. Frightfully expensive, it was nice just to look at. For real shopping, I headed to the fashionable Rua Oscar Freire shopping street. Obviously, a visit to H.Stern’s grand boutique was in order – after all, it is the most popular jewellery brand from Brazil.

Courtesy IBGM, I even got a chance to be part of the famous carnival rehearsals. It was wild! The music was fantastic.   

Obrigada (Thank you) for accompanying me to Brazil.

19-21 Feb, London

After more than 15 hours, via Paris I arrived in London. It had been almost 9 years since I had been here. With no time to recover from jet-lag, I went straight to the Royal College of Art (RCA) to meet a friend.

Asprey, New Bond Street, London

I saw some impressive work and even met a student who already designs regularly for a well-known international jewellery brand. 

As time permitted, I strolled down to the V&A Museum to view first-hand the new Jewellery Gallery. Over 3,000 jewels tell the story of jewellery in Europe from Ancient Greece to the present. An interesting video showed British jeweller Shaun Leane crafting a ring. After this hectic day, I treated myself to a coffee and chocolate brownie at the spacious V&A Café, observing the massive round lights hanging from the ceiling.


Circles and round shapes are a noticeable trend in jewellery currently.

The next day was spent in the glittering world of jewels at the Wonder Room in Selfridges and a sparkling walk down Bond Street. Asprey’s ( ) grand flagship boutique is pretty colossal.

Thank you for keeping up in London.

22-25 Feb, 2009 Milan

ABOUT J 2009 was a memorable event. Although it was just the second edition, it is destined to be a landmark show in every top jeweller’s annual calendar.

The Hangar Design Group  ( under the leadership of Corrado Facco did a terrific job on the ambience. High-end, mostly Italian jewellery, and all under one roof, About J is the brainchild of the Vicenza Fair.


Luxury, more & more and especially in an economic crisis, is intangible. For me, it’s About J, a ‘memory’. (

The show brought to light that even in these tough times, creativity does not fade. Roberto Coin, Chantecler, Utopia, Mattia Cielo, Nanis and others continue to innovate. Some key trends: Bold rings; soft edges found in round and oval shapes; black and white diamonds; elastic gold bracelets and rings; brown pearls; brown, black and white diamonds combined; golden, white, brown pearls mixed; small diamonds in smart settings to lower costs; icy diamonds; diamonds and gemstones set upside down. Rose gold is still being used widely.

Grazie (Thank you) for still being with me.

See you soon at the BASELWORLD 2009 show.



Pooja Agarwal F.G.A
Birthplace: Bangalore, India
Citizen: Singapore
Pooja is contributing editor and design trend analyst for many high-end global publications. Her name is known in most major jewellery circles. Brought up in Mumbai, the city of Milan was home to Pooja, for a while, where she discovered the intricacies and sensitivities of master Italian craftsmen.
Based in Singapore, her keen eye for design and search for excellence translates into extensive travels around the world.
A truly global identity.