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Downturn fuels creativity in design - Paola De Luca
De Luca puts finishing touches to TJF Trend Book 2011
By James Clatford
August 9, 2009 – Paola De Luca, one of the world’s leading authorities on forecasting jewellery design trends, says economic crisis is good for creativity.
Paola De Luca

As she wraps up editing of the TJF Trend Book for 2011, sponsored by the Vicenza Fair, which looks ahead to key jewellery design trends emerging around the world, she expresses optimism about new approaches to luxury and the inspiration of the next generation of young designers.

“Austerity is good for design and new ideas,” De Luca told Jewellery Outlook in a recent interview. “A new design approach has emerged – not only from the downturn, but also from the vision of the new generation.”

She said that silver and bronze would be increasingly used in designs, and talked of a few “mega-trends” characterising the start of the second decade of the new millennium.

One example is what she called “Nouvelle Nouveau” – a return to high craftsmanship with the influence of Art Nouveau.

Bringing back lost techniques. Mixing organic with precious material – woods with precious stones and unusual gems.

At the other end of the spectrum is a mega-trend that Paola refers to as “Smash Culture”, which is influenced by play stations and cyber culture.

Paola said some brands had introduced jewellery lines this year that caught the public mood in these tough times very well.

“Stephen Webster captures a Dark nature in jewellery,” she said.

She also singled out as stand-out creations the graphic patterns on Emporio Armani jewellery, and the “hand-made feel” of Antonini and Marco Bicego pieces.

But she pointed out that new jewellery design trends emerge from the people, not from brands.

“Trends are not dictated by brands or corporations,” said Paola, who is based in Arezzo in Tuscany, Italy.

“The seeds already exist in society. Few companies have the skill and vision to identify and decode existing trends and translate them into strategies.

“Jewellery is a part of our lives. In order to project trends we must study society’s needs.”

The TJF Trend Book 2011 (Trends Jewellery Forecasting) will be available at the September 2009 edition of the Vicenza Fair, which runs from 12-16 September, 2009.

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