Boca Raton, Florida (PressExposure) June 10, 2008 -- The deepening recession and long-term changes in consumer behavior have combined to deal the retail jewelry industry a hard blow. The dismal situation can be attributed in part to the recession according to some analysts, but also to changing attitudes about jewelry. While retailers profited from consumer extravagance in the past, they are now struggling to adapt to more conservative buyers. Recession causes consumers to scale back on their discretionary spending and jewelry is one of the first things that one would willingly live without. Historically, when economic growth slows, shoppers retreat and jewelry demand weakens substantially.
Doing better, however, are stores offering costume or fashion jewelry, which thrives when bold designs are in vogue as is very much the case this season as cited in major women's fashion magazines, such as Harpers Bazaar and W. These magazines predict, "costume jewelry will become the accessory of choice replacing the designer handbag." One fashion jewelry store that is filling the niche is EJ Jewelry in Boca Raton, Florida, offering true and "faux" jewelry in designs similar to those of designers but at a much lower price.
A recent report released by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. forecasts the world costume jewelry market would grow at a rate of 4.63% to reach $21.1 billion by the year 2010. The demand for costume jewelry and fashion accessories, such as rings, earrings, and bracelets is driven largely by consumer preference for affordable yet fashionable jewelry. Costume jewelry has tailored looks and styles borrowed from fine jewelry but given the affordability of costume jewelry, purchases are predominantly impulsive, especially for the younger generation, as seen with Jackie Kennedy's famous faux pearls.
According to Joanne Stillman, owner of EJ Jewelry, "Costume jewelry is experiencing a resurgence that hasn't been seen since the Eighties. It is the perfect accessory for casual to formal dress, and is a wonderful way to convey your personality. Beaded costume jewelry and semi precious stones offered in 14, 18 and 24 karat gold are fun and funky ways to express yourself. Costume jewelry is often perceived as what one wears when one can't afford the real thing. So not true says Vera Wang and other fashionistas. Women wear costume jewelry with a specific type of clothing to improve their appearance and personality. We even have clients who come down from Palm Beach to buy our pieces and wear them to galas and social events."