“Megatrend: the Millennials & the Merging of Polarities” – This is the opening statement used to describe the Swarovski Gemstones Gem Visions report for 2017. The annual publication aims to present an analysis of the design and gemstone trends that will influence the jewellery industry in the next year.
As in previous iterations, the report has been developed in combination with Swarovski Gemstones' in-house team as well as a group of selected international jewellery, gemstone and trend experts.
The phrase ‘opposites attract’ is at the centre of this edition, with the dominant ‘megatrend’ being the fusing of polarities – think art vs science, natural vs man-made, young vs old, antique vs avant-garde and real vs virtual.
The influence of the Millennials – those aged 22–36 – has also be identified in the report as the driving force behind the current jewellery market. According to the forecast, the younger consumers’ ability to withstand constant change and work within extremes means they are drawn to designs that push standard boundaries.
The megatrend has been broken down into four design directions that jewellers and consumers alike are expected to embrace in 2017.
Here, Jeweller takes a closer look.
Science meets spirituality to celebrate the hidden and magical aspects of planet earth. Dramatic landscapes, fossil and gemstones set the inspiration for this theme, which is said to appeal to inquisitive and demanding consumers who are aesthetically sophisticated and possess a taste for cool contemporary and the eternal organic.
Gemstones that develop a natural patina such as amber, coral, pearl and quartz are the natural choice for this trend, as is the sharp mineral marcasite or bi-coloured gemstones.
Earthy colours of chartreuse, shades of green, deep lava red and charcoal also all fall within the design direction.
This trend is all about drama and the celebration of a resurgence in opulence and love of couture. It will attract the savvy, fashion-conscious consumer who seeks designs that speak excitement and can fill the role of a modern-day family heirloom.
To accompany the glamour and contemporary look of this trend, intense gemstone colours are used, with the red and pinky shades of rubies at the forefront. Pink tourmaline, peridot, yellow beryl, topaz, amethyst and jade complete the aesthetic, along with marquise, princess or square cuts assembled in modern mosaics.
Metalwork reminiscent of exquisite lace and silk embroideries is made possible by employing advanced technologies. Black gold and patinated silver as well as invisible settings are added to the mix.
Defined by Swarovski Gemstones as being one of the most significant shifts in the jewellery industry, the Easy-Trans-Form trend focuses on jewellery that is versatile and adaptable to the wearer’s mood.
Mixing and matching is the order of the day, with a variety of metals in fresh bright colours and pastel tones such as tangerines and lilacs working well. Iridescent materials or gemstones with shifting light and color, like opals, rainbow moonstones and labradorite are also on-trend, as are frosted finishes and small accents of diamonds.
The baguette cut is the go-to gemstone shape, coupled with modern geometric cuts that can be stacked or fitted together. Gemstones are said to be highlighted with moving parts and lockets that have be re-invented.
Welcome to a fresh approach of self-expression through jewellery. The Millennial generation has revolutionised the consumption of jewellery; they demand a higher class of sustainable production, individuality in design and personalisation.
Jewellers are approaching this trend in opposing ways, with some moving towards redesigning vintage styles, while others are gravitating towards a multi-pronged aesthetic influenced by pop art, surrealism, contemporary music and street-art.
Metals such as silver and interesting gold shades like black, brown and green fit into this theme, with coloured cubic zirconia, howlite, synthetic diamonds and even 3D printed materials finding their way into this trend.
Gemstones are said to be “set free of constraints”, dangling loosely from a bracelet, necklace or earring. Briolettes, drop-shapes, petal-shapes, carved stones and candy-like cabochons also fit perfectly into this theme.
|Swarovski Gem Visions 2017 |
View the ebook
Trends, directions and more for 2017
Jewellery trends past, present and future