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Visual Merchandising

   New York's Cartier display goes beyond windows!
New York's Cartier display goes beyond windows!

Visual Merchandising: 10 Things to Learn from New York Jewellers

The Big Apple is the world’s leading destination for art, theatre, music, fashion, shopping and, especially, window displays. Following a recent tour of the city that never sleeps, Natalie Coulter reports her findings on visual merchandising from New York jewellers.
On a recent visual-merchandising study tour to New York City with a dozen students I viewed hundreds of window displays for inspirational ideas. Here’s 10 visual-merchandising lessons Australian jewellers can learn from New York retailers.

Celebrate the holiday seasons: Most jewellery stores in NYC installed a festive prop. It adds good cheer and excitement for the festive season, especially when carried through from window into the store.

Size matters: Keep props in proportion to the jewellery unless you have a cool statement piece designed to be large for effect; however, this way of propping should not to be tried without an expert eye.

Consider colour trends of the season: Bright-neon colours are currently all over NYC and the 2011 holiday season was the time to prop the window with brightly-coloured baubles. Look for interesting metallic objects to use as props. Metallics will be the big bang for 2012/13 and complement jewellery beautifully.

Change the jewellery: Regularly change the jewellery in window displays or even mix the jewellery around in the in-store display stands. Sometimes items shine better in a new location or under different lights. Put the newest range in outside windows when they arrive – then change them around after a week.

Look to others: When you know new stock is arriving, be prepared to highlight it with an interesting window installation. This means gathering inspiration and sourcing just the right props to highlight the jewellery. The beauty of taking inspiration from another display is the interpretation will never be the same.

Housekeeping is important: There is nothing worse than dust collecting in a store window. When props are in place for a period of time, dirt and dust collect around the prop itself. Customers notice.

Keep moving: Don't leave a window installation in longer than a month. Customers will tire of the props and the look. You don't need to always have a window creation installed; it can be refreshing to leave the window simply with well-grouped jewellery pieces.

Be relevant: Props that repeat a pattern or a colour in the collection can enhance any product. The same applies for curiosity props that brighten a window and entertain shoppers, leaving them smiling.

Keep it clean: Keep the street outside the store tidy. Remove any cigarettes and small scraps from the area around the store and also keep the window ledge clean, both inside and out.

Light it up: Keep the store well lit and have lighting in the window to highlight the jewellery to the best of your ability. Small detailed pieces need to be well lit to see what they are.

Natalie Coulter
Contributor •
Natalie Coulter is a visual merchandising expert who prefers to think of herself as a negotiator of urban space. Visit: www.belleflaneur.com

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