Vincenza Oro: World Premier Jewelry Fair, Vincenza, Italy
Each year, over 1600 vendors and over 20,000 buyers travel to Vincenza Italy for the undisputed king of artisan jewelry expositions. VincenzaOro1 is a decidedly international event. Almost half of the visitors, and over three hundred and fifty of the vendors, came from overseas expressly for the show. Because it is held at the beginning of each year, the fair is considered the inaugural jewelry event of the new fashion season. Designers, stylists, and retailers all look to Vincenza Oro to establish the trends that we will see in stores and on the fashion runways for the upcoming year.
The classics remain Vincenza Oro's strongest suit. The market for yellow gold remains a high selling point, and this year's fair paid tribute to the market with Gold Expressions, a collaboration between the World Gold Council, the Vincenza fair, and sixty-nine premier Italian goldsmiths. The exhibit remained at the fair entrance for the duration of the run, and featured new and creative works (almost all in yellow gold) by the goldsmith artists invited to participate. The works are now scheduled to tour the Chine, the Middle East, and the United States as part of an international marketing campaign.
The jewelry trade as a whole has to realign itself with the new world economy after suffering sales losses in 2003. The American dollar is currently weak against the Euro, and less American vendors and buyers were at the 2005 show because of it. But with the growth in the Far East accounting for the majority of the world's economic growth as a whole, Italian jewelry manufacturers are focusing efforts on catering to these rising markets.
Besides the fair itself, Vincenza Oro offers presentations, sub-genre conventions, technical seminars, and parallel exhibitions. Along with the aforementioned Gold Expressions exhibit, this year featured an exhibit on platinum entitled The Spirit Of Love, and the famous Orromachine exhibit; which is the only in the world that focuses solely on the machinery dedicated to the production of gold and silver jewelry.
- The current design trends feature pieces that are larger but much lighter in weight, such as woven fine-mesh gold rings and chains.
- Multi-strand necklaces and jointed, lariat-style "Y" necklaces that emphasize light-catching movement are also increasing in popularity.
- Pearls, especially freshwater pearls, were hugely popular this year; and many retailers are using them in their current lines in non-traditional ways.
- Rings have gotten bolder, featuring large enamel designs or moveable gemstone clusters that make them the wearer's most prominent piece.
- Featured elements haven't changed much from recent years past. Flowers, spirals, swirls, loops, geometrics, crosses, and far eastern symbols for luck, love, strength, and peace are still playing a prominent role.
- Despite the shows name, there are still plenty of silversmiths wowing the crowds and despite Italy's adherence to tradition, non-traditional materials such as wood, bone, and metal alloys are also starting to make a splash in the market.
- Charms and charm bracelets, both staples of the Italian fashion jewelry industry, remain a strong seller. Fanciful, quirky designs were especially popular this year.
By Faith Harper