De­mand Up For Prêt Di­a­mond Jew­ellery

Since the last cou­ple of years, In­dia’s top jew­ellery re­tail houses have been wit­ness­ing a rise in de­mand for trendy, daily wear di­a­mond jew­ellery that is com­fort­able, light to wear as well as light on the pocket.

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Cap­i­tal­is­ing on this grow­ing seg­ment, the in­dus­try has been go­ing full throt­tle in de­vel­op­ing fresh, fun desk- to- dusk col­lec­tions that are de­sign and qual­ity driven, and of­ten made with cut­ting- edge tech­nol­ogy. As de­signs get more global, con­sumers are wel­com­ing nat­u­ral fancy colour di­a­monds and fancy di­a­mond cuts in jew­ellery. CARO­LINE CHORATTIL talks to sev­eral lead­ing jew­ellers about the cur­rent mar­ket sce­nario in the di­a­mond jew­ellery pret seg­ment.

In­dia is see­ing a ma­jor shift in the di­a­mond jew­ellery seg­ment, par­tic­u­larly re­lated to daily wear. The younger, net-savvy gen­er­a­tion is more open to ex­per­i­men­ta­tion and prefers jew­ellery that is the mark of in­di­vid­ual ex­pres­sion. Af­ford­able di­a­mond jew­ellery is in­creas­ingly be­ing seen as a form of ca­sual lux­ury and peo­ple are choos­ing to wear it to work, rather than only at par­ties or spe­cial events. This per­cep­tion shift has led to a grad­ual rise in the de­mand for di­a­mond jew­ellery and im­pelled jew­ellers to keep up with the de­mand.

In­dia’s first omni-chan­nel jew­ellery brand CaratLane — a Tan­ishq part­ner­ship con­ducted a na­tion-wide sur­vey early this year and interviewed 800 women to find out new-age pref­er­ences and buy­ing habits. Atul Sinha, se­nior vice pres­i­dent, mar­ket­ing, CaratLane, notes, “The di­a­mond jew­ellery mar­ket has been grow­ing rapidly. In a re­cent an­nual sur­vey con­ducted by us we found that 49.1% women re­spon­dents were more likely to buy di­a­mond jew­ellery as com­pared to plain gold jew­ellery. Women pre­fer mod­ern and min­i­mal­is­tic di­a­mond jew­ellery that can be worn on a daily ba­sis. Cus­tomers are gen­er­ally opt­ing for IJ colour, SI clar­ity di­a­monds, less than 1 carat in terms of weight.”

Var­i­ous fac­tors such as age-group, style and taste in­flu­ence the buy­ing pat­tern of cus­tomers across In­dia. Vaib­hav Saraf, di­rec­tor, Ais­sh­pra Gems and Jew­els, Go­rakh­pur, states, “Light­weight pen­dants, earrings and rings set with round bril­liant, mar­quise and pear-cut di­a­monds be­tween 0.01 and 0.03-carat start­ing from R5,000 draw our buy­ers. Cus­tomers mostly pre­fer the mi­cro-set­ting in rhodium-plated gold as it lends more shine to the piece of jew­ellery.” While jew­ellers agree that white to near colour­less di­a­monds have been eter­nal favourites, nat­u­ral fancy colour di­a­monds, too, are be­ing pre­ferred. Although round bril­liants, princess, pear, emerald, and mar­quise cuts are used to ar­tic­u­late In­dia-in­spired mo­tifs, con­sumers are warm­ing up to ge­o­met­ri­cal shapes, and there­fore, baguettes, por­trait cuts, tril­lion cuts, hexagon cuts among oth­ers are find­ing tak­ers. Clearly, the mar­ket has be­come more ma­ture and con­sumers are will­ing to don jew­ellery that has global ap­peal. Ac­cord­ing to Sau­rabh Gadgil, chair­man and man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, PNG Jew­ellers, “Con­sumers are now wear­ing di­a­mond jew­ellery in vary­ing carat sizes to of­fice and for other ca­sual oc­ca­sions. In­no­va­tion in the de­sign as­pect is a top pri­or­ity for us jew­ellers th­ese days as con­sumers are get­ting more ex­per­i­men­tal in the way they dress and ac­ces­sorise. “Rose cuts, pear and baguette shapes are rul­ing the scene, while blue, red and green nat­u­ral fancy colour di­a­monds are ab­so­lute favourites. Other than rose gold and rhodium-plated gold, plat­inum is the pop­u­lar choice for di­a­mond set­tings.” Gadgil feels that it is a good time for the in­dus­try as more and more cus­tomers are buy­ing from jew­ellers who sell cer­ti­fied di­a­mond jew­ellery and have a good buy­back pol­icy. “This will be a win-win sit­u­a­tion for both jew­ellers and cus­tomers since

jew­ellers can en­joy bet­ter mar­gins and a larger cus­tomer base by fo­cus­ing on qual­ity, while cus­tomers can in­dulge in bet­ter de­signs, prod­ucts, qual­ity and higher af­ford­abil­ity.”

The mil­len­nial mar­ket share is con­tin­u­ing to grow ac­cord­ing to Ishu Dat­wani, founder, An­mol Jew­ellers, Mum­bai. “We are ad­dress­ing th­ese needs by de­sign­ing more light­weight, trendy and wear­able jew­ellery with prices rang­ing from

R50,000 to R2,00,000. Some of the fac­tors re­spon­si­ble for this shift in con­sumer pref­er­ence are the es­ca­lat­ing prices of gold, wear­a­bil­ity quo­tient and life­style changes.” He adds, “Smaller di­a­monds work bet­ter for ca­sual jew­ellery and the qual­ity de­pends on the bud­get. Round bril­liant cut is the most pop­u­lar shape among cus­tomers, but of late, fancy-cut di­a­monds are work­ing bet­ter. Small star melee di­a­monds along with big ones be­tween 10 and 20 point­ers are also pre­ferred. Mi­cro-pave set­ting is in cur­rently as it gives a bril­liant ef­fect. Among nat­u­ral fancy colour di­a­monds, yel­low di­a­monds work best for ca­sual jew­ellery.” Shreyansh Kapoor, vice pres­i­dent and part­ner, Kashi Jew­ellers, Kan­pur, shares, “Light di­a­mond jew­ellery with sim­ple, un­fussy mo­tifs be­tween R25,000 and R2,00,000 are mov­ing well. Women usu­ally pre­fer small and rea­son­able soli­taire jew­ellery pieces such as ear studs, rings and pen­dants with IJ coloured, VS/SI clar­ity, and emerald-shaped di­a­monds be­tween 0.25 and 0.5-carat. Our con­sumers look at the fire and cut of di­a­monds that sparkle and lus­tre to the over­all piece.” Chitwn D Mal­ho­tra, lead de­signer and founder, Dil­lano Lux­u­ri­ous Jew­els Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi, says, “Other than round cuts, emerald-cut di­a­monds have be­come a huge hit among our clien­tele. In nat­u­ral fancy colours, in­tense yel­low is trend­ing, while the prong set­ting is the most pre­ferred for small di­a­monds.” Ab­hishek Chanda, di­rec­tor, Kalasha Fine Jew­els, Hy­der­abad, be­lieves that aware­ness about nat­u­ral fancy coloured di­a­monds in In­dia is low, but for cock­tail jew­ellery, cus­tomers do pick pieces set with yel­low di­a­monds. “In the South, close-set di­a­monds are pop­u­lar for daily wear jew­ellery as chances of the stone get­ting

mis­placed from the piece are low. Mir­a­cle or il­lu­sion set­ting uses smaller di­a­monds held to­gether to make it look like a soli­taire.”

Chanda notes that his cus­tomers, too, go for light­weight di­a­mond pen­dants, ear studs, ban­gles, bracelets and rings of 0.75 to 30 carats in round, cush­ion and heart shapes, priced be­tween

R15,000 and R1,00,000. The di­a­mond jew­ellery mar­ket is in a good place, be­lieves Chanda, owing to po­lit­i­cal sta­bil­ity and pos­i­tive macro-eco­nomic fac­tors. “With the in­crease in de­mand for work wear jew­ellery, a new mar­ket has emerged and evolved, which is here to stay.”

Ac­cord­ing to Pradeep Jethani, founder, Jet Gems, Mum­bai, women are opt­ing for sim­ple, easy-to-wear di­a­mond jew­ellery for daily wear cost­ing un­der R1,00,000. Di­a­monds in var­i­ous carat sizes set in yel­low or rhodium-pol­ished gold or sil­ver, with prong or pave set­tings are best pre­ferred for ca­sual wear. More­over, G-H colour di­a­monds of VVS qual­ity, es­pe­cially in the round bril­liant cut are the likely choices. Emerald cuts, princess cut and heartshaped di­a­monds are in fash­ion.

“The younger gen­er­a­tion is more con­cerned about qual­ity over quan­tity, so they pre­fer to buy smaller, sim­ple, classy prod­ucts with bet­ter di­a­mond clar­ity,” he notes.

Tanya Ras­togi, di­rec­tor, Lala Ju­gal Kishore Jew­ellers, Luc­know, re­veals, “Since the last five years, our cus­tomers have been veer­ing to­wards light­weight di­a­mond jew­ellery, es­pe­cially soli­taire ear studs and en­gage­ment rings, priced from R50,000 to R3,00,000. Di­a­monds set in rose gold are a pop­u­lar choice for ev­ery­day jew­ellery, while tra­di­tional buy­ers still pre­fer the di­a­mond and yel­low gold com­bi­na­tion. Smaller, round bril­liant cut di­a­monds less than 1 carat in white, pink and cham­pagne are best for ca­sual jew­ellery in clus­ter set­tings.”

Aditya Pethe, di­rec­tor, WHP Jew­ellers, Mum­bai, adds, “Work wear di­a­mond jew­ellery, start­ing as low as R15,000 up to R2,00,000 is the emerg­ing seg­ment. Low-end di­a­monds in white, black and cham­pagne colours are ac­cepted in this cat­e­gory. The main draw is that the di­a­monds are real and are avail­able at af­ford­able rates and good de­signs.

“De­tach­able jew­ellery, fu­sion jew­ellery, nose pins and arm­lets, cock­tail rings, soli­taire rings set with di­a­mond to­talling1 carat and above, and cou­ple bands for en­gage­ments and wed­dings are the cur­rent ma­jor trends. Apart from the round fine bril­liant cut, princess, Ass­cher, pear and mar­quise are pop­u­lar.”

All eyes are now on this new “work wear” di­a­mond jew­ellery cat­e­gory. Ab­hishek Maloos, head of mar­ket­ing, TBZ-The Orig­i­nal, which has show­rooms across In­dia, notes that di­a­mond jew­ellery in gold and plat­inum with prong, il­lu­sion or pave set­tings are in de­mand.

“Con­sumers have now started show­ing in­ter­est in cuts such as pear, cush­ion, oval, rec­tan­gu­lar, princess, emerald, heartshaped, mar­quise and Ass­cher. Although white di­a­monds are widely pre­ferred, fancy coloured di­a­monds such as yel­low, red, pink and blue are mak­ing their place in the game too.”

Maloos con­cludes, “The di­a­mond jew­ellery sec­tor is see­ing changes in con­sumer pref­er­ences due to the ac­cep­tance of Western life­style, higher spend­ing ca­pac­ity and emerg­ing sim­ple light­weight de­signs. In another two years, the in­dus­try will con­tinue to cap­i­talise ag­gres­sively on the grow­ing de­sire for di­a­mond pos­ses­sion.”

This drive for util­ity-based, cre­ative de­signs, qual­ity and af­ford­abil­ity will be ben­e­fi­cial to the di­a­mond sec­tor in the long run, mak­ing it a win-win sit­u­a­tion for every­one in­volved. n

Two-toned flo­ral pen­dant neck­lace. By CaratLane

18-karat or­ganic gold ring ac­cented with di­a­monds. By CaratLane

Flo­ral ear studs crafted in 18-karat gold stud­ded with baguettes and pear shaped di­a­monds. By Kalasha Fine Jew­els

Flo­ral ear cuffs fes­tooned with white and yel­low di­a­monds. By Aurelle by Leshna Shah

Geo­met­ric 18-karat rose gold earrings lined with round bril­liant di­a­monds. By An­mol Jew­ellers

Leafy gold earrings stud­ded with nat­u­ral fancy colour di­a­monds. By Tanya Ras­togi for Lala Ju­gal Kishore Jew­ellers

18-karat rose gold ring set with round bril­liant di­a­monds. By An­mol Jew­ellers

A multi-toned gold ring set with fancy-cut di­a­monds. By Jet Gems In­tri­cately crafted bracelet in 18-karat gold stud­ded set with fine-cut and rose cut di­a­monds. By Ais­sh­pra Gems & Jew­els 18-karat gold bracelet set with ru­bies, rose cut di­a­monds, mar­quise and drop­shaped di­a­monds. By An­mol Jew­ellers

El­e­gantly crafted dual-finger light­weight cuff in 18-karat rose gold stud­ded with di­a­monds. By Tanya Ras­togi for Lala Ju­gal Kishore Jew­ellers

The tri-colour 18-karat gold ring is stud­ded with di­a­monds repli­cat­ing fancy shapes. By Ais­sh­pra Gems & Jew­els

The 18-karat rose gold state­ment ring is graced with in­vis­i­bly set di­a­monds in mar­quise shapes. By Tanya Ras­togi for Lala Ju­gal Kishore Jew­ellers Flo­ral in­spired 18-karat rose gold pen­dant set stud­ded with di­a­monds. By WHP Jew­ellers

Cock­tail earrings crafted in 14-karat gold set with fancy-cut di­a­monds. By Ais­sh­pra Gems & Jew­els

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