Fortrove News

People within the jewelry industry have done their best to adapt in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. One such person is independent jewelry designer Margery Hirschey who sat down with JCK to discuss how she's dealing with the current situation.

When asked about the changes this pandemic has caused to her business, Hirschey said in an interview with JCK, "Obviously, trade shows are out, probably for the remainder of 2020, which I think puts all designers on equal footing—and that’s not a bad thing, especially for smaller designers. There is always a decision about which trade shows are going to be the best, and right now that quandary is a moot point. If designers are able to successfully reach out to retailers without trade shows, will that change how they do business in the future? Trade shows are a wonderful way to meet with your peers and your retail partners and interact socially in a way. It’s hard to do otherwise, especially if you live outside of New York City or Los Angeles. But they’re increasingly expensive. Many businesses have had to make changes due to COVID, and I think many of the changes will last post-pandemic."

I am designing a little bit, but I am very distracted with the news, and that’s been an issue for me," she said regarding a question of whether or not she's designing at home. "I’m starting to feel the need to start working again in earnest. I’m getting itchy to make things. When asked if things have changed in retail, Hirschey said, "As far as retail stores are concerned, I have several outstanding invoices, but I know the stores are hurting right now, and I have let these slide for the time being. I haven’t contacted any of my retail partners since this started, except to check up on everyone.

I’ve been selling online, and that has been wonderful. The first month when people were quite scared, I didn’t sell a thing. But after things calmed down, I think the people who still had an income were starting to get bored. And jewelry is so special and it creates a memory—they started buying again.

The stores were closed, so they went online and business has been pretty decent. I sold a large emerald ring to a woman who wrote to tell me how much she loved it, and how she and her husband have nicknamed it the 'Quarantine Emerald.'

We have also just started to work with 1st Dibs, as I think online shopping is going to be an even greater force in the future. Partnering with 1st Dibs means opening up our brand to a whole new audience, so we’ll see where that goes."

Information originally sourced from JCK.