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The average spend for engagement rings in the U.S. was $6,163, according to a newly released study by The Knot.
That was up from $5,871 in 2015, according to the site, which bills itself as the leading wedding brand and marketplace.
Figures from the 2016 Real Weddings Study are based on respondents who hired a professional vendor for the service. According to The Knot: “The 10th annual comprehensive report, the largest of its kind, surveyed nearly 13,000 US brides and grooms married in 2016 to uncover the financial spending habits and trends of real weddings in America.”
The average cost of a wedding reached an all-time high of $35,329. the average number of guests was 141.
A study by the Wedding Report found a substantially lower figure for the average cost of an engagement ring among U.S. couples. The typical ring cost $3,407 in 2016, up from $3,386 in 2015, according to the research firm.
Read the full press release
The Invitation and Flower category saw the biggest increase in spending, 3.3% to 5.2%, while Photography, Video and Planning saw the biggest decrease in spending, -2.0% to -3.9%.
With the global Gen Z population set to reach 2.6 billion by 2020, retailers need to create more interactive engagement around their brands to serve the “always on,” mobile-focused, high-spending demographic, according to the study.
“Generation Z expects technology to be intuitive, relevant and engaging – their last great experience is their new expectation,” IBM General Manager of Global Consumer Industries Steve Laughlin said. “This presents a significant challenge for retailers and brands to create a personalized, interactive experience with the latest digital advances or risk falling behind. This kind of innovation is not linear or a one-time project – it is a new way of thinking, operating and behaving.”
“Just as Millennials overtook Gen X, there’s another big buying group retailers need to plan for, and it’s even larger: Generation Z,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “They appreciate the hands-on experience of shopping in a store. With technology constantly evolving but some shopping habits remaining the same, retailers need to be agile enough to serve both needs. Retailers are constantly focused on experimenting with new innovations both online and in-store to remain relevant to evolving consumer demand.”
The “Uniquely Gen Z” study conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value is based on findings from more than 15,000 consumers aged 13-21 from 16 countries.
Born after the mid-1990s till early 2000s, Generation Z is the first “digitally native” group to grow up not knowing a world before cellular phones, smartphones and other digital devices. But the study found that 67 percent of Generation Z shop in a bricks-and-mortar store most of the time, with another 31 percent shopping in-store sometimes, indicating that 98 percent of Gen Z shop in store.
The new generation is important to retailers because it has access to $44 billion in buying power, with 75 percent saying they spend more than half of the money that is available to them each month, according to the study. And the generation is demanding: the study found 52 percent of Gen Z consumers will transfer loyalty from one brand to another if the brand’s quality is not up to par. They care the most about retailers getting the basics right, with 66 percent saying product quality and availability are the most important factors when choosing one brand over another; 65 percent focus on value.
The study found 74 percent of respondents spend their free time online, with 25 percent online five hours or more each day. The degree to which in-store sales are influenced by digital is inevitable in today’s shopping journey – and continues to grow. The study discovered a number of insights into Gen Z’s digital habits and preferences brands can leverage to reach them:
The study found that Generation Z consumers like to engage with brands online, especially with those that create an interactive environment where customers can shape their own experience. As retailers develop and engage in such practices, they will be able to capture Gen Z ideas for new products, services, engagement and shopping experiences, the study said. The generation is known to be brand champions both online and offline, especially when brands acknowledge and value their opinions.
The diamond ring originally belonged to our client’s great-great-aunt, hereafter “Mrs. L ”. At the outbreak of World War II, she was living in the Philippines with her husband, one of the founders of the Manila Stock Exchange. An illness that prevented them from being evacuated with other U.S. citizens had a frightening consequence: when the Japanese invaded the Philippines they were sent to an internment camp.
At the outset of their imprisonment, Mrs. L. realized that she and her husband would be stripped of all possessions. Fearful of losing the diamond ring that her husband had proposed with in the 1920’s, she hid the cherished ring inside the drain pipe of a building within the camp, in the hope that it would not fall into enemy hands and be lost forever.
Although in poor health, both Mrs. L. and her husband managed to survive their ordeal in the Japanese internment camp. When finally liberated in 1945, Mrs. L. retrieved her diamond ring, untouched in its astutely chosen hiding place.
Some years later, the ring passed from Mrs. L. to her sister, our client’s great-grandmother and in time, down through the generations to the present day when the much-loved ring has just become an engagement ring once again.
After almost a century of wear, this noteworthy diamond ring is in good but not robust condition. Since the need for restoration work would inevitably arise in the near future, we felt it preferable to preserve the integrity of the ring as it is now. Placing a single wedding band alongside would create friction, further wearing the sides of the ring. To prevent this, we designed a pair of wedding bands, contoured for a snug “glove fit” on either side. The antique ring nestles, perfectly aligned, between the connected bands that will fend off much of the normal wear and tear of daily use.
We wanted to ensure that the antique diamond ring and the new bands looked as if they had always belonged together. To complete the impression, the bands were hand-engraved with “bright-cut” decoration in a style appropriate to the date of the diamond ring.
We are honored to have been chosen for such a sensitive and meaningful project, and proud of the trust placed in Villarreal Fine Jewelers by the great-great-grand-niece of Mrs. L. If the late Mrs. L. is looking down from above, we do hope that she is pleased with the finished results!
Colored gemstones are returning as the symbol of love and romance as they have been throughout history. The few decades-long blip on the radar of mass marketed colorless stones is being replaced by a new era of freedom of choice and personal expression. We are honored and proud to be able to play a role in so many new special moments involving our beautiful colored gemstones and award-winning jewelry designs, and look forward to many more as color returns to its rightful place in the realm of romance.
Posted by Omi Prive & filed under Alexandrite, Aquamarine, Award Winning, Bridal, Color, Doré Collection, Fancy Sapphire, Gem History, Gem Knowledge, Kashmiri Sapphire, Omi Privé, Padparadscha Sapphire, Pink Sapphire, Sapphire, Trends.
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Large and exceptional gem diamonds like the famous Cullinan or Lesotho Promise tend to have a set of physical characteristics that distinguish them from other kinds of diamonds (fig 1). One of the most noted characteristics is a low nitrogen concentration, such that these diamonds are predominantly type II, although not all type II diamonds necessarily belong to this family. New research published in Science reveals that these Cullinan-like gems, dubbed “CLIPPIR” diamonds, tell us something remarkable about the deep earth.
Villarreal Fine Jewelers – Austin Custom Jeweler, Austin, TX – Courtesy of G.I.A. Read More
If you wear a diamond on your finger, it likely has flaws, even if you can’t see them. Don’t blame your partners for your flawed engagement rings, thank them. You could be flaunting the future of data storage on your digits.
A paper published Wednesday in Science Advances shows how diamonds can be harnessed to store data for the long term. Right now, a tiny diamond — about half as long as a grain of rice and thinner than a sheet of paper — can hold a hundred times more information than a DVD. That’s not much within the context of the world’s growing data hoard. But in the future physicists could access a diamond with storage capacity a million times greater than that of a DVD, maybe more.
Read More Published: 03 November 2016Written by Joanna Klein, New York Times
With the recent introduction of “synthetic” or “lab created” diamonds, more than ever consumers need to rely on a jewelry professional with the expertise and knowledge they can trust. At Villarreal Fine Jewelers, we offer consultation and appraisal services. Call us today for an appointment – 512-231-8502. Read More
The D-colour diamond was recovered from Lucapa’s alluvial mining operations, 600 kilometres east of the Angolan capital Luanda. The rock is about the size of a 50 cent coin and is the fourth stone over 100 carats Lucapa has found this year. In February, it uncovered a 404-carat rock at the same mine, worth more than $20 million, the biggest diamond ever found in Angola. This is the 4th stone over 100 carats uncovered this year.
Article courtesy of Southern Jewelry News – Sept. 29, 2016 Read More