14 March 2007
Bangles & Bracelets(HKTDC Jewellery, Vol 01,2007)
|Intricate 14K white gold bangles and bracelets set with diamonds and coloured stones from Good Way Jewellery Mfy Ltd|
They have a kinetic appeal unlike any other type of jewellery, exerting an almost hypnotic effect as they slide up and down, swaying in time to the wearer's movements.
More substantial than earrings yet less immediately noticeable, bangles and bracelets never fail to enhance a wearer's sense of style - whatever the age.
Today, bracelets and bangles run the gamut from big to delicate; with both chunky and understated designs styles selling well for Pointers Gemcraft & Jewellery Mfy.
One of the company's most successful new collections features free-form gemstones arranged on antique-style oxidised sterling silver cuff bangles. "We use soft-coloured stones like agate, jasper, aventurine, carnelian and rhodonite," explains spokesperson Cecilia Mak.
The 50-piece collection has been particularly in demand in the US, the 42-year-old firm's major market. "It's aimed at 25-30 year olds," Mak adds. "The bangles can be worn with casual clothes or at night."
Equally popular at the opposite end of the spectrum are sterling silver bracelets featuring delicate pink opal flowers. Prices for the free-form line range from US$30-55 FOB Hong Kong per piece to US$25-35 each for the pink opal line.
The ISO 9001- and ISO 14001-certified company produces about 5,000 pieces of sterling silver jewellery and approximately 1,500 pieces of 9K-18K gold jewellery per month at its factory in Shantou on the Chinese mainland.
Pointers Gemcraft's own Aku brand is carried on about 10% of its products, while ODM work accounts for 60% of output and the remainder consists of OEM. Minimum order is 12 pieces per style per colour, with delivery about 4-5 weeks after order confirmation.
Thin is in at Kai Lam Gemstone Jewellery Co, where slim contemporary-style sterling silver and 9K, 14K and 18K gold bangles and bracelets are set with a wide variety of synthetic or natural gemstones inlaid with synthetic Japanese opal, mother-of-pearl and other gemstones.
"People mostly like single colour jewellery but some want multicoloured," says sales executive Carrie Chau, who notes that Kai Lam's bracelets are more popular than its bangles. "That could be because they're more lightweight and varied."
Sterling silver bangles and bracelets with synthetic or natural gemstones sell for US$20-40 per piece FOB Hong Kong, depending on the weight and the stone, with 14K gold items priced from US$230.
Minimum order is three pieces for gold items and 12 for sterling silver, with a minimum value of US$3,000 per order for either gold or silver items. Shipments to the OEM/ODM company's major export markets in the US, South America and Europe go out 30 days after order confirmation.
Established in 1986, Kai Lam manufactures about 10,000 pieces of jewellery per month at its mainland factory in Guangdong Province, with bangles and bracelets representing 25% of the total.
Taking a different approach entirely, Di-Amanda Ltd's novel use of denim in its jewellery has won it a growing legion of fans who adore the material's innovative use in casual-wear sterling silver bangles and bracelets.
A variety of denim colours - blue, black, red and pink denim - are used. "We treat the denim to make it more durable," explains Iris Lam, marketing representative at the two-year-old company.
Aimed at 20-35 year olds, much of the jewellery has a unisex appeal, although more feminine pieces feature hearts, butterflies or stars while small diamonds add extra sparkle.
Di-Amanda has two lines - a classic collection with diamonds up to 20 points in size and a trendy collection for younger wearers - with prices ranging from US$30 to more than US$200 FOB Hong Kong per piece depending on the weight of the silver and the diamonds.
"Larger, chunkier-style cuff bangles are popular and some of our latest designs are more 3D rather than flat," says Lam, adding that a bangle with a series of hearts that costs US$90 is the company's best-selling item.
Di-Amanda manufactures about 1,000 pieces per month at its mainland factory in Panyu, and delivers negotiable minimum orders to the US, Taiwan, Russia and South Africa 14 days after order confirmation.
US and UK consumers are also snapping up the traditional, Chinese-styled jadeite jewellery produced by Golden Jade & Jewelry Co, which specialises in the bangles/bracelets that account for about 80% of production at the 24-year-old, family-owned firm.
Different jadeite colours combined with sterling silver or karat gold give bangles a fresh, new look, while onyx or mother-of-pearl may be added for extra effect. "Mostly people from overseas buy them," notes spokesperson Mary Leung.
One of the company's most popular sellers is a sterling silver bracelet with green jadeite pieces separated by the Chinese symbols for good fortune and long life.
FOB Hong Kong prices for Golden Jade & Jewelry's 500 bangle and bracelet models range from US$10-100 per piece, with the higher-priced items featuring karat gold. Naturally-coloured jadeite is the main material used, although bangles/bracelets with dyed jadeite are also available.
Golden Jade & Jewelry welcomes OEM orders for "simple" designs, but the remainder of the 5,000 mostly handmade pieces it produces each month at its mainland factory is ODM.
No minimum order requirement applies and delivery normally takes 2-3 weeks for orders of 100 pieces or more. "If stock is on hand, it might only take a few days," Leung adds.
With so many styles to choose from, there is no better place than Hong Kong when it comes to buying firm favourites such as popular bangles and bracelets.
WRITTEN BY ANDREA PAWLYNA
Good Way Jewellery Mfy Ltd
Unit 23, 11/F, Blk B
Focal Ind Centre
21 Man Lok St
Hung Hom, Kowloon
Pointers Gemcraft & Jewellery Mfy
Unit 27, 7/F, Blk B
Focal Ind Centre
21 Man Lok St
Hung Hom, Kowloon