IJL launches Kickstart initiative FOR 2016
LONDON, November 2015 – Emerging British jewellery designers are invited to apply now for selection for IJL’s unique KickStart mentoring programme, with ten of the most promising designers chosen to show at IJL 2016. Supported by the National Association of Jewellers, this initiative has now helped seventy young designers since it was set up in 2009.
Sam Willoughby, Event Director, explains the popularity of the scheme: “The KickStart stand is always one of the most popular features at the show. The lucky winners always set the bar when it comes to on-trend innovative design. It is brilliant that we have helped so many young designers access the commercial arena and it is especially rewarding to see each year how successful they are in securing orders and stockists as a direct result of the project.”
Goldsmith Jos Skeates, Founder of EC One and member of the IJL Advisory Board, comments: “In an increasingly homogenised market it is a relief to see initiatives like KickStart showcasing new and exciting designer jewellers. As more and more brands dictate the landscape of our marketplace, it is important that we continue to encourage recent graduates and new talent to emerge and grow. The quality of the entrants was superb this year and we have already taken on one of the designers who showcased her work at IJL 2015.”
Lindsey Straughton, NAJ Marketing Manager, adds: “Kickstart is an initiative very close to my heart that has provided solid help to ten very creative individuals embarking on their IJL debut. The stand is a ‘must see’ destination at the show for many visitors and the designers welcomed the opportunity to discuss their ranges with over 8000 buyers last year. What will this year’s line-up look like? Diverse but relevant for the trade, fresh, on trend quality jewellery is what we are looking for; do you make that? Enter now we would love to help you on your exciting journey.”
The ten KickStarters chosen for 2015 were Flora Bhattachary, Andrew Gold Neilson (GoldNeilson), Mirka Janeckova (Mirka Janeckova Jewellery), Francesca Marcenaro, Rosalie McMillan, Laura Parra (LaParraJewels), Samantha Rose (September Rose), Lauren Rowden (Ellie Air Jeweller), Ilene Steele (Ilene Steele Jewellery) and Ana Thompson. All had a busy and productive show, benefits included reaching a wider audience, meeting press and buyers and, most importantly, securing orders.
Flora Battachary reports: “KickStart was an amazing experience. It was good fun exhibiting alongside such an exciting group of new jewellery businesses. I felt that I had a really positive response to the brand and to our new Baoli collection. Most importantly though – I took orders, gained a number of exciting new stockists and some brilliant opportunities are in the pipeline since the show.”
Ellie Air Jewellery
Lauren Rowden of Ellie Air Jewellery and winner of the Adorn Insight Award, adds: “Being selected for KickStart was a huge highlight of 2015 and winning the Adorn Insight Award made the whole experience even better. To bring out a new collection and then show it to such a wide audience was exhilarating and I received such great feedback; IJL brings together press, buyers and prospective clients that have a huge world of knowledge.”
Ana Thompson agrees: “Showcasing my latest collections at KickStart 2015 has led to me making some great industry contacts, I have gained new stockists and a design project with a new client.”
Mirka Janeckova adds: “Thanks to being KickStarter, I have 7 new stockists now, including Johnny Rocket, London Rocks and Sara Preisler Gallery. And I really liked the friendly and supportive atmosphere.”
Potential KickStarters are invited to apply online and ten of the most talented entries will win a place on this highly regarded industry bursary programme. Winners will not only benefit from exhibiting on a group stand at IJL 2016 but also receive marketing and industry support from IJL and the National Association of Jewellers. The deadline for entries is 13 March 2016.
The winning KickStart designers will be at IJL showcasing their work from 4 to 6 September 2016 at Olympia GRAND.
To enter, go to: www.jewellerylondon.com/Kickstart