Wendy Brandes Jewelry

If you’re a jewelry professional attending the big Las Vegas trade shows next week, come visit me during my debut at JCK’s LUXURY show! I’ll be at booth LUXEE 28, part of the INTERVISION experience in the Elite Enclave Ballroom at Mandalay Bay. You’ll be able to see my Maneater rings in person.

dragoninviteYou’ll also see them in a virtual reality “Store of the Future,” which will be presented by CEEK VR and Richline. You’re going to feel like you’re in a futuristic jewelry store, as 3D versions of the jewelry pop up and spin around to give you a view from all angles, along with background information, audio commentary, and video of me talking about my inspiration.

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The virtual reality store. Click to enlarge.

An “augmented reality” experience also provides information about a design when users place their phones or tablet over the jewelry.

I’m excited to be involved in shaking up the retail scene.  These days, it’s so easy for people to shop at home — or, increasingly, by mobile — that brick-and-mortar retailers have to start offering something special. And not just special, but something useful that takes into account how people live/act/shop now. What I really like about the CEEK VR/Richline concept is that it incorporates our phones. From the retailer’s point of view, if people won’t put down their phones, why not use those phones in a meaningful way? As for the shopper, it’s brilliant. Let’s face it, most sane people don’t enjoy going into stores and encountering bored salespeople who act like you’re dirt looking for something to soil. On the other hand, it’s stressful when you walk in and overeager salespeople swarm everywhere, asking, “Can I help you?” before you’ve even had a chance to look around. With augmented reality, you can do online-style researching IN the store while you get our bearings and then have the sales associates on hand for immediate assistance and purchasing gratification. No “live chat,” call to an overseas help desk, or post-purchase shipping necessary.

This is an especially good match for my jewelry because there’s a LOT of back story to each one of my designs: elaborate inspiration concepts, challenging manufacturing processes, hundreds of gems, unexpected heft, and moving parts. I’ve always said that you can’t quickly eyeball one of my pieces and totally appreciate it. (That’s why the gorgeous clients who buy from my website frequently write to me to say the jewelry is even better than they hoped.) You have to experience the design. The more you get to know a piece of my jewelry, they more you’ll love it. Guaranteed.

I’m looking forward to meeting some industry folks in Vegas who are ready to do this thing!