Trade alert: Prepare for Prom Queen mania
There was a time when, at the end of Year 11, British teenagers would be perfectly happy with an end-of-year disco, non-uniform day and mass shirt-signing sessions with all of their friends to commemorate leaving school behind.
However, thanks to today's teens being raised on a diet of American TV, that era is well and truly over. Instead, Millennials are demanding ever-more elaborate proms inspired by their favourite programmes from across the pond (to be fair, we probably started it by looking so longingly at Sweet Valley High) to bookend their high school lives.
That means frocks from New Look and a necklace borrowed from your mum will absolutely no longer do. The order of the day is a glitzy dress, hair and makeup professionally done, jewellery to complement it all - and preferably a showstopping mode of transport to get them all there, too.
The behemoth that is the prom
According to figures from Spartoo quoted by the Guardian, the average cost of a prom outfit is £102, which we think is actually at the low end given that many would-be prom queens get their dresses from bridal shops.
Then there's also the extras on top of that, meaning many parents are shelling out in excess of £500 on this one, all-important (to their teens) day. And since 85 per cent of British schools now host a prom, there's no getting around at least some financial outlay.
For children, it's an opportunity to emulate their idols and look like they've never looked before, perhaps even being crowned king or queen to boot.
However, for retailers and jewellery buyers like readers of this blog, prom is also a big opportunity. Young girls can become pretty het up about what to wear and how they're going to stand out from all their friends, so you have a golden opportunity to help them by offering style advice alongside your products.
Style advice to pass on
Accessories to wear to prom will depend largely on the dress the girl goes for, so you might want to consider having some gowns on display in your shop and then suggesting items of jewellery to go with them. Other bust-style dummies can then show off additional pieces to save you on space.
As a general rule, if dresses have gold accents, it's best to stick with jewellery in gold tones or with warm colours. Conversely, if the dress has silver embellishments, cool colours, silver tones and diamantes will complement the look perfectly.
Having said that, you can also get away with diamantes and gold - just keep the metal around the edges gold-toned too to avoid clashing. Prom is one time when one can never have too much diamante.
It's also a good idea to get girls who visit you to consider the style of their neckline when they're looking for jewellery. Strapless dresses mean they can go all out with chunky necklaces and chandelier earrings, while halterneck looks might call for something that fits the neckline a little better.
Low V-neck dresses look great with V-shaped pendants and scoop-necks can carry shorter pendants or chokers.
Generally, drop earrings are de rigour for prom, although anyone wearing a gown with a very embellished and high neck could easily get away with large studs to avoid too much fussiness.
Remember that jewellery doesn't have to match, either. Encourage your customers to bring their dress and try on items all together to get the best idea about what might work.
Stock up with Majique
We have absolutely loads of prom-style jewellery here at Majique, so jewellery buyers can really stock up for this busy time of year. We love this showstopping collar-like diamante necklace, while this one in gold tones and an almost Bollywood feel would be perfect alongside something in warmer tones.
There's plenty more where that came from, so grab a drink, have a browse and get ready to bhave exactly what your customers want.