Professional Jeweler Archive: Born in a Trunk

April 2000

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Born in a Trunk

Charles Krypell’s trunk shows impress jewelers’ customers and work wonders for sales


A dozen jewelers have a major promotion scheduled for Mothers Day, and more than 40 have already planned one for Christmas 2000. They’ve all invited designer Charles Krypell to bring a trunk show to their stores, talk with their customers and help them make major sales.

Krypell is believed to be one of only a few major designers to personally take trunk shows on the road during the holiday season. Last year, he visited 43 stores from October through December. “Lots of design houses do trunk shows, but they send their reps,” he says.

“The result is huge business for the retailer and for Charles Krypell,” he says. He recorded $2.2 million at his cost in trunk sales this past Christmas season, with almost all pieces sold at normal retail prices.

The advantage for retailers – in addition to the sales – is the relationship they can forge with customers by showing the entire Krypell line and serving as the local Krypell expert. Gary Long of Gary Long’s Village Jewelers, Stockton, CA, has hosted two Krypell shows; now his customers look forward to seeing and talking with Krypell. “One customer has six pieces, and it’s because Mr. Krypell showed them personally,” he says.

Krypell provides retailers with an invitation (the retailer fills in the date and location and inserts the store logo), envelopes and brochures. He also supplies the ad slicks, and the retailer pays to place them. “When I come in, the appointments are made (with the big customers) and everyone is primed to do business.”

At Long’s store, for example, the full Krypell line is on display all day, and Long invites special customers for an evening event. He serves wine, champagne and hors d’oeuvres. “Customers love it, and it brings us a lot of extra business. The best part is that the line turns over remarkably well.”

– by Jack Heeger

Charles Krypell (right) and Gary Long show a ring to a customer at Gary Long’s Village Jewelers at a recent trunk show. It was one of 43 shows Krypell did during the 1999 holiday season.

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications