Professional Jeweler Archive: H. Stern Designs In-Store Displays

August 2003


H. Stern Designs In-Store Displays

As it begins sales at other jewelry stores, the retailer's own architect will assist with displays

Enter any of the 160 H. Stern stores worldwide and prepare for a visual feast. Oh, and the jewelry and watches are nice too.

The Brazilian retailer’s store redesign program has been so successful that after the Fifth Avenue location was redone six years ago, accolades poured in from designers, architects and jewelers (Professional Jeweler, April 1998, p. 88).

The architect of the redesigned stores, Denise Barretto of Sao Paolo, Brazil, will now help independent jewelers who carry H. Stern jewelry and watches showcase the merchandise using the same warm modern scheme. They’ll have personal access to Barretto for advice on integrating the H. Stern branded look into their own stores. (At BaselWorld in April, H. Stern announced it is looking for select retail jewelry stores to expand its distribution.)

Sized to Fit

Retailers may choose from several ensembles, depending on space limitations. A simple showcase with drawers and in-case displays uses minimal floor space and show a representative grouping of the company’s jewelry and watches, says Andréa Hanson, North American marketing director.

“We make available everything from the basics to a full shop-in-shop,” says Hanson. Most pieces are modular and can be arranged to best fit the space available. “We’ll work closely with each of our retail partners to create the H. Stern environment.” Consultations with architect Barretto are part of the deal.

“Denise’s fresh perspective – she was new at the time to commercial spaces, especially retail architecture – enabled us to create a store environment inspired by the same elements that guide our product development: bold, sensual, rounded shapes, understated but luxurious materials, comfort and versatility,” says Hanson. “Basically, her designs for the stores [and the shop-in-shop proposals] are guided by the same principles that we use to create jewelry and watches.”

Contemporary Warmth

“The elements are contemporary, but we didn’t want the often cool feel of modern fixtures,” Hanson says. “So all the edges are rounded, and the pearwood is accented with familiar maple and brushed stainless steel.” The effect is “inviting” not overwhelming, she says.

The brilliance of polished metal is avoided in part to avoid any edginess or ice-like sparkle. That brilliance is seen only inside the case on the jewelry, which is propped on fixtures made of maple and frosted acrylic.

The props echo the elliptical freestanding showcases, a shape inspired by Jorg Hysek, the famed designer of watches and other merchandise. Roberto Stern worked with Hysek during the initial phase of the company’s 1997 renovations. The showcases are modular – an appealing trait to space-hungry stores – but their unique shape attracts attention wherever they are placed. All display pieces are made in Italy and Brazil.

Hansen adds that H. Stern expects to develop its U.S. retailer base slowly as it looks for partners who know the firm’s naturalistic jewelry. H. Stern signature style combines textured finishes, comfortable designs, hidden secrets, versatility and modernity. Those same characteristics now apply to its in-store image as it moves ahead with its expansion plans.

– by Michael Thompson

Retailers who are selected to sell H. Stern jewelry and watches can choose from combinations of fixtures to suit space limitations and will also be able to consult with the company’s architect. The elliptical pearwood free-standing displays are modular and accented with maple and brushed stainless steel.

Copyright © 2003 by Bond Communications