Fashion industry veteran Muriel Piaser launched Precious Room by Muriel Piaser in January 2019 as a meeting place for fine and high jewellery designers. Adopting a novel showroom-meets-trunkshow-meets-consultancy model, Piaser’s B2B concept includes a twice yearly event during haute couture in Paris and a prime spot at Premiere Classe. Most recently, Piaser added a lockdown-inspired digital edition to her growing suite of services and this – she says – is only the beginning.
Adorn co-founder Maia Adams sat down with Muriel Piaser to discuss how luxury jewellery brands can maintain relevance, the growth of ‘slow jewellery’, and the game-changing role phygital experiences are set to play in our sector.
Adorn Insight: You launched Precious Room by Muriel Piaser in January 2019. Why?
Muriel Piaser: I worked for 15 years as a director for various Paris fashion and accessories shows, followed by 11 years as an international fashion and business consultant with my company Muriel Piaser Consulting. In this role, I worked to implement intelligent fashion strategies to meet my clients’ needs and help them develop. In addition to having close contact with different players in the fashion industry, I observed an evolution in the market and changes in consumer buying behavior which revealed unequivocally that a new set of expectations was evoling across the chain.
AI: Such as…?
MP: The behaviour of end consumers had become more democratic. Rather than wait for the gift, they wanted to self-purchase pieces that allow them to express their personality. Also, the values embodied by brands are fundamental nowadays and buyers as well as consumers are very attentive to them. We talk about slow jewellery, for example, to denote ethical and sustainable practices which can influence purchasing decisions.
AI: Why did you make the move from a career in fashion to jewellery?
MP: Jewellery is an integral part of my life, I am passionate about it. It is a very dynamic market and I saw an opportunity in Paris to create a B2B event focused on fine jewellery, in particular for brands that are avant-garde and contemporary who want to present their work in a prestigious and intimate way.
Muriel Piaser, founder of Precious Room by Muriel Piaser
AI: What distinguishes Precious Room by Muriel Piaser from other luxury jewellery showcases?
MP: The concept is a hybrid of showroom and private appointment - like a two-day trunk show in the exceptional Palais Vivienne.
It’s an event where emotion and unique experiences are combined. We provide the showcase then it is up to each brand to stage its jewellery, display and storytelling in its own way. In spirit, Precious Room by Muriel Piaser is like a concept store in that we place importance on image and trends.
AI: What are the advantages of showing during haute couture week?
MP: We benefit from the luxury image of this event but above all because it corresponds to the purchase periods of the pre-collections so buyers still have the budget and can discover new brands or plan their purchases accordingly. It's a real business and image opportunity – an accessible luxury mix!
AI: You have a digital edition too. What’s that about ?
MP: The digital edition of Precious Room by Muriel Piaser is offered to brands all year round through a partnership set up with a B2B online showroom Le New Black with which I can create the brands' marketplaces and manage their orders with French and international buyers.
AI: What’s next for Precious Room by Muriel Piaser?
MP: I’m delighted to announce that I’m signing a collaboration with Premiere Classe which takes place at the Jardin des Tuileries in October and March. Precious Room by Muriel Piaser will have its own dedicated space, designed and decorated with its own visual identity.
As well as being a showcase for brands to get exposure and connect with buyers, they will benefit from coaching from me in areas such as global business development, sales strategy, promotion and digital marketing.
It's a real value-add to be able to offer my brands a commercial edition during Paris fashion week and thus develop their distribution network in France and internationally.
Precious Room by Muriel Piaser at Palais Vivienne, Paris
AI: And what’s this I hear about you going phygital, too?
MP: I'm looking at phygital – a mix between physical and digital editions – via the online showroom. This will be a real plus for the brands in terms of promotion and commercial support.
AI: Why it is important to be considering phygital in the luxury jewellery space now?
MP: It's essential today to have a B2B marketplace that allows brands to reach an international market and gain notoriety. Brands must also know how to create emotion through their storytelling and creations, and offer an experience to end consumers and buyers.
Participating in professional events reinforces brand development in wholesale and retail. Having a performing e-shop and social networks boosted by creative, innovative and intelligent digital marketing helps to build community.
Phygital allows brands to do all this in a new way. It’s the future to when it comes to developing the brand's B2B and BTC business in a global way.
AI: How can emerging fine jewellery brands get noticed in a crowded jewellery marketplace?
MP: Offer a creative product with high added value, strong story telling, a good price and audacity. You must also know how to embody your brand.
AI: You mentioned 'slow jewellery' earlier on. Is this a trend that's here to stay?
MP: We are entering the era of ‘slow life’, especially since the pandemic. As the desire to "consume less but better" grows, brands must become more responsible in sourcing, production, chain of custody and what this engenders. Slow jewellery – by which we mean traceability, ethical practices, environmental commitments, etc... – is enriched with arguments that make sense to buyers and end consumers. It goes without saying that it is a reality and opportunity for designers to stand out and defend their values and products.
AI: How can the luxury jewellery sector maintain relevance to a younger consumer demographic with different values, needs and desires?
MP: We are seeing a growth in brands whose more conscious points of view are helping them to build loyal communities.
Some brands are embracing inclusivity, as we have noted in the rise of gender neutral collections. Others are putting sustainability at the heart of their activities in order to meet the expectations of increasingly aware and informed end consumers.
I represent luxury jewellery brands which are using lab grown diamonds, for example. They embody a new wave of contemporary jewelers that are on a quest for meaning and it is essential to welcome them with open arms.
Precious Room by Muriel Piaser https://www.precious-room.com/