Defending Luxury Part II

Posted on: October 4th, 2014 by jfdadmin No Comments

Last month we touched upon the difference between our highly labor-intensive, hand-made luxury lacquerware versus the lower quality mass-produced lacquerware.  This month we did a little more exploring and here’s what we found:

Cost Polarization:  By 2015 the middle class will have disappeared in most developed countries taking mid-price retailers with them.  Most consumer markets are already polarizing between economy and premium sectors (low price versus luxury).  However, customers can happily live in both segments buying a $15 t-shirt one minute and $500 jeans the next.

Mass customization: We are moving out of the era of mass and cheap into the age of luxury and ‘made for me’. For the fortunate few this means bespoke (tailor-made) products (sold in brand experience stores with concierge level service), while for others it means limited run products or mass customization (products created for specific niches or groups, often with the help of the customers themselves). We’ve seen this trend with an increase in individuals around the world ordering customized runs of our trays for their private yachts, planes, and homes.

Considered Consumption:  The new luxury shopper values the entire shopping experience and is less likely to buy on impulse. He or she is willing to travel further to enjoy a wide range of brands in an exceptional environment with the ambience, and quality of store almost as important as the retail offer itself.


So there you have it: The new luxury consumer only buys things that they really want, instead of buying lots of things that they don’t need. They don’t mind paying more for better quality. They shop around online, perhaps visiting stores they had never considered before. And they do a ton of research before buying.

What’s the takeaway? Well, for us, it makes us more confident that we’re doing the right thing.  Even though our lacquerware is expensive, we’re proud to support local Vietnamese artisans and their time-honored craft.  We hope that you as a retailer, or as a consume, agree.  Let us know!

Love and Lacquer,

J. Fleet Designs

Research provided by: and


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