defending luxury

Posted on: September 1st, 2014 by jfdadmin No Comments

Inevitably at the New York gift show,  people will walk into our booth, gush about how gorgeous our trays are and then when they find out the price they will ask, “Why so expensive? There are other trays for less.”

Yes, there are other trays for less. Yes, the trays and bowls and bath accessories provides the same function. But no, they are not the same.

The extremely labor-intensive process of our lacquerware takes about 100 days of work for each and every piece.   Our process, based on ancient Vietnamese technique, is all done by hand by talented, dedicated artists.  Nothing is mass produced or machine-made.  Each piece has 15-20 coats of lacquer with traditional arts of mother-of-pearl inlay, burning and inlaying cracked eggshell.  There’s a big difference.

According to a recent article in Casual Living, affluence is alive and growing in America.  Not every consumer wants to purchase the cheapest-priced item.  Especially the “upwardly mobile Millennials (consumers between the ages of 18 and 36) who want to reward their hard work with an outstanding product.”

So, if you are a retail store – how do you sell higher-priced products?  Well, first you need to carry them in your store and truly believe that they are better than any other products in their category.  You need to be able to explain the differences that make the more expensive product worth the consumer’s investment.   Enthusiasm is contagious.  If you’re not enthusiastic about the line, don’t expect the consumer to be enthusiastic about it either.

If you are a consumer, why should you buy a luxury item? Because you are a quality-conscience buyer who wants something that’s not found in the big chain stores.   We all place value on different things – perhaps we enjoy nice cars or bags or wine. Maybe it’s art or even a spectacular backyard grill.  Whatever it is, be proud of it and enjoy it.

Love and lacquer,

J. Fleet Designs

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