If used correctly, lighting choices will give you the edge you need over your competitors. Start with selecting from LED (light emitting diode) lights for serious savings over time, and you will be investing in the best. Expect 25% of the cost of the store to be lighting—fixtures, maintenance and electricity—and you need to get the most value you can from it.
No matter how beautiful your store nor how great the quality of your jewelry, if you fail to display your merchandise in the best possible light, your sales will not reflect these assets. You cannot settle for cheap deals in showcases lighting or assume the brightest lights possible will do the job for you; you need good lighting above your showcases and within them.
It is one of the most important factors in promoting jewelry sales. Interior showcase lighting is critical because the merchandise is small and visibility is of major importance. The customer must be able to evaluate the choices available before asking to examine his preferences. There should be no shadows and jewels should sparkle at their best.
Good lighting must ensure that shadows are not cast over the showcase when the customer is in front of it or leans over it to inspect the contents. The heat and color of the light should be carefully chosen to maximize the features of the products.
A light source at the top and back of the showcase is a good choice because it doesn’t interfere with the view of the contents, but recessed front lights can work, too. Aim for about 30 foot candles (fc).
This type of lighting in jewelry stores is crucial. If you can’t afford great lighting both above and within your showcases, invest your money in the best lighting above. When a customer asks to see a particular item, it will be removed from the showcase and he will examine it in the light from above and it must be the best you can afford and the most suitable.
Light from above your showcases is the “true” light or ambient, general lighting, and must be chosen for the size of the store, which is probably small, and the height of your ceiling, preferably nine feet or lower. If your ceiling is more than nine feet high, consider using suspended overhead lights spaced about three feet apart, or whatever spacing will ensure 70 foot candles (fc) of continuous overlapping light on the top of your showcases.
Choose the ideal light warmth (measured in Kelvin or K degrees) and remember that cool white will add sparkle to diamonds and silver. 3,000K lights are warm white and have a slightly yellowish glow; 3400K to 4500K lights are neutral white and 4600K and higher is a cool white with a slightly bluish glow.
Your showcase lighting should be consistent with your overhead lighting, and brighter isn’t better in either instance. Choose lighting above and below to show your diamonds at their sparkling best in and out of the showcase. All the other jewelry will be fine if you take care of the diamonds.
Within a showcase, the cool white of 6,500K or higher will add sparkle and clarity to diamonds, silver and gemstones. Make sure there isn’t a radical difference between the look of jewelry in the showcase and its appearance when you remove it—especially not the diamonds.
Gold jewelry looks better in warmer white—3,000K to 3,500K—and, if you have a display case featuring all gold items, choose a warmer white for that case.
Remember, the rule of thumb is to highlight the beauty of your diamonds over all else, and cool white remains the choice for the general lighting from above, and for any showcase containing diamonds, no matter what else is displayed.
LED lighting offers many shades of white, and you can pick one of the cooler whites to make your diamonds look their dazzling best. They can use up to 80% less electricity, are efficient and cost-effective and, unlike the versions that first came on the market, are now strong enough for overhead lighting and a perfect choice.
A knowledgeable lighting designer can help you choose the best products and produce a great design for your store and let you know what your lighting will cost and where you can save.
Sales drive your business and the best jewelry store design with the most appropriate and fashionable lighting choices delivers the message to your customers that your store is cutting edge with quality merchandise. Impress them.
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