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Sam Willoughby, event director, IJL

IJL is delighted to welcome you to Nexgems. Consumer research shows that design is the single most important factor when considering jewellery purchases and Britain is the leading market in terms of jewellery design.

It is the home, after all, to a host of legendary designers like Stephen Webster and Shaun Leane.
IJL has for many years been totally committed to supporting design innovation through two main flagship programmes: Bright Young Gems and Kickstart. Bright Young Gems, originating eight years ago, is a collaboration between IJL and leading fashion editors who influence trends and fuel consumer interest.

It is well known in the industry for unveiling future stars and allowing them the opportunity to establish a reputation for producing and showcasing outstanding, contemporary jewellery at the UK’s largest jewellery-specific event.

Kickstart, supported by the BJA and now in its fourth year, provides a commercial launchpad for 10 promising designers, hand selected to exhibit on a group stand at IJL. This fresh, new talent, along with the established designer-makers elsewhere in the show such as Sarah Jordan, Sarah Ho, Andrew Geoghegan and Babette Wasserman, are the lifeblood of the UK jewellery industry and are vital to competing with other luxury goods. I hope you enjoy reading about these talented people.