Jon Michel, the designer silver jewellery brand of Thailand-based manufacturer Precious Products Jewelry Co Ltd, is presenting a different aspect of Scandinavian design by focusing on Viking-inspired motifs.
"The design aesthetic of the brand is very much Scandinavian lines of simplicity," explains company president Michael Lindblad who hails from Sweden. "We use natural stones and have developed a special Viking design aesthetic that is quite unique. The Viking legacy is an important part of the Scandinavian tradition so we have chosen to let their patterns and motifs play a significant role in our brand."
With the heritage, mythology and traditions of the Norse men a signature design theme of Jon Michel, the brand converts traditional Viking motifs into modern style statements.
Its interpretation of the Hammer of Thor is sleek and chic, while its Circular Collection alludes to the Scandinavian concept of circular equality and perfection. "A globe or a circle has no beginning and no end, and it is in perfect balance just like the earth," Lindblad says. The brand represents this concept through round chalcedony pendants, among others. Yet another motif permeating the brand's designs is the wave, representing a moving life force and alluding to the seafaring Norse adventurers of times past.
While the main collection targets ladies in their mid-20s to 50s, the brand has something for every demographic, says Lindblad. Jon Michel has a range of Viking-inspired pieces for men, while younger consumers can opt for its Jon Micks collection of small beads, pendants, earrings and stackable rings.
"Scandinavian design is our mark but we are certainly not the only ones to specialise in this. But to do it well and in high quality is an art that we have mastered. Several things work in our favour. We use natural stones and have developed a special Viking design aesthetic that is quite unique. Our prices are also extremely affordable for the quality and design we provide – we want people to be able to buy the jewellery, thereby helping us establish a presence in the market. Most importantly, we have the knowledge, skill and ability to design and produce all the items ourselves," Lindblad notes.
The Jon Michel brand is currently available at its own four shops in Koh Samui, Thailand, and it recently established a presence in Bangkok. Lindblad intends to open 10 shops for Jon Michel in Thailand and get it into local stores in the next three to four years. Internationally, the goal is to be in all of Scandinavia as well as Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and the UK. So far, Jon Michel has landed some accounts in the US. It also attracted interest from mainland China during the recently concluded September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair, the company official reveals.
Lindblad pegs the minimum buy-in for the brand at US$20,000 for distributors. Smaller companies in markets without a Jon Michel distributor can opt for a smaller investment of US$3,000 but at higher unit prices. A typical Jon Michel ring with stones or pearls would retail for US$70 to US$120 in the US or Europe. Retailers in Europe can expect a profit margin of around 60 percent, he says.
|Hammer of Thor-inspired necklaces in rhodium-plated and gold-plated silver from the Vikings Collection of Jon Michel
Wave cuff in gold-plated silver by Jon Michel
Silver necklace with shiny and brushed surfaces by Jon Michel