Nuberu is one of those brands that makes people stop and look twice. In the world of jewellery design and retail where you’re spoiled for choice, striving to main originality and individuality in your designs is no mean feat. We’ve loved working with brand creator Louise since late last year and our partnership has been an education for both sides as we’ve discovered together why sometimes a brand really does hit their stride from the onset.
Nuberu specialises in silver jewellery ranging from simple pieces to striking and contemporary. Predominately unisex (we love the ethos of the brand which is ‘if you like it, wear it’) the ever-expanding range includes necklaces, bracelets, earrings and cuffs.
When Louise brought the collection in to our Princes Square popup boutique close to Christmas 2015, we loved the high-end simplicity of the products. Louise’s design background was evident as she knew how to take one element of a creation and make it standout; this is not easy to execute well. As we are always informed by the designers and creators we work with, you’ll continue to develop your skills and, in tandem with this, you’ll continue to look back and see what you could have done differently which only comes with time, knowledge and development.
Louise was still in the process of shooting product photography for online selling but the core collection was ready to go and we could launch it in store for the final Christmas run. We always have the same chat with anyone who joins our platform and it’s the cold, hard truth of retail. In brief, no-one can guarantee a sale, it’s hard for an independent brand to compete with major high street retailers and never see your participation in any sales-based event with a view to return on investment (ROI).
We were speaking each other’s language as Louise had always understood what managed retail can do for a small indie looking to test their market and had actually had this discussion with contemporaries of her own who didn’t initially understand why you would pay to feature in a shop rather than sell bulk wholesale.
So what do we mean by this?
Wholesale works well for some brands while the numbers don’t add up for others who are not yet producing in high enough volumes. Sometimes a large retailer may try to squeeze your margins, other times they may purchase a wholesale order which has as much as a 120 day payment schedule (while you’ve got to manufacture the agreed amount and figure out how to pay your suppliers in the process) and other times it could be a case of signing an exclusivity agreement which prohibits you from expanding your stockists within specific trading areas or even countries.
No right or wrong here but so many small brands think wholesale is king where the truth may be that managed retail ensures you a bigger slice of the pie per retail sale rather than wholesale price. By working as an agent on behalf of Nuberu, Louise kept full ownership of her products at all times and her participation in the boutique provided her with a presence on the high street, inclusion in promotional activities, bespoke product enquiries and, of course, sales. This was without doubt a mutually beneficial partnership and to place an ROI figure on your participation costs simply isn’t a black and white matter.
In the lead up to Christmas, Nuberu and G69 Clothing worked with Karen Bennie Events to host a joint launch party which allowed them to celebrate the achievements of all their hard work, invite some friends, family and key figures into Princes Square and begin their promotional activities. Zeno Watson very kindly shot the event and his imagery captured the products so beautifully that it’s not surprising to hear that Zeno has shot the brands latest products!
The Nuberu collection sold amazingly in store and many customers came back to make repeat purchases, bring in friends and family to show them the unique designs and ask if they could pre-order new variations of best sellers due to launch.
Louise had to re-stock on a regular basis and the ‘gamble’ of managed retail more than worked out for her brand. We loved it when shoppers had been to some of the very high end jewellers in the local jewellery arcade only to spy some beautiful silver, hematite or Swarovski Nuberu pieces and decide they would be their purchase of choice. When we launched our click and collect service online, it was Nuberu who sold the most via this option.
Now, as we prepare to officially launch the latest collection online, we’re excited to see how much progression their is in the brand in under a year of working together. It’s a perk of the job when you get an exclusive preview of upcoming designs from so many talented brands and believe us when we say these new products are going to continue to stop customers in their tracks, online and on the high street.