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Why creating ‘EMOTIONAL DESIGN’ is very important for jewellery designers?

01 Aug 2020

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What is Emotional design?

The term ‘Emotional Design’ was first conceptualized by Donald Norman. According to Norman, “Everything has a personality: everything sends an emotional signal. Even where this was not the intention of the designer, the people who view the design infer personalities and experience emotions.” In this write-up we have tried to address quite simply few aspects about emotional designing and why creating ‘EMOTIONAL DESIGN’ is very important for jewelry designers today.

Emotional design is a concept on how to create designs that evoke emotions which result in positive user experiences and interactions. Further according to Norman, in this process, a designer aims to connect with a user on three cognitive levels—visceral (user first impressions), behavioral (fulfilling a need) and, reflective (performance after purchase). 

Why is emotional design becoming very important today?

In a fast-paced world, even though we may be surrounded by people we may be feeling an emptiness in some emotion. Humans are emotionally complex. Everything around us is influenced by emotions. The same is the case with jewelry too. A piece of jewelry is not purchased or worn for solely its monetary value but because of its added emotional and sentimental value as perceived by the wearer. Wearing jewelry creates a positive user experience for most. So keeping this in mind, a designer when sketching a jewelry design must try to elicit an emotion that can become one with the wearer. A great designer perceives how and why people react to the visual experience of his/her design. Ultimately, the designer intends to draw the emotion ‘love at first sight’. 

How to apply emotional design to jewelry? 

When a design speaks, words fall silent. Every designer in the process of designing a piece of jewelry hopes to touch an emotional chord that will influence the buyer to purchase the jewelry. So, what are the factors a jewelry designer has to take into consideration while designing ‘emotional jewelry’?

Convey a message -

Remember the famous lock bracelet by Cartier with the screwdriver. It surely wasn’t the most practical to put on and take off but it sold thousands of pieces by invoking the most perceived emotion of ‘eternal love’. 

Add a signature style -

The jewelry design should have your “signature style” while accentuating the personality of the wearer.

Keep it visually appealing -

A design can look classy or trendy but most of all should be appealing to the eye. The use of metal and gemstones in the design must be unique to draw attention and create a first impression.

Maintain functionality -

Functionality is especially important in the pieces of jewelry that are intended to be worn daily. Small detailing like clasps and lock mechanisms, weight of the piece, mobility, and smoothness, go a long way to improve the functionality of a design. 

Create an experience -

Make wearing a piece of jewelry an enjoyable experience for the wearer. It should offer self-esteem and confidence to the wearer.

Make it memorable -

When someone buys a particular piece to capture a moment, there is an underlying reason for it. Is it a wedding proposal, a childbirth gift or a milestone? The designer has to create a design that transcends time to become a memorable, cherished, and everlasting jewel for the buyer.

Let it be different -

Basic jewelry design is always functional and artistic but a great one will convey an emotion. In 1976, Ronald Kurowski created the iconic ‘Happy Diamonds’. These floating diamonds even today celebrate ‘happiness’. The emotion of being playful and happy conveyed by these floating diamonds became a differentiator for Chopard and the rest is history. 

Draw out an instinctive connection -

The minute your customer sees your design he/she should instinctively feel “I want this piece. It will look amazing on me.” That is a strong and positive emotional reaction in jewelry buying. 

Try futuristic -

“Interactive relationships” with jewelry can open up a new way to look at jewelry. Like an Apple watch that challenged traditional watchmakers, maybe a piece of futuristic jewelry can do so. Think tomorrow.

What is the role of a jewelry designer in creating Emotional Design?

Jewelry designers have to conceptualize and prototype for manufacturing their designs. Besides designing on new software tools like CAD-CAM, they need expert knowledge on metals and precious stones to bring to life a functional and aesthetic design. Nothing is randomly chosen. The design, the metal, the gemstones, the finish, and the story behind the creation all have a purpose. It is important a designer can provide clear instructions to the production line to bring the design to life. The design could be for mass production or a one-off. From paper to production, every jewelry designer is trained by the best jewellery institute to deliver an idea behind the design. The designer through his/her emotional design acquires the fine art of engaging with the customers. The role of the emotional designer is to make the customer feel good and ultimately create a sense of belonging for the brand. 

How to deliver ideal Emotional Design? 

  • Use the power of research to understand the demographics and what they seek before beginning to design.
  • Understand your potential customer’s motivation and behavior that will lead to the purchase.
  • Sample a few pieces of the design to gauge their effect on the buyers.
  • After getting feedback from the sample group remove any pain points in your design.
  • Determine if your design can deliver a positive emotional experience.
  • Keep your signature style constant. 
  • Stay in line with the overall brand image.
  • Reach out and stay connected with in-store customers, website visitors, and social media fans as they are your true brand ambassadors.


Conclusion -

Today the emotional design of a jewelry item affects its success. Your design should not only look different from that of competitors’ design but also feel different. Let it convey feelings and conjure up emotions in the wearer. Jewelry is not a daily product of purchase and is often bought after much consideration. So, why not add this extra element of ‘Emotional Design’ to stand out in a crowded marketplace of fine jewelry?


About Rukshana -

Rukshana is a freelance content and communication strategist based out of Mumbai, India. She mingles her expertise in PR with comprehensive domain knowledge and creative writing skills to assist and propagate business, worldwide. Being a quick learner, she utilizes her diversified digital expertise to provide copywriting and content writing services to create highly profitable brands, products, and services.