Threads Styling, a London-based online personal shopping service with a presence on both WhatsApp and WeChat, said communication tools had helped its fine jewelry business to boom in recent years. And while the average online sale of fine jewelery is £3,000 to £4,000 ($3,734 to $4,978), Alyse Chirumbole, the company’s director of fine jewelery and watches, said established customers have used WhatsApp to shop for expensive jewelery on the amount she described as “millions”.
Nouf Alzamil, who works with technology and lives in Saudi Arabia, has shopped with Threads Styling since 2012; she said she now does most of her fashion and jewelry shopping through the platform, messaging her personal shopper “once a week or more” and buying fine jewelry “four or five times a year.”
In 2019, her personal shopper at Threads helped her buy a Patek Philippe watch that wasn’t available locally; now, she said, she’s likely to be inspired by styled jewelry photo shoots and “trend” item selections that Threads posts on social media.
“Probably 60% of the time I buy something directly because Threads suggested it; the other 40% of the time I saw something I liked and will ask my buyer to buy it,” she said in a phone interview. Recently, she said, she bought a necklace from Loquet, as well as jewelry from Shay and Kamyen, two brands she discovered on Threads.
“I definitely think Covid has accelerated digital shopping among my friends,” she said. “In Saudi Arabia, we don’t have as many options for in-person shopping and nobody wants to spend too much time indoors anymore. So it’s nice to have someone who can discover new brands and inspire you.”
She said she’s happy to buy fine jewelry based on photos and videos, although “anything £20,000 or more I’d like to see in person”.