There are several dictators within the fashion world, but in the world of Plukka – the consumer decides. After noticing the steep mark-up in jewelry, co-founders Joanne Ooi and Jai Waney wanted to create an e-commerce market place site offering highly creative luxury designer jewelry to shoppers at 70-90% off customary retail prices. Through their innovative made-to-order business model they would eliminate the customary middlemen associated with traditional fine jewelry distribution.“Traditional jewelry designers have to predict trends and hope people will like the designs — Plukka knows there’s interest before the gold is melted down” explains Joanne. Hearing of such an interesting structure, made me want to know more. Below, Joanne Ooi shares the scoop on Plukka and what fashionistas can expect to find.
Naima Turner: When did the light bulb go off for you to create this selling concept?
Joanne Ooi: The lightbulb went off after brainstorming with my partner for several months. At some point during the Groupon hype, he exclaimed, we should marry group buying directly to manufacturing. That was the original Eureka moment but we have since iterated and pivoted a hundred times, so that, now, what we are is, mainly, a made-to-order find jewelry e-tailer with a huge offering of extremely creative fine designer jewelry offered at prices which are almost factory-direct. One thing we have hewed to faithfully the entire time is our commitment to “no middlemen”. In other words, we remain true to our original vision of world-besting creativity at extraordinary prices.
Naima Turner: What would a woman find most fabulous about the designs offered on Plukka?
Joanne Ooi: That there is so much original design for the strongly individualistic woman plus, our pricing really doesn’t break the bank. We want our customer to compare the value of one of our 18k diamond rings against buying a new designer handbag. In the process, we hope to make shopping for fine jewelry fun again. We also believe the unrivaled creativity of our selection makes shopping for fine jewelry much more fun than it has been for years.
Naima Turner: There are tons of beautiful pieces presented on the site…where does one start who’s looking for a special signature piece?
Joanne Ooi: I would definitely look at our designer collections, because each designer’s aesthetic so strongly shines through. Then, I would look at our Icons collection which showcase our most beloved and recognizable pieces.