b'Found the Jewelry TradeMelee exhibitor Anthony Lents 18-karat yellow gold Crescent Moonface Pendant with moonstone Show Sweet Spot and diamond MANY TRADE SHOWSHAVE TRIED AND FAILEDto present high-caliber design at pricing affordable for independent designer jewelry brands, but Melee is the fine jewelry event getting it done.Independent designer jewelry brands have a common refrain when it comes to trade shows: Theyd like to show their creations in an intimate, upscale setting that matches the quality of their work and attracts the highest caliber of buyer, butand here is the troublesome catchat a price that wont wreck their budgets. Their wish has become a kind of Shangri-La, a utopian marketplace that simply doesnt exist. Its understood that a brand either is accepted into, and foots the accom-panying bill for, a boutique trade show experience in the vein of Couture, or resigns itself to a larger, convention hall-esque affair such as JCK or JA New York, where it is hard to feel seen among the hundreds, if not thousands, of competitors. Thats not to say that certain trade shows havent tried to be both exclu-sive and affordable.Some new concept shows from jewelry outsiders have acted as a revolv-ing door of jewelry talent season-to-season, unable to retain exhibitors or garner credibility. Other shows from established professionals try to buck the odds during the June Vegas shows. Their attempts to edge their way onto buyers packed calendars usually end without much luck.Over the last several seasons, however, one fine jewelry event has emerged as that mythical unicorn of trade shows, that impossible union of luxury and affordability. Its called Melee and its headed by designers.The gray diamond Ravine ring with open-style bezel in 14-karat yellow gold with white diamond pav from Rebecca Overmann, co-founder of the Melee showNATIONAL JEWELER 35'