From the Ground Up – Unique Wooden Jewelry by Gustav Reyes

Gustav Reyes is a contemporary jewelry artist from Chicago, IL who specializes in custom, handmade wooden accessories. He is perhaps best known for founding Simply Wood Rings – a small one-man company that produces limited editions of these custom crafted pieces. But putting his business aside, I was pleased to have a more holistic glimpse at Reyes’s portfolio, which not only showcases a wider variety of his work, but also reveals an intriguing worldview that underlies everything he does as an artist.

Organic Coil Bracelet

Organic Coil Bracelet

Though his designs are distinctly modern, he relies heavily on salvaged wood for his pieces. This not only demonstrates Reyes’s appreciation for preserving our natural resources, but the process also indulges his interest in the relationship between past life and present circumstance.

Kauri Ring

Kauri Ring

Kauri Wood & T-Rex Skull Inlay (no joke)

Kauri Wood & T-Rex Skull Inlay (no joke)

The best example of this is his use of Kauri wood (above), which dates back to over 50,000 years ago. As he puts it, Kauri “gives you a connection to an extraordinary time of pre-historic sunlight, rains, and life from so long ago.” Extrapolating from his mission statement, Reyes is fascinated by the intersection between the contemporary and the ancient.

Turquoise & Rosewood Earrings

Turquoise & Rosewood Earrings

Ironically though, Reyes shies away from viewing his work as little emblems of eternity – a common sales point for jewelry. Rather, he incudes elements of the past in order to celebrate our unique moment in time, whether in retrospect towards our heritage or in anticipation of our future. In this sense, Reyes is ultimately interested in the perpetual legacy of human creativity – a trait he argues is common throughout all facets of humanity.

Clomm’s “Terra Firma” Timepiece Collection

Having only launched their website on the 10th of May, UK-based fashion label Clomm has put out quite the first impression. The boutique watch brand has released six timepieces in its “Terra Firma” collection – each one with a distinct, albeit understated sophistication.

Rosegold with Burgundy Strap

Rosegold with Burgundy Strap

 While there are departure points, the common thread throughout the entire line is a thoughtful combination of proper materials and minimal design. All of the timepieces feature aerospace grade stainless steel cases, premium Italian leather straps, Swiss quartz movements, and sapphire crystal lenses. That said, three of the six watches offer natural wood faces in rosewood, oak, or cork. The juxtaposition between cutting edge and organic materials is rather refreshing – especially when you consider the subtle darkening of wood and leather overtime. For such a minimal watch there is nonetheless room to acquire character with use and abuse, all without running the risk of going out of fashion.

Natural Oak

Natural Oak

Natural Rosewood

Natural Rosewood

With longevity in mind, the watches are meant for the discerning buyer who appreciates quality more than making a statement – yet in this case those ideals are not mutually exclusive.

            Be sure to check out their work at the link above and scroll through the gallery for some high-resolution images of all six pieces, including some lifestyle shots and a peek at their hand crafted wooden storage box.

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