A couple of weeks ago I met the couple behind Variance Objects. It felt like a big moment for me because I've been following their work for a very long time but had never seen it in person. Not only is the jewelry weird and beautiful, but so are Nicole and Scott. Their passion and authenticity is incredible - it made me love the designs so much more. Read their story below.
I've made jewelry for as long as I can remember. As a kid, I loved making things, anything, but I always wanted to figure out some way to wear whatever I made. I started making the Variance line in 2010 and we launched the brand in 2013.
The pieces and process are inspired by the materials. We use the materials of traditional fine jewelry but we approach the process in a minimalist way. We cut and polish all of our stones, but we do it with a different set of priorities in mind. We look to capture the nature of the stone, and preserve its inherent textures, color patterns, and light qualities rather than transforming them into a sparkly made object. Then, because of the way we cut stones, we are able to approach metals and settings in a completely different way. We fabricate everything so there is no duplication in the way that there can be with cast metal. Plus we mix gold and silver, melt metals together and leave everything only semi-polished, the final polishing comes with wear.
It's the process that inspires. Just having the materials in front of me, and responding to them, there is endless inspiration in that. There's no design. It isn't like having an idea about how it is going to look. It's about responding to what is already there and being in love with and interacting with the materials, so that at every step in the process I'm looking to have fresh eyes. That's all Variance is. I don't think I would have such strong experiences if I was working with wax or not cutting the stones. so the existing materials inspire the aesthetic.
Favorite design: I have a rotating list of favorites. It usually has to do with some anomaly in a stone. I have a small piece of moldavite with a bubble in it that I made into a pendant. That piece is one of my favorites. The air in that bubble is from the upper parts of our atmosphere from 14 million years ago.
Personal collection: I have a ruby pendant which was blessed by Amma (the hugging Indian saint) which I never take off. I wear it with one of our gold handmade link chains.
Daily jewels: Everything. I wear most of my personal collection all the time and I never take it off. This includes about 12 rings, 3 necklaces and some earrings.
Favorite artists: Agnes Martin, James Turrell, Issey Miyake. Favorite contemporary jewelry designers include Todd Pownell, Polly Wales, Jill Platner, Judy Geib, Jamie Joseph.
Currently listening to: We're always listening to music while we work. Our favorite Pandora station has been Bob Marley for some time now.
See more one-of-a-kind designs here!