The Ghost Aesthetic
If you are like me, you are pretty rough with your jewelry, and sometimes forget you have it on. I'm all for a solid piece that can take the abuse, and go with any outfit. I have a feeling these bracelets are in the long haul with me! Created by Gaige Redd, The Ghost Aesthetic creates quality jewelry lasting you a lifetime, while using several upcycled pieces as material. Click below to read his interview with Sustainably Chic - the business has such an interesting start!
p.s. use code GHOST20 for 20% off your entire purchase!
Tell us about The Ghost Aesthetic and how sustainability is incorporated into your business
Because we live in such a “throw away” society, my first priority is making things that will stand the test of time; it’s also why each of my pieces have a lifetime warranty. I don’t care if it’s 10 years down the road and you ruined your bracelet by using it as a carabiner repelling down a cliff face - I put my soul into each piece and I want it on you, not in a landfill! It’s also important for me to know where my raw materials come from, so I’ve sourced all of them from American manufacturers.
How did The Ghost Aesthetic begin?
I love making things by hand, and i’ve always got a project going. Last year I finished rebuilding a 1977 Honda CB750 motorcycle that was 3 years in the making. While cleaning up I found the old bike chain that came from a 1976 donor bike I used for parts. I was thinking about how many miles and years that chain had seen and I was oddly attached to it. I had leather and rivets left over from a previous project and had the idea to use one of the chain links to make a bracelet for my daughter. She loved it, and I got a lot of interest from other people so I decided to make more and try some other designs. The brass I used for the Slab bracelets was also left over from another project and it just came together from there.
Where do you find inspiration for your jewelry?
I’m a designer by profession so I’m always looking for inspiration and new ideas. I tend to get a lot of inspiration from old things—old machines, old buildings, and old furniture. Not necessarily for how they look but how they were made; they really don’t build things the way they used to. Things were build with tough materials and even factory parts were usually hand fit and assembled by a skilled craftsman. It’s part of what inspired the name The Ghost Aesthetic - I was trying to quantify why hand made products were so much more appealing than mass-produced items. Part of it is the higher quality, but there is also an intangible aspect to something that is handcrafted. Someone put their time, energy and sometimes blood (I’m looking at you, bench grinder.) into it. Little decisions have to be made at every step because no two pieces are exactly the same. I think on a subconscious level we understand that “ghost” quality, as we hold something handmade.
You take pride in making a piece that lasts. What are your favorite materials to use?
I use a lot of different materials, but if I’m picking favorites I would say brass and walnut. Walnut is so beautiful and incredibly strong, that I use it whenever I can. I happen to have a lot on hand because a local cabinet maker was throwing out their end pieces one day and I happened to be driving by so I have a bunch of 12” - 18” planks that I’ve used in a ton of projects. My love of brass goes back to a Titanic exhibit I saw several years ago. One of the pieces on display was an ornate faucet from a bathtub. Most of the nickel plating was worn away, revealing the brass underneath. I just loved the way it looked and how far it had come to be on display.
What are the future plans for The Ghost Aesthetic?
I have several new designs that i’ll put on sale this year. I’m also creating a one-off section of the store where I’ll sell items that I made as an experiment or items that cant be duplicated because they were made from reclaimed material. One example is a pendant I made from an old brass door stop I found. There was only enough material for 2 pendants and I gave one to my wife for Christmas, so the other one will be featured in that section.