We continue this week with another designer’s corner showcase, this time featuring Oskar Gydell. If you haven’t heard of them before, they are a successful male accessories brand that emphasizes on custom made hand-woven quality male jewelry. Without further ado, we meet up with Oskar Gydell, the company’s founder, to talk about himself and his brand.
1. TO START, CAN YOU TELL US A BIT MORE ABOUT YOUR BRAND OSKAR GYDELL, AND THE STORY BEHIND CREATING THE BRAND. HOW DID DID IT ALL START?
The brand came from my own name, Oskar Gydell. I have been skateboarding ever since I was a child, and I always knew that one day I would become a professional skateboarder. After my education, skateboarding really took off for me, and I had the best time of my life travelling the world. It was during this time, I would do simple bracelets from stuff I found in different countries that I had visited. In 2010 I hurt my knee quite seriously, and after the X-games in Los Angeles, I required knee surgery, which forced me into retirement.
Since then I completed university in Sweden for industrial design and after one year I started creating bracelets again for fun. Soon people started asking me where I bought my bracelets, and wanted the same design for themselves. From this, the brand Oskar Gydell was born.
In 2014, I started working with my friend and colleague Christian, who is a goldsmith. We started to develop more high end jewelry, and now 2 years later we make bracelets from 100 SEK to over half a million SEK.
2. THAT’S QUITE AN INTERESTING STORY! THE BEST FOUNDING STORIES HAVE THE MOST TWISTS AND TURNS THAT SOMEHOW MAKE SENSE IN THE END. ALSO, BEING A PROFESSIONAL SKATEBOARDER MUST HAVE BEEN EXCITING – WOULD YOU SAY ANY OF YOUR DESIGNS ARE INFLUENCED BY YOUR SKATER LIFESTYLE? IF NOT WHAT ARE THEY INFLUENCED BY?
Of course! I have always been influenced by the skater/surfer lifestyle, even outside of designing jewelry. And even with time, I still think some of my jewelry reflects that lifestyle. Looking at the other side of things, my love for watches is also a huge influence, especially with the higher end jewelry using gold and diamonds. But still, I prefer many of my jewelry to look casual even with the use of diamonds or other expensive material.
3. NOW LET’S DISCUSS THE OTHER SIDE – YOUR CUSTOMERS. CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR TARGET GROUP OF CUSTOMERS? WHAT TYPE OF PEOPLE WOULD BE SUITED FOR YOUR DESIGNS?
I think my average customer is male between 18 and 40 years old. There are many brands today for men, but not many that makes colourful jewelry with gold or diamond. With more mens accessorizing, we have started to see more of them wanting to have jewelry with colour, gold, and diamonds.
I usually do stuff that I would want, and hope other people will like them as well. But of course all my jewelries are unisex and can be worn by women as well.
4. AND, AS FOR YOURSELF – WHAT IS THE PRODUCT THAT YOU ARE MOST PROUD OF, AND WHY?
I really like our bone bangles. It is a simple bangle in silver or gold that I think many people find creative and unusual. In fact, the bangles are very versatile, last year we made a pair of custom designed bangles with lobster claws. We had a very long process involving real lobsters and a lot of designing, 3D modelling, and experimentation. It was some of the most fun I have ever had. The end result turned out fantastic and the customer was very happy.
5. YOU’RE ACTUALLY THE FIRST DESIGNER TO TALK ABOUT USING 3D PRINTING… CAN YOU DESCRIBE THIS A BIT MORE; DO YOU FIND IT CONVENIENT, WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF USING A 3D PRINTER?
Well many people call themselves jewelry designers because they can put some stones or rocks through a cord, and to a certain extend that is being a designer. But to create a piece from start to finish, it is so much more then just buying finished parts from a supplier and putting it all together. Since I have been studying industrial design for over 3 years, I wanted to take the step. If you look at my schedule, I spend a lot of my time working in 3D environments. We don’t use any “pre-made” pieces, which is why we keep all our design unique and refreshing. Our creative designs are prototyped on a 3-D printer, where we create models of our processes. If we like its first stage, we will then create the mold and casting using wax. This gives us a better sense of the overall design. I can talk forever about this, but I’ll leave here.
6. WE ALWAYS WONDER ABOUT DESIGNERS AND WHAT THEY WEAR. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR FASHION STYLE, WHAT ARE NOTICEABLE FEATURES OF IT, AND WHAT IS YOUR TYPICAL OR GO TO OUTFIT?
Personally, I like a casual outfit. Jeans with nicely designed t-shirts are my go to style. This way my wrist and neck will pop out more when I accessorize. I usually prefer to wear between 2 to 3 bracelets and 1 necklace, with each of my outfits.
7. WHAT DOES COLOUR MEAN TO YOU, WHY HAVE YOU MADE COLOUR A FOCAL POINT OF YOUR DESIGNS?
I love to express myself with different pieces of jewelry. Since I don’t usually wear a lot of colour on my cloth, I accessorize and colourize through my jewelry instead. This is noticeable in most of my designs, as I try to use colours other designers shy away from.
8. CAN YOU TALK MORE ABOUT YOUR LAUNCH TILL NOW, HAS IT BEEN AN EASY JOURNEY? WHAT WAS SOME OF THE DIFFICULTIES YOU HAVE FACED?
It has been a lot of hard work from the start. I love what I do so that has made the process a lot better. With more brands popping up, this journey has only been that much tougher. Social media has been a huge help for my brand. And as an innovator, I am always looking for the next trends in social media, to help propel my designs to higher and larger platforms.
9. LASTLY, ON A PERSONAL NOTE: CAN YOU DESCRIBE FOR OUR READERS WHAT KIND OF PERSON YOU ARE AND WHAT DO YOU ENJOY DOING IN YOUR FREE TIME?
I am a very calm and focused person, someone that is honest and believes in karma. Friends and family are more important than anything else to me; unfortunately many people today have the opposite priorities. I think being in a business I have realized that the business world sometimes holds this opposite belief as well. So I try my best to surround myself with friends who value honesty, family, and integrity. During my spare time, I love to skate and spend time with friends. I am also a big car junkie and interior designer, which definitely keeps me busy during my spare time.