"With every piece, there's a story"
Michael Raymond was destined to become a jeweler. Born into the industry, he grew up shadowing his father, Raymond, as he created one-of-a-kind pieces on the bench, and quickly developed a passion for turning objects, both obscure and obvious, into wearable pieces of art.
From the day he could grip a pair of pliers, Michael’s father began imparting the intricate art and craftsmanship of fine jewelry, honing Michael’s raw talent into an unparalleled skill.
In 2005, Raymond passed away, leaving his entire studio – bench, tools and molds – to Michael. After a career focusing on a variety of artistic pursuits from skateboarding to fronting a rock band, Michael decided to return to what he knew was his birthright. He understood the responsibility entrusted to him to carry on his father’s legacy. Demonstrating an urgency he had never experienced before, Michael shipped all of his father’s equipment from Miami to New York City to create his own jewelry studio.
From there – Michael diligently went to work. He became consumed with learning new techniques and exploring every facet of jewelry making. Michael approached his craft with the driven passion of an artist who had found his life’s purpose. Michael’s signature designs became apparent when he discovered his unique aesthetic by evolving functional forms into unexpected, statement pieces.
“I get a kick out of combining unusual elements in nature, such as bones, teeth, scales and modern man-made elements that normally wouldn’t go together. Every piece I make has a story behind it, “says Michael. “ I like the idea of manipulating an easily recognizable object like a spray paint can tip or my childhood Star Wars figures into something for which it wasn’t originally intended, like a ring or necklace.”
Many of his pieces repurpose the body parts of animals found on travels around the globe, into fascinating accessories that capture the imagination and challenge the everyday perception of what jewelry should be. Rough elements such as horse molars, bullet casings and scorpion tails are cast in fine metals to create a rare juxtaposition of materials and attitudes. Every piece Michael creates seeks to push the traditional boundaries of function, form, beauty and adornment.
In 2015 Michael launched MR by Michael Raymond, a contemporary jewelry collection designed and handmade in New York City. MR by Michael Raymond is comprised of neoteric takes on luxury designs. He continues to produce one-of-a-kind pieces under the eponymous Michael Raymond Collection, a compilation of commissioned works and passion projects. Each piece is designed to speak to individual style and those who dare to make a statement.