Watching Scott Gauthier carve a jewelry design into wax is like experiencing the composition of a symphony. With the gems that inspire his designs sitting around him, he expertly creates one-of-a-kind pieces using a labor-intensive, old-world crafting process called the “lost wax casting technique,” meaning that each of his rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings and more are all crafted with his bare hands.
Gauthier, a fine jewelry designer from Scottsdale, Arizona, has set his sights on Santa Barbara as his new jewelry kingdom. Since his first store opened in 1989, Scott Gauthier has been hand-making his “wearable art” right in his stores. Lucky for us, starting August 11, we will no longer have to fly out to Arizona to see his exemplary work.
The new Gauthier jewelry gallery, located at 921 State St., is more than just a place to buy jewelry. The art gallery-inspired interior was designed by Gauthier himself, with beachy-industrial elements such as natural cork floors, handmade stainless steel trim and plenty of natural light.
The detailed yet simple design of the store allows each rare gem to shine in its own right. Emeralds and rubies sit amongst black and pink diamonds and mother of pearl, showcasing Gauthier’s talent with a wide range of rare and exotic gems, some so rare that his store boasts some of the last stones of the kind, such as cat’s eye aquamarine and alexandrite.
The true rarity is how much of the artist is put into each piece. Gauthier creates the setting around whichever gem catches his eye at that moment, incorporating hidden elements, mechanisms, and eclectically placed gems. Because of the handmade nature of each piece, Gauthier expresses his care and love for each of his artistic pieces, whether $1800 or $400,000.
The opening of Gauthier’s store on Saturday will include gorgeous pieces designed specifically for the store, all made within the past 90 days, with Santa Barbara as the designs’ influence.
Gauthier’s pieces are “not just high-end jewelry, but a high-end art form” as the designer says himself, and he hopes that through the uniqueness and handcrafted quality of his pieces that he can remind his collectors what jewelry used to be.
Visit the new Gauthier store and gallery at 921 State Street, and view Scott Gauthier’s website here.
-Taylor Micaela Davis