Today’s Mos Eisley Marketplace article features Star Wars fan and jewelry designer Michael Raymond, from Michael Raymond Jewelry. Based in New York, US, he creates custom made Star Wars rings based on classic action figures. His gorgeous collection includes classic Star Wars characters – Yoda, Darth Vader, Stormtrooper, Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, C-3PO, and even newcomer Kylo Ren.
The rings are made from Sterling Silver, except for the Chewbacca ring which is made from bronze, and the C-3PO ring which is made from 14k Gold plated Brass. Prices range from US$425.00 to US$650.00 each – all designs are available in women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, and men’s ring sizes 7 to 11. Michael Raymond Jewelry can ship internationally, which is great!
- Yoda ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Darth Vader ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Stormtrooper ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Princess Leia ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Luke Skywalker ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Han Solo ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Chewbacca ring – US$425.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- C-3PO ring – US$425.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
- Kylo Ren ring – US$650.00 each – women’s ring sizes 5 to 9, men’s ring sizes 7 to 11
I recently had the incredible opportunity to ask Michael a few questions about his Star Wars character rings, how he got started making jewelry, and the process of making custom designs. Read on for the full interview –
How long have you been a Star Wars fan?
My father got one of the first VHS players when I was, I believe 3 or 4. So that would have been about 78’ or 79′. Somehow he managed to get a copy of the first Star Wars and that proceeded to be my babysitter as I watched it on loop for who know how many months.
Do you have a favourite Star Wars character?
I have two.
1. Chewbacca cause I just want to hang out with him
2. The StormTroopers. I wanted that suit real bad… I mean, the truth is I still do.
How long have you been creating custom jewelry?
My father was a jeweler, so I grew up helping him with his projects over the years. Assisting my father was my first job. He’d put me to work making chains, polishing and castings… all the dirty or repetitive work. He would always let me play around with my own ideas and experiment. I’ve been doing that, since I was old enough to grip a pair of pliers.
As of the last couple years I’ve been working with the talented creator, Diomedes Raul Bermudez. With his help, I’ve started going the route of releasing diffusion collections. I however, still do do quite a few custom pieces under my name sake Michael Raymond.
What inspired you to design and create Star Wars rings?
A lot of what I do is to take everyday objects and turn them into jewelry. Things you can instantly recognize but also see the way the lines work as a rings, necklaces, bracelets, earrings etc.
After moving several years ago, I came across a bag with all my childhood Star Wars figures. I was making a lot of two finger rings at the time. I sat Yoda between two of my fingers and was like, holy moly, I have to make a series of these!
How did you decide which Star Wars characters to feature in your designs?
I started using the figures that I found in that bag I mentioned while moving. They were all the original Star Wars main characters. I have also done a custom two finger of one of the newer characters, Kylo Ren, for a customer. I would image I’ll be adding to the line up for years to come.
Do you have a personal favourite design from your Star Wars jewelry collection?
Design wise, I’m really happy with the way C3PO came out. Since he’s always waving his arms, I decided to make them articulate and move up and down. I think he came out pretty cool with his moving arms and 14k gold plating. As far as aesthetics and the look of the character in a two finger ring, I really like the way Chewy came out in Bronze.
How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style is functional, edgy, and slightly Avant Garde.
As for my Art, I lean towards making statement and conversation pieces either from scratch or by manipulating wax from molds of various intimate objects.
When making said Art, I feel it doesn’t matter what you do or how you do it. It’s all been done before. For me, its’ all about the intended attention to detail, while communicating to others that what they are looking at, is made by someone who experiences the same emotions they do.
Typically how long does it take to create a custom jewelry piece – can you describe your manufacturing process?
This usually depends on what it is I’m making. If it’s a piece that I’ve already made and I’ve already figured out how I’m going to make it, It usually will take anywhere 7-14 business days.
To make a piece entirely from scratch that has never been done before, can take anywhere from 8-12 weeks… sometimes less if all the stars are aligned.
The process usually starts with talking with the customer either by email or by phone. (I prefer real time conversations and feel like much is lost in texts and emails.) Once the customer and I have agreed upon the design, I will take a deposit and begin work.
I do so many different and experimental things with jewelry, it would be hard to describe more of the process without talking about a particular piece. I’ve done anything from using peoples teeth and cremation ashes, to making molds of babies umbilical cords. One of the things I really enjoy about jewelry are the options. The sky’s the limit to create a truly custom one of a kind piece.
I’ve been lucky. Most people contact me because they’ve seen work I’ve done in the past and they want to do something in that vein. I mean you don’t ask an abstract painter to to paint you a photorealistic painting. You commission an artist for their style not for the job title.
If someone contacts me and asks me if I can make a piece of jewelry that is already available, I will refer them to that piece that is already available. I have no interest in creating work that is already for a sale.
Can customers contact you for custom ‘geek’ inspired jewelry designs?
Absolutely. I love working with peoples concepts and making them tangible. I have life long connections with the people I’ve made one of a kind pieces for. The more out there the idea, the better. There are plenty of jewelry designers doing traditional jewelry. I welcome the ideas that must be reverse engineered to become a reality.
Do you ship internationally?
I will ship anywhere mail goes. I don’t mind filling out all the customs forms, as long as the customer doesn’t mind insuring and paying for any extra shipping costs.
Where can fans find Michael Raymond Designs on social media?
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Email)
- http://www.michaelraymondjewelry.com (Website)
- https://twitter.com/MRaymondDesigns (Twitter)
- http://michaelraymonddesigns.tumblr.com (Tumblr)
- http://pinterest.com/micraydesigns/ (Pinterest)
- https://www.instagram.com/michaelraymondjewelry/ (Instagram)
- https://www.facebook.com/michaelraymonddesign/ (Facebook)
Many thanks to Michael for his time in answering my questions. As a Star Wars collector and fashion fan, I love seeing accessories that are inspired by classic action figure sculpts. The larger two-finger style really showcases each design – these are simply gorgeous statement pieces!
Photos sourced from and belong to Michael Raymond Jewelry.