Biker jewelry isn’t reserved exclusively for bikers. It is available to anyone capable of pulling it off. Skull rings are a sought-after accessory among rock icons, pop idols, movie stars, and celebrities of any tier and caliber. If you don’t belong to any of these categories, you shouldn’t worry, bikers won’t frown upon seeing you flaunting jewelry featuring their beloved symbols. The thing you should worry about though is who made your trinkets and how. The Internet is bristling with offers, and their quality and exclusivity vary dramatically. What to choose – designer biker jewelry or mass-market products? In this post, we are going to outline the pros and cons of both options.
What Do Bikers Themselves Wear?
The right answer would be ‘they wear custom-made jewelry’. The very first copies of what we now call biker rings were made by hand in Mexico by local craftsmen. They used devaluated coins as raw material, melted them down, and reshaped them into pieces of jewelry. Even if certain motifs repeated, every item was unique. These Mexican rings eventually traveled across the US border where motorcyclists spotted them. They liked the idea of rocking jewelry featuring such symbols as freedom, speed, independence, powers, strength, etc. In a short while, along with Mexico-made trinkets, they started wearing products of American craftsmen. The latter constructed jewelry with motorcycle club emblems and inherent biker symbolism. Those motorcyclists who weren’t deprived of artistic talents also tried their hand at the craftsmanship.
Only in the 1960s, biker jewelry caught designers’ eye. Movies dedicated to motorcyclists formed the image of a daring, fierce, and jewelry-wearing biker. At the same time, a variety of celebrities got involved in the biker movement (the king of rock and roll himself was an avid motorcyclist). Fashion designers were vying to created unique masterpieces of jewelry for them and in such a way put their names on the map. The popularity of biker jewelry was gaining momentum, more and more manufacturers started offering their visions of biker fashion. Along with exclusive models, the market got flooded with factory-made rings, bracelets, etc. Do bikers themselves wear such jewelry? Absolutely. However, their most precious pieces are made in single copies as reminders of important events or people that affected their lives.
Designer Biker Jewelry
Brands such as Chrome Hearts, Werkstatt, Night Rider, and others helped shape the biker jewelry landscape. Their founders were motorcycle buffs, they were well aware of values and preferences common for this community. They set goals to create pieces fellow bikers would be proud of wearing. This commitment deserves nothing but praise. However, it comes at a cost of hefty price tags.
If you consider getting designer jewelry, these are a few things you can take advantage of:
- jewelry created by bikers and for bikers;
- exclusive designs;
- small batch production;
- outstanding quality;
- jewelry worn by celebrities.
Yes, many biker fashion brands collaborate with rock stars and prominent figures of the motorcycle movement. The pieces they jointly create are an excellent opportunity to flaunt trademark logos and imagery absolutely legally. Plus, they provide you with a chance to have the same rings or necklaces your idols wear. For instance, Chrome Hearts and Rolling Stones created a capsule jewelry collection featuring the much-loved lips and tongue symbol.
The major con of fashion jewelry is its lofty prices. More often than not, a trinket made of inexpensive stainless steel will be costlier than a silver analog just because it is rolled out by a famous brand.
Everything that is not custom-made and is not designed by a famous fashion brand belongs to this category. We are going to label these pieces as mass market, although some of them may actually come in small batches. These items won’t carry a famous name on them (if any), you won’t see them in ads, celebs don’t promote them. If you’re looking for hype, these pieces won’t provide it. Still, they have a number of benefits:
- price is significantly lower on similar items;
- they can be made of precious and non-precious metals;
- available in countless designs.
Many non-designed pieces offer quite decent quality unless we are talking about Ali Express products. If you have a limited budget but want to get your hands on precious metal such as silver, your best option is little-known brands. Some of them even deliver rip-offs of beloved designs. Let’s say you’re dreaming of the Keith Richards ring but can’t afford a piece designed by its creators, Courts and Hackett. Your best option is a re-creation of the same design. The legal side of this deal is questionable but it is able to save you a few hundred dollars.
Not every no-name or little-known manufacturer specializes in copying famous models. Many of them come up with solid concepts and great designs. You can even find companies that craft their pieces by hand while retaining a really attractive price. You just need to dig deeper on the Internet and get ready for pleasant surprises.