To express their gratitude for 20 years in the business, Ten Thousand Things founders and designers David Rees and Ron Anderson have created Love & Adorn, a collection of one-of-a-kind jewelry for 16 of their favorite clients.
These aren’t just any clients. Ten Thousand Things’ fan base is comprised of A-list celebrities and cultural icons. Julianne Moore, Susan Sarandon, Olivier Theyskens, Christy Turlington, Padma Lakshmi, Kristen Stewart, and Cyndi Lauper, to name a few big names, agreed to pose in their respective pieces for a 16-page spread shot by photographers Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin to be published in V magazine on Jan. 10. The pieces will then be auctioned off from Feb. 6 through Feb. 27 on charitybuzz.com with all of the proceeds dedicated to each of the clients’ charity of choice.
Susan Sarandon (photos courtesy of Ten Thousand Things)
“I think when you’re a smaller business your customer becomes important,” said Rees. “Our clients inspire us and this was our way of being very grateful and supportive. They have been so generous with us.”
Given that celebrity wrangling can be like herding cats, the project was two years in the making and a labor of love, Rees conceded. “It required a lot of stamina,” he says.
In terms of production, however, the long lead time did have its advantages. “We have a tendency to experiment and you don’t want to make mistakes,” he says, noting the materials they worked with included natural pearls, black diamonds, and micro-set pavé and other precious gems they had been collecting for 20 years. “It was nice to have the time to do it correctly.”
In the campaign, Susan Sarandon is wearing a diamond pavé, American natural pearl, and moonstone double pendant necklace. Cyndi wears a diamond pavé and pearl 18k gold lariat, while fashion designer Olivier Theyskens sports a diamond pavé charm necklace. Kristen Stewart wears a diamond pavé Native American “Avanyu” ring that is so substantial, it calls to mind a finger brace. All pieces are valued between $15,0000 and $20,000—of course the designers hope to go beyond dollar value and raise as much money for the charities as possible.
Ten Thousand Things operates a store in the Meatpacking district of New York City, and wholesales to Barneys New York, Ylang 23 in Dallas, Ikram in Chicago, and Noodle Stories in Los Angeles.
For the moment, however, philanthropy trumps profit. “We should all be giving back,” says Rees, who, flipping the emphasis from purchasing to giving, likes to say, “The consumer gets a free gift with purchase—donate to the charity and you get a beautiful piece of jewelry. You’re lucky if you can make a difference and it’s something that we aspire to.”