Stylemaker: Mateo Bijoux
Inspiration surrounds us — that is the mantra that men’s accessories designer Mateo Bijoux lives by. The modern-day maverick, who hails from the beautiful island of Jamaica, has successfully managed to introduce the traditional male to non-traditional, one-of-a kind pieces that are relatable and speaks to the heart and soul of the “everyday” gentleman. With a unique understanding of his customers and modern point-of-view, Mateo is on his way to becoming of the most premiere jewelers since the turn of the century.
Embrace this brand, become a fan and get to know Mateo Bijoux!
JET: How did you get your start in fashion?
Mateo Bijoux: Initially I studied hotel management and, coming from Jamaica, thought I would go back home and work to become a manager and eventually open a quaint bed-and-breakfast. I would later learn that I hated working for other people. Believe it or not, I fell in love with jewelry and am self-taught; once I determined that this was what I truly wanted to pursue, my obsession with jewelry began. After consulting for a few years, with a few brands, my namesake company was launched in 2009. After that and then the national offers staring pouring in: Macy’s, Nordstrom, Gilt and most recently, HSN! And, as they says, the rest is accessories history!
JET: Where do you find inspiration?
MB: Norman Foster, who is a famed architect and one of my biggest role models, credits everything around him as inspiring and I have adopted the same philosophy. That is how I feel about New York City; I never have to leave, as inspiration can be found on the street, a taxi; I can find it people watching as well as dining in a corner cafe.
JET: What do you consider your strengths as a designer?
MB: My strengths, because I am not classically trained, are my emotions! I am not contained in any box and can think and create in a progressive and avant-garde manner.My passion helps me create without limitations and with an organic state of mind.
JET: Describe the Mateo Bijoux guy.
MB: A man’s MAN! The Mateo Bijoux guy is handsome and not afraid to wear jewelry. He is not afraid to get his hands dirty (hence the symbolism of the nails and screws). He is not on-trend; he is about classic and timeless and study pieces that must compliment his lifestyle.
JET: Where do you see your brand in the next five years?
MB: I see the brand as a household name! A place for a man to come for all of his accessories: perfect leather bag, jewelry and much more.
About Tyrus Townsend
Cultural expositor Tyrus Rochell Townsend has written for Essence, Uptown, Vibe, BET.com, The Atlanta Post, Bleu Magazine, Details Style Network and numerous other publications. Read about his style musings at The Gentleman’s Daily and follow him on Twitter @gentlemansdaily and on Instagram at @tyrusrochelltownsend and @thegentlemansdaily.