Biker Jewelry 101 - Everything you ever wanted to know about Biker jewelry a.k.a. Gothic silver jewelry and more

Define: Biker Jewelry (pronunciation: 'bi-ker 'ju-el-re\\ noun) - biker jewelry,commonly also sometimes known as rocker jewelry, gothic jewelry, rock and roll jewelry, rock n roll jewelry contrasts hugely from paradigm conceptions of delicate jewelry, and carries more weight and substance than its traditional counterpart. Biker jewelry is easily identifiable because of the bold statement it makes with its uniquely masculine look. It is commonly created using bulky and heavy precious metals; in particular sterling silver, the craftsman's prime choice of material. It is not uncommon to find real sterling silver wallet chains weighing in at an entire lb made by a famous biker jewelry brand. The mix of leather (sometimes alligator or snake skins), silver and loud designs sum up the essential elements of the renegade biker image. The good thing is you needn't be a biker or live the biker lifestyle to shack on biker jewelry. The biker is simply a cultural icon which epitomises the ability to ride free, to feel the wind blowing hard against your skin, to express your own quirky style without boundaries and to live without restriction. Wearing gothic silver is about making a resounding statement of freedom and independence.

The biker jewelry of today has evolved from simple traditional wallet chains and skull rings into highly intricate, custom, handcrafted, magnetically attractive pieces of donnable art made in sterling silver and other precious metals. In the world of biker jewelry, boldness, designs and motifs matter. The most commonly seen designs include an astoundingly extensive range of animal jewelry, skull jewelry, cross jewelry, fleur de lis jewelry, hearts jewelry and fire jewelry. Experts on biker jewelry treasure good silver designs rather than brands just like tattoo lovers value great ink designs. Patina on silver appears as a unique and beautiful polished black accentuating a background of glistening silver; an effect no other metal can replicate.

Los Angeles and Tokyo are the gothic silver jewelry of the world. Known as silver freaks in Japan, the first Japanese to admire biker jewelry were young tourists visiting Los Angeles in the 1990's who immediately took to the magic of the pioneer Gaboratory's first gothic silver designs.

First Generation Biker Jewelry and Leather Designers from Los Angeles:

GN - Gabor Nagy started Gaboratory
TW - Travis Walker (Gabor's student and employee) started Double Cross Jewelry
BWL - Bill Wall (Gabor's friend) started Bill Wall Leather or BWL
DP - Dennis Pollicino started Leathers and Treasures
RS - Richard Stark founded Chrome Hearts or CH
RM - Ryk Maverick founded Starlingear
VAL - Jerry Van Amburg founded Van Amburg Leathers

Popular Los Angeles Hideouts for Biker Jewelry: Santa Monica; Venice; Malibu; Melrose
Popular Countries for Biker Jewelry: USA; UK; Germany; Hong Kong; Japan; Taiwan

Biker jewelry, or rock n roll jewelry, was the first of its kind in that it catered almost exclusively to men, using bold motifs and masculine designs to symbolize strength, freedom and rebellion. Once thought to be reserved for bikers, renegades and rockers, gothic silver jewelry has crept into the realm of mainstream fashion for both men and women alike. Biker jewelry designers and sterling silver aficionados deserve much credit for the rising popularity of men's jewelry, rock 'n' roll accessories, and skull motifs in fashion.

Gone are the times when watches and neckties were the only accessories men could wear without attracting odd stares. In this day and age, jewelry has found its way into every well-dressed man's wardrobe, with sterling silver being the prime choice of metal. The potent fusion of leather, sterling silver and daring motifs sum up the primary elements of the biker image, and increasingly, men and women alike are being drawn to biker-inspired fashion as a theme for casual wear. Designers are answering to the call of the masses by offering new lines for both sexes which include biker-style leather jackets, clothing, baseball caps, shirts and, of course sterling silver jewelry. Biker jewelry, regardless of what naysayers of long ago have claimed, is surely here to stay.

In recent years, prices of gothic silver jewelry have risen so sharply that fans are increasingly unable to afford it. In response to this development, attractive alternatives to designer labels are being offered by freelance jewelers, who utilize the same sterling silver to create almost identical or similarly styled (inspired) designs as the originals.

Everything you ever wanted to know about Gothic silver jewelry and real silver alternatives to designer labels is available at Chrome Hearts.

The author is a New York-based veteran jeweler with 10 years of craftsmanship experience under his belt. He specializes in jewelry craft and fashion analysis. To find out more about Chrome Hearts alternatives and other challenges facing the brand, visit Chrome Hearts