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Brand to Know: Cave Collective

Claiming California as muse is well-trodden territory in fashion, but few have taken that old yarn to the lengths of Cave Collective.

The company’s debut jewelry collection is actually dyed in plant life scavenged from Golden Gate Park and Stinson Beach. Co-designers Cat Lauigan, a Parsons-trained illustrator, and Alex Wolkowicz, a photographer, met two years ago in Oakland, where both had accepted an artist residency at Lobot Gallery. The pair introduced their first jewelry collection last year, its ethereal forms based on the seaweed clusters and sunrise hues that Lauigan discovers on her daily meanders along Ocean Beach. Lauigan manipulates cotton cord, hemp, and raw wool—hand-dying the fibers with local flowers and produce—then ships the pieces cross-country to New York, where Wolkowicz casts the bronze hardware. The tasseled necklaces are reminiscent of both marine life and ceremonial tribal jewelry, an homage to Lauigan’s Filipino roots. As the label’s recognition grows, so does Lauigan’s aspirational green thumb. “My dream is to get a beach cottage in Bolinas,” she says, “one with my own dye garden.”

Established: January 2012
Founders: Cat Lauigan and Alex Wolkowicz
The Goods: Statement jewelry inspired by the Pacific coastline
Find it: Reliquary, 537 Octavia St. (near Ivy St.), 415-431-4000


Originally published in the June 2013 issue of San Francisco.

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