Ron Anderson, a Michigan native, taught himself to make jewelry while working in the fashionable boutiques of Birmingham, MI and moved to NYC to work in high fashion retail. He began to sell his handmade jewelry on the streets of Soho in the late 80’s. David Rees, an Ohio native, earned an art history degree, moved to NYC and worked for high end fashion retailers Charivari and Linda Dresner.
They met in 1991 and formed the jewelry company TENTHOUSANDTHINGS. The name is taken from a line of the ancient Chinese philosophy, the I-Ching that is translated "from one thing begets the ten thousand things". The inherent concept of infinite creativity and constant evolution appealed to the designers who adopted that philosophy as their guiding principal.
The primary focus of TENTHOUSANDTHINGS has always been to work with the finest natural gems and pearls and develop original techniques to create unique jewelry. As self taught artisans, the designers have developed a reputation for original and unique work that has the integrity of antique jewelry but is distinctly modern. The esthetic intent has been to create jewelry that can be described as raw and refined. Initial collections were labeled “personal jewelry" by the fashion press and helped to solidify a new direction in fashion jewelry. Favorite materials include rare American natural pearls from the Mississippi River, rare natural blue, green and red ambers, natural sapphire cabochons, black opal beads, unusual colored diamonds. A signature is delicate beading both in 18k and oxidized sterling silver chain. Most recently the creative focus is a constantly evolving sculptural vocabulary rendered both small and extra large in gold and silver. Abstract organic shapes inspired by nature but not a literal redrawing. These forms have taken the shape of necklaces bangles rings and earring.
In 1997 they opened their first flagship retail store and production studio on 19th street in Manhattan. They designed and created the interior which was profiled in World of Interiors May 2000. It was a unique combination of organic materials, hand blown glass, rough hewn wood and wool felt that complemented the design esthetic of the jewelry and was a further illumination of their focus on refined handmade objects and natural materials.
They relocated their flagship store production facility to 423 West 14th street as the meatpacking district was being developed and again designed and created its interior. The signature interior elements of hand-blown glass and combination of woods were duplicated and the roster of designers expanded.