PaperCity Magazine

December 2018- Dallas

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72 A ntiques dealer and interior designer Loyd Taylor and jewelry designer Matthew Trent huddle over a velvet-lined tray in Trent's salon at the Plaza at Preston Center. They are deep in conversation about seven pieces of jewelry from Taylor's personal collection — works of wearable art Trent custom-designed for the dapper tastemaker. Nothing is subtle: a pair of yellow-gold and emerald cabochon cuff links, with a diamond set in the back of each; a massive cocktail ring nicknamed Gutsy, with a 15-carat yellow sapphire set in an elegant raised-pyramid; and the most eye-catching of all, a 60-carat bi-color tourmaline pendant necklace carved into the shape of a scarab — an antique stone Taylor found in San Francisco, which Trent designed into an 18K yellow-gold setting that mimics the inlay pattern on Tutankhamen's sarcophagus. Taylor picks up one of the rings, a tanzanite and ruby stunner, and slips it onto his fi nger. "That was born from a Lalique snake — a purse, actually" says Trent of the ring he crafted. "It was inspired by a handbag they did in the '40s." This sets Taylor onto a tangent. "Stones speak to me. I'm very inspired by Jean Schlumberger — pearls, coral. I also like Boucheron … And '20s and '30s Cartier." To which Trent chimes in with a laugh, "It's kind of hard not to." This launches the creative duo into a bantering critique of modern style — or the lack thereof. "There's no real style anymore," says Taylor of contemporary jewelry houses. Trent adds, "It's sort of like driving through the Park Cities now. All the house are just white." It is this fascination with beautiful, tactile objects that has bound Taylor and Trent since they met 24 years ago. Trent will often spend days, weeks, even months laboring over creating the perfect handcrafted jewel. Taylor is known for his impeccable taste and unparalleled collection of antiques, which he houses at Loyd-Paxton, a palace of Asian and European rarities. While these two men are industries apart, they both work in the rare-air realm of rare objects. "Loyd comes in. We talk about ideas. Then he goes away," say Trent of the creative progression, which typically begins with a stone Loyd brings in, followed by Trent's sketches and wax molds. "I do something. Maybe I don't like it. So I'll do something else. Loyd will stop back in." And the pressure-fi lled creation process continues. "It's a big compliment to me to work with someone who lives with such style," says Trent. The pièce de résistance of Taylor's Trent-designed collection is a pair of amoeba-like cuffl inks: massive in scale and made with 13 carats of rubies, which taper gorgeously into 3.5 carats of diamonds. Even the frames and the backs of the cuffl inks are bold, fi nely detailed, and exquisitely fi nished. These are not for the faint of heart. Again, inspiration started with Taylor, who latches on to designs rooted in nature, animals, sea creatures, and snakes — and all was then translated by Trent. "You see what you want," says Trent of the fi nal result. "With these, Loyd saw a paisley — and I saw an octopus." BY CHRISTINA GEYER PHOTOGRAPHY MISAEL RODRIGUEZ BY CHRISTINA GEYER THE BEAUTY OF TACTILE THINGS Loyd Taylor in Matthew Trent's jewelry studio Loyd Taylor's Matthew Trent- designed rings

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