The Man Behind the Brand
Growing up in Turkey, becoming a jeweler was far from the thoughts and dreams of a young Gurhan Orhan. Instead, always the “discoverer,” Gurhan pursued a variety of eclectic interests which included building hi-fi equipment, making watches in Switzerland and even operating a rock bar in Turkey. It was only when he held a piece of 24K gold that his passion for jewelry was born. It was in this sheet of shimmering metal (still carried in his wallet today!) that Gurhan envisioned a unique brand of jewelry transcending simple design; a brand connecting his customer with the values of ancient cultures.
Often referred to as a maverick, Gurhan defied the common wisdom advising him against working in 24K gold. It’s too soft, he was told. It’s too heavy and customers will never buy it, he heard time and time again. But Gurhan disagreed and studied the ancient craftsmen who were responsible for producing some of the world’s most magnificent and precious creations. By incorporating their techniques, Gurhan developed his own unique method of design and began producing designs that quickly gained popularity in the shops and bazaars around Turkey.
GURHAN The Brand
Shortly after Gurhan began his fledgling business, Fiona Tilley, an Australian business woman traveling on vacation, discovered the jewelry and was instantly enthralled with the hand-crafted quality and evocative beauty. Fiona laughingly admits to a bit of stalking, but when the two finally met they discovered a host of common interests, including their passion for the artisanal design found in ancient cultures.
Today, Gurhan is known for reincarnating the use of 24K gold in modern fine jewelry design. Together with wife and business partner Fiona, they operate GURHAN ENTERPRISE, which includes retail, wholesale and private label, from their Manhattan headquarters. Gurhan can also be found many days in his beloved Atelier in the trendy Tribeca neighborhood of New York City. It is here, hammer in hand, that the renowned designer spends his time putting the finishing touch on a client’s custom design, or envisioning his next One-of-a-Kind. Unlike many others, Gurhan is one of the few award-winning designers who continues to work on a daily basis with his customers. It is this intimate and emotional connection that sets him apart as a designer who truly understands what women want and earns him the reputation as a Renaissance Man.
How It’s Made
GURHAN is one of the only major jewelry brands that hand crafts every piece in its own company workshop. It is here that skilled artisans - all trained by Gurhan himself — produce outstanding designs with an unwavering dedication to superlative quality. Working in sterling silver, 24K gold and other high karat metals, every piece is treated with individual care and attention. Like so many of his clients, Gurhan has always believed in the value of hand-made craftsmanship and continues to offer One-of-a-Kinds and custom designs.