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Timo Mustajärvi

Master goldsmith, designer and jeweler who draws inspiration from aesthetics.

A goldsmith’s workshop in Fiskars, a center of Finnish art and design, makes handcrafted JALO metal jewelry. Founder Timo Mustajärvi thinks that the ability to visualize is essential for a craftsman’s profession. Timo also has a strong vision about the genuine, rough style of the jewels and about which jewels suit each customer best.

Much like a jewel, Timo Mustajärvi’s skills are the result of a long process. In addition to business, he has studied design and glassblowing, and his resume boasts the titles of carpenter, jeweler and master goldsmith. Becoming a goldsmith, however, was not something he planned.

When we studied noble metals at our stonemasonry school, I thought ‘no way, this is just so difficult.’ But once I had graduated, I briefly worked as a jeweler and really got into it. I continued my studies and became a goldsmith. I came to realize that the trade is not as traditional as I thought, and it presented me with an opportunity to express my vision.”

JALO jewelry draws inspiration from Timo’s aesthetic philosophy. The colors are from Mexico, the design language goes back to his scuba-diving hobby, and the surfaces are inspired by the rough look of rust. In his hands, a newly-made jewel already looks like it has seen a lot of life.

”When a jewel is finished, it’s important that no two are identical,” Timo sums up.

The ability to visualize is important in any handicraft

An unfinished jewel may bounce around Timo’s desk for ten years before it’s finished. And sometimes one day is all it takes. Timo has taught himself to stock his creative energy and take his time when making jewelry.

”In my philosophy, you first take on the task that feeds your creativity and gives you energy and zeal for your next task. If the most tedious and difficult job is up first, you postpone it and get back to it later. When you have to force it, the results are never optimal,” Timo says.

Spatial perception and the ability to visualize are important for a goldsmith. When crafting handmade jewelry, your vision is realized with your mind, your eyes and your hands working seamlessly together.

”If a jewel doesn’t look great on a customer, I’ve been known to refuse a sale.”

Timo leads the hectic life of a business-owner where most of his time is spent working directly with customers. Each and every customer is treated as an individual. At JALO jewelry, customer service is as personal and as genuine as the products.

”If a jewel doesn’t look great on a customer, I’ve been known to refuse a sale. People are sometimes taken aback but I justify my view by explaining and showing what actually suits them, leading to a mutual understanding.”

Even though each jewel is created for an individual customer, they are always recognizably JALO. When you work with your hands, it’s important that the results are aesthetically pleasing to their maker. For Timo, recognizability and personal style were underlying motivations for opening his own shop.

For him, it’s all about the experience. Actual sales come second. He wants customers to take their time, to draw them in to the story of a particular jewel. A typical customer showing up at our store is an intrigued window shopper who later converts to a buyer and, hopefully, a regular customer. Customers impressed by our jewelry often become return customers.

Who is Timo Mustajärvi?

Master goldsmith, designer and jeweler who draws inspiration from aesthetics.