About Compass Rose Design Jewelry
Compass Rose Design designer line of wearable heirlooms is inspired by Victorian and industrial fashion. History, quality and elegance define our work and each piece has a story to tell. We are a small family business based in California's San Francisco Bay Area. Founder and Designer, Creek Van Houten, is a third generation maker of jewelry with recycled objects and rediscovered historical treasures. What makes Compass Rose different? We use real antiques. We solder whenever possible. We make history wearable.
I have been making jewelry and stained glass for the last fifteen
years with vintage and found treasures. Collecting from family members
and flea markets has been a lifelong tendency. I took apart my first
stereo at age 7 and my first broken pocket watch at 9. In both cases,
my goal was repair, but upon seeing the beautiful parts, I changed my
mind. Both my father and grandfather were dentists who crafted jewelry as
a hobby - I still use some of their tools.
After almost a decade of work in non-profits and then some PR and marketing, I moved to the Netherlands, where my mom grew up. After returning to California from Amsterdam with boxes of antique trinkets, I set up shop in our tiny San Francisco apartment to embark on the lifelong dream of working for myself. In 2009, I made the leap to become a full time maker metal alchemist.
My husband, Johnny, joined the company, helping with photography and soldering in 2011 to help keep up. His love of railroad history and trains has been a delightful addition to my interest in mechanical gadgets and Victorian everything. We've also found a way to use his rather large railroad date nail collection. Working together has been a fabulous adventure - We've learned a lot about family business.
The Compass Rose Design collection is made with authentic antiques and storied heirloom treasures. Our Jewelry collection captures the story and aesthetic of Victorian era - a fascinating moment at the birth of a modern world combining the forces of revolution, industrialization, innovation and an idealized past. The collection resonates with steampunk afficionados just as much as with those who simply appreciate beauty, quality and a story.
Everything in our shop is handmade in our home studio, just north of San Francisco, California, and reflects a bit of treasure renewed into a unique and beautiful keepsake. Thank you for visiting!
- Creek & Johnny Van Houten
Artists, Makers, Designers
Read about our shipping and return policies on our Customer Service page.
Wholesale inquiries welcome - find out more about our wholesale program.
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