I immerse myself in the unusual, be it golfing in Malibu, Calif., without knowing how, paragliding despite a fear of heights or joining a parade in Amsterdam to preserve old homes. (Of course, I usually drag my best friend Cathy with me to share in the insanity and offset the embarrassment.)


Naturally then, when I come across a jewelry designer who shares an adventurous life, I can't help but be thrilled. So, without further ado, meet Bernard Reller of Reller Gold in Gainesville, Fla. (which is the birthplace of The Gator Nation, FYI).


Majoring in physics in college, Reller never intended to go into jewelry, but ended up in the industry due to his father's prompting. Now Reller wouldn't have it any other way, saying it turned out to be a lot of fun.


He specializes in treasure-coin and nautical jewelry designs. He says he gets upset if sails on jewelry aren't set correctly and makes sure the ones on his are set right.


Reller's talents haven't just been bestowed on jewelry but also on Michael Jackson's elephant, Ali. In 2006, Reller collaborated on creating a creation for Ali, who resided at the Jacksonville Florida Zoo and Gardens as a gift from the king of the moonwalk. The elephant had broken off one of his tusks, so Reller cast a 6-inch-diameter cap protecting the rest of Ali's tusk.


The fun doesn't stop there: Reller's biography includes skydiving, flying lessons, sailing, hot air ballooning, and salvage diving among many other eclectic endeavors.


Although we have not met face-to-face, one thing is evident: Whether he is designing jewelry or preserving elephant's faces, Reller certainly knows how to have a good time, and I can't help but be a huge fan.


For more information on Reller, read the December issue of National Jeweler. Until then, visit Rellergold.com.


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National Jeweler

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Since 1906, National Jeweler has been the must-read news source for smart jewelry professionals--jewelry retailers, designers, buyers, manufacturers, and suppliers. From market analysis to emerging jewelry trends, we cover the important industry topics vital to the everyday success of jewelry professionals worldwide. National Jeweler delivers the most urgent jewelry news necessary for running your day-to-day jewelry business here, and via our daily e-newsletter, website and other specialty publications, such as "The State of the Majors." National Jeweler is published by Jewelers of America, the leading nonprofit jewelry association in the United States.