It’s almost 2011 and SoJones found out that blings are still the cool thing to wear and own in the hip hop community. The surprise is more delightful with the fact that blinged-out gear gets classier by the minute. SoJones talked to one of the man behind today’s sickest iced-out watches out there: Just Bling Watches, Carlos Zuniga.
Introduce yourself and how did you get yourself into this sparkly business?
Carlos Zuniga, lead designer at Just Bling Watches. I’ve been in product design for a few years now. I started with furniture, footwear, and here I am designing watches.
Who and what are the people and things that inspire you? Who in hip hop most embodies the Just Bling watch spirit?
I’d have to say that people like Kanye and Pharrell really inspire me. They think above and beyond or outside the box. Kanye’s music basically says, “this is still Hip Hop, but with a different approach.” Pharrell is another artist who does things differently. He has designed all kinds of things from furniture, clothing, and even bikes. These guys don’t try to invent a new genre of music, they just reinvent Hip Hop and that’s what I try to do with my work. Our watches are going through a bit of a transition. Just like Hip Hop has evolved through the years, we’re also evolving as a brand and I’d have to say that almost any Hip Hop artist would rock our shit.
You’re… designing diamond-clad watches. That’s a very unique job. Is it as glamorous as it sounds?
You don’t meet designers on any given day. You have better chances of running into a doctor, lawyer, or a dentist. So I guess it is unique in that sense. But being in the design field, I’ve had the opportunity of meeting a lot of interesting people.
What Just Bling watch would you recommend for SoJones readers this season?
The Armada in black is sick. It has two rows of diamonds on the bezel but in a size that’s not too crazy but yet, stands out. It has a black dial which is really hot right now and the stones on the hours gives it a nice touch of class. It also comes with a king size crown, which is another popular trend in watches right now. Another one that won’t hurt your pocket as much is the Tazo Steel (the all steel one in photos).
Some hip hop artists have toned down their blings, and there’s even speculations on how blinged-out items have lost their shine in the past few years. What’s your take on this?
In one way or another, bling has been around since the birth of Hip Hop. It just wasn’t always called “Bling.” I remember the big gold rope chains from back in the 80’s worn by Slick Rick and many others. Then in the 90’s, artists started wearing gold teeth and later stepped it up to platinum. And most recently, Kanye decided to replace his bottom row of teeth with diamonds. Once again, he has a whole new approach on things. These days, you can wear an all black tailored Prada suit with diamond teeth and be recognized as a fashion icon, like Kanye. Basically, I wouldn’t say blinged-out items have lost their touch. I think artists are reinventing it and this time around, it’s on a classier level.
Is there any celebrity endorsement yet?
There have been several celebrities seen rockin’ our watches. We have some exciting projects and celebrity collaborations we’re working on for 2011 but I can’t give you too much info. Don’t worry, it will be hot.
Any plans to ice-out more accessories and move on beyond watches?
I’m just focusing on watches at the moment but the possibilities are endless.
What’s the price range of Just Bling watches?
Just Bling watches range from $200 to $2000. It ranges depending on the amount of diamonds on each watch.
In terms of bling personality, which legend do you think would be great to rock Just Bling: TuPac or Biggie?
I think Pac would rock one. I think he was the flashier one of the two. I remember watching his behind the scenes California Love video where he was flashing all his cash. RIP Pac.
Check the full collection of Just Bling watches at the brand’s official website. And to kick off your 2011 fresh look, SoJones tapped Just Bling Watches to do a giveaway for you, readers!
JUST BLING WATCHES GIVEAWAY!
Here’s a giveaway unlike any other because Just Bling Watches is giving out only ONE very special timepiece from their collection: The Tazo Steel.
Yes, this luxury timepiece features a black dial with stones as hour markers, chronograph and date. The Tazo steel is made of pure stainless steel, knurled pattern crown and lugs. Thoroughly blinged-out, the Tazo steel is retailed at a cool $1,490.
Here’s How It Works:
1. As we mentioned above: this is not just any other giveaways, so you’ll have to do more than commenting about the watch. You’ll have to fill our comments section with one short paragraph telling us your new year’s resolution. And then, you’ll have to go to the Just Bling Watches Facebook page to click LIKE on their page. Remember, you’ll have to do both to have a chance in winning this gorgeous Tazo steel watch.
2. You have two weeks from December 17th – December 31st, 2010 to participate. Also make sure when you comment, have a link to somewhere we can contact you (like your SoJones account, your facebook, etc.). It makes it easier to contact you if you win.
3. Drawing for ONE very lucky winner will be held on January 2nd, 2011. The winner will be announced on this page and on the forums page (http://www.sojones.com/forums/).
Article Comments Lottery Rules
One item per winner
Previous winners must wait 30 days before entering this contest
Duplicate comments will not count, like posting “I love this forum” or “hi” 50 times.
Garbage or nonsensical comments will not count, like “awr#$ASFasdfkl”
Comments hating on other people will definitely NOT count.
U.S. residents only
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