katie deguzman & michael miller
A dingy basement studio isn’t where most people find their future collaborator and co-designer. Yet, for Katie deGuzman (right) and Michael Miller, it’s where their 12-year-long friendship—the basis for K/LLER COLLECTION—first began.
As fast friends studying furniture design at Parsons, the duo honed their metal restoration, lighting design, and jewelry skills separately before eventually coming together two years ago to get their own line off the ground. They’re joined by not only the desire to make goods from scratch but also an obsession with materials: The two hand-cast crystals, feathers, and other natural elements in brass, giving their pieces a tough-to-achieve polished, earthy vibe.
And as on-trend as their current quill-filled collection happens to be, they don’t pay too much mind to those sorts of things—they’re all about emulating a lifestyle. "We really look at this as, ‘What do I want to wear? What speaks about us?’ We’re similar in our aesthetic, so it works really well,” Katie explains. So well, in fact, that Helmut Lang boutiques are now carrying their work, and their following is growing exponentially. Looks like for them being stuck in the basement all that time was worth it. —carlye wisel
Behind The Scenes
The K/LLER Girls Play Favorites The two designers choose their most-loved things from each other’s lives.The camaraderie between Katie deGuzman and Michael Miller started with a bracelet: Katie bought one from Michael to hide a tattoo from her mom. Their shared aesthetic—this affection for things that are equal parts badass and beautiful—is what drives the jewelry line K/LLER COLLECTION that they launched since. From helmets to gold-plated wolf teeth, they show off how that vibe plays out elsewhere and what they’re itching ... READ MORE »
Watch the K/LLER Gals Craft Their (Diamond!) Of a Kind Edition Don’t worry: It still has plenty of fierceness.“We have been asked for awhile if we would ever use diamonds in the collection, and we’ve always been hesitant since neither of us are blingy girls,” says Katie deGuzman, half of the team behind the rad line K/LLER, which just entered the fine-jewelry fold. The solution? Taking a graphic, minimalist approach that doesn’t feel too glitzy. “You still get the tough K/LLER aesthetic with a bit of sparkle—the dark clashing with the sweet,” notes Micha... READ MORE »
A Peek Into the K/LLER Porcupine Process These two turn something cool into something even cooler.When Katie deGuzman, one half of the K/LLER COLLECTION team, stumbled upon a porcupine quill in a shop one day, she decided to play around. Casting a few in brass and falling in love with the outcome, she and her cohort Michael Miller decided to incorporate both the natural and juiced-up incarnations into a few of their tough, delicate pieces—including the limited-edition necklaces they made for Of a Kind. As badass as these quills look... READ MORE »