1 Girl, 4 Looks: Peep A Jewelry Superstar’s Rustic-Cool Closet!

[UPDATE: This story was originally published on October 24.]
Every now and then, a bauble comes around that is so mesmerizing that it knocks the wind right out of us. And while our accessory interests often fluctuate from edgy to whimsical to minimal, there’s always room in our box for a free-spirited Southwestern addition. So, when we met local jewelry designer Tamar Wider of The 2 Bandits, we were smitten right off the bat. Her line's rustic elegance and California-meets-Texas vibe has us positively googly-eyed.
Naturally, we wanted to shine a spotlight on the darling designer and take a peek at her enviable duds. And it turns out, this gal’s wardrobe is every bit as cool as her bits and bops! To see what we mean, check out this slideshow of Wider's favorite fall looks and get to clickin'.
Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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Tell us a little bit about your designing background.
"Growing up in Texas and going to camp in Missouri at Lake of the Ozarks embodies the story behind my brand. My grandfather, JJ, had a farm that we grew up on and I have the best memories playing with my cousins in the backyard, catching fireflies in mason jars, and getting muddy in the creek. In high school, I started going on Phish tours and had fun selling patchwork clothing and hemp necklaces out of the back of my car. Why my parents approved of this, I have no idea! I then moved to Israel and went to school for Gemology. My career started in the diamond wholesale business and I designed in New York City, where I founded The 2 Bandits."

Tamar and her cute pup in her living room in a Mango sweater, vintage shorts, and The 2 Bandits jewelry.

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile
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When and why did you start The 2 Bandits?
"I kind of dance to the beat of my own drummer and started designing things that hadn't been done before. The 2 Bandits launched our flagship product, boot accessories, in 2008. I began designing jewelry and had a brand rebirth in 2011."

Working hard!
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Describe your personal style.
"Messy-neat, rustic, yet refined."

What are your fave shops in your hood?
"Ver Unica and The African Outlet."

We're dying for those baubles!
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How does your brand aesthetic play a role in your everyday life?
"I've always dressed in worn-out clothes and still do — distressed jeans and flannels with holes. I spend my day listening to bandit jams, such as Dolly Parton, Joni Mitchell, Van Morrison, the Dead ... you get the point. I can't remember the last time I took a blow dryer to my hair. It needs to be a mess, but messy-neat, of course! Every time I get off the plane in Texas, or I haven't seen my mom in awhile, she always says, ‘I'm going to clean you up like a bandit.’ Every piece I design goes along with this lifestyle."

Tamar in a swell pair of buckled Jeffrey Campbell boots.
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You’re originally from Texas, what’s one style-related tidbit you miss about it?
"I am so inspired by Texas style. It's amusing to see the runways this season filled with Texan glam. The most rad thing about Texas girls is they dress so cool and don't even know it."

Goldie locks! Tamar in BCBG pants, a Club Monaco shirt, and The Two Bandits jewelry.
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Where do you go to find style inspiration in S.F.?
"In the city, I dig the thrift shops in the Mission. Outside of the city, Guerneville near the Russian River is my favorite place on earth. That's where our recent lookbook was shot."

Lady in red! Tamar poses in her Hayes Valley hood.
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Who are some of your fashion icons?
"Bob Dylan. I just saw him in concert recently, and I love the whole Western vibe he has going on right now. In his prime, he really had it going on. He has a great hat record, too. Also, Kate Hudson. Do I even have to explain?"

Accessorized to the max!
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If you could wear one item for the rest of your life what would it be?
"The most epic pair of vintage, bell-bottom Levi's that are molded perfectly. But, I would need to cut them into shorts in the summer ... would that be cheating?"

Tamar modeling a cool fall getup! The designer wears BCBG pants, a Madewell top, vintage jacket and shoes.
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What’s the most inspiring thing about working in fashion?
"It's inspiring to always stay true to The 2 Bandits brand, but complement what's trending."

If you weren’t designing jewelry what would you be doing?

We love this rustic-cool compilation!
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Where do you go online for style inspiration?
"I don't really go online for style inspiration, but my favorite blog is Oraclefox."
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What's your favorite item you've designed to date, and why?
"All the neck statements. Bandit collar, bib, tie, and the bowtie. I love them because they add so much to an everyday, simple look."

Hats off! Tamar kicks it in Mango pants and thrifted boots.
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What’s your philosophy when it comes to accessorizing?
"Go big or go home!"

If your style were a song what would it be?
"'Wildflowers' by Dolly Parton."

Holy moly! Gorgeous jewel alert.
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What's one piece of advice you'd offer aspiring designers?
"Define your own aesthetic and outlook. Your designs will arrive more organically and easier, and you can adapt your brand to evolving trends naturally."

Photographed by Anna-Alexia Basile