Celebrating 25 Years, NeoMetal's History

Celebrating 25 Years, NeoMetal's History

NeoMetal is celebrating our 25th anniversary! Twenty-five years of innovation and dedication to an industry we are proud to be part of. From manufacturing titanium jewelry for Gauntlet, the world’s first body piercing studio, to inventing the threadless technology that piercers around the world love, our company has come a long way. Join us as we look back at our history and honor the people that have helped us get to where we are today.

It All Started with The Gauntlet

An original Gauntlet catalog.

The piercing industry wouldn't be where it is today without Gauntlet, the first-ever piercing studio and body jewelry manufacturer. Founded by Jim Ward in 1975, what started as a small piercing studio with a one-man jewelry manufacturing facility in the back, quickly grew into much more. As the modern piercing movement began to flourish Gauntlet needed additional capacity to keep up with the demand and manufacturing operations were contracted out to other companies. Norsco Attachments, owned by Greg Siekierski and managed by his brother, Ted Siekierski was one of these companies.

Among the products Norsco designed and manufactured were stainless steel guiche weights, an entire range of internally-threaded barbells in stainless steel and titanium, and Illusion Rings.

A collection of the original products NeoMetal manufactured for gauntlet including illusion rings and weights.

In 1997, Gauntlet suddenly went out of business, leaving Norsco Attachments with an excess of body jewelry. Ted figured there was only one thing to do…start a jewelry business.

NeoMetal is Born

The first step to starting a jewelry wholesale business? Find to manage everything. Ted went to his wife Sue. We like to imagine the conversation went like this…

Ted: “How would you feel about selling body jewelry?”

Sue: “You want me to do what?”

Eventually, Ted and Sue created NeoMetal Incorporated. Norsco Attachments would remain the manufacturing side of the business, and NeoMetal would become the side that sold the jewelry.  Sue set up shop in her closet, and with little to no knowledge about the industry began calling studios around the Bay Area. By listening to the piercers and collaborating closely with the machine shop, Sue and Ted were able to keep up with the demands from the industry.

A history of NeoMetal's catalogs, starting with the first from 1997.As piercings started to become more mainstream, the demand for smaller more intricate jewelry increased. When piercers started asking for barbells in 16ga and smaller, NeoMetal and Norsco found out it was a lot more difficult to manufacture internally threaded bits that small. Ted got to work on some new designs and invented Threadless Body Jewelry, a technology that would change the piercing industry forever. (To read more about how Threadless Jewelry works, check out this article.)

His design was patented in 1997 and was officially sold to the US piercing market in 1998.An excerpt from the 1997 patent for Threadless technology.

After more than 30 years of producing high-quality machined parts for companies across North America, Norsco began exclusively manufacturing NeoMetal’s jewelry in 2018, and in 2021 NeoMetal California.

Since the invention of Threadless Jewelry in 1997 we have continued to innovate, always with the piercer at the forefront. Whether it be with product like the Universal Threadless System we introduced in 2015 and the first high-quality Threadless Circular Barbells introduced this year, or by offering easy online ordering and maintaining steady lead times of one week.

We’ve come a long way since our founding in 1997. We are delighted and honored that a small family business, which started in a tiny room, has had such a lasting impact on an industry with similar roots. Thank you for all your support over the last 25 years! 

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