Waris Singh Ahluwalia is an American Sikh jewelry designer and actor. He immigrated with his family to the United States at the age of five, and grew up in Brooklyn, New York. He is based in New York City but has also lived in Los Angeles and travels frequently to Rome, Italy, Japan and Rajasthan, India, where most of his jewelry is made. He sells his jewelry through his company, House of Waris, and has collaborated with the fashion designer Benjamin Cho. House of Waris came into being after the owners of Maxfield’s in LA noticed Waris’s elaborate diamond rings and placed a large order, which sold out. He owns a tea shop in New York City underneath the Highline under his House of Waris brand. In addition to his work in jewelry, he has had a number of small roles in films, most notably by those of his friend Wes Anderson, and in commercials.
While in Los Angeles, I happened to go to Maxfield’s, one of the most famous and lavish boutiques in the world. I noted that people were literally afraid to walk into the store, given its lavish surroundings and prices – clothes, jewelry and vintage items. The place was frequented by Hollywood stars and as I walked around the store the owners noticed my rings and placed an order for a supply of rings to be delivered within a week. Each ring had a silver base with an elaborate assortment of diamonds and was quite hefty. The rings sold out. Before long, the fashion press started writing about them. I needed a name for this new endeavor. I chose ‘House Of Waris’. I tired to learn about the entire process of jewelry-making and spent time with big wigs in the jewelry industry and attended jewelry conferences. – Waris Ahluwalia