Brooks Salzwedel’s

Best Belt Buckles, October 2006
The term “wearable art” screams fashion disaster, evoking images of puffy painted sweatshirts and spin-art tees. Style hounds can keep their pants on, however, with illustrator Brooks Salzwedel’s Shane belt buckles. Following a stint at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, Salzwedel began encasing his line drawings of owls, birds, rhinos, deer, and other creatures in rectangles of resin. The result: beautiful, milky-colored belt buckles that come attached to a weathered leather strap, on which Salzwedel might also draw a pattern or two. The artist also plays with cityscapes and has a new line inspired by evolution. Made to order at $175 apiece, the buckles are as much an art investment as a fashion statement.