Redefining Standards: Allied Maker
Redefining Standards is a showcase of young talent who embody the bold, relentless spirit of Cadillac. Through their work, these artists and designers are making their mark, daring to push the boundaries of contemporary design, and, in doing so, drive the world forward.
Hand-blown glass globes, precisely spun metal, and raw brass tube make up just a few of the components employed by Allied Maker to create their expressive lighting collections. Accented with elements of turned wood or brushed finishes, the pieces have become regulars in places like Sight Unseen OFFSITE, where independent studios flock to showcase their latest wares.
For those familiar with Allied Maker’s refined aesthetic, it might come as some surprise to find that the studio was initially founded as part of a self-initiated student project, right in Ryden Rizzo’s parents’ garage.
“I went to my professor and said, ‘I want make one new product a week and sell it,’” says Ryden Rizzo, founder of the New York-based studio. “I would make anything from cutting boards to chopsticks to a skateboard to a knife, a knife holder…” Of the myriad products and gadgets Rizzo dreamed up, only one sold: his lamps.
“What people were most interested in were my lighting pieces, which I would make very simple lamps, and that’s the only thing that sold,” recalls the designer.
That set Rizzo on the path towards what Allied Maker is today, a design and manufacturing studio focused on lighting that he now runs alongside his wife, Lanette Rizzo. “This company was not started with an investment and a business plan, it was started with a garage, a dream, and some basic Home Depot tools,” says Ryden Rizzo. Quickly outgrowing his parents’ garage, Ryden Rizzo moved the studio to a 6,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Long Island in 2014. “He went from fulfilling orders of single or 20 units to fulfilling orders of up to 400 units for one lamp type,” says Lanette Rizzo. “It’s no longer a one-man band. We have 15 employees now.”