A Day in the Life: Silversmith Demelza Newsom
Demelza Newsom was always artistic, but neither drawing nor painting was the right medium for her.
She found a way to fuse her artistic inclinations and her fascination with molten metal and workshops when she came across an apprenticeship at the largest gold and silversmiths’ workshop on the island. The rest is history. Demelza now spends her time crafting beautiful pieces for her business, Kink Links.
Let’s find out some more about this silver and goldsmith.
What’s your current job?
I am a gold and silversmith and I currently run my own business, Kink Links, making unique jewellery designs inspired by Guernsey’s heritage and beautiful coastline.
How long have you been empolyed in metalworking?
I have been working as a gold and silversmith for nearly 25 years but started my own business in 2015.
How did you get into this business?
I started a seven-year apprenticeship at Bruce Russell & Son when I was 17. Since completing my training I have worked in the business on and off, taking breaks to look after my children as my family has grown.
Describe your typical day.
My workshop is at the Guernsey Picture Framers and Art Gallery. It is compact, but it provides me with the space to create my own designs in casts and work on the resulting jewellery, as well as meet with clients to discuss their ideas for commission pieces.
What inspires your creations?
When I spend time with my family we like to visit the beach and search for new treasures that I can use to create casts. I then work hard when I make the jewellery to try and keep the natural texture of the shells. I also love island life and take inspiration from our local history and culture for new design ideas.
What is the best part of your job?
The part of my job that I enjoy the most is using my own imagination to create a unique item.
What’s your least favourite aspect?
Some commission jobs that involve larger numbers of items can be repetitive and because of that can also be physically hard work.
Who are your customers?
Most of my customers are local people who contact me with commission work or want to buy jewellery with a local connection as gifts for family and friends. However, I do also sell my designs to tourists who visit the shops in Herm and the Guernsey Museum sites.
What advice would you give to someone starting their own business?
Starting your own business can be hard but I would advise anybody to stick with it and to believe in yourself. It is important to listen to advice but don’t let doubters deter you. ‘You only fail if you never try’.
What are your goals for the future?
I hope to have even more opportunities to create beautiful items that celebrate the unique nature and culture of Guernsey. I would like to see my business successfully established as a well-known part of the island’s artistic community.
What’s your proudest accomplishment so far?
I have been proud to see some of the ideas I’ve had in my head for many years come to life and be loved by others.
When you’re not working, what are your hobbies?
When I’m not busy making jewellery, I like to unwind shooting at the archery range with the Bowmen of Guernsey.
Check out some of the beautiful works done by Demelza and find out more about Kink Links on the official website.