This year, Susan Domelsmith’s recycled jewelry line Dirty Librarian Chains celebrates it’s tenth birthday! To mark the milestone moment, she’s just launched a new home line which she debuted alongside her most recent jewelry collection at pop-up shop Market 605 during New York Fashion Week this season— Emma was there to celebrate with Domelsmith at the kick-off event.
New York-based Dirty Librarian Chains jewelry reuses vintage jewelry components made in the USA, from the ’60s-’80s. Based in New York, Austin transplant Domelsmith takes design cues from herarchitectural surroundings. She shares her greatest triumphs and tribulations in a candid interview, below.
Rebecca Mir Grady: When/how did you launch Dirty Librarian Chains?
Susan Domelsmith: I launched my collection in 2004 when I was living in Austin, Texas. It was very organic. I started making jewelry for myself, then my friends wanted pieces, then stores and press started asking for more. Ten years later, I’m still loving it!
RMG: How did you get exposure for your line early on?
SD: Yes, I was lucky to have my jewelry in the coolest store in Austin, Factory People. When editors were in town for music festivals, they always stopped by. I had jewelry in Vogue China within 2 years of my launch!
RMG: What have you learned along the way?
SD: Always keep your work light and fun, and great things will happen.
RMG: How do you source your materials? Since you are working with vintage components, how do you deal with the supply and demand? Are some styles limited editions?
SD: Every piece in my collection is limited edition, and each is actually one of a kind since my chains vary slightly from piece to piece. I’m surprised, but supplies have never run out for me. When a style sells out, that’s a good thing, and I’m onto the next.
RMG: What has been your biggest challenge so far?
SD: Learning to trust my natural rhythm of what I am inspired to do, and to not force myself to do something I am not in the mood to do. Somehow, the work all gets done!
RMG: On the flip side, what has been your biggest success?
SD: Loving what I do, feeling I’m improving the quality of the environment, and inspiring others, and having so many wonderful followers and supporters.
RMG: What are you working on for Market? Do you have a new collection? Can you tell me a little bit about it?
SD: My new collection is inspired by bold retro-future shapes from the 1960’s, and the elements from Feng Shui. I also recently launched a home line with pieces that benefit specific areas for Feng Shui.
Images: Susan Domelsmith, credit: Dustin Cohen; Dirty Librarian Chains & Dirty Librarian Chains materials, credits: Susan Domelsmith
“R&Design" is a monthly interview series that features jewelry designer Rebecca Mir Grady, who launched a debut jewelry collection under her eponymous label in 2013, in conversation with new and established designers. The monthly guest column is a platform for the exchange of ideas, advice, and fashion-focused research and development strategies. Follow Rebecca’s adventures on Twitter,Facebook, and Instagram." This post first appeared on Past Fashion Future.