Q&A with Neophyte Jewels, Anna Stainsby
Toronto based Neophyte Jewels first came to my attention about eight months ago. I had noticed an influx of beautiful iridescent pearl barrettes and unusual twists on the up and coming hair trend on my Instagram feed.
After Marianne Theodorsen (forever muse) championed the brand I knew I wanted some of them too.
Anna is an incredible powerhouse of creativity, personality, and intelligence. This star in the making is one to watch. We now stock her handmade barrettes here.
Here is what Anna has to say....
JC: First sentimental piece of jewellery you bought/were gifted? Why is it sentimental?
NJ: I was gifted a pair of white and yellow gold hoops from when I was born. It's customary in Honduras to pierce babies' ears but my mother waited until I was old enough to decide for myself. By the time I got my ears pierced they no longer fit my lobe but I kept them anyway. Some two decades after they were first gifted, and after a few more holes, I managed to slide them in my cartilage and they haven't budged since. I love having that connection to my Honduran heritage with me everyday in the form of jewellery.
JC: What led you to a career in jewellery?
NJ: Whenever I thought about what my dream job would be, I thought of a career as a goldsmith or jewelry designer. I love working with my hands and creating wearable art. To me, jewellery is the first thing I put on in the morning and the most important part of my outfit. It makes me move and feel differently, so being at the helm of creating those feelings of empowerment/sexiness/strength has always really interested me.
JC: Advice to your younger self?
NJ: Put away half of each of your pay checks in savings. Budget. Sleep on purchases. Practical financial advice is something I think we should be giving younger people. Advice like "don't be afraid" just can't stick like practical advice can.
JC: How do you overcome imposter syndrome?
NJ: I'm still working on this one! I don't have a business background and only have a few months of metalsmith training, so it's easy to feel like I've just faked my way. But really, I've given myself an education in the past year. I think the only way to overcome imposter syndrome is to look at the facts: if you've succeeded, there's a reason. Set insecurity to the site and try to figure it out through logic. I've managed to get to where I am because I worked hard at two jobs, taught myself a lot, took risks. I put in the hours (often up to 14 hours a day/7 days a week). If you think of it like that it becomes easier to realize that there's a reason you got there.
JC: What helps inspire you if you ever feel like you have a creative block?
NJ: Exercise! I seldom want to actually drag myself to the gym when I'm feeling frustrated but it always helps unblock.
JC: Favourite Instagram account?
NJ: @marianne_theordorsen. Ultimate muse, forever and ever.
JC: Which three people would you invite to dinner (dead or alive)?
NJ: Jonah Hill, Emily Weiss, and my boyfriend. An odd mix maybe but I think it could work.
JC: Best album of all time?
NJ: I am so musically inept and very much aware that my taste in music capital-S Sucks! My favourite album to road trip to is the Hamilton soundtrack so do with that what you will.
JC: The best lesson you can learn in life is…..
NJ: Moving your body is the best cure. Keeping your serotonin levels high will make everything so much easier to handle.
JC: One thing you can’t live without…..
NJ: My Notes app, chock-full of lists.
JC: Best moment of your career so far?
NJ: Seeing our pieces in print! Thanks ELLE Canada!
JC: What are your short term goals?
NJ: Manage to juggle my Master's degree, my business, and mental health at once.
Huge thanks to this wonder woman! You can shop her pieces here .