kaminer haislip silversmithThrough my metalwork, I seek to enhance daily life by creating functional handcrafted objects that give a nod to the past but are entirely contemporary in form. I am inspired by the concept of enhancing domestic rituals through traditional metalworking techniques coupled with an innovative approach to design and production. Currently, I am the only practicing female silversmith in Charleston and my process is directly tied to the city’s immense craft traditions. As a silversmith working in Charleston, I am carrying on the legacy of the city’s rich history by employing techniques that have been used for centuries.

In my work, art and form combine to create designs for living—the function of the object contributes to that design. In my view, functional objects have visual and conceptual relationships to art and living. The clean-lined visual aesthetic, emphasis on function, and ergonomic relationship to the human form that characterizes my work further enhances that connection. For me, using a thought inspiring yet functional teapot enhances the process of making tea. When a beautiful, well-designed object and domestic ritual are united, a connection between person and object occurs and then an appreciation of function results. In my work, I strive to make these themes evident and to encourage people to interact with form and function.

Fine craftsmanship is also an important hallmark of my hand-fabricated work. All of my objects or jewelry items begin as sheet or wire and then are manipulated utilizing traditional silversmithing techniques, such as forging, raising, and fabricating, to create the final piece. My design approach focuses on a timeless quality that is durable and lasts rather than steered by fashion or fleeting trends. My concepts vary for different series, but all of my metalwork is unified by elegant design and clean lines.

Additionally, designing and creating custom commission jewelry and objects for clients is another facet to my metalsmithing. A commission piece merges the client’s vision for a specific object with my technical and artistic ability. For me this combination is a unique approach to designing, because it creates an opportunity for my work to take a new direction.