Meet the artists: The Jewellery Maker with a Twist

Deptford Foundry
7 months ago

With the commercial space of our Deptford Foundry development being completed and handed over to Second Floor Studio & Arts, we have been getting to know our new artistic neighbours that are now calling Deptford home as they set up their new studio space.

Meet Laura Nelson, an award-winning jewellery maker. Laura uses various materials and processes to create her work, creating unique and beautiful jewellery, made from items, such as recycled yoghurt containers.

Can you tell us a little more about your background?

I previously worked in product and exhibition design. Whilst working I was always looking for new materials and methods of production.

At this time, I discovered a plastic sheet made completely from recycled yoghurt containers. They had a marble-like and contemporary quality. I suddenly had a eureka moment and realised that the material would make interesting jewellery.

I ordered samples, cut some minimal shapes, drilled some holes, threaded the plastic on the chain and…hey presto, I had a necklace! Where does your inspiration come from for your designs? When creating the necklace from recycled plastic, I realised that the texture drew me to this material. It amazed me that something so overlooked, such as a discarded yoghurt container could be recycled in an energy efficient way to create something so beautiful.

I then began to look at other textures and worked to design small ranges that explored the textures and processes, such as casting and etching; from there the collection developed.

What do you love most about Deptford? When I finished studying at Kingston in 2012, I moved to New Cross, as this was an area that still had an affordable level of rent.

I would often walk to Deptford Market and do my shopping on the high street, particularly at El Cheap ‘ou, if you don’t know it, it’s a shop that has a very random stock of discounted groceries, the owner is super friendly and has pictures of his customers stuck on the wall.

I really like the personal touch that a lot of the businesses on Deptford High Street have; there is a real sense of independence here which is really appealing. What are you looking forward to with your move to Deptford? I am looking forward to being part of a community of like-minded creatives at the studios, it is great to have such a large space in zone 2 at such an affordable price. I can travel to Hatton Garden very quickly for supplies and am also enjoying walking to the studio from my home!

What are your dreams for the future? I want to expand my collection and have more work stocked by a growing list of retailers. I want to continue working on bespoke pieces, such as wedding and engagement rings.

I enjoy working with people to create one-of-a-kind pieces, it is an exciting journey to be part of!

I would also like to create a series of workshops that takes people through the whole process, starting with the design through to creating a final piece, made from precious metal. I envisage this workshop inspired by different textures which surround us in our daily lives.

Also here is a link to a short film about my work created by a super local film maker called Dom Soar!

To find out more about Laura Nelson, visit


Looking for a creative area to set up home? If so, then Deptford Foundry could be the place for you: 020 7526 9229 /