Sarah (Placke) Demchyk
Brimmer and May Graduate 2005
Bryn Mawr College, B.A. in Art History, 2009
Gemological Institute of America, Graduate Gemologist Certification
What are you doing currently for a profession?
I am a GIA graduate gemologist, private jeweler, and designer with my own company, Cimelio Jewelry. My line of work involves getting to know my clients’ wishes and design aesthetic, maintaining relationships with a network of the world’s top gemstone suppliers, brokering diamonds and colored stones, educating my customers on gem and jewelry value factors/pricing, designing jewelry and providing a personalized experience throughout the process. While I can help with any jewelry need, my passion is repurposing and redesigning old jewelry and gemstones. I love helping clients take their outdated/unworn jewelry and helping them create jewelry pieces that are personal, relevant, and fresh. Each piece is a modern heirloom with a unique story and history behind it, and to me it's that sentimentality that makes every jewel so special.
How did Brimmer and May prepare you for your career?
More than anything, I think the fact that my teachers encouraged me to explore and develop my creativity. The wealth of courses and activities I had at my disposal, from studio art to plays to creative writing, really unlocked my potential as a creative individual and businesswoman. I still use what I learned about tessellations from my IMP math course in my design work. I could say my jewelry career began at Brimmer and May—I first started designing and making jewelry out of gold and silver wire and semi-precious stones my senior year. I had a trunk show in the solarium, and former Head of School Anne Reenstierna even bought one of my pieces. My teachers nurtured and inspired me to be an individual, and those are values I hold very dear.
What led you to attend Brimmer and May?
My parents moved from Connecticut to Boston as I was going into the 6th grade, and we were pressed for time finding a school. I attended the Advent School in Beacon Hill that went up to 6th grade, and their guidance counselors steered me towards Brimmer and May for 7th and onwards. The School stood out as an institution that focused on individualized attention for students, small class sizes, and a rich arts program. My parents and I felt that it was a place where I could put down roots and flourish in a close-knit, cultured environment.
What are you stand-out memories of your time at Brimmer and May?
Our senior trip to Interlocken is pretty memorable—pouring down rain and freezing the majority of the time, and as a whole we were pretty miserable. Yet I feel that that experience bonded us as a group, and of course we managed to laugh and have fun. I made friends at Brimmer and May that I will have forever. My closest girlfriends were the bridesmaids in my wedding, and that's a memory I will cherish forever.
Cimelio Jewelry strives to find the balance between the delicate beauty of antique designs and the sophistication of modern style. Inspired by the mathematically pure geometric shapes found in Medieval art and architecture (such as a trefoil leaf or the quatrefoils adorning a reliquary) and infused with an aesthetic reflective of today's style and sensibility, Cimelio Jewelry's designs are modern heirlooms--with a past, present and future all their own. Meticulously executed by local artisans, Cimelio's designs feature repurposed antique diamonds and gemstones. The spirit of Cimelio Jewelry--which means relic in Italian--is to craft pieces with sentimentality and style; pieces that defy trends and can be passed on from generation to generation. Cimelio Jewelry does not just create beautiful objets d'art, but beautiful moments in time. From a proposal, to a birthday, to a gift of love, every Cimelio jewel is created to celebrate these special moments in life.