Blacksmith Jessie

Written by on 8th May 2024

A Cork woman, is believed to be the first person with Down Syndrome to become a blacksmith in Ireland. Jessie from Castletownbere, began working alongside her dad Ryan when she was just sixteen, and is now a fully trained blacksmith who makes sculptures and jewellery.

Recently they have established an online company called ‘Born Transcendent’, which sells everything from handmade sculptures to affirmation fashion, and which they hope will positively alter attitudes and misconceptions around Down syndrome.

Father and daughter both use the ancient techniques of hot hand forging using manual tools which Jessie finds tough at times, but she always rises to the challenges and works through them, which makes the finished pieces even more impressive.

Ryan says, “all of Jessie’s sculptures are different and beautiful and that is the message we want people with Down syndrome to know – that even though they are different, they are all still beautiful”

Jessie enjoys the positive feedback she gets from all around the world and was thrilled to have her image spectacularly projected on a billboard in New York’s Times Square last year as part of an initiative celebrating the achievements of people with Down syndrome.

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