I am a firm believer of learning new things, giving yourself new challenges and seeing where it takes you. I have always loved jewellery and think that anyone would have to admit that it has a very alluring quality. Thinking back to when I was little I can remember my Auntie’s bead and shell collections and the lovely jewellery she created back then that always fascinated me. I was always interested in making jewellery myself, the big question was… would I actually be able to learn to make it?
Succumbing to this notion I recently decided to finally make a proper start on learning how to make jewellery. I decided to start small, taking it from the beginning with beaded jewellery. From the humble beginnings of beaded stretchy bracelets, I soon found myself making lovely tiger tail necklaces and a variety of different types of earrings! Today of course I have to limit myself to a single trip a month to Hobby craft as I can get a little bit carried away… its all part of the fun though… in fact it’s only August and I have already made half of my family Christmas presents!
At Harriet Kelsall Bespoke Jewellery we appreciate this fascination and hope to nurture it. It is a lovely way to spend some time doing something really creative and can be a lovely family activity and is popular with kids. We offer jewellery making sessions for children at our popular open day events which are held each year and even offer jewellery-making kits for children of all ages. Many of our designers showed an interest in jewellery from a very young age…. you never know, you might have a future jewellery designer on your hands!
Now that I feel perfectly at ease with my tiger tail, crimping beads and round-nosed pliers I’m looking to experiment some more with the more arduous elements of jewellery-making. I’m lucky enough to work next to a workshop of very talented goldsmiths so get to see them making engagement rings and wedding rings, and viewing the ‘up close and personal’ aspects of their work. It is an amazing skill to have and takes year of training and incredible skill. If you are in any doubt of this take yourself to one of the many exhibits and museums across the UK which display the stunning and intricate work of goldsmiths and silversmiths. If all of this makes it sound a little daunting not to worry… for all of you novices out there you can attend classes where experienced goldsmiths can teach you the ropes from the very beginning. You never know, you might even see yourself becoming an apprentice in a workshop or even designing engagement rings, wedding rings or eternity rings!
Of course if you are seriously interested in learning about jewellery making or designing there are a whole variety of options available to you with jeweller and design degrees in universities internationally. There are also a wide variety of practical and academic course available from The National Association of Goldsmiths such as the Professional Jewellers Diploma and Management Diploma to courses provided by Gem-A such as the Gem Diamond Diploma to workshops and lab classes to name but a few. Of course if your interests are peeked to more practical aspects you can always check out the world of other metal workers such as silversmithing and iron mongery! Whether it’s become a hobby or a career direction there is certainly enough appeal and variety to keep even the most easily distracted people going for a good while… why not give it a go?