Weston Beamor’s stand at the Jewellery & Watch Show Birmingham was packed with students from the School of Jewellery on 3rd February, 2015 to hear Andrew Morton, the company’s managing director announce the winner of its annual design competition for 2nd year students taking the university’s Higher National Diploma in Jewellery and Silversmithing.
This year’s competition brief was to design a solitaire engagement ring with a matching wedding band in platinum or 18ct gold to include a 1ct diamond and embellished, if desired, with smaller precious stones.
Announcing Lucy Whitehouse as the overall winner Morton praised all those students who had participated and said that the high standard of entries had made it very hard for the judges to make their choice. “The winners impressed us with their drawing, their CAD skills and their ability to deliver to the brief they were set in just six weeks,” he said.
Lucy’s winning design, which was influenced by Art Nouveau and is extremely feminine in its style, uses a round brilliant diamond to create an unusual vintage-style engagement ring with feature claws and a cleverly shaped band incorporating five small stones.
Speaking at the NEC after her win was announced, Lucy, who is 21 years old and comes from Worcestershire, said it was: “Amazing to win first prize” and that she was very much looking forward to the week of work experience with Weston Beamor which is a part of her prize.
This year is the 12th anniversary of the collaboration between BCU and Weston Beamor and Acting HND Course Director, Jo Pond, is unequivocal in her praise for the project: “Weston Beamor’s support has been invaluable, enabling our students to see behind the scenes of the company and to develop a greater understanding of the new product development process. This project provides a live design opportunity, with the company’s design team giving a valuable critique of the submissions and showcasing the winning outcomes at the NEC,” she said.
Three further students were also awarded prizes in the competition. Suzannah Key, who created a four-piece suite of bold, architecturally-styled stacking rings featuring a princess cut diamond and three accent stones and Aaron Cumbers, who opted for a sleek, contemporary look in platinum featuring a marquise stone with a minimalist setting, won joint third prize. Second prize went to Milena Vizuete-Courtes, for her unusual and highly-textured rings in a mixture of white and rose gold featuring a round-brilliant stone.
In addition to the work experience at Weston Beamor, Lucy Whitehouse will also receive a £500 cash prize with £250 for the student placed second and £100 each for those placed third.