Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Opportunities for a New Generation of Crafts People

A new design community, aspiring to work in the jewellery and goldsmithing industry, will get the chance to enhance their skills, at the bench and in business when the leading charity for the professional training of goldsmiths’ launched its new training packages at New Designers on 26 June.

The Goldsmiths’ Centre, based in Clerkenwell, close to Farringdon Station and the jewellery district of Hatton Garden, is offering three new career launch pads to wannabe crafts people that will give them the perfect start to a future in the industry.

Available from October 2013 Setting Out offers those wanting to make the transition from learning to business or a career in a jewellery/goldsmithing workshop full time, flexible access to shared studio space in its state-of-the-art building in the heart of the creative community.

They will also get access to a Knowledge Programme that includes at least 20 days vocational training and/or professional development per year.

From January 2014 the Centre’s Making It programme of courses taught by goldsmiths for goldsmiths is ideal if you’re already working in the industry and want to develop your skills or are just starting your career.

Courses are offered in a range of formats including day-release for those working in the industry, evenings and weekends, and will range from diamond mounting, silversmithing and engraving to enamelling and diamond setting, with more to be confirmed – giving designer/makers the skills they need to get to the next level.

Also in January 2014, from 13 – 18, the Goldsmiths’ Centre will be running the Goldsmiths’ Company’s Getting Started Course , a week of intensive, interactive workshops and seminars to help new starters get to grips with setting up business on their own, or as part of a workshop.

Just some of the areas covered include; pricing strategy; making social media work for you; marketing and selling to galleries and specialist retailers – and much more besides. Places on this sought after course are, literally like gold dust so would-be participants will need to fill in and return an application form when application begins on Monday 14 October 2013.

Goldsmiths’ Centre Director Peter Taylor is looking forward to meeting the next generation of designers and makers at New Designers when he announces these innovative new programmes: – “What you learn in a university or college environment doesn’t always equip you for the highs and lows of getting into a goldsmithing career”, he comments “and graduates often find that they also need to hone their practical skills in the workshop. At the same time, those immersed in learning their skills at the bench don’t get time to think about the transition into a business of their own.

Our great new programmes combine these important learning streams so that those new to the industry, and those already in it don’t just get the chance to excel at the craft , they also get the business skills they need to survive in today’s volatile business world”.

One member of the new jewellery and goldsmithing community, Ivonna Poplanska has been able to get off to a glittering start, thanks to her involvement in the pilot stage of the Setting Out programme:- “My career has really taken off”, says Ivonna “Having studied at the University for the Creative Arts in Rochester I took the opportunity to move into shared studio space at the Goldsmiths’ Centre and enhance my skills through their Knowledge Programme.

In 2012 I won the British Jewellers Association’s competition to design a brooch for Her Majesty the Queen celebrating her Diamond Jubilee. She wore the brooch to church on Christmas Day – a real high point for me. I would never have won that competition without the skills I learnt here at the Goldsmiths’ Centre, and the exposure it has given me has resulted in new commissions and opportunities I feel much more equipped to fulfil.”

Newcomers to the jewellery and goldsmithing bench or business can get their own head start through the Goldsmiths’ Centre’s Setting Out, Making It, and Getting Started. They can start by taking a look at the Setting Out studio space at the Setting Out Open Day on Friday 12 July – from 10am.


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