Last updateTue, 19 Jun 2018 9pm

Eight top bench jewelers to compete in Texas


A special holiday edition of the Bench Pressure Challenge coming to The Smart Show Dallas

(CHICAGO) - INSTORE magazine selected eight talented bench jewelers for its live Bench Pressure Challenge competition held at The Smart Jewelry Show Dallas on September 8 - 10 at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center.

Sponsored by Stuller and Gemvision, the battles demonstrate the excitement of seeing these artists work live, while discussions will focus on how bench jewelers - and their colleagues - can deal with the increased pressure that is an inevitable part of the busy holiday season.

INSTORE selected the following contestants:

Bench Pressure Challenge - CAD:

  • Brett Edmondson (Besco Custom Jewelers, College Station, TX)
  • Charlie Herner (Green Lake Jewelry Works, Seattle, WA)
  • Curt Vinson (Troy Vinson Jewelers, Granbury, TX)
  • Mike McGee (Dolmen Metalworks, Little Canada, MN)

Bench Pressure Challenge - All-Around:

  • Isaac Kornhauser (Bella Cosa Jewelers, Willowbrook, IL)
  • Marc Williams (MarcCo Jewelers, Luzerne, PA)
  • Amber Worley (Green Lake Jewelry Works, Seattle, WA)
  • Jason Marchiafava (J. Fava, Allentown, PA)

On Saturday, September 8, the four contestants in the INSTORE Bench Pressure Challenge: CAD are given just two hours to complete a CAD design for a wedding ring that meets the exact specifications of a hypothetical customer. After a break, the four jewelers return to work on a suite of earrings and pendants which must also follow requirements announced at the start of competition. A CAD winner will be crowned at the end of the day.

During the next two days, the other group of competitors take the stage for the INSTORE Bench Pressure Challenge: All-Around. They’ll demonstrate their skill with challenges that cover palladium (sponsored by Palladium Alliance International), engraving, and wax carving. The all-around winner will be announced at 2 p.m. on Monday, September 10.

Taking place on the floor of the jewelry show, the Bench Pressure Challenge seeks to elevate the professional status of bench jewelers by showing the audience the expertise required to turn basic ideas into brilliant finished pieces. With overhead screens giving attendees an up-close view and Joel McFadden - a third-generation jeweler and regular INSTORE contributor - returning to host the activities, these competitions are as interactive as they are informative.

Now in its fourth year, The Smart Jewelry Show Chicago takes place April 13 - 15, 2013; The Smart Jewelry Show Dallas is on September 8 - 10, 2012. (Educational conferences start a day prior to the show openings.) These one-of-a-kind jewelry events provide independent retail jewelers the world-class speakers, interactive education and exciting buying opportunities they need to grow their businesses smartly. The Smart Jewelry Show is presented by INSTORE and INDESIGN magazines. Learn more at www.smartjewelryshow.com.