Following in the footsteps of “American Idol,” “Iron Chef” and other reality shows, the “Smart Jewelry Show” is featuring a challenge to rock stars of the jewelry industry. These artisans and designers account for the most innovative creations in the world of ‘sculptured art’ worn by select consumers who want truly proprietary products.
Taking place at the Chicago Navy Pier, April 19 through 21, The INSTORE Show will set the stage for the best and the brightest bench jewelers in a complex challenge with the winners emerging victorious based upon their ability to meet and exceed the needs of customers.
Four challenges will be held:
The CAD/CAM Challenge
Competitors: Jim Tuttle, Green Lake Jewelry Works and Greg Stopka, Jewelsmiths
The Wax Carving Challenge
Competitors: Mark Grosser, M. Grosser Jewelry Design and David White, Aucoin Hart Jewelers
The Setting Challenge
Competitors: Mark Morrell, Cambridge, MA and Tony Baldwin, A.A. Baldwin Jewelry by Design
The Engraving Challenge
Competitors: Elichai Fowler, Paradise Ring Works and Marc Williams, MarCo Jewelers
Each contestant will be challenged to create an original design by customers, emulating their store experiences right at the Show. Various experts and retailers will be among the judges.
This time-honored craft is still very much alive and well, and though technologies have changed, the true barometer of excellence remains in the talent and eye of the individual bench participant.
The challenge is hosted by Joel McFadden, owner of Joel McFadden Designs, David Geller, Jeweler Profit Inc., and Stuller – who is supplying all of the materials necessary for this event.
Sunday from 1 to 3pm will feature the first challenge, as Tuttle and Stopka respond to a customer’s exacting request for a new jewelry design. The jewelers will then begin with the CAD/CAM which will be scrutinized by the panel of judges.
Wax Carving will take place Monday from 10:15am to 12:00pm. Grosser and White will employ their craft as they complete wax carvings. The interactive nature of the challenge will allow attendees to ask questions of the jewelers as they compete.
Monday from 1:15pm to 3:00pm Morrell and Baldwin, master jewelry designers, show their creativity and ability as they complete the same setting project.
Tuesday from 10:15am to 12:00pm will incorporate the last challenge in this competition. Renowned jewelers, Fowler and Williams, will be given the same style ring to embellish with engraving, utilizing their own sense of style and execution.
The Bench Pressure Challenge represents an exciting opportunity for jewelers to see the world of custom creations by the foremost members of this field. The area of custom design is becoming more and more popular as consumers vie for exclusivity in the designs they wear.
For more information visit www.theinstoreshow.com and click on Education & Networking on the left side, then click on Experience Areas – Workshops.