Last updateTue, 19 Jun 2018 9pm

The Ultimate Design Contest finalists announced by Instore and The Smart Jewelry Show


(CHICAGO) - The ten finalists of The Ultimate Design Contest, a unique jewelry design competition, have been announced by Instore/Indesign and The Smart Jewelry Show. From start to finish, the competition will take jewelry designs from renderings to finished pieces of jewelry, displayed at The Smart Jewelry Show April 24-26 in Chicago, IL.

The competition called for jewelers across the country to design a ladies size seven ring using an oval rhodolite cabochon or an oval aquamarine as the centerpiece.  The first phase of the competition narrowed down the submissions into two categories, CAD and hand drawings, with five semi finalists in each.  Entries were judged on professionalism and skill of presentation, creativity and design, and wearability.

CAD Rendering finalists:

  • Lisa Kirkawa of Kirkawa Jewelry Designs in Tucson, AZ
  • Mark Lauer of Mark Michael Diamond Designs in Maple Grove, MN
  • Tom Lineberger of Goldworks in Garden City, KS
  • Mark Maxwell of Mark Maxwell Designs in VistaCA
  • Zoltan David in Bee Cave, TX

Hand Rendering finalists:

  • Brandon Justice of Stall and Kessler in Lafayette, IN
  • Aleksander Chulyakov of Quick Fix Jewelers in BrooklynNY
  • Gary C. Wyant of G C Wyant Fine Jewelry in Indiana, PA
  • Gregory Crawford (two submissions chosen) of Gregory Crawford Design in Bolingbroke, GA

The ten finalists had seven weeks to complete their jewelry items, and submit them for the final phase of judging by March 26th 2010.  They were each given their choice of stone, a 9x7 mm oval cabochon rhodolite garnet or a 9x7 mm faceted oval aquamarine to create their ring. A panel of 5 judges will narrow down the 10 semi-finalist submissions to two finalists in each category.  The judges include Joel and Jennifer McFadden, owners of Joel McFadden Designs in Red Bank, NJ; Greg Sherman of Certified Jewelry Appraisals; Mike Cohen, Director of Jewelry at The Fashion Institute of Technology; and Duval O’Stein, Public Relations Director of the World Gold Council. The four finalists chosen will receive an all expense paid trip to The Smart Jewelry Show.

Attendees of The Smart Jewelry Show will be asked to vote on the overall winner, based on the following criteria: skill in execution of design, how closely the item matches the rendering, technical merit of design and execution, and wear-ability.  The contest winner, who will be featured on the cover of the June issue of Instore, will be announced on 1 PM, Monday, April 26, the final day of The Smart Jewelry Show.

The Ultimate Design Contest is a one of a kind opportunity that gives guild artists a place to shine.  What sets the contest apart from most jewelry design competitions is that entrants must complete at least fifty percent of the work going into their piece.  Reflecting what can typically happen at a retail store when a customer comes in for a customized piece of jewelry, The Ultimate Design Contest truly challenges a jewelers artisanship.

“The contestants have told us how much they appreciate that the contest is providing the center stone,” said Jim Reed, Show Director of The Smart Jewelry Show.  “This makes the contest affordable and practical for smaller designers and levels the playing field with designers who have larger budgets.”

“We love all colors of gems .... and our extensive inventory reflects just that. So, we are very excited that the ‘Ultimate Design Contest’ is promoting the use of color as one of it’s elements. The opportunity to enter this contest is a wonderful avenue for many aspiring artist, at all levels of their craft, to make this leap: designing and creating their winning piece. We are very excited to be part of it all,” said Shomais Shirazi of Gem 2000.  Gem 2000 is donating all of the center stones for the contest.

For more information on The Smart Jewelry Show and the Ultimate Design Competition please visit www.smartjewelryshow.com.