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Apprenticeship wanted

Hello All, I have 5 years sales experience, 2 years of that in the
optical field. I 've always been interested in jewelry, and now I’ve
decided to make it a career. I want to move to Amsterdam, and I
would be interested in servin g as an apprentice or just working in a
jewelry store to learn more. I’d appreciate any advice about how I
should go about learning the trade of designing and repairing

Thank You,
Amy Carriere

Dear amy! Here are the two main links for what you have in mind.
Europe has a strong guild tradition especially the Holland and
Germany. These guilds used to organise the manufacturing branches
since the middle ages. They are very organised and controlled.
generally all handcraft is learned by an apprenticeship, accompanied
by technical school. It takes 3 years. Trainig is very good
depending on Your “Master”. Additional one or two years to become an
entrepreneur or “master” of the craft. Of course you mght find the
"nice guy" who will take you in and train you without the school,
saying he is doing you a favour. But here in Europe that is mostly a
ripp off. As an apprentice you would get some pocket money,
regularly employed as a helping hand you will hardly get more but
never get a degree. The other approach is the design academy
approach. There is a very good academy in Amsterdam, the advantage
here is it is bilingual, dutch and english. Both are listed below.
Imho get some 3d rapid prototyping or prototyping training either
before or after you learn the craft. 3D prototyping is getting more
and more important in this field. But the USA is way ahead so
training will be easyer to find there than in Europe. Note that
although in holland almost everyone speaks english Vaksschool will
be held in dutch only.

Opleidingen means education/schooling
Goudsmit is goldsmith
Juwelier is more of a trader of Jewels
Leer means apprenticeship
Leerling is the apprentice
Vakschool means technical school

Gerriet Rietveld Academie Info:
inde= x=general&subject=inleiding Click Study, then product
design, then Jewellery

Main Page:

Next: Vaakschool Postjesweg 1 1057 DT Amsterdam Tel. +31 20 618 12
25 (Director)

Dutch gold and silver federation (in dutch) Full of infos and Links

Hope this will help, Good luck and contact me off list for more, Poidi
Trauttmansdorff @F.M_Trauttmansdorff P.S. Amsterdam is a great city!

F.M., Thanks you for sharing this invaluable concerning
the Jewelry trade and education of Europe.

I, too, have the same desire that Amy Carriere posted. I’ve longed
to relocate to Amsterdam and frankly don’t know where best to start.

May I ask where one with experience in goldsmithing and watchmaking
would go about finding employment in Amsterdam or better yet
Switzerland where my great grandfather was born?

Thanks in advance.

The English system is rather different. You apply for a job at a
manufacturer who allows you “day release”.

Many of the London colleges - such as the John Cass - have 1 or half
day courses leading up to the City & Guilds certificate. Some are
taken during the day that the employer gives you waged and free and
the others are done in the evenings and at the weekend.

Many young people end up converting these courses into part of a
degree course and take a BA after 4 or 5 years.

The real problem is finding an employer! So many people end up
pumping gas or parking cars and doing it full time - using the
evenings and weekends to work.

I can’t praise the John Cass too highly. Courses are not overly
expensive, the equipment is good, the training is very thorough and
all the tutors are craftspeople - sometimes retired professionals
from places like Graff’s and Garrad’s.