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How does apprenticing works

I am not at all familiar with how apprenticing works and would like
thoughts and suggestions from the group.

I have been designing and making sterling silver jewelry part-time
for about six years…my real job is my husband and I own a small
winery which is full-time for the two of us. I have my studio in the
back of the winery.

I would like to spend more time making jewelry and learn as much as
I can. I’ve spoken briefly with a local jeweler who I have kept in
touch with over the year’s and expressed an interest in
apprenticing. We didn’t go over any details other than I should get
back to him after the holidays and that I could start out by
observing first, then learn how to do repairs and set stones. I told
him about some of the classes I’ve taken and he also mentioned New

My question is, does a person get paid when apprenticing? I’m really
interested in working for this jeweler and I know he would be
flexible with my hours with my other business.

Holly Swanson
Holly Eve Designs

Dear Holly,

In the UK, we have a long relationship with apprenticeships. I don’t
know how they work in the US. When I was young (back in the dim and
distant 1960’s and 70’s), apprenticeships were very common, then
they went out of fashion. Recently, however, after lots of various
government promoted schemes, apprenticeships are back in vogue. They
have always been and are today are very good way to learn as you are
learning on the job, ie. whilst you are being paid.

If you have the opportunity to experience a genuine apprenticeship,
I would say go for it, as long as you are both happy with the
contract of such employment. Basically, it is a symbiotic sort of
relationship, ie. both parties benefit. You get the benefit of
knowledge and experience and your employer/teacher gets the benefit
of an extra pair of hands in his shop.

Good luck.


Sorry, I should have said that as well as gaining knowledge and
experience, you also benefit by being paid and the employer/teacher
as well as an extra pair of hands, also gets the benefit of having
someone working for him/her that they have educated to do things
their way - which must be worth your weight in gold - no pun