Quest for apprenticeship

I was wondering if any of you could give me any advice inlooking for
an apprenticeship in Jewelry Design. I have already taken some
classes at the community college, but I have learned as much as I can
there without access to other equipment or materials. Many of the
people who have seen my work say I definetly have a knack for it and I
enjoy it immensly. How and where should I go about looking for an

Michael / QuestFox

In answer to Michael’s question about an apprenticeship: there was
an offer of one on Orchid within the last two weeks… I can’t find it
now, as my server is taking way too long to download, but it was
somewhere near Flint Michigan, I think. Could probably find it
immediately doing a search for “flint” on the orchid archive. good

You have taken a good step here on Orchid, but it would help list
members to know where you are. Then folks could let you know about
potentials in YOUR area.

John Dach

MidLife Crisis Enterprises
C.T. Designs
Cynthias sculptures are at:
Maiden Metals,
A small bronze foundry, not web site yet!!

If you don’t succeed the first time, then sky diving is not for you.
The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

If there are any tradeshops ( i,e, working bench jewelers who do
repairs for the trade), ask if they are looking for help. Many
jewelers start off as polishers, so you may have to get dirty for a

Hello Michael! Saw your post on an apprenticeship. It sounds like you
already have most of the components of a quality jeweler. So what
should you do now? Find the best shop, and finest craftsmen in the
area you want to work. Now just make sure they hire you. Resist the
temptation to take a job in a lesser shop. You won’t learn as much or
as quickly. Work for the best you can find; even for free, to get in
the door! Oh yes I did! Good luck! Tim

Hi Michael - Depending upon where you are located, I believe the best
way is to advertise in a local metals guild newsletter (usually free)

  • or to visit all of the metalsmithing programs in your area (private
    schools, universities, etc) and see if there are any bulletin board
    postings. (You can also ask the professors, but my guess is if they
    know of anything, they’ll tell their students first).

I happened upon my apprenticeship by being in the right place at the
right time. I visited an exhibit at the University of Washington and
happened to come upon Marlo’s request for an apprentice/production
assistant. I had no skills at the time (I mean nothing), but took a
few classes and made use of other skills (business background, etc.)
to help her out while we worked together to build my skills to meet
her production needs.

It has been an invaluable experience, Marlo is a great mentor, and I
strongly recommend it for anyone who is getting started. My skills
greatly improved over a very short period of time.

Good luck!
Lori Bugaj
One-Eyed Collie Jewelry Design

Hello Michael, offers an apprenticeship It can be
tailored to your needs as far as length of time and what you wish to
learn. is a 25 year old diamond jewelry design firm
located on the beautiful coast of Maine. Etienne started the business
as a small silversmithing shop in the early '70s and has grown it to
Internationally know vertically integrated jewelry company working in
18 kt and platinum, designing, manufacturing,and retailing as well as
wholesaling jewelry to about 150 accounts worldwide. We have 13
employees performing a wide variety of jewelry related occupations;
bench jewelers, stone setters, casters, model making, and doing a
wide variety of custom orders and repairs for clients from our
showroom. Our office staff is skilled in the use of computer graphics
to design our advertising and web site, There
will be chances to attend the major jewelry and craft shows to see
how the Etienne Perret Collection is marketed in the United States.
Our extensive library of jewelry books and magazines as well GIA and
other home study courses allows you to study written materials in
addition to the hands on experience. provides you with a fully outfitted workbench,
access to the other jewelry equipment and a computer internet
station. Etienne will give you a monthly review of your progress.
There is a monthly charge of $575.00 If the apprentice should chose to
work on projects for, there is the opportunity to
work up to 30 hours a week at a $6.50/hr. A year’s apprenticeship will
teach you the skills that are needed to survive in today’s
competetive jewelry world. As wonderful as the education is at the
major University art programs, it really does not do what a hands on
apprenticeship in one of the leading fine jewelry design firms can do
for you.

I wish you all the Best,
Etienne Perret
Designing Colored Diamond Jewels
20 Main St
Camden, Maine
USA 04843

Dear Michael, I am the person who sent a post recently looking for an
apprentice, specifically located in the central Michigan area. I
certainly don’t have as much to offer as Etienne Perret, almost made
me want to go work there myself, but you would learn all areas of
manufacture and be paid while doing so. I am specifically looking in
our home area as the short term benefits would not compensate for the
costs of relocating.

Our business is quite small, and we cannot offer benefits such as
medical insurance and retirement, so very often it works best if it is
considered a secondary income for a married couple. If you have any
questions or comments, please email me off-line.

Thank you,

I am in Spokane, Washington, though it looks like I will be moving to
Texas with some friends next year, late spring or early summer.
Though I may stay in Spokane if I am able to find something here.
Unfortunetly, Michigin would be too much of a commute for me. Thank
you for pointing it out, though. I will probably call around to the
jewelry places here in spokane and find out which places actually do
jewelry work. I believe, most of them send their work out to be done
somewhere else. The last time I checked, there were two that do
jewelry work on location. One I have heard bad things about from
people who had worked there previously, and the other has been making
cutbacks. I will try to find out if there is anyone else.

Michael / QuestFox

Hi Michael, I Know a really nice place in Woodstock, Vermont
(Beautiful Country!!) They have very good facilities. They do casting,
custom design, remounts, the usual repairs, and are a well established
and respected part of their community. You can call and and talk to
Nick Ferro at 1-800-538-9641, Tell him John Henkel suggested that you