Rise And Shine

THE ART DE­MANDS AC­CU­RACY AND UT­MOST AT­TEN­TION TO DE­TAIL. POL­ISH YOUR BA­SICS, HONE YOUR SKILS FOR A SPARKLING CA­REER.

India Today - - COVER STORY -

SSUHANI PITTIE

ome­times you have the lux­ury of choos­ing your path in life, but for a cho­sen few, life de­cides the path you will travel on. Jew­ellery de­sign is one such area which takes you on an in­cred­i­ble jour­ney. This is hardly far­fetched for the glo­ri­ous world of gems and jew­ellery, which is pure, cul­tural and in­flu­en­tial to the point of start­ing wars. That said, it is not a craft that can­not be learnt. While a cer­tain in­her­ent ap­ti­tude is vi­tal in or­der to suc­ceed, there are cer­tain nu­ances that should be and can be learnt. It is very ex­cit­ing to be a part of an in­dus­try which is con­stantly rein­vent­ing it­self and at the same time is hum­bling, as the her­itage of gems and jew­ellery is much big­ger than us.

ED­U­CA­TION AND AN­A­LYT­I­CAL

Study the sub­ject deeply, in­clud­ing the man­u­fac­tur­ing process. There are many short and long term cour­ses avail­able in In­dia. I am an un­schooled de­signer but if I could, I would choose to have a for­mal ed­u­ca­tion on the sub­ject. Re­search and study the var­i­ous pro­cesses of mak­ing jew­ellery, such as en­grav­ing, cut­ting, buff­ing and pol­ish­ing. Make it a habit to an­a­lyse all the pieces you cre­ate. When deal­ing with a pre­cious me­tal, a de­signer should al­ways make sure that a piece is per­fectly se­cure and fin­ished.

CRE­ATIVE SIM­U­LA­TION

It’s ex­cit­ing to be your own boss and work with pre­cious jew­ellery daily. How­ever, you have to be hon­est with your­self about whether you are cut out for this. Jew­ellery de­sign­ing may be the most ‘it’ ca­reer now but you will do much bet­ter if you re­alise early how cre­atively stim­u­lated you can stay. Re­mem­ber you need to be cre­atively rel­e­vant ev­ery day. When you’re deal­ing with jew­ellery, you’re deal­ing with peo­ple’s emo­tions. You can­not go wrong with a dad’s gift to his daugh­ter or a grand­mother’s love for her daugh­ter-in-law.

CRIT­I­CAL AND BUSI­NESS SENSE

One needs to be fa­mil­iar with in­dus­try stan­dards and busi­ness prac­tices as well as the tech­ni­cal knowhow of grad­ing, base pric­ing and pro­duc­tion costs. This in­dus­try needs ex­ten­sive work­ing cap­i­tal so plough­ing back of all prof­its is not un­com­mon. De­velop a keen sense of the pric­ing of raw ma­te­ri­als in the in­dus­try as it fluc­tu­ates a lot. One learns a lot on the job, so be ready for sur­prises. With time, one learns to ne­go­ti­ate prices and how to ac­com­mo­date fluc­tu­a­tions in costs and mar­gins on a daily ba­sis.

PASS­ING ON THE HER­ITAGE

Jew­ellery is deeply em­bed­ded in the coun­try’s her­itage and if you de­cide to dab­ble in it, do it with re­spect, hard work and per­se­ver­ance. Don’t ex­pect overnight suc­cess as it takes time to build trust, gain recog­ni­tion and good­will. Test your cre­ative flair, be hon­est, learn and lis­ten.

SHUTTERSTOCK

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