Pa­tience is cru­cial for craft

Jew­eller loves turn­ing old to new

The Queensland Times - - NEWS - LACHLAN MCIVOR [email protected]

HE HAS seen more and more shop­pers head on­line to do their shop­ping but jew­eller Yung Tang will al­ways have a strong de­mand in Ip­swich for his spe­cial touch.

It is his abil­ity to turn the old into the new that is so strongly sought after.

While grow­ing up in Viet­nam, Mr Tang worked in a watch shop on week­ends and school hol­i­days.

It was there that he dis­cov­ered he had a knack for work­ing on “small, lit­tle fid­dly things” while re­pair­ing old watches and clocks.

“You need pa­tience to do it,” Mr Tang said.

“I’m the per­son that does have the pa­tience to work on the very, very small in­tri­cate things.”

After mov­ing to Bris­bane he com­pleted a four-year ap­pren­tice­ship in jew­ellery man­u­fac­ture and had his own busi­ness in the city.

He has been a con­stant pres­ence in Ip­swich for the past 17 years.

The 56-year-old ad­mit­ted the re­tail side of things was slow­ing down, as it was for many other busi­ness own­ers, but that didn’t stop peo­ple from seek­ing out his skills.

“Peo­ple are buy­ing things on the in­ter­net. They don’t walk around and win­dow shop any more,” he said.

Mr Tang, as well re­pair­ing watches and clocks, breathes new life into pieces of jew­ellery that have sat un­touched on the shelf for years.

Clients bring in old rings, neck­laces, pen­dants and bracelets and he works with them to sketch out a new de­sign to turn the metal and stones into some­thing com­pletely dif­fer­ent.

“I do all the de­sign and recre­ate a new unique piece of jew­ellery for the cus­tomer to how they want it,” he said.

“It could be an old thing they don’t wear any more or the ring from the break up of a mar­riage and they don’t want to wear it.

“I sit down and talk to them and ask ques­tions and get all the in­for­ma­tion to cre­ate a new piece of jew­ellery ex­actly how they want it so they are happy with it.

“(Then) I sit down and ac­tu­ally hand make it.”

Some jobs need just a few hours to com­plete, while oth­ers can take two to three days.

Pre­sent­ing the fin­ished cre­ation back to its owner is his favourite part of the job.

These days, a lot of jew­ellery is mass pro­duced.

“The de­signs, they do change over the times a lit­tle bit,” he said.

“It works out a lot of cheaper than a jew­eller who sits down and hand makes the piece of jew­ellery.

“But the qual­ity is dif­fer­ent.”


Photo: Cordell Richard­son

FO­CUS: Man­u­fac­tur­ing jew­eller Yung Tang has run his Ip­swich busi­ness for 17 years.

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