JA Affiliate Design Competition Winners

Jewelers of America has announced the winners of its 19th annual Affiliate Design Competition, held during the JA New York Show, Jan. 18-20.

Designers from Alabama, Kansas, Missouri, New Jersey, and Ohio took home the prizes in four categories (based on the cost of materials used): $1,000 and under; $1,001-$3,000; $3,001 and over; and a Buyer’s Choice Award.

The Affiliate Design Competition features jewelry designed and crafted by JA members nationwide. A panel of industry experts judged 27 entries on craftsmanship, marketability, practicality/wearability, and overall design. JA New York attendees determined the fourth honor, the Buyers’ Choice Award, with a separate ballot.

Category I ($1,000 & Under)
Jonathan Smiddy, Regan Jewelers, Garden City, Kan.; Title: “Accupressure.” A rutilated quartz pendant, cut by Rick Stinson in an elongated kite-cut cab. Smiddy completed the wire fabrication with laser and torch.

Category II ($1,001 – $3,000)
Bill Wismar, Metal Benders Jewelry Gallery, Fairhope, Ala.; A handmade fancy-link necklace in 14K gold with multi-color gemstones and pavé diamonds.

Category III ($3,001 and Over) Tie
Jason Baskin, The Gem Vault, Flemington, N.J.; A custom-made and hand-engraved 14K white gold pendant with African cuprian tourmaline (21.54 ct) as the center stone. The stone is surrounded by pavé-set, bezel-set and channel-set diamonds totaling almost 3 carats. Custom-cut diamonds dangle from the main pendant to finish the piece.

Randall R. Hurt, AVA Goldworks, Hannibal, Mo.; Concept: “The Earth is Our Pearl.” A Tahitian pearl necklace with a 14K white gold and 18K yellow gold oyster-like pendant featuring sphene, black opal, moonstone, and white and natural yellow diamonds. The pendant opens and closes to reveal the intricate design inside.

Buyer’s Choice Award
Mark Abbott, Mark Abbott Jewelers; Powell, Ohio.; A pendant made of hand-sculpted black jade with a marquis-cut diamond (1.73ct) center, and six opals inlayed on sides. Abbot finished the piece with a 14K white gold bail with opal inlay.

Jewelers of America awards the winners with an engraved trophy and a framed certificate.

Photos by Karen Janowski of Diamond Vision Services