After a rigorous application and interview process I can hardly believe that I have been awarded a Queen Elizabeth Scholarship! Not wanting to get my hopes up I had tried to put the results out of my mind and was caught off guard when I received the phone call in the dairy section of Tesco’s and tried to stem the tears of surprise and delight. This scholarship will afford me a one-to-one apprenticeship in Antwerp, Belgium, focusing on the beautiful stone setting skill of micro pave.
The Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust (QEST) is the charitable arm of the Royal Warrant Holders Association. The Trustees look for well thought out projects and training, which will contribute to the pool of talent in the UK and reflect the excellence of British Craftsmanship as symbolised by the Royal Warrant of Appointment.
Micro Pave uses state of the art equipment that takes many months to master. It is practiced under a microscope that allows work with stones as small as 0.5mm. This technique will lend itself perfectly to my design style allowing the stone to become a part of the form rather than the focus of it. The minute stones when set together in this way create a sea of diamonds or a ring of light that is like no other. Barely visible to the naked eye over every tiny stone is four little grains that have been individually created and pushed over to hold each diamond in place. I will be off for four months so see you when I get back in April!