All That Glitters Episode Two: Hair Pin

As All That Glitters returns to our screens, we caught up with Andrew Howard, Lecturer in Jewellery and Silversmithing - Design for Industry, to discuss the second episode and get further insight into the world of jewellery making.

Andrew Howard
Lecturer, School of Jewellery

Week two in the All That Glitters Studio will sadly not see Steve return after his elimination last week. Steve, a refugee from Syria who learnt to make Jewellery in the Calais jungle, will be missed by many, but we are sure we will see him again.

This week we saw the remaining seven jewellers compete for jeweller of the week and to have their hair pin selected by the client.  In the bespoke challenge, the jewellers took on the task of creating a ‘spinning ring’. The ring was to be made to a set size for the central band with additional rings that move freely around the main band. The jewellers could adorn the rings however they chose in their own style to impress the judges. With the very tight time pressures we were bound to see some splits, some solder joint errors and some last minute final finishing changes to hit the beeps of Katherine Ryan’s timer. What a stunning collection they made!

The jewellers not only have to make a piece that fully functions to a set size that shows off their style AND impresses judges; but also have to entertain us all at home, explain the processes they are using, why they have elected to do it a certain way and talk to the producers off camera! I think we can all agree that the contestants, who have not had any training prior to walking on set, all did an excellent job of drawing us all in and keeping us all entertained.

Did you agree with the contestant rankings? What a plot twist that was for this series! The judges spend a long time deliberating and agonising over the decisions, and the jewellers all felt the changes after the first days filming, but they all said it gave them a different perspective on the next days challenge. I would have thought those towards the top would relax more, however during filming it was very much the opposite, all of them came out fighting each week to either move up the plinths or remain in their top spots. 

Bonnie won with her detailed hairpin and was chosen by client Alice, a nurse from Birmingham who isn’t able to wear jewellery at work for health and safety reasons but is allowed to wear items in her hair; and what a winning piece it was! The delicate movement in the upper section, the purposeful and appropriate texture applied was lovely to see, all of the pieces created were considered by the jewellers for fit, form and function.

That time pressure crept in again with some, but as they say, someone has to leave each week and sadly we had to say goodbye to one more jeweller. Nyanda is a pocket rocket of energy who has an amazing background.

Who will get Jeweller of the week next week? Who will be selected by the client in week three and who will go home? What will the jewellers make of the next brief? Tune in next Thursday, 9pm on BBC TWO to find out more.

If you missed the first episode, you can watch it now on BBC iPlayer.

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