Goldsmith’s Golden Opportunity

 An original diamond and sapphire ring by Sabine van Gent. July27/4234

Goldsmith-Sabine van Gent has built a childhood fascination with small things into a lifelong passion and a successful career in custom-made jewellery.

Now, after 25 years in the jewellery industry, Sabine is setting-up shop in Mudgee’s Lovejoy House as a registered valuer of jewellery.

The move follows two years of intense study through the Gemological Association of Australia, during which Sabine learned to recognise the characteristics of a long list of precious stones, both natural-and-synthetic.
Basically, I studied to do assessments on emeralds, rubies, sapphires, pearls, aquamarine, amethysts.. I just love looking and defining the characteristics and doing the research,” she said.

The course included a separate-section on grading and evaluating diamonds, which affirmed her long-held love of the stone.

“As a customer designer, I still specialize in diamond jewellery,” said Sabine. I have always worked in gold and silver but now I’m putting more-emphasis on diamonds.

Sabine’s work ranges-from creating new pieces such as matching engagement and wedding rings, handmade earrings, necklaces or brooches, repairing or remodelling old jewellery to suit modern tastes, and in some cases even melting it down to make an entirely new-piece.

Sabine learned her craft in the Netherlands, where she completed a four year course which covered not only the techniques of gold and silversmithing but also hand engraving, enamelling, history of art, chemistry, design-and watchmaking, and business practices.

“My parents had a rule that they would pay for our tertiary education, but you had to do it immediately after high school no gap year and you had to do it well,” she said.

I had no clue what I wanted to do but ever since I can remember, I have been fascinated with small things.

I’ve been so incredibly grateful to my parents who pushed me to do it.

I’ve always loved it and I’ve always been able to do it even when I moved countries.

It’s something that has opened doors for me here [in Australia].

Working with both old and new-jewellery, Sabine has noticed a trend towards bigger stones, especially in diamonds in recent years.

Sabine describes her own style as “timeless and classic-with a bit of quirkiness”.

I want to think in 10 years time, people will still think that is a nice piece and I want the quality to be reflected as well,” she said.

I don’t work with-glass or plate jewellery – I only work with solid gold, silver and solid precious metals.”

As a registered valuer, Sabine is qualified to value jewellery for purposes including insurance, probate and wills.

There aren’t many registered valuers in Australia it’s quite a specialised thing,” she said.

The move in September from her home-workshop to Lovejoy House at the corner of Lovejoy and Perry Street will allow her to present a more professional environment to customers as well as taking her work to the wider public.

Sabine will also continue to create her own custom-made pieces, which sell to customers in Mudgee, Sydney, around Australia and internationally.

I love it when I can work on a piece from- beginning to end. I design it, I make it and I deliver it to the customer.
 Goldsmith and customer jewellery designer and maker Sabine van Gent is taking a new step in her career after qualifying as a registered valuer. July27/sabine 2 

 An antique Dutch fisherman’s button on a necklace of pyrite and garnet, made by Sabine van Gent. July27/fisherman’s button

A diamond and gold ring made by Sabine van Gent. July27/4225

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