Jewellery Challenge All That Glitters

Jan Leeming

Shoreham 2007

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Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.

 

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Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.

JEWELLERY CHALLENGE - All that Glitters

Date: 22nd May 2021

I’ve said before that Journalists ‘piggy back’ on the ideas of others.

It’s happened again - a friend sent me this link - and of course I wasn’t approached for my views.  It'a a very emotive accusation - Stolen - hijacked more like.

https://www.professionaljeweller.com/all-that-glitters-jewellery-show-idea-was-stolen-claims-gutted-tv-presenter/

Actually they’ve written a relatively accurate and comprehensive article. What they missed is that, although the programme very closely represents my original concept, my whole idea was that a Challenge - like the Cookery, Pottery, Sewing and Painting Challenges - would be to encourage the viewer at home to say ‘Hey that looks good, perhaps I could try my hand at Jewellery making or Silversmithing’.

With my Concept, Amateur jewellers would have been used - not total beginners obviously - but people who’d reached the stage I did at Adult Education Jewellery Classes. They would have competed for a prize something like a Year’s Apprenticeship with one of the Celebrity Judges. That really would have been exciting to see a Semi-Amateur coached to take up Jewellery Making as a profession - and could have been the subject for another programme.

As it was they had professional jewellers competing for a Trophy - there was no thought to the involvement of the public. The pieces they made were way beyond the ability of an ordinary member of the public embarking upon Jewellery making.

Not only do Adult Education Classes and Classes in general teach a valuable lesson but they also perform a Social Role. I joined up two decades ago because I was actually rather lonely - loved jewellery and Classes served both purposes. I made one friend at the class and he and his wife have remained firm friends ever since.

Having forced myself to watch all six of the All That Glitters programmes they were to me interesting because I know the basics of jewellery creation and as a Competition for a Trophy it certainly filled the bill. I very much doubt the series will have encouraged members of the public to take up the craft - the level of achievement was Highly Professional.

The judges improved as the programmes continued, but I found them rather stiff and stilted and not the fun kind of judges I’d suggested in my initial brief.

And what can I say about the Presenter? Well, I’m only human and can’t imagine why the BBC chose to use a Left Wing Canadian Comedienne who knew damn all about jewellery making.

Having said that, Television companies in general appear to be using Actors and Comedians to front any programme vaguely resembling a Documentary.

They are different arts - an Actor or Comedian usually works to a script - and indeed the All that Glitters Presenter was out of vision for much of the time delivering a Voice Over in that Harsh Accent which anyone could have read. A Presenter/Interviewer researches the subject and then directs meaningful questions at the participants to elicit information about their craft.

I know the first programme in the series received poor reviews and have no idea how it has fared since then or what size of audience it attracted but what saddens me is that if the series didn’t fare well, then ‘Jewellery’ will be a No-No subject for future programming. I can think of almost endless possibilities for programmes revolving around Jewellery down the ages - History; Love; Famous Gems; Famous Collections etc - the list is endless.

It is interesting to remember when I first started out on the road attempting to launch a series on Jewellery Challenge (long before I approached the BBC in 2017) I was turned down and told that Jewellery was Elitist. What absolute rubbish. What woman and indeed more men these days, doesn’t want to have a piece or pieces of gorgeous jewellery.

I did a lot of work on another aspect of Jewellery but I don’t feel much like trying to market it. I don’t have the wherewithal to make a full Pilot programme and have already spent many hundreds on a 3 minute video promoting another aspect of Jewellery

Unfortunately I don’t have the funds or friends in high places and have explained in a previous Blog that trying to get an idea further than the drawing board is almost impossible. There are hundreds of Production Companies and each time you approach one, you leave yourself open to Plagiarism because it is impossible to Patent an Idea.

GOW (GRUMPY OLD - definitely not rich - WOMAN)

Stay Safe - Jan xx

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