Breaking bedazzled

Student-jeweller Isabel Gertler left a job in market research to take full-time jewellery studies at George Brown

Third-year jewellery-student Isabel Gertler has experience working with several different materials. But what’s her favourite?

“It probably depends on my mood that day,” Gertler laughed.

She’s been working with silver and gold, yet she said her favourite is acrylic.

“I really enjoy the acrylic — it’s sort of a quicker material to work with, it doesn’t require the same finishing that metal does and you just get that big pop of colour.”

Gertler decided to take up jewellery when her job in market research started to feel dull and she decided to do something about it.

“I was looking for a creative outlet, so I started doing silversmithing and copper enameling classes in the evening,” Gertler said.

Earrings by Gertler. Photo: Chau Nguyen / The Dialog

Enchanted by jewellery-making and thrilled with the idea of accomplishing more than just what she learned in her evening classes, Gertler decided to leave her job and study full-time at GBC.

“The program here is amazing. It’s so comprehensive, it gives us a lot of experience with all aspects of jewellery,” said Gertler.

She has also been making jewellery for her friends and family outside of her full-time study at the college. She’s been making engagement rings and wedding bands for her friends and family, and also has joined quite a few fairs and exhibitions to get her crafts out there — one of which is the her program’s Holiday Jewellery Sale.

The Holiday Jewellery Sale, held at George Brown’s Casa Loma campus on Dec. 12 and 13, is also a chance to give back to the community, according to Gertler. Ten per cent of the sales will be go to the local food bank to support families at holiday time.

With all the experience and knowledge acquired from the time she spent at the college, different art shows and from her internship, Gertler is excited to have her own jewellery brand someday. At the same time, she also feels like she still has a lot to learn.

“I’m going to do a field placement in the winter semester with a jewellery business in Toronto, and so I’m excited to get some local experience working for an established company here, and then we’ll see how that goes.

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Breaking bedazzled