Three Birmingham City University School of Jewellery students have been shortlisted as finalists in an annual design competition run by Weston Beamor.

The second year students are studying for a Higher National Diploma in Jewellery and Silversmithing and impressed judges in a competition run by Birmingham-based casting house, 3D printing and bespoke manufacturing company Weston Beamor.

The brief for this year’s Live Project was to design a halo engagement ring and a fitted wedding band to sit alongside it. All designs had to include a primary gemstone or pearl, mounted in precious metal. Students were asked to tailor their designs towards 25-35 year olds.


Three potential winners – Ruth Hallows, Bethany Ross and Sarah Shiau – have now been selected, with the final results to be announced in February at the Jewellery & Watch Show Birmingham.

The presentation will take place at Weston Beamor’s stand P38-Q39 in Hall 17. Samples of the three winning rings will be made by Weston Beamor and displayed on their stand at the show.

“All three of the shortlisted rings reflect the designers’ unique perspectives, approaching the halo engagement ring from interesting new angles” said Richard Vinten, a bespoke CAD designer at Weston Beamor.

Ruth Hallow’s Celestial ring in platinum and yellow gold, which was inspired by the night sky, stars and constellations was praised by the judges for ‘thinking outside the box’ both in her interpretation of the halo design and for the high standard of her supporting work.

Bethany Ross used a circular cabochon opal in an intricate design inspired by the natural world and in particular forests and deer – especially antlers – which are very much on trend in home furnishings at present.  The judges praised Ross’s cohesive development of the concept and her innovative use of a diamond-set half-halo.

The final contender, Sarah Shiau, put forward a contemporary and elegant design giving a modern twist to a classic look. Shiau’s inspiration came from the landscape of America, particularly its national parks and the Grand Canyon where the rocks are formed into different layers of flowing curves. This student’s sketchbook and the thorough development of her design were applauded by the judges.