s.33 Horn & Polymers

A piece of jewellery or decorative product containing horn and/or plastics showing innovation in design and proficiency in horn/plastics shaping.

This award is sponsored byThe Worshipful Company of Horners'

You are invited to design and produce distinctive Jewellery, smallwork or silversmithing taking innovative approaches in design and construction that incorporate and embody horn and/or polymer. 

The winning entry will feature fine detailing, functional craftsmanship and excellent utilisation of horn and/or polymers as a decorative and complimentary feature. We recommended that horn should be your first consideration due to its natural bi-product and eco-friendly existence. Horn can be ethically sourced as it is a by-product from the food and leather industries. Alternatively, or as well, entrants are welcome to use polymers, preferably recycling them for the jewellery piece.  

Entrants are reminded to design with costs in mind. The design emphasis should be on reasonable material cost with value added by creative design and high standards of craftsmanship.

Entrants are encouraged to design with an environmental approach in relation to the choice of materials. The final artefact should use horn and/or polymer as a significant material for construction. However, the incorporation of horn, even to a small extent will be looked upon favourably. Where plastics are used, acknowledgement will be given to the creative use of recycled materials. Each design must reflect research on the audience and market as defined by the entrant. 

Consideration should be given to visual concept illustration and photography and must feature an effective method of display/point of sale, ready for use within an auction event for a Horners’ Charity. As with any design brief, please ensure the specification is clear (materials, stones, elements, moving parts etc.).  

This brief has been written by Michael O’ Brien of the Worshipful Company of Horners in liaison with the GC&DC. 

A fantastic opportunity

Along with winning this named Award in the competition, the prize winner will also be invited to a Worshipful Company of Horner’s dinner to celebrate their Award. 

Entry Form Requirements

There will be placeholders on the entry form for you to explain your design concept and the tools or techniques / processes that you have used. We encourage entrants to use these placeholders wisely. The information you provide will be ensure that judges can make informed decisions. 

The placeholders are: 

  • Material information: Materials used to produce the piece/s. (Max 150 words) 
  • Processes used to produce the piece/s: It is important that you write down all the techniques you have used to make your piece and especially whether any elements are created using technology. This will be used in the judging process and you may be at a disadvantage if it is unclear how the piece was made. (Max 150 words)

In addition, if another craftsperson helped to finish / create your entry (i.e. polishing / engraving) they may enter your piece as a separate entry under the relevant craft section (i.e s.20 Polishers) This is a great way to champion the crafts and the collaborative nature of our industry! 

We warmly welcome The Worshipful Company of Horners’ to the Goldsmiths’ competition, and as new Named Award Patrons, we are excited to be able to offer a brand-new Award that is founded on the Company’s support to its charitable activities. This Award is for the most effective and decorative use of horn and/or polymers within jewellery, smallwork or silversmithing.

Crafting with horn is an art that is not now widely adopted and the Horners are promoting this award to help maintain this craft, which has been used extensively throughout history.

Horn is an organic material and natural plastic, it is used as a bi-product and The Worshipful Company of Horners’ adopted polymers (which covers a range of natural and synthetic materials, including plastics) as the contemporary equivalent of horn, a shapeable ancient material. Horn is one of the first materials used by civilizations and was used extensively for many household utensils; now plastics are used extensively in our lives. The Company seeks to promote and explore innovative ways of utilizing horn and plastics to recognise these versatile materials for use in a wide range of creative disciplines and creative outcomes.

The Worshipful Company of Horners is one of the ancient Livery Companies of the City of London. They are a lead sponsor in many activities structured to encourage interest in science, materials and innovative design. 

Additional sections to enter

Have you considered entering your piece into a 3D Design section or an additional 3D Craft section as well?

09 Jan

Online entry deadline (for ALL entries)

25-27 Jan

All 3D entries submission / post-in days @ Goldsmiths' Centre, London

28 Feb

Awards Ceremony @ The Goldsmiths' Hall, London

09-11 Mar

Collection & post-back of entries; The Goldsmiths' Centre, London


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