Video and Picture Gallery: Lowestoft silversmith creates piece for the Queen and holds exhibition at Ickworth House

She has been awarded for her deft touch and painstaking patience which turns slabs of metal into treasured pieces of silverware.

And now Miriam Hanid is following in the footsteps of her great grandfather by creating a special silver memento for Her Majesty the Queen.

The talented-young silversmith has been commissioned to engrave a silver badge on a hunting stick being gifted to the monarch for the Diamond Jubilee.

It comes 60 years after her distant relation Wali Mohamed crafted a silver-mounted ostrich egg teapot, and an ivory gong and striker, to be presented to the Queen during a visit to Kenya in 1952.

But this royal request falls during a busy period for Mrs Hanid who is gearing up for an exhibition at Ickworth House, Suffolk, launching this Saturday.


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Speaking about her royal commission, the 25-year-old, of Lowestoft, said: 'When I was asked to do it I had this feeling that I had gone back to my roots because you have the silversmith link with my family. I feel honoured that I am going to do it, but it is also kind of ironic that I am creating such a small piece for such a big occasion.

'It is reassuring to know that I am getting recognised for the skills that I have and the work I am doing.

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'But it is also quite daunting because it is the first engraving job I have done and it is going to be for the Queen.'

The badge, to be presented by The Drapers' Company, will be engraved with pheasants flying over a river bed of reeds and rushes, and is to be mounted on an rams-horned handled stick to be used by the Queen on hunting trips.

The water images on the badge compliment Mrs Hanid's other work including her curvaceous silver vessels which are said to be inspired by the seas near Lowestoft.

At present, all her pieces are formed from a small purpose-built workshop in her back garden using oak and beech tools made by her father.

But she admits that she was not totally aware of her great grandfather's talents as a silversmith before taking up the profession herself.

She continued: 'When I found out I felt like I had suddenly realised that this what I was meant to be doing. After all, my dad is quite technically minded so it runs through my blood.'

Mrs Hanid was a student at Kirkley Community High School in Lowestoft before studying at the University College for the Creative Arts at Farnham, and Bishopsland Educational Trust post-graduate training course.

Since then, she has exhibited work at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Saatchi Gallery in London, had examples of her work kept in collections at the National Museum of Wales, and received a silver award this week at the Goldsmiths' Craft and Design Council 2012 Awards.

Mrs Hanid, the artist-in-residence at Ickworth House, is creating a silver beaker commissioned by Goldsmiths' Company as a prize for a free draw open to visitors attending the Studio Silver Today exhibition.

The event takes place from Saturday March 10 to Saturday November 3 and will feature Hervey family's silver collection spanning four generations.

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