The Path to Making Jewellery

A mini-series of short stories by Designers and Makers.

~ Part 2 ~ Ann Marie Shillito – her Lockdown Project.

Creativity is so important for our mental health and wellbeing. Over the past year especially, we’ve all become so much more aware of this. Having something to focus on other than work and the news, gives a chance for our minds to declutter. According to the Zen Habits website picking up a creative hobby can contribute towards living a more fulfilling life.

Serious ‘play’.

The idea of full time crafts people having a creative outlet might seem strange, however having time to switch off from a work-based project to focus on something just for our own enjoyment is invaluable. Creative ‘play’ can often lead us to new ideas and developments, ‘that project’ that we’ve been putting off for 6 months (or perhaps 6 years!) can finally get some attention. The path to making jewellery is no different, time off to play is needed.

Creativity in lockdown 2020
The path to making jewellery: Ann Marie Shillito’s lockdown project: 3D Printing onto lace.

Ann Marie Shillito uses a wide range of materials combined with 3D Printing to make her jewellery. Early in the U.K.’s first lockdown she took the opportunity to experiment with repurposing materials found in her home, and her 3D Printer. Ann Marie had seen other designers 3D print elements onto fabric before and wanted to try this herself.

Creativity in lockdown 2020
Ann Marie Shillito’s Digital 3D model on her Cloud 9 software.

Digital to 3D model and beyond.

The digital 3D model needs to be ‘sliced’ for the 3D printing process. This requires the model to be prepared and Ann Marie uses Ultimaker’s Cura software that formats the model’s file by converting it into gcode which describes the slices. The 3D Printer prints the slices, and builds layer upon layer of material with precision. The result is a physical 3D model. Read on here to find out more about this process in detail.

A sample of Ann Marie Shillito’s lockdown project.

Creating a wearable object.

Ann Marie chose to use lace for this project as the 3D Printer filament needs to get through the intricate holes in the lace, which fixes the layers into the 3D form realy well. The design aesthetics of the lace provides a beautiful contrast between both elements.

This finished brooch has lace fabric firmly fixed inbetween the pink filament layers. Beautiful!

Ann Marie Shillito’s wearable lace and 3D Printed brooch with a steel pin.

To create jewellery that can be worn lovingly, Ann Marie experimented with this process further to secure different fabrics and materials into the Print.

The path to making jewellery can create a lot of waste or excess materials. Ann Marie has been collecting and using the scrap filament from her 3D printer and repurposing it for future jewellery designs. This piece has been made by gently melting together plastic filament strands with a household iron and 3D printing onto it.

Ann Marie Shillito’s 3D Printed model and repurposed excess filament sample.

So looking forward to seeing more of the results of the lockdown project and repurposed materials from Ann Marie!

To see her current jewellery collections in store, please visit our shop here.

~Anarkik Creations~

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