Who’s the Who in Acrylic Jewellery

Lock 24, Camden Market – Tatty Devine Display 2014

Glitter or jewels, fixed or links, handmade vs. laser cut, layers, etchings & inlays, you never knew so much could be done with acrylic plastic to make it in to stunningly interesting pieces of jewellery. Time for a look in to this growing trend and some of my favourite designers who make the stuff.

 

Tatty Devine

Tatty Devine started a lot of peoples obsession with the trend, I myself saw some of their large statement necklaces in a shop in Camden for the first time last year and was amazed how well they were doing! For me acrylic was something I had hacked at with a hand saw in DT at school, now it seemed to be the must have item to add to your jewellery box.

Tatty Devine is a totally independent British company designing and micro-manufacturing original jewellery in the UK. Their standout designs are all about expressing yourself in a fun and distinctive way. Founded by Harriet Vine and Rosie Wolfenden in 1999 after meeting at art school, this pair really wanted to wow and to express art, fashion & culture in their jewellery. Still running things from the East London studio they are now the hight of must have for this trend with their larger statement necklaces being instantly recognisable.

The price tag stopped me from grabbing up at least 8 necklaces up immediately and the sheer size of some pieces will be out of some peoples comfort zones but they are the elite when it comes to the trend. Find them in plenty of press pieces & fashionisters wardrobes or just check them out at – www.tattydevine.com – some very architectural themed collections have just come out!

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There are several other bigger brands pushing out plastic pieces but I believe a good selection are just jumping on the band wagon as it were, doesn’t mean there aren’t some nice pieces to be had but I would recommend shopping in person to check the quality for yourselves. But who I have seen and been impressed with, who has pushed the boundaries of the material and styled their jewellery in to the fashion trends of tomorrow? So sneak a peak at those experimenting and genuinely enjoying designing with some boutique brands and dedicated designer makers.

Little Moose

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Sparks Yard, Arundel – Little Moose Display Case

From humble beginnings Little Moose is a playful British fashion brand which brought itself to my own little piece of the south coast and really captured its audience. Starting in 2010 with quirky character led designs across a selection of mediums it is their well thought out collections & shapes that add some serious personality to an outfit. After being invited to The Southbank Centre to put on a a perspex jewellery workshop they continue to spread their wings and smile. Carrie & James are the wedded duo behind the brand which has now evolved to include products from their favourite brands; all they offer is designed to appeal to the playful nature of the customer.

Through complimenting colours and little splashes of metallic & glitter each piece is just eye catching enough to be appreciated while still being easy to wear. Get yourself some happy trinkets from their website – www.littlemoose.co.uk – they are reasonably affordable step in to the Acrylic jewellery world.

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Sparks Yard, Arundel – Display

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CraftyFox Market, Museum of London Docklands – Market Stall

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MANmade, Etsy – Stall Display

I have known Brendan and Ruth for a while now and they get all my love and appreciation in the world as they are two of the few dedicated designers that hand make all their pieces. Each piece is unique with inspiration from life with lots of buildings and everyday wonders even the odd vegetable with a cheeky smile. They are mostly simple in colour and are made up of layered pieces or cutouts keeping making them more 3-D and touchable.

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WeMakeLondon, Camden Market (2014) – Shop Display

I first came across a selection of their piece stocked in WeMakeLondon at Camden Market who supported only the most deserving young crafters and since then they have never been out of sight. They are part of some create craft markets and by putting on wonderfully inclusive workshops bringing along their tools and giving you the chance to have a go and learn some appreciation for the effort and skill that goes in to their pieces. They truly are ambassadors for the craft movement and for buying British and to give them even more brownie points they do commissions! So if you have a personal idea that you need some help making physically let them know.

Workshops at: MANmade Etsy Market – Truman Brewery, CraftyFox Market, Kachette – LDF, Renegade Craft Market – Truman Brewery

Shop lots of their stuff at – www.iamacrylic.bigcartel.com – or find them usual on a stall at their local Old Spitalfields Market just a stones throw away from their studio.

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Hand over the fairy cakes

I am always discovering new makers, Sally is a recent addition to my database after only just meeting her at Renegade Craft Fair, London but have been having nostalgic flash backs ever since. With a rich themes from everyones childhood and bold glittery colours HOTFC’s stall was a feast for the eyes.

Each piece starts with a detailed vector drawing which gets sent like magic to the laser cutters and comes back a lush acrylic puzzle to be put together, with one necklace having 24 individual pieces. Not entirely sure where the name comes from but a love for cake combined with jewellery seems to be a beautiful combination. I shall be keeping a close eye on what she comes up with next through – www.handoveryourfairycakes.goodsie.com – as her ideas expand, now lots of Sally’s designs come in enamel pins and even some fun patches. So get your denim jacket out and get some fresh pins for that baby then match it with a super soaker and off you go.

I have a couple pairs of glittery studs I save for a rainy day and they never cease to bring the sunshine, not to mention I will always support a fellow cat lover and so should you!

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Finest Imaginary

Kim Lawler a lovely Yorkshire lass working out of Huddersfield a far away land where yours truly went to university is the lady behind Finest Imaginary which if you can believe it is only half her job, with the rest of her time spent running a creative website business. You wouldn’t think as busy as she is that she gets out much but I saw her before christmas at BUST Craftacular (sorry to blag so many of your lovely Instagram snaps, wasn’t satisfied with the pictures my camera came up with).

With her own handy laser cutter, everything is made start to finish in her studio and there are some really clever ideas coming out of it. I am completely in love with her Succulent/Cactus terrarium designs, they tick all the boxes with the final detail being the etching on the clear acrylic. They are really thought out designs technically which appeals to my logical mind, her paint by numbers collection is so detailed they are even painted by hand to finish. I was particularly impressed with her offering for the Etsy – Natural History Museum collaboration her fox pieces were unique and a great representation of mixed media story telling pieces of jewellery. Check out her stuff at – www.finestimaginary.com – or browse either of her two blogs for some great creative advice.

Rosa Pietsch

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BUST Craftacular, York Hall – Stall Display

My newest addition to the list but thoroughly deserving of being included, Rosa’s design are more that simple images cut in acrylic they are wonderful patterns and have great variation inside each of her collections. Rosa makes a complete mix of multiple piece single layer designs, single pieces with etching and of course her speciality layered pieces with resin inlays filled with beautiful gold or silver leaf. I was really drawn to her stall at BUST Craftacular lots of metallic colour and different chain finishes of good quality, which is not a guarantee, meant I took a second look…then a third…

Rosa actually started out working with resin as a medium and branched out in to Acrylic I think realising their potential together, I have looked through years of her designs and their is a real evolution to her work as it only gets better & better. I honestly can’t wait to see what she comes up with next and will be adding something of hers to my Wish List very soon. Find Rosa’s sparkles on her easy shop – www.etsy.com/shop/rosapietsch

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Now I am mad for jewellery and have had a many happy debate with my mother over how much jewellery a lady should own and these acrylic delicacies are not her cup of tea but that leaves me wondering if acrylic is a passing trend or here to stay? I hope it is anyway, there is truly not enough variety and originality in the main stream jewellery market. I need constant infusions of creativity from boutique brands & designers such as these to keep me sane and my jewellery boxes full.

If you check out any of their social media channels at the moment you can see that they are currently experimenting with different ways to heat and manipulate their plastics and sharing tips amongst the group. I think its beautiful to see such friendly designers continuing to experiment and improve their products and not insularly but as a community. I know there are so many more designers and of course everyone deserves a go so I’m not saying it has to be the only thing you make or buy, but take a page from some of these true champions and go from there.

Enjoy!