Cut and Cast

Casting silver?  How about acrylic moulds?

Jeweller Daphne Olive combines old fashioned metal smithing techniques for gold and silver with laser cutting technology

How did you come across Ponoko?

I have a home/design store in Washington DC. When I went to furniture shows, I kept finding myself attracted to design using laser cutting in furniture and home products. I thought it would be fun to use the same process to make jewelry.I think I googled something like ‘laser cut bamboo jewelry’ and found Ponoko. (not actually sure what words I searched for) I had been talking to laser cutting companies that would only work with me if I did thousands of one design, so it was love at first sight.

How would you describe your design process?

Good question. Sometimes I start with an idea in my head. Sometimes I just doodle with my finger on the computer and see what I can do with my doodle in Illustrator. I hadn’t used Adobe Illustrator before working with Ponoko, so I spend a lot of time figuring out what I can do and then doing it.

What material/s do you use/ have you used and why?

I went into this wanting to make bamboo jewelry. Then suddenly I wanted to make myself a white acrylic necklace. Loved it and everyone in the store wanted one, so now I use both.

Have you been surprised by anything in the Ponoko process?

That it has been so easy overall. Getting such good customer service from a web-based business was also a big surprise.

Do you have any tips for other users?

I would say to read the Forum. I have learned really great things there.

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Andy Kerr

Can you expand on how you’re building the molds? Is it one layer of acrylic with a deep etch, or some combination of several layers? How long do the moulds last?


There’s nothing in this post about making or using acrylic molds! I see the finished silver product, but I’d like to know the process of how her stuff is made. I’m a bit disappointed.

Yes, please. Could she say how she gets to silver from acrylic and bamboo? Is she just using the acrylic and bamboo as templates for piercing the silver?

Beautiful work, though!

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