3D Printing

These Ain't Your Granny's Brooches: Weidenbach's 3D Printed Granny Chips

Known internationally as one of the premier designer jewelry and silverware events, the UK-based Goldsmiths’ Fair is a celebration of the most creative and aesthetically pleasing trinkets produced in all of Great Britain. The event is split into two weekly sections that take place from late September to early October, and although the festival aims at celebrating traditional gold and silversmithing methods, this year will feature some high-quality jewelry manufactured through 3D printing technology. Presenting at the Goldsmiths’ fair this year is designer Silvia Weidenbach and her 3D printed brooches, beautifully and complexly designed ornaments made to add flair to your finest wearable garments. This collection of one of a kind brooches is called Granny’s Chips reloaded, and feature a number of uniquely shaped and colored brooches that are created using both traditional and additive manufacturing methods.

©Sylvain_Deleu_Silvia_W_15_ 15 The brooches are composed of dyed 3D printed nylon infused with various precious metals and stones, such as sterling silver, diamond briolettes (diamonds cut at their earliest stage), and synthetic gemstones. By encapsulating these traditionally used jewels and metals within a 3D designed nylon structure, Weidenbach was able to mix the traditional materials that have used in jewelry making since it’s conception with the fresh angle of additive manufacturing.


The combination of the two processes has resulted in modern looking brooches with a hint of classical taste, giving the potential ornament wearer a unique addition to their outfit. Weidenbach uses naturally based synthetic gemstones such as smokey quartz, spinel, and sapphire, along with blackened sterling silver and naturally-colored diamond briolettes, implementing these classically styled materials into the modernly designed, 3D printed nylon structure.


Although she was originally trained in traditional silversmithing and jewelry making, Weidenbach has been influenced greatly by the potential that digital design can offer her field. Weidenbach’s brooches were inspired by her deep-rooted interests in aesthetics, symmetry, and the fine line between the precious and grotesque. This fine line is certainly apparent in her latest line of brooches, which look alien and foreign in structure, but contain the precious metals and stones that have signified prominence in the jewelry world for so long. Her 3D printed brooches should hold up to be one of the most modern and unique displays at the Goldsmiths’ Fair. Weidenbach will be presenting her Granny’s Chips reloaded collection during part one of the festivities, which takes place between the 22nd and 27th of September. Although tradition still holds gold, silver, and diamonds on a level of prestige, this artist is disrupting that tradition and is introducing us to the next-generation of jewelry making.