Brendan and Ruth of i am acrylic have been designing their cheering, handmade acrylic-based jewellery since Brendan’s first fretsaw-cut bird keyring he made for Ruth in 2004. Rockets, birds, mountains, coastal scenes, ghosts, cacti, yachts… You name it. I’ve been familiar with their designs for years now and have watched the collection grow. They have their regular gig at Spitalfields and stockists around the country, but can also be found at countless craft and design events across the city. It was at one of these fairs that, while chatting, he asked what we’d like to see them create in the future. We bravely* requested power stations. Rather amazingly, that request was honoured, not only in the form of cooling tower brooches but a replica Battersea Power Station! You’ve gotta love these guys, that’s some customer engagement.
The little blackbirds are a classic appearing in almost every form, but one of their newest additions is the delightful Happy Sausage brooch – look at him there, naïvely excited to fulfil his fatal destiny. There are so many people I want to give this to I might just get it for myself. What?! That’s totally logical, they all get to admire it!
And for the cheese lover in your life… *Rapturous round of applause for the below*
As well as increasing their repertoire, the duo are passionate about collaboration, such as this exclusive Winter Sparkle Mountain brooch and necklace for UNLIMITED Design Shop in Brighton. So pretty and cool with just the right amount of delicate glitz that means you don’t look like you’re wearing a Christmas decoration. Their work also adorned the musician Piney Gir who rocked a custom made lightning bolt the size of her face for her recent performance with Gaz Coombes at this year’s Mercury Music Prize Awards.
You could argue that T***y D*****e rule the acrylic jewellery market, and you wouldn’t be wrong. They are very much an established independent brand now with a huge following. But there’s just something about i am acrylic that I find so incredibly charming. Maybe it’s the simplicity of their designs or the feeling it was cut, glued and made yesterday, bespoke. Maybe I’m just all about the underdog, and this one’s nipping at some heels.