Oct 26, 2017 | By Julia

As 3D printing becomes increasingly popular among a new generation of designers and jewelry makers, one London-based artist is exploring the possibilities of online co-creation and collaboration with her clients. Hexatope is a new app that lets users experiment, develop, and design their own pendant necklace in 3D printed sterling silver or 18-carat gold plating. 

Spearheaded by UK designer Charlotte Dann, Hexatope straddles technological innovation and artisan craftsmanship: designs created on the interactive self-guided app are hand-produced by Dann in her East London studio.

“Hexatope is a visionary process that makes you the centre of the design process,” says Dann. “You have complete control over your pieces, making for a truly personal experience.” The basic idea is simple yet clever: Dann wants to give clients more control over the look and feel of their jewelry, adding a personalized, creative edge to the process of jewelry shopping.

A hexagonal grid forms the core of the interactive experience. A popup tutorial directs users to the app’s draw tool, which activates hexagons, allowing clients to draw diverging or converging curves in either single or double strokes. Editing tools facilitate the drawing process, letting users cycle through the various layouts and make adjustments.

Finally, a nifty animation setting visualizes the finished pendant as a 3D image. The last step is simply choosing which point the pendant should hang from, before the CAD file is sent off to Dann’s studio for 3D printing.

As Dann explains, the creative space between art and coding seemed to find her, rather than the other way around. “I started working on Hexatope while undertaking a Masters in Computational Arts," she says. "I was experimenting with using the framework of a hexagonal grid to generate art with code, and soon realised that the project integrated very well with jewellery design, my other vocation.” 

Dann decided to leverage programming to design and create real-life, tangible objects, which then get brought to life through 3D printing and traditional metalwork.

Currently in its crowdfunding stage, Dann has so far secured about £4,000 of her £15,000 goal on Kickstarter, with three weeks left in the campaign. For now, the London designer is only offering pendants, but has hinted at plans to expand Hexatope’s capabilities to include earrings, rings, pins, and maybe even print materials next year.

Rose gold will also be offered as an option in the near future, alongside Dann’s current materials of sterling silver and 18-carat gold plating.

To check out the app for yourself, click here



Posted in 3D Printing Apps



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Julia Craven wrote at 10/27/2017 11:51:35 AM:

Woah this is incredible! Instant buy.

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