Giving shape to a vision

Giving shape to a vision

Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder’ and Angeline Robinson and Rituparna Das saw beauty in garbage –– namely plastic. It is from plastic that these two homemakers create intricate pieces of jewellery. And they have named it the ‘Silver Nut Tree’.

Each piece is unique with detailed work and the duo can surely astonish one with their hobby. This passion began nearly a year ago for these friends-cum-neighbours when their daughters wanted to know about recycling and the benefits of it.

   “This really triggered something in both of us. We thought of doing something about it ourselves and that’s when it struck us that we should start making little decorative items out of plastic bottles,” says Angeline.

Though both have no experience in design or jewellery-making, their journey began by trial and error. They first started fusing and melting plastic and then painting it to see what comes out of it. “With little heat, the plastic takes interesting shapes and I slowly cut it up and put a few pieces together and made a flower out of it. Soon, we started taking some time out everyday and making flowers,” states Angeline, who used to be a banker.

But this was not enough — the thirst for doing something more pushed them to try and create little pieces of jewellery from plastic. That’s when, with a little brainstorming, they came out with different kinds of finger rings, hair-clips and earrings in the shapes of flowers, feathers, cones and even beads, all made out of plastic and adorned with beads and wire.

“Our families and friends were shocked and surprised to see how beautiful plastic can look. In fact, we never thought that people would actually want to wear plastic. But as soon as we put up the pictures of the products on Facebook, the word just spread and we received much appreciation for a conical-shaped earring,” states
Rituparna, who used to be a graphic designer.

Interestingly, neither of them have ever bought a single bottle of plastic. All the materials have been contributed by their friends and family. At times, they even find it lying on the road and they immediately pick it up and store it. In fact. a small corner in their homes is stacked with junk that’s waiting to be transformed.

The technique may seem very simple but the hours of labour and concentration required is cumbersome. At times, they spend close to three hours at a stretch but sometimes, it takes them an entire night to finish one product.

   “We use simple tools like plastic bottles, scissors and our hands to make them but to get the required finishing, takes hours. Since plastic has a mind of its own when you try and melt it, one can never get an identical pair of earrings,” says Angeline.

Since both are housewives, their lives revolves around their kids. “Only when we get some free time do we sit down to make something,” adds Rituparna.

    They also try and make maximum use of bottles. While the body is used to make the various pieces of jewellery, the bottom of the pet bottles are used to make jewellery pouches and the top is used to created to make magnets. And now, they are venturing into making pendants and neck pieces as well. “We discovered a way to get a unique print of a painting. Then we fused it between two sheets of plastic and caged it with brass wire. It turned out to be a beautiful neckpiece,” adds Angeline.

The best part of the jewellery is the fact that it is not only light in weight but also lasts for a long time. “Most of the items look very delicate but people tend to forget that it is plastic. Nothing can really happen to it. If it was perishable, it wouldn’t really be a problem  to start with, would it?” asks Rituparna.

The duo has also started taking in other junk materials like CDs, punctured tires and wires and metal washers. “Each day is an experiment and it keeps the creative juices flowing. We never started this with an aim of making something commercial. It was to show our children that there is beauty in everything –– even plastic. But now, this same junk is teaching us so much and helping us grow along with it,” sums up Angeline.

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