It is amazing how many unique and delicate jewelry designs can be made today with 3D printing. For example, a ring featuring 7,801 diamonds. Cloud Factory is a company that brings together professionals from many sectors to assist artists, creators and brands in the creation of jewelry using additive manufacturing. With just an idea the team takes care of the design, 3D modeling, sending samples, packaging of your jewelry ordered with your brand logo … all without the need for a minimum order, or inventory problems. We spoke to them to learn more about their company, their unique silver jewelry production and how sustainable they are.
3DN: Can you introduce yourself and describe your connection to additive manufacturing?
We are a group of very diverse people who come together from many different fields. Our founder Taavi has been working in the field of additive manufacturing for over a decade now – developing operating systems for FDM 3D printers and teaching students and fellow startups the benefits of 3D printing. Marek, our co-founder, holds a PhD degree in powder metallurgy. Before he started his journey into startup world, he was a scientist at TalTec University, Tallinn, to help solve various problems with industrial 3D printing. Kati, the sole female founder, worked as a marketing manager in one of the oldest and largest nightclubs in Baltics. She dealt with promoters and artists and kept the club updated on all things that interested them. Additionally, I have a degree as a creative entrepreneur with a focus on fashion design. Erik joined us from the worlds of affiliate marketing, investment gold, and cryptocurrency. We covered every aspect of our growing business. Taavi was particularly interested in additive manufacturing, and the possibilities it offers to showcase its benefits.
3DN: When did the Cloud Factory adventure get started?
Taavi met a superstar from the United States who decided to retreat from the paparazzi and make a peaceful retreat in Estonia’s forests. Taavi was very excited to be able to create some metal jewelry items for him and, together with Marek, they got a government innovation grant and developed fast, high-quality parameters for the university’s industrial 3D printer. Then, Taavi asked me to join the team to help with branding, marketing and design. I was immediately able to see the potential of this business beyond the star he met. From there, we began creating samples for artists performing at the nightclub that I managed and for other artists visiting Estonia. We used contacts from my previous work in the entertainment sector. We quickly saw the amazement in the artists’ eyes when we presented them with necklaces and rings with their logos and design elements. This business model immediately won them over, so we decided to expand the business from having a product store to not having our own sales channels and becoming a “white label” manufacturing service for many artists, influencers and jewelry brands.
3D printing: How do I make 3D printed jewelry
We only currently work with sterling silver 925. Our partner buys scrap from around the globe and turns it into silver powder, which we then use to 3D print direct metal. Directly 3D printing jewelry pieces from 100% recycled sterling silver is possible with a selective laser melting process. Many people have asked us why we chose this printing technology. It is the most resource-efficient printing technology, because it eliminates most of the complex manufacturing steps required when using traditional methods. It automates all manufacturing processes, which ultimately allows us to save time, materials, and the environment. It’s the technology that best suits our grand vision to build a network worldwide of fully automated, sustainable jewelry printing centers. This will offer a unique, fast, and carbon-free service for brands, creators, and individuals.
3DN: What are the advantages and disadvantages of metal 3D printing?
Technology offers many benefits, not just the ones mentioned. Technology allows us to offer flexible and fast production, customizations and limited runs. We can launch new products in days. This also makes it possible to fully automate this labor intensive industry. Complex 3D models require a lot of product development time. It can take several days to complete more complex designs in order to begin the sampling process. That’s why we are also working on development that can help us automate the part of product development that requires a lot of manual work: converting 2D designs into 3D. This would allow us to onboard new customers more quickly than ever before.
3DN: What do you think the future holds for additive manufacturing in the jewelry sector?
I think the process that Cloud Factory uses will definitely be a key element of the industry within a decade – relative to the increased restrictions within the industry to stop polluting actions, traditional manufacturers are looking for new ways to be more planet friendly and to meet the desires and of the next generation’s customers.
3DN: Last words for our readers?
Cloud Factory is a pioneer in the sustainable production of fine jewelry. Although the jewelry industry is highly lucrative, it has been severely limited by its need for production know-how, upfront payment and long development cycles. We are changing the game. We want to make the jewelry business more accessible to future generations. Our goal is to make it affordable, traditional and fun for everyone. Cloud Factory can be found HERE.
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