The Jesmolite

Overview

A domestic lighting project, chosen to improve my aesthetic design and manufacture skills.

The Jesmolite is a small, cylindrical, bedside table lamp made from Jesmonite. The cylindrical elements slot together and allow you to rotate each piece, to achieve the perfect scattering of light for your situation.

The Jesmolite's outer appearance features a terrazzo effect, which was achieved by mixing multi-coloured Jesmonite chips into the mould during the casting process and later sanding down the outer layer to reveal the final pattern.

My contribution

Product design Manufacture Graphic design

The team

Year

2018

Process

The first stage of the project involved primary research - exploring existing market lighting solutions by visiting the London Design Festival. Ideation began, and an early decision was made regarding the overall aesthetics of the product: to be playful and vivid, while embodying the raw, geometric appearance of brutalism. To achieve this effect, I chose to use the new-material: Jesmonite. This two-part solution hardens to achieve acrylic-like qualities (a common material choice for obtaining the terrazzo effect).

I created card models to test the scattering of light from my solution. It was important that the emitted light not be too-harsh as my product is intended for use in a bedroom's ambient setting. Once a final design was decided upon, I utilised the on-campus workshops to produce a final prototype - this involved creating two custom moulds in which the liquid Jesmonite was poured into, and use of the lathe, sanding and polishing facilities to reveal the final terrazzo effect.

Outcome

This project challenged me into thinking more about the materials and manufacturing processes I use, as there were a few problems that I had to solve along the way. Jesmonite has shown itself to be an extremely versatile material, with a lot of potential for customisation; however, while jesmonite is not suitable for anything larger than batch production, I would love the opportunity to include it in a future project.

Overall, the project was a huge success, and I am incredibly proud of the outcome. The Jesmolite currently resides on my bedside table, serving its purpose as a beautifully designed, bespoke lighting solution.

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