Are you itching to use a laser cutter, but first need to learn how to create your own digital designs? Good news! We’re now offering a two-day Intro to Laser Cutting and Vector Illustration workshop at Brit + Co SF for exactly this, taught by independent jewelry designer Allison Hughes.

In our two-part class, you’ll learn the basics of vector illustration using Inkscape, a free downloadable software. Then you’ll create your own designs for a laser cut necklace or keychain, and cut them out right then and there on our laser cutter! Each student will get to make one of these three-layer necklaces or keychains in a completely original design of their own using wood, leather and all the necessary findings. To get that creativity flowing, we’ll take you through the process of making one of these layered beauties, designed by our very own instructor, Allison.


– leather

– wood

– jewelry chain

– jump rings

– lobster clasp


– laser cutter

– jewelry pliers

– wire cutters

Once you’ve sent your vector files over to the laser cutter, put your first material into the laser cutter. We started with wood for a solid base layer, then tan leather and then blue leather for the top layer. Now take a look at your vectors come to life, pop out your freshly cut shapes and get out the jewelry supplies — it’s time to put together your necklace.

Open up a jump ring and add all three layers of your pendant onto the ring. We attached a second ring as well to give us more room to string chain through. Cut a piece of chain to whatever length you would like your necklace to be and string the chain through the jump ring attached to your layered pendant. Attach jump rings and a lobster clasp to the ends, and the necklace is just about complete! It’s only missing a bit of flair.

Here’s where we added a little bonus feature. We gave the tan strip of leather a gold touch using a paint pen. Just let the paint dry, and you’re done!

Wear it long or short, and make sure to let everyone know YOU designed it yourself!

Fancy making one of your own? Check out the Brit + Co SF site and sign up for our Intro to Laser Cutting and Vector Illustration class! Our first two-part class starts on Tuesday August 12th from 6-8pm and Thursday August 14th from 6-8pm.

Please note: This is a class for beginners who have never used a vector illustration program. Class requires that you bring your own laptop and mouse with a scroll wheel, and have installed xQuartz and Inkscape (available for free download) before the start of the class.

So will we be seeing you at Brit + Co SF — 550 Sutter St in San Francisco — anytime soon? We hope so! Even if you can’t make it to the class, be sure to stop by to say hi! Brit + Co SF is open Monday — Saturday from 11am to 8pm and Sundays 11am to 5pm.