Burntisland Primary School wanted to have some bespoke keyrings made. A week before the school broke up for summer, they decided to act quickly so they could be given to the teachers as thankyou gifts.
Meeting a tight budget
One of the parents at the school works with wood and can generate computer based artwork, so they asked him if he could help. Once he had an idea of what they wanted, he got in touch with me and we discussed materials, thicknesses and designs that could work well.
Which material to choose?
As the budget was tight, I suggested using 3mm plywood. It’s good value, robust and tactile, and looks woody. Choosing a thinner material means that cutting will be faster, making production time shorter, keeping costs down. And I had some in stock so I could make the keyrings quickly.
We discussed Perspex as it’s colourful, but it costs a lot more than plywood. The only option that would have been slightly cheaper than plywood is mdf, but it wouldn’t look as nice.
Jonnie said that the school were thinking about jigsaw piece shapes of around 50 x 60mm with a hole cut out for the split rings. I said that from experience, interesting shapes are more appealing than simple shapes like squares or rectangles. A jigsaw piece would be a fun and interesting shape, but would be robust in the parts of the design more vulnerable to breakage.
He asked if I could cut and engrave 70 keyrings from 3mm ply within a set budget. I thought I could, so he set about a final design for the school to approve.
Making the keyrings
After some thought, the school decided that the keyrings should be engraved with something fairly generic so that they could be used for different purposes. They chose ‘Team BPS’ with their motto, ‘Belong, Participate, Succeed’ below. After a final sanity check on my quote, Burntisland Primary School approved everything. I made a sample and sent a photo to Jonnie so he could see how they would look.
I made the keyrings that day. BPS were delighted with them, and with how quickly we had made this happen.