Scratching the itch to etch

Scratching the itch to etch

With their most recent move to a larger location on the Camana Bay Paseo, the ladies of 3 Girls & A Kiln wanted to bring something new and innovative into the shop for their customers.

It all came together when the Cayman Islands Government was assisting locally owned small businesses that were struggling or needed assistance due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government programme they applied for offered support packages for micro and small businesses to cover business-process innovation grants. The girls were given an advisor who guided them through the process. Once they came across the Glowforge 3D laser printer as a piece of equipment that would foster innovation and growth within their company, they applied and received their grant.

The Glowforge is a powerful laser cutter that has the ability to cut and engrave a wide range of materials including wood, acrylic, rubber, leather and fabric by simply using a beam of light the width of a human hair. To use it, a design is first created digitally and then sent directly to the Glowforge printer. It can also be used to scan designs and drawings onto your item of choice so that customers can personalise pretty much anything this want. One of the three "girls," Deborah Kern, explained how she took one of her daughters’ drawings and was able to scan it onto the laser printer and engraved the design on a piece of wood to add to her keychain. While Kern has not tried it out herself, she said that the Glowforge also has the ability to engrave on iPhones, iPads and laptops. The possibilities are endless, she said.

laser printed earrings
These intricate earring designs were created by 3 Girls & A Kiln using the Glowforge 3D laser printer. Photo: Alan Markoff

Over the holiday season the girls used the new laser printer to create Santa cookie trays, Advent calendars and personalised ornaments. Last month they hosted their first Glowforge class by making "welcome home" signage.

“We plan to host one class each month using the machine,” said Kern.

However, customised orders are available at any time and for any special occasion. This can be anything from wedding favours and baby shower gifts, to Christmas ornaments or other decorations. With Valentine’s Day this month, 3 Girls & A Kiln will be selling Valentine’s kits for children along with other themed items in the store.

“We also like to collaborate with other stores in the Town Centre,” said Kern, noting that they have already engraved wooden chopping boards from Bon Vivant with the family’s name as gifts.

For more information on what the Glowforge can do to personalise your gift ideas, email or visit the shop in Camana Bay.

This article was originally featured in the February 2022 print edition of Camana Bay Times.

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