Our up-cycled brooches are made of 1980s Galalith, a synthetic plastic material manufactured by the interaction of casein (milk protein) and formaldehyde. The commercial name is derived from the Greek words gala (milk) and lithos (stone).
Discovered in France in 1893, Galalith is odourless, insoluble in water, biodegradable, non-allergenic, antistatic and virtually non-flammable.
Galalith could not be moulded once set, so it had to be produced in sheets, but it had the advantage that it was inexpensive to produce. It could be cut, drilled, embossed and dyed without difficulty, and its structure could be manipulated to create a range of effects.
Because the material cannot be moulded and also splinters over a certain size, Galalith was eventually replaced by other types of petroleum and plant based plastics.
So, all of our brooches ha e been made from pieces that were hand cut and polished ready to be made into 1980s jewellery. We have simply secured a modern pin on the back of the pieces.
There are loads of colours and shapes. Light and durable we like them clustered in threes on jackets, jumpers and bags. And at £5 they are an affordable way to rock a material that led the way for costume jewellery.