Melbourne Design Awards - City Design Awards

inSync design

Melbourne Design Awards 2010 - Winner

Project Overview

Launched in 2006 inSync design was initially inspired by the children's book, Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson, in which Harold creates a world around him by sketching with his purple crayon.

Led by Iris Saar Isaacs, inSync design transforms botanical and geometric line drawings into wearable art in the form of brooches, bangles, earrings and necklaces.

Through a constant and consistent exploration of design and technique a minimalist, contemporary and bold range of jewellery has resulted. A synergy of graphic design and contemporary jewellery, inSync is designed and made in Australia.

Project Team


inSync design
Iris Saar Isaacs


inSync design
Iris Saar Isaacs

Iris Saar Isaacs

Project Brief

When inSync was established, the initial goals were to make high quality, well resolved and distinct range of jewellery that has a ‘hand made’ feel, be colourful and be able to produce in small production runs. The wider symbolism of ‘creating your world’ is a focus of the design studio, keeping a playful, whimsical and fun approach.

This was achieved through combining traditional handmade techniques with industrial processes; giving the work it’s unique edge and high quality.

After much experimentation with a variety of materials and processes stainless steel was chosen for it’s unique qualities and through utilising industrial processes the refined industrial appeal that inSync is renowned for was achieved.

Keeping in theme with the hand-drawn wearable art, the new range of raw stainless steel brooches compliment the existing colour range. An extension of the highly popular raw earring collection, this range continues to explore shapes and forms in the material's purest state.

The result of this entire process is high quality, tactile, light and 100% hypoallergenic pieces that are inspired by and integrated into everyday life.

Project Innovation / Need

Iris noted that there was a gap in market for affordable but high quality contemporary jewellery. The majority of pieces sold in galleries and design stores were beyond the average customer's price range, and so inSync design developed as an affordable, high quality contemporary jewellery to fill the gap in the market, by combining industrial applications with the hand made techniques, making the process more efficient.

inSync design was the first studio in Australia to use powder coating in jewellery production and still today inSync’s work stands out with it’s unique aesthetics, clever resolution and high quality.

Traditionally, Powder coating was used in industrial applications such as colouring fences, gates, cars etc. inSync has refined the process and applied it to fine pieces such as jewellery. In order to achieve an even and consistent coating, a very thin layer of paint was applied.

All of inSync work is cleverly constructed out of one piece of metal that is cut with continuous lines that extend from the ‘drawing’ to become a hook (in the earrings), a pin and a catch (in the brooches) and a prong at each end of the necklaces that extends into flexible black neoprene tubing to create a continuous line the whole way around.

Design Challenge

Since it’s inception, inSync studio stood out as high quality, bold, graphic and illustrative style contemporary jewellery. Quite early on, Iris realised the Australian market was very small for a niche product like inSync’s so decided to venture overseas and spread the word internationally. To date inSync has exhibited in the UK, Italy, Japan, Germany and the USA. The importance of exhibiting overseas is tremendous, gaining an insight into the international market and communicating both with retailers and the end customer. By exhibiting overseas we understand specific markets and their suitability to our work both in price and aesthetics.


While inSync studio sources out the laser-cutting, the rest of the processes are all done in Iris's own home studio. No material is waisted, as the remainder of the stainless steel sheet is recycled and reused, and pieces that are damaged can be stripped back, reworked and repainted, so pieces are never wasted.

Also, by producing most of the processes in house, we minimise costs like transport, industrial machinery, utility costs of an external studio along with offshore production. InSync design is wholly designed and produced right here in Australia.