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Featured Shop: This Ilk

Aug 12, 2013

by Tamara Bavdek

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

I’m Tamara Bavdek, and I’m the creator of This Ilk, which means of the same type or kind. I design and make lace statement jewelry inspired by vintage aesthetics. I pretty much do everything myself, including photography and graphic work, but I have recently acquired a bit of help from my good friend Marie-Laurence Guindon, who organizes my artistic chaos. We are based in Montreal.

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This Ilk was started with no particular plan to make lace jewelry – to tell the truth, I was never a fan of lace! After earning a bachelor’s degree in industrial design, I did a little existential questioning and decided I needed a change – a big one. So, after nearly 20 years of having long hair, I decided to chop it off. I knew that a touch of femininity would be lost when I cut my long locks, so I turned to the era of awesome short ‘dos and women who pulled them off with amazing style: the ‘60s, and more specifically, Edie Sedgwick. Extra-large statement jewelry and bold make-up did the trick for her, so off I went looking for a way to mimic a pair of Edie’s earrings.

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As I was researching, I found myself drawn to the simple shapes and art deco aesthetic in a lot of vintage laces from the ’60s and ’70s. That’s where my inspiration came from.

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My process has developed over the years, and includes seeking out rare, high-quality lace and other trinkets from a variety of mostly vintage sources. These materials sometimes fit my existing ideas, and other times inspire new pieces altogether. Other parts of my process include cutting, dyeing, and treating the lace so it doesn’t fall apart. I also stiffen the lace strategically for structure, assemble, and paint the various pieces so they are as comfortable and durable as possible.

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My industrial design background pushes me to constantly reinvent the notion of jewelry, or even simply the wearable. I want to surprise people with well-thought-out designs, and I enjoy using materials in ways no one has ever seen. In my case, sometimes the lace is the chain, the ornament, the link, or the bead in my designs. I think that that is what sets This Ilk apart; I have this constant urge to innovate in one way or another and improve my techniques.

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Today, my hair has grown back, but my passion for statement pieces has never faded. With help from believers at various stages along the way, This Ilk has managed to become my life and full-time job. I couldn’t be doing what I do without Etsy, and the positive feedback I get here really keeps me motivated.

Maker photo by Julie Artacho, studio and process photos by Josée Lecompte, item photos by This Ilk.

Featured Shop Archive

Lace ear jacket earrings - LUNAR ECLIPSE - Black, burgundy or dark green lace with gold or silver details
Lace ear jacket earrings - LUNAR ECLIPSE - Black, burgundy or dark green lace with gold or silver details
thisilk
$26.55 USD
Lace hair accessory - DAZE - White lace, brass hoop and brass findings
Lace hair accessory - DAZE - White lace, brass hoop and brass findings
thisilk
$28.11 USD
Lace earrings - PENDULUM - Black, forest green or burgundy purple lace, with bronze
Lace earrings - PENDULUM - Black, forest green or burgundy purple lace, with bronze
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Lace bracelet - Refraction II - Black lace and vintage brass chains
Lace bracelet - Refraction II - Black lace and vintage brass chains
thisilk
$99.95 USD
Lace necklace - NIGHTFALL - Ivory tassels, indigo blue lace, crystal and vintage brass (now in black)
Lace necklace - NIGHTFALL - Ivory tassels, indigo blue lace, crystal and vintage brass (now in black)
thisilk
$64.03 USD
Lace earrings - Talaria - Ivory with brass
Lace earrings - Talaria - Ivory with brass
thisilk
$24.99 USD
Lace necklace - Choker - Black or white lace
Lace necklace - Choker - Black or white lace
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Lace earrings - Tapestry - Wine lace & brick tassels with silver
Lace earrings - Tapestry - Wine lace & brick tassels with silver
thisilk
$40.61 USD
Lace earrings - Seaplant - Black or white lace
Lace earrings - Seaplant - Black or white lace
thisilk
$21.86 USD
Lace earrings - Tassels - White lace, green tassels & gold chain
Lace earrings - Tassels - White lace, green tassels & gold chain
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Body harness jewelry - Pocket - Black lace and gunmetal chain
Body harness jewelry - Pocket - Black lace and gunmetal chain
thisilk
$82.77 USD
Lace earrings - Spanish Grass - Yellow, blue or coral
Lace earrings - Spanish Grass - Yellow, blue or coral
thisilk
$26.55 USD
Lace earrings - Clouds - Black lace
Lace earrings - Clouds - Black lace
thisilk
$23.43 USD
Lace earrings - The Edge - Black lace with brass
Lace earrings - The Edge - Black lace with brass
thisilk
$20.30 USD
Lace earrings - FREE SPIRIT - White, black, burgundy or indigo blue lace with brass bars and yellow diamond shaped findings
Lace earrings - FREE SPIRIT - White, black, burgundy or indigo blue lace with brass bars and yellow diamond shaped findings
thisilk
$35.92 USD
Lace necklace - Vendetta - Black or white lace, with brass
Lace necklace - Vendetta - Black or white lace, with brass
thisilk
$53.10 USD
Lace and tassels earrings - Cleopatra - Black with bronze
Lace and tassels earrings - Cleopatra - Black with bronze
thisilk
$40.61 USD
Lace ring - Flowerchild - Yellow, purple, coral or blue lace on bronze ring
Lace ring - Flowerchild - Yellow, purple, coral or blue lace on bronze ring
thisilk
$17.18 USD
Lace earrings - Nightside - Black and silver, white and bronze or indigo and brass
Lace earrings - Nightside - Black and silver, white and bronze or indigo and brass
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Body harness jewelry - Bretelles - Black or ivory lace with your choice of chain
Body harness jewelry - Bretelles - Black or ivory lace with your choice of chain
thisilk
$99.95 USD
Body harness jewelry - Belicosa Inca - Ivory lace with gold and bronze chain
Body harness jewelry - Belicosa Inca - Ivory lace with gold and bronze chain
thisilk
$204.59 USD
Lace and tassel necklace - BANDERA - Ivory tassels, vintage burgundy lace and vintage chain
Lace and tassel necklace - BANDERA - Ivory tassels, vintage burgundy lace and vintage chain
thisilk
$87.46 USD
Lace bracelet - Multichain - Black lace with silver chain
Lace bracelet - Multichain - Black lace with silver chain
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Lace necklace - Hamsa - Ivory lace with copper & exotic beads
Lace necklace - Hamsa - Ivory lace with copper & exotic beads
thisilk
$48.41 USD
Lace necklace - Medusa - White or black lace, with brass
Lace necklace - Medusa - White or black lace, with brass
thisilk
$64.03 USD
Lace earrings - ANGKOR - Black lace with brass
Lace earrings - ANGKOR - Black lace with brass
thisilk
$35.92 USD
Lace earrings - Cali - Ivory lace with brass, recycled glass beads & sunset fringe
Lace earrings - Cali - Ivory lace with brass, recycled glass beads & sunset fringe
thisilk
$35.92 USD
Body harness jewelry - Falcon - Black lace with bronze chain
Body harness jewelry - Falcon - Black lace with bronze chain
thisilk
$87.46 USD
Glasses chain - OSHEAGA - White triangle lace, purple or ivory (cream) tassels and a mix of vintage chains
Glasses chain - OSHEAGA - White triangle lace, purple or ivory (cream) tassels and a mix of vintage chains
thisilk
$37.48 USD
Lace earrings - ZENITH - White or black lace, fringe tassels and vintage brass chain (now in black))
Lace earrings - ZENITH - White or black lace, fringe tassels and vintage brass chain (now in black))
thisilk
$35.92 USD
Lace earrings - Translation - Black triangular lace with bass sticks
Lace earrings - Translation - Black triangular lace with bass sticks
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Lace earrings - Flowerchild - Yellow, purple, coral or blue lace
Lace earrings - Flowerchild - Yellow, purple, coral or blue lace
thisilk
$17.18 USD
Lace earrings - Spectre - Black lace with silver chain and silver findings
Lace earrings - Spectre - Black lace with silver chain and silver findings
thisilk
$40.61 USD
Lace headband/bracelet - Third eye - Black lace with brass
Lace headband/bracelet - Third eye - Black lace with brass
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Lace earrings - Ahimsa - White or black lace with brass & exotic beads
Lace earrings - Ahimsa - White or black lace with brass & exotic beads
thisilk
$32.80 USD
Lace earrings - Pendulum - Black or white or iridescent mint, with bronze
Lace earrings - Pendulum - Black or white or iridescent mint, with bronze
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Lace choker - BLUE MOON - Indigo lace with vintage silver chain, silver findings and blue vegan suede braid
Lace choker - BLUE MOON - Indigo lace with vintage silver chain, silver findings and blue vegan suede braid
thisilk
$56.22 USD
Lace anklet - Morrocan Fringe - White, black or grey lace
Lace anklet - Morrocan Fringe - White, black or grey lace
thisilk
$23.43 USD
Lace bracelet / armlet - HENNA - Vintage burgundy or black lace with vintage bronze chains
Lace bracelet / armlet - HENNA - Vintage burgundy or black lace with vintage bronze chains
thisilk
$67.16 USD
Lace earrings - Oaxaca - White lace with brass & najavo weave
Lace earrings - Oaxaca - White lace with brass & najavo weave
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Lace hand bracelet - Celeste - Indigo or black lace with brass cuff and bronze chains
Lace hand bracelet - Celeste - Indigo or black lace with brass cuff and bronze chains
thisilk
$64.03 USD
Lace earrings - Synapse - Black lace with bronze chain
Lace earrings - Synapse - Black lace with bronze chain
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Lace necklace - Silver Lining - Black lace with silver chain
Lace necklace - Silver Lining - Black lace with silver chain
thisilk
$53.10 USD
Lace and fringe necklace - HULA - Denim fringe with geometric lace, vintage silver tone findings and wood beads
Lace and fringe necklace - HULA - Denim fringe with geometric lace, vintage silver tone findings and wood beads
thisilk
$56.22 USD
Lace necklace - Median - Black lace, brass metals, real suede cord, handmade blonde tassel and bronze chain
Lace necklace - Median - Black lace, brass metals, real suede cord, handmade blonde tassel and bronze chain
thisilk
$87.46 USD
Lace earrings - Credo - White lace with bronze, brass & rosegold chain
Lace earrings - Credo - White lace with bronze, brass & rosegold chain
thisilk
$48.41 USD
Lace bracelet - Picaroon - Black lace with gold cuff and chains
Lace bracelet - Picaroon - Black lace with gold cuff and chains
thisilk
$48.41 USD
Lace necklace - Taurus - Black lace with silver chains and studs
Lace necklace - Taurus - Black lace with silver chains and studs
thisilk
$56.22 USD
Lace necklace - Multichain - Black or white lace with silver chains
Lace necklace - Multichain - Black or white lace with silver chains
thisilk
$37.48 USD
Lace necklace - Taj Mahal - Black lace with brass, black suede, glass bead, pompoms & tassel
Lace necklace - Taj Mahal - Black lace with brass, black suede, glass bead, pompoms & tassel
thisilk
$53.10 USD
Lace earrings - Marrakech - Purple, black or burnt red lace, with bronze and matching tassels
Lace earrings - Marrakech - Purple, black or burnt red lace, with bronze and matching tassels
thisilk
$37.48 USD
Lace earrings - May 68 - Black, purple-slate & porto lace, with antiqued copper
Lace earrings - May 68 - Black, purple-slate & porto lace, with antiqued copper
thisilk
$29.67 USD
Lace earrings - Libra - Black lace with bronze metals
Lace earrings - Libra - Black lace with bronze metals
thisilk
$35.92 USD
Lace earrings - Bazaar- White or porto lace with brass findings and multicolor beads
Lace earrings - Bazaar- White or porto lace with brass findings and multicolor beads
thisilk
$48.41 USD
Lace choker/bracelet - DEW - Indigo blue or black lace with vintage brass chain and micro tassels
Lace choker/bracelet - DEW - Indigo blue or black lace with vintage brass chain and micro tassels
thisilk
$37.48 USD
Lace earrings - Tied up - Black or white lace with gold
Lace earrings - Tied up - Black or white lace with gold
thisilk
$26.55 USD
Lace earrings - Dusk - Indigo or black lace with vintage brass chains and bronze findings
Lace earrings - Dusk - Indigo or black lace with vintage brass chains and bronze findings
thisilk
$48.41 USD
Lace necklace - Theoreme - Black lace, glass beads, silver sticks, gunmetal chain and black obsidian spear head
Lace necklace - Theoreme - Black lace, glass beads, silver sticks, gunmetal chain and black obsidian spear head
thisilk
$87.46 USD
Body harness jewelry - Revel - white lace, ivory tassels with a variety of brass vintage chains & exotic beads
Body harness jewelry - Revel - white lace, ivory tassels with a variety of brass vintage chains & exotic beads
thisilk
$204.59 USD
Body harness jewelry - Hey Day - white lace & denim blue tassels with a variety of gold and bronze vintage chains
Body harness jewelry - Hey Day - white lace & denim blue tassels with a variety of gold and bronze vintage chains
thisilk
$165.55 USD

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