Shapeways Small Business Spotlight: Dennis C. Roffe

In honor of Shapeways’ commitment to makers and empowering small business owners, this week we are featuring Shapeways shop owners on the blog discussing how they started, and are growing, their business with Shapeways. In his DreamTree Imagination Studio shop Dennis C. Roffe, based in South Carolina, designs products under the motto “Life is hard… Design it better.”

What prompted you to open your Shop on Shapeways?

I opened my shop in order to bring the designs hidden in my brain and scribbled in my sketchbook to reality.  Shapeways offered me a way to prototype my designs at a decent price and offer my designs for sale.
Since 1984 I’ve been working as a product designer in the automotive, HVAC and medical industries.  I started technical, 3d modeling with ProEngineer in 1987 and recently started free form modeling using Blender and Sculptris.
The focus of my shop is to create fun and useful products with unique designs.  I plan to put more of a branding focus on my Guitar Gear products.
How has having a Shop on Shapeways affected your life?

It has helped me to bring my designs to reality. I never pursued any of my designs in the past because I knew what prototype parts cost. Now I can upload my designs and have them made at a reasonable price.  Also, the money I make from sales helps me to pay for new designs and prototypes that I am working on.

What is your favorite part of having your Shop on Shapeways?

Shapeways has allowed me to bring my designs to fruition at an accessible price. Having my shop on Shapeways helps me showcase my products and offer them for sale which in return helps support Shapeways. I recently made a connection with a customer in England that ordered one of my drum rings for herself and one for her fiance.  They are going to use the rings as their wedding rings which is really awesome to me.

What was it like to make your first sale on Shapeways?

Exhilarating and inspiring!  When I first opened my shop I remember checking it everyday to see if someone had liked or ordered one of my designs.

Overall, Shapeways has inspired me to look at designing in a whole new way. With an array of materials available it is almost endless what can be created.

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