Author Archives: Aimee

Introducing: Making Good

Posted by in 3D Printing, Jewelry

We live in a fascinating time when, increasingly, technology enables everyday people to make their voices heard. From the Ice Bucket Challenge to Kickstarter, you, me, and our friends and family can very easily jump online and find a resource that could help us raise money for a cause we care about, fund a new product, raise awareness, and more.

Shapeways has a unique place in this new world: We bring products to life. That means that you can turn your passion for a cause into a product for sale — a source of fundraising — with zero investment. And Shapeways designers are doing just that. Designing keychains, pendants, rings, and objects that have a special meaning to their makers and their causes. In our new series, Making Good, we’ll tell the stories of those who are leading the way. Today, we’re excited to kick things off with three Shapeways designers who are already making (for) good on our platform.

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When Marjolein van der Vleuten and her family faced the challenge of her mother’s breast cancer, it inspired her to go beyond the boundaries of her family’s struggle and help raise funds to find a cure. Not only did she work with Shapeways designer Debbie Claxton to design swag like this gorgeous Pink Ribbon pin (benefitting Pink Ribbon), she and her Shapeways-sponsored team tackled the toughest cycling course in the French alps in support of the Dutch Cancer Society.

Taking a broader approach to philanthropy, LikeSyrup is a longtime Shapeways shop owner who channels all of his proceeds to a range of causes. Scott Denton, the designer behind LikeSyrup, explains that he’s “decided to donate all of the funds from purchases on Shapeways to charities in line with furthering our common goal to peace and prosperity.” Scott makes lovely, imaginative everyday jewelry pieces that each make their own statement. And now, behind the scenes, they also make a statement in terms of where your purchase makes an impact.


We also recently learned of another designer, Melanie Palishen, who uses Shapeways to create beautiful, meaningful products for charitable initiative the Battle Axe Project. She doesn’t offer the necklaces she creates through her Shapeways shop, but rather 3D prints the basic shape with us, then personally adds a touch of sparkling bling to polish it off. As her site details, the base design “is based on a found antique brooch of a battle axe that had it roots in the Suffragette Movement.” The Axe is available in a variety of Shapeways-printed metals, to which Palishen adds chains and Swarovski crystals. All profits from sales of the necklaces go to the National Organization for Women.

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This isn’t the first we’ve seen of our designers using 3D printing for good. On Giving Tuesday, we covered five designers using Shapeways to give back. And, we spoke with Michiel Cornelissen during the 2014 World Cup, whose KXX ring’s sales benefited social good projects in Brazil’s favelas.

Whatever cause you feel passionate about, why not use your design skills and Shapeways shop to make your voice heard? If you’re already donating all or part of your profits, we’d love to hear about your social good projects. Leave a comment below, or post your project in our Feature This forum for a chance to be featured in a future Making Good post.

Easy Custom Gifts for Your Valentine

Posted by in Design, Design Apps, Gifts

Valentine’s Day gifts can be tough. Do you go for the usual dozen roses and chocolates? Or would you rather find something… more personal? Heart-shaped jewelry is great, but with Shapeways, there’s no reason not to take it up a notch. After all, the best thing about gifts is the feeling of giving something you just know the receiver will love. And, the best thing about 3D printing is that you can find and create some of the most unique, custom, and personalizable gifts out there. Here are a few easy apps that let you truly create gifts that will speak directly to your love’s unique qualities. So, with the help of the talented designers behind these incredible apps, read on to find out how to make the most meaningful, beautiful Valentine’s Day gifts.



Ciphering lets you create a personalized ring unlike any other. Its physical form encodes numbers of your choosing. The ring itself looks decorated in a Morse code-like pattern, but really, it’s a message! The secret message only becomes visible only when you take the ring off your finger and either shine light, or look directly through it. The information you input is fed to an algorithm that generates the unique shape. You can also add engraved initials on the inside of the band.


Create a piece with an anniversary, birthday, or other special date – or initials. Tell us you’ve ever seen anything like this!

Twine Jewelry

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Perhaps your valentine prefers necklaces. Never fear. Twine Jewelry lets you create a unique piece that allows you to combine two names into one lovely pendant, adding a big dose of wow factor to an already gorgeous gift. Available in a variety of materials, this pendant doesn’t break the bank when printed as a fun and colorful accessory, or you could print it in gold to show your love that you’ll be together forever.

Custom Pendant Creator

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The Custom Pendant Creator allows you to fully jump in and make your own piece. Simply draw an image on paper, take a photo (or find one online), and upload it in the Custom Pendant Creator app. Magically, you’ll see your design appear in 3D! Use the tools to adjust settings like size and softness of detail, and add a bail for the final pendant touch! Warning: this app is incredibly addictive. Print in colorful plastic or a lovely rose gold – you decide – to make this gift 100% personalized.

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at Shapeways. Share your best gifts with us in the comments below, and check out our Valentine’s Day collection for more lovely (get it?!) designs from our amazing community.

The Hiking App You Never Knew You Needed

Posted by in 3D Printed, Apps

It’s the best part of fall. When the weather is perfectly sunny, with a nice chilly breeze … and we get some of the most amazing colors out of nature to boot! It seems that everyone finds their way to the nearest park, or even goes so far as to find the highest peaks with the best views of every red, yellow, and orange leaf you can imagine. We know you’re snapping plenty of Instagram-worthy pictures the whole time, but how do you commemorate the journey itself?

Enter Nicetrails! Nicetrails creates unique personal trophies for hikers and mountaineers, automatically generated from GPS track data. The result is a custom 3D printed terrain map with each user’s unique trail. This is one of the most unique apps we’ve seen, allowing you to choose from a gallery of world-famous trails like Mount Fuji, Everest Base Camp, the Grand Canyon — or upload your own trail. Nicetrails connects directly to Strava, which makes the whole process practically effortless.


Take a look at some examples, but most important, play around with your own maps! And when it comes to gifting, Nicetrails are perfect for the hiker, runner, snowboarder … and every adventurer in your life.

Love & Robots: Truly Unique, Customizable Jewelry (Hint: Perfect for Gifting)

It seems early, but we promise it’s not too early to start thinking about your holiday gifts. And as if 3D printing weren’t amazing enough, there are lots of designers who are taking their ideas to the next level; they make an amazing product, and then let you customize it just for yourself or the lucky receiver. We’ve highlighted our Pendant Creator and Mymo so far, and today we are featuring the lovely Love & Robots who have some amazing personalizable products available. Between earrings, pendants, bow ties, wall art and more, they’ve created an easy, fun process of creating a truly unique piece. Our favorite is the jewelry, which has so many fun options.

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The most unique piece we came across was the Windswept Collection (pendant or earrings). An animated render of the product sits on the left waiting for you to personalize. On the right you have different options to fill in; location, date and material. “Choose any location in the world and watch as the wind in that location changes the movement of the cloth. Pause it to create a uniquely draped windswept pendant.” What! So good! The results are seriously stunning and I found myself racking my brain for every important date I could think of just to play with it more!


Don’t forget to check out their whole range of products, as well as all apps you can play with. Share your designs with us @Shapeways, we’d love to see what you make next (from scratch, or with a little help!)

Top 10 Things To Set Up A Successful Shop on Shapeways

Posted by in Shop Owner Tips

The other week, we made sure everyone knew how to open a shop on Shapeways. Whether your shop is brand new or you’re a veteran shop owner, we have a few helpful tips to share. In no particular order, here are the top 10 things to set up a successful shop on Shapeways:

  1. A logo and banner help to brand your shop; shops with a user uploaded logo and banner sell twice as often as shops without one.



  1. In order to get paid, you have to set up a PayPal account!

  2. A shop description helps customers learn more about your brand and have more of an insight to your background and inspirations.

  3. Adding Google Analytics tracking allows you to dig into your shop data and learn more about your customers.

  4. Set up your products for sale, add a subcategory and tags for visibility.

  5. Make sure to add markup to your products so you start making some extra cash from your designs.

  6. Products sell 10x more when they are photographed; anywhere between 3-7 photos is ideal.

  1. If you design a variety of things, add shop sections for easy browsing.

  2. Add in social channels so customers can connect with you on their favorite platforms!

  1. Top selling shops have at least 10 products.


Stay tuned for more shop tips and updates. Don’t hesitate to reach out to the team, community or merchandising with any questions! Happy designing!

How to Open a Shop + Tips for Success

Have you opened up a shop on Shapeways yet? It’s incredibly easy, and we’ve created a new tutorial video to show you how it’s done. If reading step by step is your thing, we’ve got that too!

Did you know that by simply adding a banner and a shop logo you will help your sales? And that shops that have descriptions sell more than those that don’t? We’ve dug into our data a bit and found three simple things you can make sure you have in your shop we think are most important:

  1. Description

  2. Google Analytics

Get started opening your shop today, or update your settings to give your shop a nice Spring cleaning!

Designer Spotlight: Rich Brungard

Posted by in Designer Spotlight

We are highlighting miniatures this week, so we’re happy to feature Rich Brungard and his shop, Marsh Creek Mini. Rich is inspired by creation, and has found a hobby that allows him to do just that. What’s more, Rich was able to use Shapeways to create products that he found hard to find, and made them available to others, as well!

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I have been drawing and conceptualizing ever since my first box of crayons, about 35 years ago. I am a father, a husband, and a veteran. I have a number of hobbies that I’m interested in, but Model Railroading is what occupies most of my hobby time, along with spells of interspersed military and science fiction/fantasy modeling. I’m currently working in the power industry as a 2D drafter, in Reading, Pennsylvania. 

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Designer Spotlight: Kasia Wisniewski

Posted by in Designer Spotlight

Our designer spotlight this week is highlighting the very talented Kasia Wisniewski, designer behind Collected Edition. Her shop has some incredible designs ranging from jewelry and hair pieces to men’s accessories. The stand-out pieces capture specific moments in nature, rather than perfect interpretations. Different materials allow for different looks, but Kasia has clearly figured them out. Learn more about her inspiration and process below!

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I’m an apparel and accessories designer based in Brooklyn. After attending Pratt Institute and receiving a BFA in fashion design, I worked in luxury womenswear for Vera Wang, J. Mendel, and others for several years. I’m now focused on building the jewelry and accessories divisions of my brand, Collected Edition.


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Designer Spotlight: Gordon Lardi

Posted by in Designer Spotlight

For this weeks designer spotlight we are featuring Gordon Lardi of Rip and Tear. Gordon’s love for sculpture led him to designing his own art and, with 3D printing, eventually jewelry! Learn more about his process and inspiration below.

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
My name is Gordon Lardi. I have been an Industrial Designer over 10 years living in Coral Springs, Florida. I have worked developing products in a variety of fields my favorite of which is jewelry. It was my love of making sculptures out of clay and metal that led me to the creative field of Industrial Design.


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Designer Spotlight: Haydn Bao

Posted by in Designer Spotlight

This week we are highlighting Haydn Bao, one of three behind the awesome drone shop, Fusion Imaging. A talented group of three hailing from Australia, Haydn is the product designer of the team. Haydn gives us some insight into why 3D printing and drone accessories work so well together, as well as where their inspiration came from. With a shop full of great branding and drone accessories, we are very excited to highlight Fusion Imaging.

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I’m Haydn Bao, the designer among a small team of drone enthusiasts based in Sydney Australia. We originally designed components for ourselves, but soon many others wanted us to purchase our designs. That’s how Fusion Imaging was born.

Designer Photo


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Designer Spotlight: Matt Roesle

This week we are highlighting Matt Roesle (with help from his wife Mahi Palanisami) and his shop Hypatia Studio. Both are mechanical engineers by trade who have transferred their engineering background to creating mathematical art and jewelry, starting with a wedding band!

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
My name is Matt Roesle. My wife, Mahi Palanisami, and I are mechanical engineers. We 3D print jewelry and sculpture based on equations. We live in Thornton, CO, USA.


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Designer Spotlight: Melissa Ng

The designer spotlight this week highlights Melissa Ng! Melissa creates beautiful, whimsical masks, that she’s transformed into intricate pieces of jewelry. She’s also working to help entrepreneurs and creatives navigate the 3D printing world through motivational writing and art.

Update (February 16, 2016): We’ve followed an inspiring project with Melissa; The Dreamer Regalia Armor. Take a look at her process from ideation to final touches on a truly beautiful 3D printed piece.

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?

On my site, Lumecluster, I make intricate Dreamer Masks and fantasy wearable art for ambitious creatives who want to take people’s breath away. I’m a New York-based self-taught artist with a background in media & communications and public relations, When I’m not working on Lumecluster, I am managing two other small businesses.

I started 3D printing in 2014. Within less than a year in the 3D printing arena, I won the Adobe & Shapeways 3D Printing Design Competition with my very first 3D print, I designed the aesthetics on a gorgeous 3D printed prosthetic leg, and I worked on a JiHAE music video starring The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus.


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Designer Spotlight: Tomer Emmar

This week we are featuring Tomer Emmar, designer behind the unique shop fortyseven. With a design focus around androgynous bespoke silver jewelry, the shop features beautiful jewelry that can be enjoyed by everyone!

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
My name is Tomer and I am a multidisciplinary industrial designer. I am located in San Francisco, CA with aspiration to travel all over the world.

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Designer Spotlight: Benjamin Cann

For this weeks designer spotlight, we are excited to feature Benjamin Cann, a very inspiring shop owner with designs we could stare at for days. Benjamin has a lot of different designs, pushing the boundaries of 3D printing in really beautiful and fun ways. Hear about his process and inspiration below.

Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
I am a French mechanical engineer, based in Germany. I used to work in various sectors such as material & process research, aerospace, jewelry industry and now in automotive engineering. Besides my day job, I have been continuously learning by myself 3D design techniques, making prototypes and any kind of projects involving advanced methods. Some projects are fully personal, other more contests oriented in order to frame more my creativity. Indeed, I won a couple of 3D Printing contests in the past years. Another of my passions is photography. I have been shooting film for 5 years now and it’s a great way for me to cut with all-digital, instant results. I take a lot of patience to shoot what inspires me at a certain moment. It allowed me to have some exhibitions and commissioned works in the last 3 years.

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