Why These Architects Love Their MakerBot

Matthew Compeau and Biying Miao are architects and entrepreneurs who use The Replicator to bring their designs to life, including the fantastic jewelry from their latest project Hot Pop Factory. We asked them why they use a MakerBot, and they whipped up a post for us to share right here on this blog.

Hot Pop Factory’s collection of 3D Printed jewelry celebrates the unique texture of 3D Printed objects. The three-piece collection was designed using Rhino3D and Grasshopper and then fabricated with our MakerBot Replicator. Coming from an architectural background – a profession in which the tools and technology for dreaming up amazing designs are progressing much faster than the budgets and construction methods needed to build them, we realized that our MakerBot provided an amazing creative outlet to scale down those ideas and bring them to life in way that wouldn’t be possible with other fabrication methods.

Since it first started shipping earlier this year, we’ve been using the Replicator non-stop. After several months of experimenting with its strengths and limitations, we’ve been able to develop a set of striking designs that show off the stratified beauty inherent to the additive manufacturing process. During this time, The Replicator completely changed the way we design. Instead of iterating our designs through sketches and rough models, The Replicator lets us produce an unlimited number of full-size prototypes that we can touch and wear at every stage of the design process. The result was a visceral understanding of how each piece is formed that allowed us to tweak every detail in order to help bring out their true beauty.

As excited as we were about The Replicator as a design tool, we are equally passionate about its role in the future of personal manufacturing. As young designers we don’t have the resources that would normally be required to bring a product like this to market. Our MakerBot has empowered us to take full ownership of the design and manufacturing process. Instead of investing tens of thousands of dollars and trying to forge relationships with suppliers and fabrications, we can manage the entire process — from design, to fabrication, to distribution — from our living room. It’s an exhilarating feeling to have so much control over a project we’re so passionate about. We hope that as our business grows, we can empower others in the same way, by providing tools that allow them to personalize each piece for custom manufacturing.

Needless to say, working on this project has already been an exciting journey. We hope that you’ll join us as the experience continues to unfold at www.HotPopFactory.com.