A Laser Cut Light In The Dark

Laser cut lamps, pumpkins, chicken boxes, the Black Lodge!

tlc247 (1)

Above is an updated Hollywood Regency pendant lamp from Phil Spitler. It is laser cut from plywood and acrylic like Ponoko.com‘s own.

After the jump, pumpkins, chicken boxes, the Black Lodge… (more…)

Ideas for Creative Agencies & Brands – #19

How to use laser cutting to stand out from the crowd


The distribution of ‘freebies’ or giveaway items can be a powerful marketing tool, with novelty objects triggering conversations between stakeholders in new and interesting ways. When used to full effect, these products become memorable in their own right… and most importantly, that also means the brand identity becomes an integral part of the ongoing conversation.

For an exhibition showcasing the best student works titled ‘D& AD New Blood’, the creative design team from Southampton Solent University incorporated visual, conceptual and sensorial metaphors into their very effective event freebie. A neat little laser cut box was produced in the style of the ubiquitous Southampton dock packing crates. Inside, further supporting the theme of “Cargo”, nestled a macabre-looking glass vial with the top sealed in wax.


This small bottle of wine continued to play on the New Blood idea of creative juices being shipped out. All sealed in a laser cut crate with sliding lid and laser etched details, it held just the right combination of conceptual nostalgia and contemporary novelty to become an effective conversation starter. People loved the diminutive scale and the nonsensical utility of the object. This was all made possible through clever use of laser cutting to increase brand awareness. See more photos of the miniature crates on behance.

How would you stand out from the crowd with laser cut freebies using the Ponoko Personal Factory? Let us know in the comments below, and for more ideas for Agencies and Brands, see the other posts in the series.

Let’s Talk Ideas

Ponoko designs & makes promo products from scratch for event marketers.  Hit us up for a free quote.

Free Design & Quote »

Laser Cutting Time – With Friends!

Laser cut clocks, droids, horns, tags, leaves!

tlc246 (2)

Above is a dragonfly wall clock. It is laser cut and stained wood and comes from Sarah Mimo Clocks. Ponoko.com‘s own versatile Birch Plywood could be used to make this beautiful clock.

After the jump, droids, horns, tags, leaves… (more…)

Ideas for Creative Agencies & Brands – #18

Topping off tasty treats with laser cutting


Tasty treats are a great way to draw a crowd, and as these playful laser cut cake toppers demonstrate, there can be so much more to the proverbial ‘cherry on the top’ if you’re willing to get creative with laser cutting.

This approach calls for elements that ring true with the strengths of laser cutting – a combination of crisp outlines, bold forms and delicate silhouettes that are uniquely eye-catching. Each individual unit is also fast and cheap to make, and will be resilient enough to withstand the rigors of more than a few rounds at events or parties. This makes them great take-home souvenirs or giveaways, with the added memorable twist of your brand being associated in a fun way with a tasty treat.


Using the cupcake as a base for their creative endeavors, John and Christine from Thick and Thin Designs have gathered quite a following with their cake toppers on Etsy; a few of which are pictured here. How does this inspire you to use the Ponoko Personal Factory to sweeten your corporate messaging? Let us know in the comments below. For more ideas for Agencies and Brands, see the other posts in the series.

Let’s Talk Ideas

Ponoko designs & makes promo products from scratch for event marketers.  Hit us up for a free quote.

Free Design & Quote »

Laser Cutting and Learning To Fly

Laser cut blueprints, lamps, cats, fronds, and ornaments.

tlc245 (3)

Above a custom chest. It is custom engraved birch plywood, like Ponoko.com‘s own, and comes from DaVinci Crafts.

After the jump, lamps, cats, fronds, and ornaments… (more…)

Elliptical Laser Cut Boxes

Using Inkscape plugins to round out those boxed corners 


We all agree that laser cut boxes are handy to use as enclosures for DIY electronic projects and for storing little keepsakes. Adding your own personal touch gets a whole lot more interesting when you can break away from the traditional rectilinear form to create elliptical laser cut boxes.

Once again, the magic happens thanks to some clever programming in the form of a freely available Inkscape plugin. Instructables user Bas van der Peet has compiled an extensive guide to using this plugin, with a number of fun examples of what you can achieve when you round off a few corners here and there.


If breaking out of the box sounds like fun to you, head over to Instructables and follow Bas’ guide, then let us know how you go with the plugin in the comments below.

Make your elliptical laser cut boxes using the Ponoko Personal Factory.

Elliptical Box Maker via Instructables


Laser Cutting – It’s Alive!

Laser cut ladies, mushrooms, and hedgehogs!

tlc244 (2)

Above is a silhouette brooch of the Bride of Frankenstien from CABfayre. It is laser cut from black and white 1/8″ acrylic like Ponoko.com‘s own.

After the jump, mushrooms, and hedgehogs… (more…)

Laser Cut Iris Clock

Time to reveal with mechanical precision

Laser Cut Iris Clock

There is something quite magical about the reveal that is the hallmark of a mechanical iris. Watching those leaves glide apart with smooth precision to neatly frame the circular opening is indeed interesting, but what about finding an application for the iris?

Over on Thingiverse, Joseph took inspiration from an existing iris and incorporated it into a laser cut clock. When you want to see the time, a small lever is depressed which activates the iris mechanism, revealing a laser cut clock face. Keeping the physical components of the iris exposed adds a layer of visual interest that invites interaction. Click through to see a short clip of the clock in action.   (more…)

Laser Cut Like New, Again!

Laser cut lamps, giraffes, and gumball machines!

tlc_243 (4)

Above is the Branch Lamp. It is laser cut from reclaimed urban wood from Toronto. It was designed by LGA Architectural Partner and laser cut by Hot Pop Factory. If you don’t have any reclaimed urban wood sitting around, you could use Ponoko.com‘s own Bamboo would work well – especially if you want to stay on the greener side.

After the jump, another lamp, giraffes, and gumball machines…   (more…)

How To: Design a Laser-Cut Interlocking Box

Build your own custom enclosures 

boxmaker screenshot

Boxes! Everyone likes putting things in boxes, and there is something so satisfying about making your own enclosure to neatly round off a DIY project. It’s something that electronics enthusiasts have been doing for a long time – and with the handy Box Maker web app and plugin, making a custom enclosure is easier than ever before.

Existing as an online calculator and also a laser cutter-friendly Inkscape plugin, you should be well covered to fit Box Maker into your workflow.

The Box Maker interface on Inkscape is very straightforward to use. Once you have set the size of your box, you then have control over the tab size, the material thickness and the all-important kerf (the amount the laser cuts away).    (more…)