Studio Desk Organizer

Made by vzhou

Organize and hold my studio-specific items.

Created: December 3rd, 2018


1. Intention 

For this holder project, I wanted to create a studio desk organizer that would hold my studio tools and items that are not typically addressed in a conventional desk organizer. Specifically, I wanted to create an organizer that would help serve as an upgraded kick-stand for my hot glue gun (as the thin metal frame often falls under the weight of the glue gun, thus having the glue gun topple over), help sort out my extra, leftover wood scraps, and cleanly hold my rubber bands. 

2. Research + Context 

Unlike the other previous desk organizers that I have owned, this desk organizer would be able to be personalized accordingly to what one typically uses in their day to day studio life -- in my case for the semester of Fall 2018, it is my glue gun, rubber bands, and wood scraps. These organizers would be customizable in such that the 3D printed piece would be able to swap out, and also the acrylic boxes would be able to stacked up or down, depending on how much containers one needs and/or wants. Also, as an additional measure of "fun", I wanted to incorporate some sort of element of playfulness (--in the end, going for a face that you can swap and alter by stacking the boxes in different ways) 

3. Aesthetic Inspiration


Examples of organizers that are more "customizable" utilizing stacking techniques. Also, an example of how I wanted to create a kickstand for my hot glue gun. 

4. Sketch of my project


5. Process and Procedure

For my process, after sketching my ideas onto paper, I prototyped the organizer in CAD modeling. I created these multiple boxes in an efficient manner by creating parameters for one box, creating that box, and then simply duplicating that box but with different parameters for the smaller, stackable boxes. Afterwards, I created a couple of cardboard prototypes to figure out if my dimensions were accurate, and then constructed my final out of different shades of acrylic. 

Also in my process, I found that in order to create stackable boxes, I would have to implement some sort ledge that would allow the box to nest, rather that just sit on top of the bottom box. After considering different types of how I could create this (adding an extra sheet of acrylic stacked flush to the inner perimeter of the bottom box, creating an overall smaller dimensioned top box, etc) I settled upon the idea of installing small ledges to the top boxes that would be flush with the inner perimeter of the lower boxes, as this allowed for the cleanest procedure of gluing my structures while utilizing the smallest amount of extra material. 


7. Reflection

The major unexpected lesson that I faced when constructing this project was the fact that the acrylic was not press-fit cut, so the pieces did not snap as well as I had expected they would. This therefore required me to glue each piece together using a crazy glue, which was not optimal, but did address the problem quite effectively. 

The greatest learning take aways from this project are that I am comfortable able to use a laser cutter, and understand how to simply change parameters within my project to create the same overall pieces but with different dimensions. I also learned how to create stackable pieces, in a relatively efficient manner. 

For further exploration, I would love to explore stackable shapes that are not just cubes, and/or explore a container on a larger and/or smaller scale, that would perhaps not just serve as a container on its own, but become an extension of something. 

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Digital Tooling (DigiTool) provides a platform for any CMU student to learn Digital Fabrication processes; all of which are very hands-on. Like these processes, this class is also very hands-on. I...more


Organize and hold my studio-specific items.