Studio Description

Rosa Weinberg

In Food Space, Nathan Melenbrink and Jacob Hammon, both M.Des candidates at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, sought to experiment with a platform called MakerSphere they developed for their class "Responsive Environments: Glitchy Food" with Professor Allen Sayegh. MakerSphere joins young makers with local businesses. Union Square Donuts, Aeronaut Brewery and Bay End Farm will be brought in to act as clients for the students.


Simon Zalesky and Benjamin Fox

        When Megan from Union Square Donuts first came to our group, she presented some of the bakery’s problems. One of the biggest problems was their boxes. The problems were in the shipping. The boxes they used were recycled pizza boxes and while the donuts were being shipped they would bounce around in the box causing them to hit the top and the sides of the box. When the donuts hit the top of the box lots of the glaze would end up rubbing off, and when they hit the sides they would get bruised. This is the problem Ben Shivani and I decided decided to solve. Megan wanted the box the box to was foldable from one piece of cardboard, so that it would reduce waist, was eco friendly, held coffee and donuts so that the customer would have a easier time carrying their order, and marketed their business.


    The first thing our team did was brainstormed ideas for stopping the donuts from bouncing around. We came up with a couple designs, but in the end decided to pursue making inserts in the boxes that the donuts could fit on but would be blocked from bouncing upwards by a insert on the top of the box that is slightly wider than the donut hole. We started on the boxes by trying to use origami to find a way to fold one piece of paper into box that had places for a donut and a coffee cup while Shivani pursued the idea of the inserts. After many failed attempts with the paper we finally made a box out of paper that had one large compartment and two smaller compartments. After this we decided to move onto Rhino and start designing a box that we could laser cut out, and then fold. We designed this box to hold coffee cup and a donut. The next day we decided to move on to another box to try to fix some of the mistakes that we made on the first one. On the second box we made the walls slightly larger so that it could hold two donuts, two coffees, or one donut and one coffee The box had two main problems, they were; the cup holes were on the bottom of the box and the walls didn't stay in there place. We fixed both this in the next box. We fixed the walls by adding tabs that slipped into slots when the wall folded. The holes were an easy fix by just moving the circles in Rhino.

    The next few days I spent working on stamps that could print the names of the donuts onto the boxes so that the customer could tell which donut is which. I first designed the stamps in Rhino that used the same font (Nashville) as they used. While I worked on the stamps, Ben worked on the box that could hold 4 donuts and 1 coffee,(their most common order) and adding their logo and social media accounts onto it. On Thursday we finished the stamps and made the second to last box. On Friday we made the final box. This box purposely had no branding on it so that we could try out the final stamps that had the Union Square Donuts logo, social media accounts and their address on them. We also only added three holes for drinks holes because using five was a waist because no one ever orders five coffees. 

Union Square Donuts Whisk - Process Post

Ryan Joy and Jasmin Breakstone
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Design Prompt: Our design prompt was to redesign the whisk of Union Square Donuts in some way where it would be more efficient and less painful. When Megan visited the studio, she explained how the whisk was too time consuming and painful. They have to manually whisk the icing over a stove top for 45 minutes. Because of this, they cannot use a kitchen aid. We originally brainstormed to have an electronic whisk, yet we realized it would be too time consuming on our part. Our solution was to create a spirograph over the pot, which made the stirring of the whisk easier and simpler. 


Iteration 1: Our first iteration was just a cardboard model that displays our brainstorming ideas. With thorough research we considered to have the idea of a spirograph, where the whisk would be moved in a certain pattern. Jasmin and I also thought of the idea to have a turntable that spins the inner gear, but it was not too realistic. We decided not to do this because we it would be too complicated for the 2 weeks that we had. Almost everything we created had to be changed except for the spirograph itself. This is because we thought of more innovative and simple ideas along the way, and replace them from the original design. For example, we replaced the clamps with set screws and omitted the turntables.


Iteration 2: Our second iteration was our first design on wood. We used Rhino and made many edges to the spirograph, 64 to be exact. After laser cutting, we realized a few things were wrong. The main problem was that the edges were too sharp. When we used the spirograph, the inner gear was constantly skipping around and it was making an unsuccessful design. Another problem was that we had no idea how to stabilize the spirograph. We realized the clamps would be too complicated and time consuming to make, so we were temporarily stuck. A quick solution for the spirograph edges was to curve them. Curving the edges would make the spirograph not skip around and would be more efficient.


Iteration 3: Our third iteration displays our curved edges, allowing for a more simple movement. We still discovered one problem. The problem was the stabilization, where the inner gear was constantly falling off the pot. A solution for this was to layer the wood. We would place a circular piece wood above and below the spirograph. These pieces would be the same size as the spirograph. By doing this, the inner gear will stay put and never fall off. 


Iteration 4: Our fourth iteration stabilzed the inner gear, making the stirring proccess much more simple. We added more layers from the top and bottom to improve the stabilization and made it perfectly fit in our bowl. Also, we added more hole in the inner gear. During this iteration we realized that the whisk needed to change. Another idea was to add a screw set to maximize security. These were our last problems we discovered. For the whisk handle, our plan was to remove the original grip and replaced it with a dowel. This dowel would make our stirring process much more sturdy. 


Iteration 5: In our last iteration we finalized every aspect we needed to. We 3D printed a screw set, and added lock nut to end of screw to meet with the bowl to avoid slipping and sliding. We also made each layer wider, and added another bottom layer on for security. We added mulitple holes for our inner gear, adding variety and versitility to the whisking. As you can tell, we have made this whisk are secure as we can. Something that we could have added was to either coat wood to avoid any saftey hazards with heat. A change we could have done was to change the nut and screw size so it is more sturdy when touching the bowl.



Shivani Angappan


The Final Packaging Set is meant to facilitate the packaging of donuts so that Union Square Donuts can expand their business to long-distance donut shipping. This set is the combined set of the shipping shell—the pizza box—and the insert layer, which is a layer of cardboard with the inserts etched and cut out so they can be readily folded. The layer of cardboard is not attached to the pizza box in any way, because it snugly fits into the bottom of the box. The removability of the insert layer helps transfer the insert layer to another box by the customer if desired, and also makes the pizza box reusable for other purposes (perhaps to hold an actual pizza!) The inserts are in a rectangular shape with half-hexagonal tabs and slots with double notches. These notches are meant to interlock when the inserts fold up out of the layer of cardboard. Each insert has flaps at the top that fold out in a flared manner, similar to a four-petal flower. The petals of the insert are pushed flat by the top lid of the box, and the ever-useful force of gravity. The shipping shell box is a simple cut-out of the pizza box, constructed similarly to Ben and Simon’s smaller to-go boxes, and optimized for shipping. The insert layer fits snugly into the bottom of the shipping shell.

Final Post

Michael Schaff and Micaela Pierce

Ben Holmes co-founder of Aeronaut Brewery came in to talk to us about his Brewery, Aeronaut, and some of the challenges he comes across throughout his day. What Ben seemed to want most was a Beer Tap that stood out from others but wasn't over the top. He explained to us how important it is, as a brewery, to have a tap handle. Tap handles are used to advertise beer in bars and it’s how people identify what beer it is that they want.

When we started talking to Ben, he told us that tap handles needs to identify its brewery, be well functionable, very robust, and have attractiveness to it. His problem was that he didn’t have any of that with the tap handles that are currently being used at Aeronaut Brewing. As explained in the process post we made a mold out of a 3D Printed beer tap we designed and filled the mold with resin. The reason we initially wanted to make a snowglobe is because when we first met Ben he explained that the meaning of Aeronaut is, one who travels. We also noticed a theme of air travel in logos which when looked at the “O” in Aeronaut initially looks like a can opener but it was designed to resemble a hot air balloon floating over a landscape. When we went to visit the brewery there were also beach chairs hanging from the ceiling. We wanted to import this theme of air travel into our final design which is why there are balloons lifting a chair stuck in the resin.

The importance of the project is pretty simple. The tap handle needed to be designed to represent Aeronaut Brewing. It needed to be in a shape that wasn’t basic and was robust. The tap handle needed to look nice enough to attract people and help advertise the brewery.The main idea is that this tap handle can be reproduced  many times and given to bars that serve Aeronaut beer. The design problem was Aeronaut needed a beer tap that they can give to bars. This project is important because now Aeronaut has a potential beer tap they can give to bars



Shivani Angappan
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Union Square Donuts - Long Distance Shipping

The intent of this project was to design a method of packaging donuts so that they could easily be shipped over long distances. I designed the packaging method described in the “Final” post for Union Square Donuts, a bakery that has partnered with NuVu for the purpose of this project and three others, all working on improving the quality of the bakery’s products and facilitating the jobs of the employees at the bakery.

When a representative of the bakery visited NuVu for the first time, she listed out a set of problems that were hampering the bakery’s productivity and sales. One problem was that the current donut packaging method, using a plain pizza box to package nine donuts in a 3 x 3 arrangement, would allow for the donuts to touch each other and the insides of the box, thus increasing the hazard of toppings being smeared and jeopardizing the quality of the donut when it is finally presented to the customer’s eyes (and mouth).

At first, while Ben, Simon, and I were all together, we brainstormed ideas for ways to package donuts in general. Afterwards, when I branched off into long-distance shipping, I added a few more ideas to the plethora that we already had. Here are three packaging strategies that seemed the most promising to me, both pre-production and post-production. Sketches of all three are in the images above.

Strategy 1: Complementary Inserts Method

This strategy involves attaching removable, interlocking inserts on the inside surface of the top and bottom lids of the box. The inserts on the inside surface of the top lid would be formed in the shape of a cone with concave sides. Each top insert would also have a base (non-removable, and part of the insert itself) in the form of a cylinder with a height of around 2 or 3 mm and radius larger than that of the donut hole, to prevent donut mobility when the box is not right side up (say, if the box were sideways or upside down). The inserts on the inside surface of the box would be shaped like the intersection of two of the top inserts: two concave frusta joined at the smaller bases, and hollow, so that the top insert can fit snugly into it. Rough models of the two inserts are shown in the first image.

Strategy 2: CD Stack Method

This strategy was inspired by the way CDs are stacked in a CD case. In this strategy, we form a bar of radius slightly less that 1 inch (to fit through the holes of the donuts). This bar has holes in it for smaller bars that will serve as partitions so that the donuts do not touch each other. Each donut will snugly fit between the partitions, and there is no risk of the donuts being overturned if the box is not upright, and the amount of glaze touching the box or the bars/partitions is minimized, because the donuts are tangent to the partition bars, so the area of contact is at a minimum. This strategy has two offshoots. If the main bar is horizontal, the partitions can be a single bar through a hole. However, if the main bar is vertical, the partitions must be two smaller bars per hole, forming a perpendicular cross/+ shape. (I will post a model of these afterwards.)

Strategy 3: Slant Method

This method has already been implemented by several companies for packaging cookies, donuts, and other types of pastries. In this strategy, each donut is separated by small inclined partitions, quite like business card holders, so that all the donuts are leaning on their non-glazed side, thereby reducing the amount of glaze that touched the box. However, this type of box is susceptible to large amounts of donut damage when not placed upright. This can be remedied by combining the bar method with this: having a bar through the holes of the donuts while they rest on the partitions. (Images of the plain slant method can be found readily available on Google Images, but the bar method cannot.)

            After coming up with these top three choices for my first iteration, I decided that the insert model was the most apt for production, for several reasons. The foremost reason was that the representative of Union Square Donuts had strongly emphasized her need for an eco-friendly product. Since their pizza boxes were made of eco-friendly cardboard, I decided that folding inserts out of cardboard would save 1) time that would have otherwise been spent in waiting for a 3D printer, 2) money that would have otherwise been spent in buying a 3D printer and the plastic used to print, and 3) the ecosystem, by using biodegradable materials rather than plastic that facilitates 3D printing. Thus, I began my first iteration of the fold-up insert.

Iteration 1: This iteration of the fold-up insert set was very rudimentary. When folded up, the top insert is a simple square pyramid, and the bottom insert is a hollow rectangular prism with squares as the bases. The pyramid is folded out of triangles spaced so that the vertices of their bases do not touch each other. The rectangular prism is also folded in a similar manner, with the flaps formed in the shape of rectangles rather than triangles. 

Iteration 2: Some time after I made the first iteration, I realized the rudimentary design that I had laser-cut did not have a way to secure the foldable parts of the insert together without tape. Taping the foldable flaps together for each insert is a painstaking process (as personal experience does show), is unhygienic (the ash from the laser cutter tends to rub off on hands, and the germs from hands are transferred to the tape and then to the donuts), and looks unprofessional. Thus, I decided that I ought to find a different way to attach the insert flaps together. Instead of completely revamping the insert design, I merely designed a system where the inserts have both tabs and slots, so that they all fit together perfectly. I made the slots and tabs in the shape of one half of a regular hexagon. This iteration, unfortunately, did not succeed in its purpose—the tabs fit into the slots, but they did not stay in their designated places, because there was again no way to secure the tabs inside their slots. Thus, I created the third iteration.

Iteration 3: For the third iteration, I set about designing a new type of interlocking mechanism, having realized the various downsides to using adhesives to stick the tabs to the inserts—1) the cost would be very high, 2) the uncertainty of how would the adhesives be applied, 3) the amount of time consumed in applying the adhesive to the inserts, and 4) the cleanliness/hygiene of the donut (who wants adhesive on their donut, after all?). I decided that a double-notch system, in which each insert has two notches that fit into the other notches of the neighboring inserts, would be best fit. Thus, I designed a double notch system with the original half hexagons. I laser cut this and was delighted to find that the notches did indeed fit, and were deemed “extremely rigid” by various third-party testers. Because of these comments, I decided that the set of top inserts (the ones that folded up into a pyramid) were unnecessary. Also, the pyramid did not fit into the hollow space created by the fully assembled notched insert, so this decision would have had to be made in either case.

Iteration 4: In this iteration, I attempted to make a replacement for the top inserts. My idea to accomplish this was to first lengthen the inserts, then move the notches lower on the inserts and fold out the protruding parts to create a flaring design much like a flower with four rectangular petals. The box’s lid would push down upon these petals, thus trapping the donut in place and inhibiting any vertical or horizontal movement. This system actually works the best when the box is upside down, since this is when the force of gravity on the donuts is highest, and thus the pressure on the tops of the inserts is highest, so the inserts’ top flaps flare out even more. This iteration has been laser cut but no pictures are available at the moment, only Rhino screenshots.

The Pizza Box: This box is a simple cut-out of the pizza box, constructed similarly to Ben and Simon’s smaller to-go boxes, and optimized for shipping. This has also been laser cut but no pictures are available at the moment, only Rhino screenshots.

The Final Product: This is the combined set of the shipping shell—the pizza box—and the insert layer, which is a layer of cardboard with the inserts etched and cut out so they can be readily folded. This is meant to facilitate the packaging of donuts so that Union Square Donuts can expand their business to long-distance donut shipping.


Benjamin Fox and Simon Zalesky

   Union Square Donuts has been creating impeccably scrumptious and original donut flavors since 2013. Sadly, they do not have as equally creative and safe transport mechanism for these special donuts. With a box that guarantees safe transport,  their business will be able to expand. Our job these past two weeks was to create a  box that would safely ship donuts long distances, as well as a series of carry out boxes. Simon and I were given the task of creating the carry out boxes. The very first thing we did was brain storm all of the aspects that we wanted our boxes to have. After a day of brainstorming we figured out what we wanted: a box that was foldable from one sheet, because it is easer to mass produce and it folded in less than a minute; could carry both donuts and coffee, which allows people to carry out both in just one simple box; was eco-friendly, for recycling of course; and finally, a box that marketed their business, because their current box only has a single small stamp of their logo on it.
    We first started with the design of the box in Rhinoceros. One of our biggest precedents was the donut box that they currently are using, really a pizza box. We used this a lot to help us design how we fold the box. We went through multiple designs from a small two donut box – which could also carry one donut and one coffee – to a four donut box – which could hold four donuts and one coffee or up to two donuts and three coffees. We chose the diagonal line of coffee holes because even though you could fit a fourth or fifth whole, its rare for someone to order 4 or 5 coffees and no donuts. We went through multiple designs trying to get the correct dimensions as well as finding the right material to use. The box is made out of a piece of cardboard that is about 1/16 of an inch. Although its sounds a little flimsy, when folded, the box is in fact very sturdy. The cardboard is recyclable, making it eco-friendly. The logo on top (or on the side) can be either laser cut, or stamped with rubber stamps that we also made, since we know that Union Square Donuts already have a stamp system in the works.


Michael Schaff and Micaela Pierce

Last Monday we met with Ben Holmes who is the co-founder of Aeronaut Brewinng. We talked with him about the brewery and he told us how he wants us to make them a beer tap because they currently didn't have one to give to bars that serve their beer. Our design prompt was, can we make a unique and ergonomic beer tap for their brewery. We brainstormed many ideas of how we can create this. Some of our ideas included more basic simple tap handles with just the company logos on it to more creative taps, like snow globes or lava lamps. Are solution was to print a shape using the 3d printer and then make a mold of it using smooth on. Lastly we poured a clear resin in the mold to make the final product.

Our first iteration was pretty simple, our ideas were just the company's name or logo on a simple cylindar shape beer tap. Our ideas worked but they didn't work well. They clearly advertised the brewery and would have been pretty easy to make. How ever they were basic and boring tap handles. The boring taphandles other breweries use would have been more interesting than these tap handles. We decided we needed to make the tap more unique and different than existing ones. We had to change the shape and find something that would make it unique while still clearly relating it to Aeronaut. We needed to do this becuase while these designs work they didn't work well and Aeronaut wouldn't have been very happy giving out these beer taps.

Our second iteration of the tap handle was the snow globe idea. We drew several sketches and in theory it seemed pretty cool. It was a unique idea and we hadn't seen any images of snow globe tap handles. Additionally it was unique and looked cool.  However when we thought about it more carefully there were some major problems with it. First off was the chance that the substance inside of it would leak. Another problem was that we couldn't really create a clear hollow object that we could use on the outside. Additionally a snowglobe normally requires you to shake it for it to work but the tap handle wouldn't be shaken when used. Lastly Ben the man from the brewing company was very enthusiastic about it and wanted something simpler that would have a smaller chance of breaking. So we went back to the drawing board and worked on coming up with more ideas.

Our last iteration of our project was our final result. We had decided to make a 3d print an object and make a mold of that object which we could then use to cast resin. We started off with just making a bunch of sketches of different shapes and designs we could make. We decided that we would make it out of clear resin so we could put objects inside that would relate to the company. Once we had a shape we liked we made a test print that was one fourth of the size to see if we still liked the shape once it was tangible.Originally we were going to put a 3d printed chair with some 3d printed balloons in it but it wasn't going to work so we decided to put wires shaped like balloons in it instead. It worked pretty well. It was a unique shape and aesthetically pleasing. Additionally we were able to relate it to the brewery by using clear resin and placing the chair and wire balloons in it. There were some problems with it however. The mold takes over an hour to dry and the resin takes a day. Another problem we ran into was how to suspend the chair and balloons in the unhardened resin. If we had more time we would have incorporated the company logo on the top of the tap. So that it can be used for marketing the beer and would stand out more.


Our final product is a beer tap made out of clear resin.  It was made by printing a 3D model and then making a mold of that model. You then pour a resin mix into the mold and place a 3D printed chair with wires shaped like balloons that are glued on the back of it into the mold. When it hardens you just pull the resin tap out of the mold and drill a hole in the bottem.  It is robust and you can manufacture multiple examples of it using the same mold. You would screw it onto a beer tap and then when pulled down it would cause beer to flow out of the tap.



Sophia Friedfertig and Remi Shore
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    For this project our main idea was to enhance the cucumber picker.  Nowadays  cucumber pickers tend to cause either back pain or are simply inefficient in how they cut the stem. To reduce back pain Remi and I created a long pole that would eliminate need for the user to bend over.  Also the baskets typically used to cradle the cucumber are insufficient.  They tend to bruise the cucumber which the users strongly dislike.  In order to achieve this we created a basket with a deep enough curve that would cradle the cucumber.  We also made  the motion so it was side sweeping instead of straight on.  A straight on motion is harder on the cucumber.  The side sweeping motion cradles the cucumber into the basket.  Holes were placed in the basket so the dirt would drain and not sit with the cucumber.  Bigger holes were made on top for vital drainage and also because the bottom needs more support.  Our cutting system took some time to create.  The angle where we wanted to cut and the motion of the string proved to be a challenge.  We decided to create a pulley in front to elevate the string so when it was pulled down the cutting motion would be released.

    This project is important because it improves an important farming tool.  It is a tool that is extremely helpful for cucumber cutting and is relatively inexpensive.  This tool helps with all the essentials: reducing back pain, cradling the cucumber, draining the dirt, and providing a sharp cup.  This product is user friendly, will never need to be charged or need batteries.


Remi Shore and Sophia Friedfertig
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After hearing about Bay End Farms and the issues that Kofi faces, we decided to focus on harvesting cucumbers. We started our process by looking at precedents. The problems we had in mind to solve were bending down or straining muscles, monotonous motions, and poor storage.


Iteration 1:

Our first iteration was a concept similar to picking up a ground ball with a men's lacrosse stick. There would a sharp slicer at the end of a cushioned basket or mesh/fabric, attached to a stick. The cucumber would be cut and scooped up, then placed into something to store it. This method solves the issue of having to bend down, the cucumbers getting damaged, and uncomfortable labor. It still cuts, stores, and is safe.

The same goes for our design given a hanging cucumber, which is very similar. The difference is that the basket will have a rim that functions like a claw with sharp ends. It will cut the cucumber with a clamp handle at the end of the stick, the cucumber would fall into the cradle and then be placed into a basket or crate of some sort. The same goals are accomplished.

A spring was added so that the "claw" aspect is naturally open. This way, when the user contracts the blade around the stem or in order to get the cucumber out, it goes back automatically. This concept utilizing the spring is paired with the string for an even more stable outcome. We decided to only have one blade that would cut on a platform of the other piece in the clamp. Lastly, the basket was underneath the blade in order to catch the cucumber and cradle it gently. By only holding one cucumber at a time, it is insured that the crop does not get bruised, squished or damaged.

We discovered that Bay End Farms has cucumbers that lay on the ground. Our original idea for this (rim with a blade on an edge) was good, however, it could be made even better if our invention allowed the user to cut and cradle in one motion. In addition to this, the blade was not in the right position to cut a stem laying flat on the ground. In order to cut and cradle the cucumber, it would have to be done in two steps. Since cucumber stems are not taught and a harvester cannot use force to pull the cucumber, it would have to be some type of scissor mechanism. Hoping to combine the rim with our previous idea, we decided to change the placement of the blade because of danger and potential future basket problems. However, the "one motion dilemma" led us to change the basket and rim to a scooper.


Iteration 2:

This version of our product has edges that curl up in order to keep the cucumber from falling out. We made the scooper pocket deep with the same intention. Because the design could only consist of one surface, we made the surface curl under forming a circle with the diameter of the rod on one end, and had it get smaller. The string would attach to the blade, run along the scooper, and into this tube. The string eventually would continue into a second rod and all the way to the handle. This way of connecting the rod will prevent the user from having to crouch down. To adapt the blade with our new design, we created a slit at the end of the pocket. This was supposed to hold a stationary blade.

We could tell that we were getting closer to a final design. We needed to change the angle of the scooper/tube because with the angle it had, the farmer would still have to bend down. The slit that we made was not only too big, but we could not figure out a way to carry out that idea in an effective manner. Thus, we had to modify the method of attaching a blade.


Iteration 3:

A pulley system allows the string to use upward force but be pulled across. We attached a screw to the narrow end of the tube. Here, we put the blade on the end of the scooper. The blade has a tail-like end on the opposite side from where it will slice the stem. This tail has a hole to feed the string through. On top of the tube that encloses the pole, there are triangular supports on either side. Suspended between these, supported by the screws, is the wheel. The string rests on a wheel, goes through a hole in our tube, and reaches a lever near the handle. This pulls the string using the same motion as a hand/arm would. The bolts stabilize the string and the triangular supports allow the wheel to spin. It is important for the wheel to spin so that the string doesn't wear down as much and the device runs more smoothly. If given time, we would find a way to make sure that the string does not wear down.