Opening the Maker Lounge

Meet Utopian Dunlin! This is the museum’s first 3d printer, the Form 1 made by FormLabs based right here in Somerville, MA.  With the Maker Lounge opening this weekend, we are busy warming up the 3d printer and setting up the space to get ready.

Check out the museum’s first 3d printed item. All photos by Gavin Andrews.

Check out the museum’s first 3d printed item. All photos by Gavin Andrews.

On Monday, FormLab’s Meagan Fitzpatrick delivered Utopian Dunlin to its new home in the Maker Lounge. Meagan walked us through the incredibly easy set-up and within minutes we were sending our first file to the printer.

Meagan FormLabs

Our first order of business was to start printing these block tags that visitors can place next to prototypes and completed design challenges they create in the Maker Lounge.

Juliette Edie Meagan Ed Jaime loading the file

Each block takes about three to four hours to print so if you stop by on Saturday, we will still be printing them since we have over 10 to print!

Genius first 3d print

Edie Shimel, our youth programs coordinator, and one of the core members of the Maker Lounge project team, designed each of the blocks with a big assist from teens at Salem CyberSpace who supplied all of the great words.

Edie finishing station

Edie and I spent Tuesday and Wednesday prepping materials for the design challenges. Check out all of these amazing materials

materials (1)

I’m really excited for these cardboard saws from Makedo.


 Designed for adults and kids as young as five, they can be used to saw through cardboard and the other end can be used to poke holes and then attach the fastenings and joints to secure your cardboard together. Can you imagine all of the cool things you can do with these? Participants can label their creation with name and email and leave it behind to display because we might just create a 3d print of it later.

We’re so excited for this space to open and want to give a big shout out to everyone at MIT Media Lab that is working with us to make our opening day great. Of course, this weekend is just the beginning. Stay tuned for ongoing programming that includes artists, scientists, engineers, designers and others taking over the Lounge for demonstrations and workshops. FormLabs will be working with PEM to offer 3d printing workshops and Edie is busy developing maker programs for teens. We’ve got a lot of great things in the works – we can’t wait to MAKE it all happen!

Opening day activities:

Maker Lounge Opening Day

PEM’s new Maker Lounge

The Maker Lounge is dedicated to creativity and innovation through hands-on exploration with technology, materials and ideas. It builds on PEM’s tradition of bringing together new and inspiring objects from around the world and celebrating creative expression through human ingenuity.

Tackle a design challenge or tinker with all kinds of materials from circuits to cardboard saws. Both energizing and relaxing, the space has music, iPads and universal phone chargers.

Opening Day Programs

All programs take place in the Maker Lounge
Visitors under the age of 12 should be accompanied by an adult

 Drop-in: Meet the Maker Lounge

11 am-4 pm

Check out PEM’s design challenges and play the MIT Media Lab’s bubble synthesizer and MaKey MaKey!

Workshop: Circuit Stickers

For teens and adults | Space is limited; first come, first served

Discover circuit stickers with Jie Qi from MIT’s Media Lab. Make your own designs or choose a pattern inspired by California Design (the exhibition also opens today!) and watch your creation light up!
Sessions start at:
10:45 am
11:30 am
12:15 pm
1 pm
1:45 pm
2:30 pm
3:15 pm


One Comment

  1. GENIUS! Congratulations everyone! It was such a pleasure spending time in the Makerlounge. Can’t wait to see what’s next!

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