R+D (est. 2017) is named after Rebekah and Doug (est. 2006).
R is the shop manager, designer, and printer. She has worked as a graphic designer and sold printed tea towels previously on Etsy. She came to 3D printing in a more roundabout way. D has been working in the maker movement for over a decade. They have collaborated on some projects and D often tried to convince R that they should have a 3D printer at home. Although R resisted for a long time, she agreed after D was gifted an inexpensive 3D printer. R started to learn more about how to design for it and began creating earrings. It’s moved quickly from there. R is the designer and creator of all of the items and has over 100 unique designs (and new ones daily!).
3D printing as a method of rapid prototyping allows for a lot of fun in the process—R can quickly create things that are kitschy or funny. For example, after one friend saw the Taco Tuesday design, they joked about wanting best friend pendants for her and pizza. By the next time we saw her (which was for pizza and wine) R had a new pair for her. All the items in the shop are $15 or less right now which also makes them good for gifts.
R draws on any number of things when creating earrings — popular culture, nature, friends. She likes to have fun when creating designs and doesn’t take things too seriously. She’ll make something just for a laugh (even if its just her laughing).
The biggest difference between R+D’s jewelry making process and others is that a majority of the work is digital. Each piece is designed and then rendered in 3D before R will print them, making adjustments to the design as needed. It means that a design can be replicated multiple times or customized easily.
R and D live in Sunnyside, NY, which is in Western Queens. When they moved there, they immediately fell in love with the area and the surrounding neighborhoods. Western Queens also has a lot of opportunities for small businesses and residents who are committed to supporting them.