October 2021 Update

It’s October, so you’re probably being kept awake at night by the same question as I am: “what am I going to wear for Halloween this year?”

That’s the thing about being a creator: it’s hard to settle for something from the store. Your dreams are so much bigger than the drugstore costume aisle! And you’re not going to believe how Glowforge can help this year. Here’s a sneak peek before we get into the details.

The news, in brief:

  • We’re releasing a whole new kind of Proofgrade™ material - Light Plywood.
  • There are some new features in your Premium membership.
  • Glowforge is now in Michael’s craft stores.
  • We’re hiring people like you from the Glowforge community.

And because many folks are thinking about costumes this month…

  • All month long, Premium members get 20% off Proofgrade materials.
  • Proofgrade Leather is 50% off.
  • Our design of the month is downright spooky.
  • Plus, costumes you can print quickly with cardboard (and your Glowforge).

If it’s not clear already, I really, really love Halloween. And not just because of the candy.

When my wife and I were younger, we went all-in on our costumes. Weeks of work for one great outfit was obviously worth it for us back then.

We both love making things, but we have very different approaches – I’m an engineer by training, and her degree is in fiber arts (textile design and more). This caused about 10 minutes of confusion the first time we tried to collaborate (“what do you mean we don’t need electronics in the mask?!”), but that combo of perspectives and skills has consistently produced party apparel we’re proud of.

Like this!

(Wearing those was sort of like being a football player wearing three helmets at the same time)

(I still think the Spaceballs costumes should have had electronics. At least for my ears. And shoutout to the Alf stuffed animal we found at Goodwill that gave its fur for the cause.)

Since the kids joined the festivities though, we’ve had to scale back a little. With the twins making their opinions loudly known all day, spending 14 hours paper mache-ing a giant Dr. Bunsen Honeydew mask was not an option.

So for these last few years, we’ve been assembling things like Alice and Wonderland and The Princess Bride from stores. (I colored the pink bow myself).

They turned out just fine.

These Halloweens were a ton of fun. And a ton of candy. But costumes were just the ticket we had to buy for the “have a great time as a family on Halloween” experience.

I miss making costumes though. I think the kids are old enough this year to help. And you know what? I think we just might have a way to make our costumes a little bit faster.

Here’s some amazing news to get you started on your own creations!

Introducing Light Plywood

I’m delighted to announce that, in a few weeks, we’re going to start offering Light Plywood. It has the same outer hardwood layer and semi-gloss coating, the same price, and comes in the same species as Medium and Thick Plywood but there are a few things that make it stand apart.

Compared to Medium Plywood, Light Plywood:

  • Is half the weight
  • Is slightly thinner at 0.12”
  • And the best part is… it cuts about twice as fast!

I’ve switched entirely from Medium Plywood to Light Plywood because it absolutely transforms my creating. Prints go so much more quickly that my ideas just flow out more quickly. It’s an incredible experience!

You’ll want to do some experimenting with it - the core is natural hardwood instead of engineered material, so it’s stronger in one direction than the other. That means it can be better for structural designs, but not as good for extremely thin lines like living hinges.

Here’s a Settlers of Catan board I printed last week on Light Plywood in Maple, Cherry, and Walnut. I’m still working on the interlocking road design, but it’s looking pretty slick.

Light Plywood will be available in the Glowforge Shop and in Michaels stores later this month. Sign up here to be the first to know when it’s ready!

New for Premium: Fantastic font tools

With nearly 1,000 fonts available in Premium Font Tools, how do you find the perfect one? Now, we have the answer. We’ve revamped the text interface to make it faster to find the perfect font for your project. Now, the fonts are in categories to make it easier to choose a font that fits your project. And you can heart a font to save it in your favorites! Plus a category to see the most popular fonts to help inspire your latest creation.

New for Premium Early Access: Edit in Group

To make it easier to manage artwork that you’ve grouped, we’ve added an easy way to edit objects directly. This means that, when you are looking at a grouped piece of art, you can use Edit in Group to make fine adjustments to your work without having to ungroup everything.

You can learn how to use it in this article: Copy, Paste, and Group.

Premium members get 20% off Proofgrade materials in October

We’re running a special sale - for Premium members only. Every Premium members is getting a one-time 20% off coupon that works on all regular priced Proofgrade materials. It’s just the ticket to stock up on materials before the holidays.

October Featured Design: Spooky Haunted House Kit

You might already know Jen Schacter (@schac_attack) of Tested – she’s a do-it-all creator known for her incredible, one-of-a-kind creations across the web. I’m a big fan of hers, and when I found out that she’d be our newest catalog designer, I couldn’t type enough exclamation points in Slack.

As soon as I finish writing this announcement, I’m going to print this Spooky Haunted House Kit, plus all its customizable accessories. It’s optional to add LED lighting that peers through the walls, and…I love an excuse to get out my electronics kit. But it’d also look great surrounded by dry ice, or nested inside a jack-o-lantern.

It’s free this month for Premium members or $39.99 otherwise. Remember, Premium owners, grab each Design-of-the-Month when it’s available - or the chance to get it for free will be gone forever!

DIY Cardboard Halloween Costumes

Remember how I said I wanted to get back to making my own costumes? Well here we go! Our designers heard me say the same thing, and cooked up these absolutely magical designs.

Discover new worlds with this Astronaut with Helmet and Jet Pack, fly away into fantasy with this Layered Butterfly Wings, or remix this DIY Dragon Headwear Kit to create your very own unique mystical creature. Every costume is created with pieces that are perfect to print on your Glowforge. We recommend ⅛” corrugated cardboard for the best results.

(Granted, the twins are a little old for these, so this is serving as inspiration for us to make our own!)

Print for the holidays with the Glowforge Catalog

It’s time for me to get the sweaters out of storage, which means the holidays are right around the corner – that’s why we’ve been adding dozens of incredible designs to help you prep for the busiest time of the year. From spooky ideas to holiday cheer, here are just a few of incredible holiday designs – now available in the Catalog.

Sell while you sleep in the Glowforge Catalog

Premium members can apply to be a Glowforge Catalog designer. That means earning money every month from your designs - without lifting a finger. To learn more about becoming a Catalog designer, read the Become a Catalog Designer Guide.

Leather Sale: 50% off

Did you know that every piece of Proofgrade Natural Leather is selected for its flawless surface and high quality? It’s beautiful by itself, and after months of use, it ages to a stunning, burnished glow.

If you have a leather project idea kicking around in your head, this is the perfect time to get started! Proofgrade leather is on sale now for 50% off, while supplies last. Or check out this Stylish Leather Arches Handbag or No-Sew Leather Valet Tray to help you get started!

Worry Free Price Guarantee

Around this time of year, we start hearing folks ask whether they should wait for a sale to purchase their Glowforge printer. It’s a fair question - big box retailers make us wait until that fateful Friday to get a fair price for what we want for the holidays

But we do things differently here at Glowforge. We work hard to offer you the best price, year round. It’s always been important to me, personally, that people can become Glowforge owners when they’re ready, not when we’re ready.

In short, if people ask you, no - they don’t need to wait to order their Glowforge. In fact, you - as a Glowforge customer - have the superpower to give people the best price we have or will offer this year on a Glowforge printer, by sharing your referral link.

But I want you to have even more peace of mind, so I’ll use some CEOs powers to make you a promise. If we drop the price of the Glowforge printer below the referral price before the end of the year, we will automatically refund new customers the difference. That’s how committed we are to make sure that your community gets the very best value when they join our community.

So, if your friends, family or followers start asking you about when they should buy their own Glowforge, you can tell them with confidence - if they buy now, they will get the absolute best price we offer. No need to wait for a sale. Hooray!

Hello, Michaels!

Recently, we announced some exciting news - Glowforge will now be available in select Michaels craft stores!

When we launched Glowforge, we did it to create a world where anyone could print anything. Having Glowforge printers, Proofgrade materials, and Air Filters available from a major retail partner is a big step in helping us realize that vision.

This means that you’ll be able to go to your local Michaels and purchase Proofgrade materials from over 150 of their stores!

If you see Glowforge at a Michaels store, I’d love to see it. Share photos on social media - I’m always watching #glowforge. Well, except yesterday, when Facebook broke the internet.

We need you! Join us in building the Design Catalog!

We’re getting ready to expand the Glowforge Design Catalog to new heights - where any Glowforge owner can find an incredible design for every occasion - and we have a contract position open to find you!

Are you’re interested in getting paid to:

  • Grow and nurture our community of incredible Catalog creators and show them how to become best-selling Catalog designers.
  • Project manage and optimize our design release workflow, creating a well-oiled machine to turn Catalog designer submissions into beautiful Catalog listings.
  • Scale the marketplace thousandfold! Strategize ways to efficiently bring a growing pipeline of designs to life in the catalog, ensuring quality while rapidly growing in volume
  • Do all this from your home or anywhere!

If so, LET US KNOW! You can apply for this Program Manager, Catalog role. We’d love to work with you! You can find this and many more roles with the company at Join us at Glowforge.

Customer Success chat is available!

The chat support beta has gotten such great feedback from customers like you that we’re expanding the hours. We now provide live chat with our wonderful and talented support team Monday through Friday, 9am - 4pm Pacific.

Have a question or a problem? Just click the chat button in the lower right of any page in the Help Center and let’s chat.

…and once more on the costumes.

I’m still not sure what this year has in store. We’ve been printing earrings, nametags, badges, and so much more. We’re not even sure if we’re going to go out this year (last year we had Halloween at home).

But we’ll be creating. Like you, we’ll be dreaming something up, bringing it to life, and wearing it proudly.

Enjoy every minute of your creations!


PS: You can discuss the announcement here.