A Custom Rubik’s Cube for the Blind by Emerald Models Inc.

January 07, 2013

A custom Rubik’s Cube can make a very cool gift or a unique toy for your personal collection.  Although this 3D puzzle was invented in Hungary in 1974 and became a worldwide sensation in the 1980s, it has made a strong comeback in the 21st century.  The Rubik’s Renaissance has also inspired some of today’s makers and modders to create some unusual and striking Cubes.

A challenging request for a custom Rubik’s Cube recently came though the CustomMade Project Board and caught the attention of Tom Stringham of Emerald Models Inc.  CustomMade customer Lauren posted this idea: “My buddy is blind.  I want to get him a Rubik’s Cube but I don’t really have the skills to make this kind of thing.”

Emerald Models Inc. has expertise in working with a broad range of materials, from wood, iron, steel, and precious metals to plastics.  Tom’s design philosophy is “to approach every client’s project with new eyes” and learn about his customer’s style and needs.  This project would require approaching the design in a different, non-visual way.

Tom was well prepared to handle Lauren’s project.  Tom has experience creating custom projects for the vision impaired.  Tom’s mother worked for the New York State School for the Blind, and Emerald Models Inc. has created items for their students with special needs and helped design their Sensory Park playground, which has features to stimulate all the senses.

Tom sent Lauren some images of raised acrylic shapes to add to the squares of a Rubik’s Cube.  She liked Tom’s ideas and chose him to create a blind friendly custom Rubik’s Cube for her friend.  Lauren and Tom have shared with us the creation story behind their custom Cube.  Scroll to the right and follow the development of this project, from the proposal to completion. Tom has also explained some of the techniques he used to construct the customized shapes.

When we extol the benefits of the custom approach in our descriptions, articles, and galleries, we often take vision and the visual experience for granted. However, keep in mind that CustomMade artisans like Tom Stringham are ready to approach any project from your perspective, even if that means conceptualizing a design around non-visual sensory experience, in order to create something perfect for you.

Have a custom Rubik’s cube idea or other project you’d like to run by Tom? Get in touch with Emerald Models Inc. and share your proposal.  You can also post your request on our CustomMade Project Board and have interested artisans contact you.