How a small Pittsburgh company crafts this DIY plywood kit perfect for the holiday season.
Holiday six-packs are hard to come by. But thanks to a pair of Pittsburgh beer lovers, Nick Thompson and Gio Attisano, you can create your own with very little effort. Their company PuzzlePax makes a fun and functional wood carrier that’s a great gift on its own—or even better when filled with your favorite brews.
Originally designed by Thompson as a gift for his father-in-law, Attisano joined in and the two haven’t looked back. They work out of TechShop, a collective workshop that President Obama visited earlier this year. “We made a custom POTUS version but who knows if he got,” Thompson says. The duo laser-cut each carrier out of plywood before assembling the pieces into a kit. At this point they’ve made over 5000 kits, “although the truth is nobody is keeping count,” Thompson admits. The pieces fit together like a puzzle to tote six bottles or cans, and a built-in bottle opener pops right out of the case to crack open a cold one.
Here’s the step-by-step process of how each one is made:
PuzzlePax also sponsors puzzle pack building races, during which 10 people sit around a table with a 6-pack in front of them to be assembled. The first one built wins. “Parts go flying, people love it. And the record time is 1 minute, 42 seconds,” says Thompson. Thanks to CB2, their biggest order ever, Thompson and Attisano have hired their first employee to help with wrapping, and Thompson planted a tree in his backyard to replenish the wood they’ve used thus far. We expect this design to carry its weight and then some for a long time to come.