Maker Stories

This Just In-spiration: Meet Chris Dimino

October 12, 2015

Our makers never fail to motivate us, encourage our creativity, and fill us with inspiration. So, when a new design enters our assortment, we’re always excited to learn more about the people behind the product.

What gets an artist going and keeps them creating is certainly worth sharing, and every great connection starts with a simple introduction. Meet Chris Dimino, the artist behind our new Keyboard Waffle Iron.

Keyboard Waffle Iron | UncommonGoods

When did you know you wanted to be an artist/artisan/maker?

I’ve been drawing since I was 3 and I started making additions and scenery for my existing toys that would enhance the world I was creating during play. I made things for years and had more fun doing this than anything else.

I found a great home for my skill set at the School of Visual Arts where I was able to create some of my best work, including the original Typewriter Waffle Iron. After graduation, I worked in virtually every field of design which has provided me with a valuable skill set for creating in 2D, 3D, and motion/animation. I am now circling back to what I’ve always enjoyed the most: making things. After receiving countless requests over the years from people asking if my original Typewriter Waffle Iron was real and for sale, I decided to further develop the idea and make it a real, functioning thing. The Keyboard Waffle Iron is the start of what I hope will be many creative products to come.

What was the most exciting thing about becoming a professional maker?

The idea for The Keyboard Waffle Iron has been with me for over a decade. I actually didn’t expect this, but when I held my first sample in my hands and used it, I really loved it! So the most exciting part for me is seeing that feeling translate to customers and reading their comments/emails saying that they love their KWI.

What does your typical day in the studio look like?

Each day is different with new inquires, new business opportunities, new fires to put out, and new relationships to build. Around these things I work on existing opportunities, fires, relationships, and development of the brand and future of the product. I definitely keep busy.

Keyboard Waffle Iron | UncommonGoods

Is there a trinket, talisman, or other inspirational object you keep near? If so, what is it and what does it mean to you?

I have an old drafting table that was given to me by a close family friend when I was 10 years old. It’s the place I’ve created my best work and sitting at it brings me to that younger version of myself when playing and creating were my only concerns.

Imagine you just showed your work to a kindergartener for the first time. What do you think they would say?

My guess is they would say, “Cool!” or “What’s that?” They would likely recognize the keyboard pattern for sure but maybe not know its purpose as a waffle iron. I’m going to go with “Cool!”

What quote or mantra keeps you motivated?

I have two of them, both Latin:

Ut sementem feceris ita metes — “As you sow so will you reap.” (Cicero)
and
Audaces fortuna iuvat — “Fortune favors the bold.” (Virgil, The Aeneid)

Chris Dimino | UncommonGoods

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