Hyper-metallic cases and gaudy lighters are taking over smoking accessories. What were once carefully created pieces of functional art are now truck stop novelties and pass-me-downs. Not that we're looking to promote the act, but I recently stumbled upon a cigarette case with a noteworthy design. Even more, you can download the pattern and make it yourself.
Lance Green, a designer based in New York City, was looking to create a case using a single coin cell battery, one LED and miniature and simple, handmade mechanisms. SmokeBox features a interior mechanism that connects with an exterior screw for easy access to one cigarette at a time. When you're down to your last cigarette, a red LED light will fire up.
Green shares a look at the wooden case in action:
It took a bit of time to work the design down to its thin, sleek silhouette. Green shares the process on his website:
The initial design was bulky, followed by several slimmer versions. Each prototype introduced a new way in which the device could be better than the previous version—before I knew it I had a dozen prototypes in front of me before picking and choosing which pieces worked well together: a sliding feature; a handmade, spring-loaded cigarette pushing mechanism; all brass accents and locks and subtle directional graphics.
You'll need access to some tools and machines—like a laser cutter, soldering iron and solder and a metal file—but the effort is worth the finished project. It's no surprise the idea took off. Within a few weeks of posting the design on Instuctables, SmokeBox was featured on the site's homepage, viewed over 18,000 times and liked by over 300 users. After seeing it in action, it's understandable—I'm not even a smoker and I'm looking for alternative ways to justify using it. One commenter suggests using it for toothpicks or gum. Works for me.
You can download the pattern and materials list on Instructables.