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A two-step fabrication technique based on nanoimprint lithography is described for the fabrication of three-dimensional micro- and nanostructures. By combining simple two-dimensional geometries from two molds, complex and useful three-dimensional structures are obtained. The careful selection of mold geometries constitutes a simplified and efficient approach toward building up desirable three-dimensional structures without resorting to the use of a sacrificial process or components. Three-dimensional structures fabricated for a variety of specific applications are presented using both thermoplastic and cross-linked polymer materials.