The consumer 3D printing revolution is closer than ever: the Buccaneer Kickstarter Project promises to deliver a mini printer to you for less than $400, while Thingiverse already has thousands of items with downloadable print files. Pretty soon the sky will be the limit with the amount of brightly colored plastic goodness we'll be creating in our dens instead of watching reruns of the Kardashians. I've been looking at how this applies to clothes, and was fascinated by the first 3D printed dress that was debuted by Dita Von Teese:
While the dress looks beautiful on her, the model was tailored to fit her body and it features 13,000 Swarovski crystals, so unlikely to be a part of our free-time experiments anytime soon. However, Francis Bitoni, the designer behind the first 3D dress, decided to then assemble a group of Pratt students to design another dress and print it on a MakerBot. The idea was to reference the human skeleton and inner workings of the body, and the dress model they created certainly reflects the complicated intricacies of the human body. The complete version takes 400 hours to print, and consists of 59 pieces that need to be assembled together to from the final product.
A lot of commenters seem to think that it is ugly and grotesque but I happen to really like the architectural nature of it. And if you have the means to really push the boundaries of fashion, using plastic and AutoCad instead of fabric and sewing machines, why not do it? Women certainly aren't dressing the same way they did a century ago, and we're unlikely to be wearing something even remotely similar in 2100. There's already models out there for a wide variety of accessories: Nerd Glasses, Wings for your shoes, Pirate Earrings, and High Heels. 3D printed anything will probably become much more prominent in the next decade and those of us that can embrace it will be ahead of the curve.