10 Shocking 3D Printed Fashion Items

The 3D printing industry is definitely here to stay. The technical name for 3D printing is called additive manufacturing, this process manipulates layers of additive materials with the aid of a computer. 3D printing is also known by the technical terms extrusion or sintering. 

Brief history of 3D printing

The first 3D patent application was submitted by Hideo Kodama of the Nagoya Municipal Industrial Research Institute in 1982. However it wasn’t until Charles W. Hull of 3D Systems Corp. published the first patents on 3D printing, these patents were then used in additive manufacturing. Back in the 1980’s and 1990’s three dimensional printing was exorbitantly priced and inaccessible to the average consumer or business owner. Today you can find 3D applications being applied in innovative new ways never imaginable before.

3D printers have drastically decreased in price from a decade ago. You can now purchase these revolutionary machines from $598.00 to more than $9995.00 for a Stratasys Mojo small business printer. 

How exactly does 3D printing work?

A 3D printer works by taking a three dimensional STL file from a computer assisted drafting program, before it gets processed by a G-Code generator. The printer then uses the G- code generated to lay down layer upon layer of additive powder to form your specified creation.

Three dimensional printing works by sequentially layering the deposit material in a bed of specially formulated additives (i.e. plastics). The object is then created layer by layer using the x,y and z coordinates in the CAD program. The Z coordinates dictate the depth of the object after a full layer is complete. A laser or inkjet printer head shapes the additive powder to the users exact specifications. The residual powder is then vacuumed away to reveal the final product.

Almost any shape you can conceive of can be created using a 3D printer. Three dimensional printing changes the dynamic of a passive consumer to an active creator. Modern day replicators are set to become as common in the home as the microwave oven.

10 Dita Von Teese 3D Printed Dress: $100,000 not for sale


Dita Von Teese is a famous burlesque dancer, entrepreneur, model and occasional actress. A consummate professional who has brought back the glamour from the burlesque period. The designer Michael Schmidt was approached by his friends at the Ace Hotel in New York to create a fashion garment for the Fall 2013 Fashion Week.  The New York based designer collaborated with Francis Bitonti in L.A. to create Dita Von Teese’s 3D gown. This one of a kind dress features 3000 articulated joints rendered in the printing process itself. The dress was composed of 17 separate pieces and endowed with 12,000 Swarovski crystals. This particular dress is unique in the fact that it is malleable compared to other 3D fashion creations.

9 Iris Van Herpen Summer 2015 collection: Price N/A

via: pixgood.com

Iris Van Herpen collaborated with Julia Koerner to create several kinetic dress designs to be debuted for summer 2015. The designs were made to adhere to the body movements of the person wearing the 3D garment.

The Iris Van Herpen 3D collection works with injection molding and laser cutting techniques. 3D printing fashion produces some of the most intricate and complex designs never before possible. Another benefit of three dimensional fashion is the layering of garments in giving a particular piece volume. Custom 3D designs can also be made to specifically adhere to the body shape of the model wearing a particular piece. The advent of this new way to create clothing has led to garments without any seams or stitches being visible. The future of fashion will increasingly yield more and more complex designs, for example spider web inspired clothing. Shoes, clutches and jewelery are heading into the future when it comes to futuristic designs.

8 Rein van der MastPjotr fountain pens: € 7000 or $8491.00

via: pixgood.com

Rein van der Pjotr makes sculptured designer fountain pens based on the theme chosen by the consumer. Usually made from titanium with a wall thickness of 0.3 millimeters, these pens are premium quality products. Rein der van Mast has teamed up with Additive industries to produce the 3D metal parts used in his fountain pens. These fountain pens are for everyday use or for signing your multi-million dollar contract with your new record label or football team.

The Pjotr fountain pen is simply a functional piece of art that is worthy of signing that million dollar business deal. The french inscription on the side of the pen “a nos femmes, a nos chevaux” translates “to our wives, to our horses”. This inscription was inspired from two centuries of Dutch cavalry history.

Personalized pens are nothing new, however this 3D pen from Rein van der Pjotr can have its individualized parts customized just for you. The benefit of a luxury company like Rein van der Pjotr is adapting 3D tech know how for select clientele. Additive manufacturing is perfect for producing high end metallic goods that will last a lifetime.

7 Nike Vapor Laser Talon Football Boot: Price not released 


Nike has always been at the forefront of sports shoe technology, this company continues to be at the forefront for improving athletic performance on the field. Laser sintering can be tested “within hours instead of months” according to a Nike spokesperson. In the future it will be possible to walk into a Nike store and have your feet scanned for your perfect pair of shoes. Customization is the wave of the future for shoe design.

The first 3D printed football boot by Nike. The footplate was made by laser sintering, and the studs were also made by a 3D printer. The process of using a 3D printer in the manufacturing process decreased overall production time. Incredibly lightweight, the boot weighs only 156 grams.  Nike turned to Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) technology to create the worlds first 3D printed football cleats. Wow!

6 N12 3D Printed Shapeway’s Bikini Top: $90


The same company that made Dita Von Teese’s gown has made the worlds first 3D bikini top. Made by Continuum Fashion the N12 is naturally waterproof, designed using Rhino 3D CAD software.

One company at the forefront of 3D fashion is Shapeways, this company gives designers access to the best printing technology. Designers can now utilize this company’s infrastructure to bring original ideas into the realm of reality.  Shapeways homepage navigation bar has a Design tab where consumers can select their own designer. There is also a Shop and Sell tab for products created using 3D printing.

Common problems associated with fitting bras are the following: 

  1. The Bra cups pucker
  2. Bulging out over the top of the bra cups
  3. Only one cup fits properly, the other cup is mismatched
  4. Bra may fit fine, but the breast tissue near the underarm is falling out
  5. Underwires are uncomfortable and may stick into the skin
  6. Larger breast sized women often have difficulties finding the correct bra to wear 

3D printed bras solve all of the above problems. Having the ability to custom make your undergarments means comfort and style all at the same time.

5 X-Pose bustier: Price N/A


A very naughty bustier for more than the usual reasons. Not only is this bustier 3D printed it incorporates smartphone technology to collect data on the wearer. When the wearer interacts using apps and social media the panels become translucent, revealing the skin beneath. The more data that is collected the more see-through this garment becomes.

Designed by Xuedi Chen and Pedro G. C. Oliveira and modeled by the beautiful model Heidi Lee. The seamless collaboration between smartphone technology and 3D garments looks like a match made in heaven.

4 Victoria Secret “Snowflake”: Price N/A


This beautiful piece was created specifically for supermodel Lindsay Ellingson based on her physical dimensions. Designed based on the shape of a snowflake by Bradley Rothenberg. This winter themed outfit was created in collaboration with Victoria’s Secret, Swarovski Crystals and the 3D company Shapeways. Lindsay Ellingson wore this at the 2013 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. The only drawback is there are no guarantees for the average consumer that wearing this will transform them into a stunning supermodel.

Victoria’ Secret in partnership with Shapeways worked together to also create a pair of angel wings not shown here. The above model Lindsay Ellingson wore the costume created with a 3D printer, created by architect Bradley Rothenberg. Ellingson’s body was scanned with a 3D body scanner and the wings were printed layer by layer on nylon plastic. The wings were then encrusted with millions of Swarovski crystals.

3 Maartje Dijkstra jewelry collection: Price N/A

via: theberlinagenda.com

Maartje Dijkstra is a Dutch fashion designer who specializes in custom made jewelry. In 2005 she did an internship at the company of Alexander McQueen, this fashionista knows her stuff. Maartje’s designs are mechanically inspired creations with vein like structures. 

Maartje Dijkstra’s latest 3D creation is the Hard Core Vein 2.0 a tube shaped sci-fi warrior princess outfit. The transparent tubes are filled with ink that pump to the beats of music, similar to blood running thru the veins. A truly memorable piece of clothing that would be at home in any sci-fi movie. 

2 3D Print Wooden Watch: Price $150

via: www.stampa3d-forum.it

The organic touch and feel of wood has a warm feeling compared to the coldness of metal and glass. This faux wooden watch was designed by the Polish 3D company Jelwek. It takes 5 hours to complete each watch.

1 3D Print TamiCare Panties: Price to be decided

via: www.israel21c.org

It was only a matter of time before our throwaway culture produced 3D disposable knickers for women. Think about it, disposable panties would save you time when it comes to laundry day. The founding members from Israel have their company Tamicare based in Manchester, UK. Currently the company has raised $10 million since 2001. Tamicare’s 3D printed absorbent padded undergarments are made to be disposed of after a single use. 

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