3d printing in fashion has been developing for some years, especially on catwalks and in haute couture; Its application has not yet been popularized to the clothes that are sold in general, but surely it will be a little while to see super creative clothes and accessories in any street in the world.
History of 3d printing and some applications
Many may think that 3d printing in the future will be something that discredits humanity, but honestly, 3d printing is no longer a thing of the future, it is already among us and its applications are numerous.
3D printing was born in 1983, developed by Charles W. Hull, who created a 3d printed part using a process called stereolithography, which he patented along with the standard digital file format for 3D printing called STL.
Stereolithography, which means stone drawing in Greek, uses a layer-by-layer printing process using plastic polymers as output material that mold with light and/or heat to result in a physical element of the innovative and creative design that you have. in the computer.
The applications of 3d printing range from surgical prostheses or implants, toys, prototypes for various industries such as the automotive, health, education and of course, fashion and clothing, that is, what can we say that clothing printed in 3d is also part of the present.
Definitely, 3D printing has many applications and is here to stay.
Types of 3D printers
Depending on the technology used, 3D printers can be classified into different groups, which we will mention below:
3D Printers by Stereolithography (SLA)
It is the printer that was first used and it consists of applying ultraviolet light on a liquid resin that is sensitive to light and solidifies it.
This printing method produces very high-quality results, but there is some material waste.
Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) 3D printers
This printer uses a laser to make 3D items, using powdered materials that are solidified by the laser.
3D injection printing
This printing technique is the closest to traditional printing, but instead of ink, they inject layers of liquid photopolymer.
Fused deposition printing (FDM)
It is the most common technique in home printers, which consists of adding a molten polymer on a flat base, layer by layer. The starting material must be in a solid state, which is melted and extruded in small threads to form the desired article.
And what exists as fashion in 3d?
As we already mentioned, the 3D craze has started to show results. It has been possible to assemble dresses, create shoes, ties, accessories in general, complex and original pieces, with creative and innovative designs.
There are two aspects in the world of fashion and 3d printing: 3d printing of flexible garments and rigid garments to make clothes with a 3d printer.
The flexible 3D printed garments seek the elaboration of meshes in flexible materials such as Filaflex, which provide elasticity allowing them to adapt to the shapes and movements of the human being.
Rigid 3D printed garments are based on a geometric structure allowing the materialization of highly complex and detailed designs; nowadays, basically using rigid garments for haute couture shows.
Among the fashion accessories, we can highlight totally personalized sunglasses, straps, bags, jewelry (rings, watches).
3D printing avoids waste because it only uses the necessary material, and it has a great advantage for the creation of personalized and totally creative clothing, fashion and accessories.
Do 3D printing and fashion really have a future?
There are many designers who have made fantastic 3D printed creations that could be easily used by anyone, but many others refuse to believe that 3D printing and fashion really have a future in people’s daily lives.
There are some reasons that argue the position of not having much of a future:
- It is cheaper to create a garment in fabric than to use a 3d printer
- The creation of a piece of clothing in a 3D printer is very slow, it can take many hours and it also depends on the complexity of the design. In other words, it is much faster to use an industrial machine to create clothes than a 3d printer.
- The materials used are not so similar to the fabric and its texture, which for some, limits the fall of the clothes and their appreciation to the touch.
- For the above reason, 3D printed clothing might not be as comfortable as what we wear today.
We hope that the information that we offered you about 3d printing in fashion has been useful and that you get the most out of it.
If you want to know more about 3D printing in general, we invite you to visit another article on our blog about what 3D printing is and how it works.