"The Future of Fashion is Code, Not Couture"
Result of a mixture of education, fashion and 3D printing, one of Australia’s very first 3D printed shows was held this year in Brisbane and organized by Griffith University, Materialise, QMI Solutions and Q-WIN.
The Gold Coast runway featured three collections of award-winning Malaysian designer Melinda Looi. The staff and students’ work was also showcased.
“Some of the students’ designs are just absolutely amazing. And that’s what we see a lot, when you put young people in touch with this technology, with 3D printing, they think more out of the box and they sometimes come out with fantastic creations,” Wim Michiels, Managing Director of Materialise Malaysia said.
“3D printed fashion brings art and engineering together. It is inspiring designers – including our students here on the Gold Coast – to explore new creative forms and reinvent what fashion can be,” said Dr Jennifer Loy, 3D Design Digital Media Leader at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University.
3D printing is already being used to create new types of art and fashion. It enables designers to produce designs that are complicated, even impossible, to manufacture and this inevitably fuels creativity and innovation.
It allows innovation in techniques and materials; and ideas can materialize within minutes, contrary to the traditional manufacturing process.
If designers fail with 3D printing, they can easily try again and reprint a new product.
Designer Francis Bitonti, famous for Dita Von Teese’s 3D-printed dress, also worked at the beginning of this year with students to design and 3D print a flexible dress. (Read: Francis Bitonti Releases a Line of Digital Crockery)
He led a workshop at his studio in which students had the opportunity to experiment with digital modelling and 3D-printing technologies.
“The future of fashion is code, not couture”, Francis Bitonti says. The designer started to sell in April the code for a collection of houseware items.
By modifying one aspect of the code, consumers can customize their purchases. The fashion industry could undergo a profound transformation: shorter lead time, production in smaller quantities, easy customization, obsolescence of many jobs, legal issues concerning copyright.
The students of today are the designers of tomorrow. Many consider that the designers of tomorrow are those who will recognize and embrace 3D printing.
Meritxell is a Spanish writer based in Paris and passionate about 3D printing. She is currently writing her thesis on 3D printing’s democratization while managing two 3D printing projects in the fashion and humanitarian fields.