3D Printing: The Face of Future Fashion?

Published on: 24th December 2015
Danit Peleg is a Fashion Designer and entrepreneur based in Tel Aviv, Israel. For her graduate collection at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design, Danit successfully 3D printed 5 outfits using solely home printers. Her collection captivated the attention of millions around the world.
Danit Peleg
Speaking at the upcoming Global Female Leaders 2016, the 3rd annual economic forum for female executives, Danit Peleg will focus on the Disruptive Technologies and Innovation theme where she will present her case for 3D Fashion Printing.

3D Printing and Fashion? When did you first come up with this idea and can you tell us something about your collection?

I went to Burning Man in Nevada last summer and saw amazing out-of-this-world outfits that were made with new technologies. Someone gifted me a 3D printed necklace using home printers and I got excited about it. That’s how I decided to research 3D printing clothes/fashion line from my home using home printers.

Just like a viral video, you could see a “viral t-shirt” that someone designed and that everyone is suddenly wearing

For my senior collection I decided to try and 3D print an entire fashion collection from my home. The problem was that I barely knew anything about 3D printing and I had only 9 months to figure out how to print 5 fashionable looks. I graduated 4 months ago from Shenkar fashion school and I made a video about my collection and it went viral and received almost 5 million views in a week’s span.

My inspiration was Eugène Delacroix’s painting Liberty Leading the People. I modified it so it would look like a 3D picture. I was inspired to work with the many triangles present in the painting’s composition and the tricolors of the French flag, which are omnipresent in 3D glasses.

“Just like a viral video, you could see a “viral t-shirt” that someone designed and that everyone is suddenly wearing”

From an entrepreneurial standpoint what were the biggest challenges for you and what would you do differently?

I faced two major challenges. These are:

  • Finding the right material to use. Initially I only worked with PLA, which is a hard and breakable plastic. It was really hard to make anything comfortable with that. It took me a month to figure out the right way to do it with FilaFlex.
  • Also that the 3D printers are still very slow. So it takes a ton of time to create these clothes. For example, the red jacket took more than 300 hours to print! But I am sure the technology will evolve quickly and the speed to print will as well.
I think I wouldn’t do anything differently because from the experience I’ve gained from all of this I have learned so much and I feel like I’ve solved these challenges and I think I’ve found the correct ‘recipe’ to print clothes. No one has done this before so I’m happy to share my knowledge with others.

How do you see 3D Printing changing our lives in the future?

From a fashion expert, I think we will see more and more 3D printed fashion, but it will look differently than today. I feel like with this project I tinkered the future – it took 2000 hours to print the collection so it’s not something that can be done easily. So for this to become common 2 main things need to improve: the speed of the printers, and better materials (filaments). The filaments I produced are flexible and fun, but they are not like cotton yet. I know people are working on innovative filaments and printers so I believe it’s only a matter of time until we see better printers and more wearable materials. If the technology does improve significantly, then yes, this could be the future of the fashion industry. The consequences are huge – less shipping costs, more personalization, and most importantly the democratization of design – anyone could design clothes. Just like a viral video, you could see a “viral t-shirt” that someone designed and that everyone is suddenly wearing. About

Danit Peleg is a Fashion Designer and entrepreneur based in Tel Aviv, Israel. She is also the founder of an after-school fashion course for girls aged 7-13 where she teaches arts, crafts, the basics for fashion design, and recently also 3D printing. Danit is always exploring new ways to create innovative textiles and to design fashion with new technologies.
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