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Last week in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, designer Melinda Looi presented what’s being billed as Asia’s first 3-D-printed fashion show. The models wore nude bodysuits; the entire show was about Looi’s five bird-inspired pieces, created using 3-D printing technology.
These weren’t made with your everyday Makerbot console. The designs took up to eight people, including designers, engineers, and modellers. Those weren’t in Malaysia; instead, Looi sent her designs off to Materialise, a Belgian additive manufacturing (aka 3-D printing) shop. (The show was also organized by Materialise, which in addition to its usual modelling work for architects and designers also maintains a museum of sorts.) Check out the gallery to see what Looi and Materialise came up with.
This headgear is titled “Face It,” and the description is listed as follows: “Challenges are never an issue to her! She will never hide away from obstacles. If we have faith, we can overcome anything! The bird represents Her!” Okay.
Face It Pt. 2
Another shot of the elaborate feathered headgear. It seems remarkably pliable for a 3-D printed object; most are stiff and inflexible.
Her Love and Strength
This necklace comes with this description: “Maternal love is one of the best things on earth. Her love and Strength will always be there to protect us. A necklace with a pair of wings sitting on the shoulders signifies the Strength of our mothers. The nest and the open wings of the birds over the nest to show her love towards her babies. The stones are representing the love and kindness of a mother – shining brightly in all circumstances!” Odd capitalization is [sic]. Why is “strength” capitalized but “love” is not? WHAT DOES THIS MEAN
Let Her Shine
This skirt is described as a “peacock skirt,” its pattern inspired by the display feathers of a peacock. The description: “Always give someone a chance to show what they can do. You might be surprised and dazzled by their inner strength and beauty! This skirt is inspired by the ever inspiring peacock, especially when their tail is opened into a beautiful fan!”
This “wing cape” is the largest and most complex of the bunch. The description, helpful as always: “She is a warrior! Always persevering, never giving up. BUT no matter how tough she is, she is always there to give her love freely. Opening her arms to welcome any difficulties and give all she can to help others. She represents today’s women – tough yet loving, strong yet womanly.”
Open Wings Detail
Here’s a closeup of the end-feathers of the wing piece. You can see the detail on it–each feather is full of intricate little embellishments.
Open Wings Spread Wide
Here you can see how the model actually wears the wings. They’re sort of like a backpack, with the supports as well as the feathers coming from a 3-D printer.
Stand on Me
And lastly, the shoes. 3-D printed plastic can be sturdy enough to stand on, as these show. The description: “You can always count on me when you need help or someone to listen to your troubles. The birds that are tough are always ready to fight a battle for you.”