Nov 20, 2017 | By Tess

3D printing has transformed or is impacting many industries, from aerospace to healthcare. One of the main appeals of the technology within these fields is that it opens up the possibility of what forms and parts can be designed. With that in mind, it is always interesting to see what designers themselves are doing with the technology; to see what 3D printed design for design’s sake includes.

Let’s take a look at four amazing and creative 3D printed products from the jewelry and design worlds.

3D printed Macrocosmos by Alessandro Zambelli

The first is a collection from Italian designer Alessandro Zambelli, which was inspired by outer space and UFOs. Comprising eight vases and receptacles for the home, the 3D printed collection, called Macrocosmos, is notable for its fun colors and contrasting shapes.

Each vase or piece from the collection was 3D printed using FDM 3D printing technology and was finished using brass parts and colored ERGAL pieces. The layers of the 3D printer are still visible on the designs, which adds a touch of playfulness to the colorful pieces.

“Macrocosmos derives from my very personal desire to lend a new and contemporary interpretation to a specific manufacturing sector,” said Zambelli. “Until a few decades ago, this was a staple industry in the village where I live, known to this day as ‘the village of toys’ because of its vast numbers of doll and toy factories.”

“My intention was to revive the near-surreal amazement I used to feel as a child whenever I saw those stacks of wooden crates, crammed with toy parts for assembly with the insight of the person I now am,” he continued.

Macrocosmos marks Zambelli’s first collection under his design brand Alessandro Zambelli Edizioni. The designer says his brand will feature experimental and unique design objects and accessories.

Zambelli has been working with 3D printing for some time, having produced stunning 3D printed light shades, and more.


LEGO-inspired 3D printed Playful&Precious rings by hintlab

Next, is a 3D printed jewelry collection that is sure to entice or at the very least amuse all those with fond memories of playing with LEGO bricks. Designed by hintlab, a Paris-based design studio, the collection consists of customized 3D printed rings and earrings which can be adorned with tiny LEGO bricks.

Appropriately named Playful&Precious, the LEGO-inspired jewelry is not only customized to the wearer in terms of ring size, but can also be personalized based on finish (in bronze, brass, sterling silver, or gold) and, of course, in terms of what LEGO piece is attached to it. This means that the wearer can swap out different LEGO colors on a daily basis.

And don’t worry if you don’t still have your old LEGO collection on hand, because hintlab gives its customers a personalized set of tiny blocks in a range of selected colors.

The pieces themselves were designed by hintlab’s founders Thomas and Allie and feature studs which were specially designed to be LEGO-compatible. To manufacture the made-to-order rings, hintlab has teamed up with Shapeways and reportedly uses both 3D printing and traditional jewelry casting methods to produce each ring.

“We hope our rings can be a kind reminder to keep your inner-child run and roam free,” said the design studio. “Because after all, the most sophisticated people we know—inside they are all children.”

The rings can be found on hintlab’s Etsy page and come in a range of sizes. Clients can also choose to request a custom order.


Bearing: 3D printed jewelry line by Maison 203

Italian design brand Maison 203 is already pretty well established in the realm of 3D printed design: having produced a number of 3D printed handbags, and 3D printed jewelry collections such as Kalikon.

Now, having teamed up with designer Giulio Iacchetti’s, Maison 203 has unveiled its latest jewelry line: Bearing.

Aesthetically, the 3D printed collection recalls the grace and simplicity of a string of pearls, only instead of the mollusk-produced material, Bearing designs are made from 3D printed and hand-dyed nylon.

More than just pretty to look at, however, Maison 203 designers have used 3D printing technology to integrate a new level of functionality to the pieces, in the form of a ball joint connection mechanism. That is, each 3D printed “pearl” fits inside the next, which makes for a flexible and comfortable accessory.

The 3D printed Bearing collection consists of necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and rings, each available in a range of different colors including Black, Blue, Navy Blue, Olive Green, and Cherry Red.


3D printed Colback panels by Rick Tegelaar

This last 3D printed design is not quite a finished product, but is still notable for its innovation.

As part of this year’s Dutch Design Week, a group of ten Dutch designers were invited by manufacturer Low & Bonar to produce a range of objects from Colback, a non-woven textile with applications in insulation, carpeting, road building, and more.

The project saw a number of creative uses for the material, including a chair made from pleated Colback and lamp shades made from the material using a laser-cutting process.

The one design that really stood out to us, however, was by Rick Tegelaar, who developed a method for 3D printing Colback fibers. Tegelaar’s method consists of a machine which is capable of 3D printing (or ironing) Colback fibers onto a surface also made from the non-women material. The result of the printing was a series of six rigid panels, each inspired by an aspect of the Colback research.

"Through pragmatic experiments and theoretical research, I discovered that Colback can be 3D printed exceptionally well due to the unique core-skin composition of its fibre," explained Tegelaar. "This triggered my interest to really look into the fibre and research its capabilities.”

"We've now started a research project with a global footwear brand to try to implement the printing technique in their process. In this way, we can potentially eliminate the use of glue in the fabrication of shoes,” he continued.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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