Tag Archives: fashion

The world’s first open-source, 3D-printed dress is here

High-tech fashionista Anouk Wipprecht isn’t one to shy away from breaking barriers and developing new ideas. Partnered with Austrian design house Polaire, the Maker has opened an invitation to the global community to design her next endeavor, the Open Source Element Dress.


Wipprecht has asked for creative thinkers to send her 62mm wide 3D designs, dubbed “particles,” that will be linked together to complete her new dress. These designs can be shared using TINKERCAD and submitted up until the assembly deadline of September 13th.

Upon conclusion of her effort, Wipprecht will construct the dress and hopefully have a unique 3D-printed representation of the global creative community. She tells The Creators Project that she has already received submissions from pre-teens in the U.S. and a Makerspace in the Philippines.


With this venture Wipprecht hopes to deepen the idea of 3D printing and design, seeing how things can connect more. “One of the things that I find super interesting about 3D printing is that it brings a totally new social context with it,” she notes.

With designs flying in from across the globe, the Maker’s newest creation won’t be without her signature touch. She has designed her own particle to be featured on the garment, which takes the shape of a 62mm dazzling blue NeoPixel wireframe.

“It’s a very personal and intimate message, to finally be able to design a particle or a piece of jewelry, created by you with someone else in mind,” Wipprecht believes.

When thinking critically about the message of the project, she says, “What I think I want to say is that 3D printing should involve more emotion, more depth, more meaning, more personality. I haven’t figured out yet what it exact is that triggers me to think that this project is steering something that can have potential to emotionize digital design. But there is an bigger and holistic idea behind it that I would love to explore more.”

We agree with you, Anouk… 3D design can house emotion and passion — two things we expect to see later this month at the World Maker Faire!

To monitor the progress of the Open Source Element Dress, stay tuned to the project’s Facebook page.

Don’t forget to join the Atmel team in Queens later this month for the 5th Annual World Maker Faire. Undoubtedly, this year will be amazing as an expected 750+ Makers and 85,000+ attendees head to the New York Hall of Science to see the latest DIY gizmos and gadgets, as well as AVR Man in the flesh. Once again a Silversmith Sponsor of the event, Atmel will put the spotlight on everything from Arduino and Arduino-related projects to the latest in 3D printing. See you soon!

Transforming fashion with tech

17-year-old Ella DiGregorio recently introduced a line of “Transforming Beauty” gowns that literally change from long skirts to short with the touch of a button.

As Mari Grigaliunas of MySuburbanLife reports, DiGregorio’s sample dress uses threads that run from the bottom hem to the waist of the garment to shorten the skirt when she pushes the button of an Atmel-based Arduino board hidden in the back of the dress.

Additional designs sketched by the teen arrange the threads in various designs to create completely different looks including a high-low skirt, a layered look and an Angelina Jolie inspired slit that disappears.

“I really like the idea of technology and fashion. There’s so many possibilities.” DiGregorio said.

“I’m kind of use to hiding things in clothing,”

As we’ve previously discussed on Bits & Pieces, quite a lot of wearable activity is currently centered around companies like Arduino and Adafruit. Both offer wearable electronic platforms powered by versatile Atmel microcontrollers (MCUs).

“Building electronics with your hands is certainly a fun brain exercise, but adding crafting into the mix really stretches your creativity,” says Becky Stern, Adafruit’s director of wearable electronics.

“Sewing is fun and relaxing, and adorning a plush toy, prom dress, or hat with a circuit of tiny parts can make you feel like you’re some kind of futuristic fashion designer. Playing with sensors and conductive textiles breaks electronics out of their hard shells and makes them more relatable.”

Just like their IoT DIY Maker counterparts, the soft electronics community has adapted various Atmel-powered platforms specifically for wearables, including the Arduino Lilypad (ATmega328V) (developed by MIT Media Lab professor Leah Buechley) and Adafruit’s very own Flora (ATmega32u4), which can be easily daisy chained with various sensors for GPS, motion and light.

Interested in learning more? You can check out our wearables article archives here.

Report: Wearables to drive significant battery revenue

Analysts at IHS say the global market for batteries used in wearable electronics will increase more than tenfold in just four short years, propelled by new devices suitable for active sports and fitness lifestyles. 

Indeed, worldwide revenue for wearable electronics batteries is projected to reach $77 million by 2018, up considerably from a mere $6 million by year-end in 2014.

In addition, industry revenue will have grown nearly 120 percent from 2014 levels.

“Wearable electronics will be the key to sustaining the current very-high-growth levels of battery revenue in consumer electronics,” explained Thomas McAlpine, power supply and storage component analyst for IHS.

“The tremendous expansion in store will come thanks to an increase in the shipments of smartwatch products, wearable health monitoring devices and smart glasses—products geared toward an active lifestyle combining advanced technological trends in miniature computing with newly smart consumer imperatives in fitness and fashion.”

In addition, annual shipments for wearable electronic devices will reach an estimated 56 million units by 2018, fueling continued demand for the batteries that power these products.

“Of the total number of batteries expected to be installed in wearable electronics by 2018, lithium polymer batteries will take the predominant share, accounting for 73 percent of total wearable electronics battery revenue,” said McAlpine. 

”Lithium polymer batteries are typically the preferred choice as they are lighter in weight and can be manufactured into a wider range of shapes and sizes, compared to traditional lithium-ion batteries.”

Smartphone and tablet PC demand will continue to drive the majority of revenue growth in the lithium battery market for portable electronics over the next couple of years, with the combined shipments of these devices projected to grow 46 percent from 2013 to 2015. 

However, shipments will decrease from 2015 onward, and coupled with projected erosion in the average selling prices of lithium battery cells, growth will decelerate for the overall lithium battery market for portable consumer electronics.

“This means the emergence of new applications in the market is critical. Lithium batteries will remain an integral component for innovation in consumer electronics,” McAlpine added. “To achieve sustained market growth, new wearable electronics and other devices need to be introduced and adopted by the mass market, similar to what is occurring now in recently emerging product categories.”

As we’ve previously discussed on Bits & Pieces, Atmel is right in the middle of the wearable tech revolution, with the the soft electronics DIY Maker community adapting various Atmel-powered platforms specifically for wearables, including the Arduino Lilypad (ATmega328V) (developed by MIT Media Lab professor Leah Buechley), along with Adafruit’s very own Gemma (Atmel ATtiny85) and Flora (ATmega32u4), the latter of which can be easily daisy chained with various sensors for GPS, motion and light.

In addition, Atmel’s microcotrollers are found in a number of smartwatches and wearable medical devices.

Interested in learning more about wearables? You can check out our extensive article archive on the subject here.

Victoria’s Secret teases 3D printed corset

Victoria’s Secret is slated to debut a 3D-printed design just in time for its big fashion show on November 13. The Swarovski Crystal-encrusted corset – designed to look like a snowflake – will be modeled by Lindsay Ellingson.

“It’s exciting that we get to use this—we’ve never done it,” Victoria’s Secret collection design coordinator Sarah Sophia Lidz told Style.com. “It’s the first time, and it will be perfect for this section, too. It’s called Snow Angels, and it’s really a nod to the iconic Victoria’s Secret theme, with beautiful white wings inspired by snowflakes, snowfall, frost, the northern lights—there’s a lot of Swarovski.”

According to Shapeways industrial designer Duann Scott, the Victoria’s Secret corset is the first 3D printed pieces for a major mainstream brand.

“We’ve seen some 3D printing in fashion, in the haute couture in Europe. So it’s been very rigid things, very artful things, but nothing that’s been nice to wear,” Scott explained. “This [has] a focus on the elegant, sensual form—not just rigid and stiff and alien-like. It’s wearable.”

The industrial designer also noted that there was currently an “evolution” underway in fashion with regards to 3D printing material.

“The interesting thing about 3D printing and design is, traditional fabric is either a stitch or a weave, and maybe a chain mail in there, but with 3D printing, we can do all three of those simultaneously, in one garment, in one material. So there are new ways to control the way the fabric falls and reacts to the body. There is lots of room for evolving the garment,” he added.