Laura Thapthimkuna’s 3D printed dress on Kickstarter


Designer Laura Thapthimkuna made a beautiful 3D printed dress that she is now trying to get funded on Kickstarter. Her Vortex dress has at the time of writing raised $2000 and you can check out how that’s going here.

The Vortex Dress

The Vortex Dress

Why did you turn to 3D printing to make this dress?

In my designs I have always tried to create structure and have been drawn to abstract geometry and silhouettes. I like the idea of design “beyond the body” and creating shapes and structures from negative space. When I discovered 3D printing through a friend, I found a way to execute theses designs I have had in head.

What were some of the issues with getting it made?
I wouldn’t call it an issue, but one of the challenges with this design and any is that I have to go from a 3D idea in my head and try to put it down on paper two-dimensionally. Then I have to give that two dimensional sketch to my 3D modeler to then translate back into 3D, these transitions can be tricky and challenging at times, but I’m really fortunate to work with very talented peoplel with extensive knowledge of 3D. The most obvious issue is being able to fund the actual fabrication of a design of this scale, I’m hoping to broaden the audience that finds my work compelling and achieve funding for printing this design through this Kickstarter campaign.
What kind of materials do you need as a fashion designer to make more functional 3D printed clothing? Is there a dream material?
Light weight material is a very important element when considering putting something on the body. With my current design I’m exploring shapes that need to be created in a pretty solid/rigid material to keep the shape. For me personally the goal isn’t to create something 3D printed clothing that acts exactly like fabric. I want to explore 3D printing as a meduim with its own properties and materials and come up with ideas that are impossible to create with fabric and by hand.
What is the concept behind the dress?
The inspiration behind the Vortex Dress was space and blackholes. I became very inspired by artistic interpretations of theories regarding time and space being twisted and distorted in the universe. I wanted to create a design that didn’t have a specific ending or beginning, something organic but with mathematical elements with swooping lines and spiraling textures.
Why crowdfund it?
This is my first time ever attempting to crowd fund a design-which is a little nerve racking! But I really hope in doing that I’m able to share my work with more people and get others engaged with in the possibilities of 3D printing as well as raise funds to create this design in real life.
Do you hope that people will add to or remix your design? 
I haven’t really given any thought to that, but maybe in the future with another design this could be an option. I think it might be enjoyable in the future to create a design that is open to other’s in such a way.