3D Printed Belts

Generative, 3D Printed Belt Buckles by Scunzani

3d printed belt

Who should read this: those who are curious about the applications of 3D printing in fashion accessories. Fasten your 3D printed belts, we’re going into the future of designer clothing.  

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Instead of one design to evolve, MHOX studio created many different desgins to select from (image: MHOX)

Designers and manufacturers around the world are becoming aware of the new possibilities that 3D printing can open for their products. Although the exclusive use of PLA, ABS and metallic materials is not implemented outside the context of purely conceptual creations, there are many examples in wearable gear and clothing accessories that can be already be created using 3D printers. One fascinating example is the recent buckles project by Studio MHOX for top Italian belt designer Scunzani.

Just twenty beautiful designs from hundereds generative phenotypes

This limited edition series uses an unconventional “fibrous-formation design” to provide a touch of classy and stylish aesthetics. There are twenty different formations that were chosen out of hundreds of phenotypes that were generated initially. These formations can be custom-tailored automatically to become anyone’s perfect fit. The main advantage of using 3D printing to create these buckles is that costs are considerably lower while the customization possibilities grow exponentially. Every buckle is tailored to match Scunzani’s Italian finesse, and is unique in form and creation.

The collagen mask served as an experiment to create an accessory to perfectly fit the complexity of one's own face (image: MHOX)
The collagen mask served as an experiment to create an accessory to perfectly fit the complexity of one’s own face (image: MHOX)

MHOX, the specialist studio that developed the design for these amazing buckles is actively working on perplexed and fibrous formations. The expertise has been implemented in other projects such as the one used in this collagen mask pictured here or for the creation of medical orthoses (3D printed custom supports for people who suffer from arthritic pain) and generative casts.

With its both projects the studio created objects with the high levels of precision and adaptability needed for such an abstract design to sit on a person’s face or body part. This is achieved by scanning the body of the person that the mask or buckle is created for, and then allowing computers to run simulations of fiber systems growth and create the 3D model. Designers can differentiate the end result in various ways, and thus reach their own unique artistic approach.

MHOX and CRP Group also collaborated at development of personalized 3D printed "orthoses"
MHOX and CRP Group also collaborated at development of personalized 3D printed “orthoses”

New materials for complex objects

The actual 3D printing of these buckles involves another specialist in the field. CRP Group is responsible for the “materialization” of such geometrically complex objects. The Modena, Italy, based company has been collaborating with world class companies in the aerospace and motor-sports industries and has proven their ability to create 3D printed objects that work for state of the art technology implementations and in highly demanding applications.

Utilizing the Windform additive manufacturing materials for laser sintering, which is one of the most advanced 3D printing technologies, CRP is able to 3D print objects that are strong and reliable. These parts can be further machined by CNC mills or other processing tools, and are even suitable for use in space according to NASA’s ASTM E1559 testing results. The Windform XT 2.0 material that is used for the buckles is a polyamide-based material filled with carbon to ensure the best mechanical properties of the printed object.

These amazing belt buckles give us an insight into the future of desginer clothing accessories (image: MHOX)
These amazing belt buckles give us an insight into the future of designer clothing accessories (image: MHOX)

Windform XT 2.0 is characterized by its high stiffness, excellent strength and reduced weight. Most importantly, it can guarantee high-dimensional accuracy, allowing the creation of such highly tailored customized objects. The combination of Scunzani’s style, with MHOX’s design capabilities, CRP’s 3D printing expertise and the Windform material’s advanced properties form the backbone to the full, digital creative cycle made possible by 3D printing, and gives us a first look into the clothing manufacturing processes of the future.

If you want more information on how to look good, how about some 3d printed jewelry?