Milan Design Week offers the perfect venue for unlikely pairings between designers and other creative disciplines, which is exactly what the United Nude fashion house has done with 3D Systems. Enlisting five architects and industrial designers to create bold high-heel shoes, United Nude founder Rem D Koolhaas intended to show how 3D printers could revolutionize high fashion. First, iconic architect Zaha Hadid followed up her “Coral” shoe with the glamorous “Flames”, a playfully extreme design with sharp lines and cartoonish features. Michael Young came up with the “Young Shoe”, an alien shape designed for comfort but looking like two black silos surrounding the foot. Fernando Romero’s “Ammonite” shoe used a gorgeous spiral pattern to resemble an extinct sea creature. Ross Lovegrove pushed the boundaries of 3D printing with “Ilabo” by creating a tiny green mesh that surrounds the foot like a curtain. Finally, Ben van Berkel’s “UNX2” shoe probably evoked the strangest reaction in viewers, because they look just like animal hooves. These are just a few possibilities for 3D printed fashion; below, you’ll find more imaginative stories about designers pushing the limits of today’s technology.
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