Meet Danit Peleg: the designer making 3D printed fashion collections

A slew of independent designers have been quick to recognise that when it comes to intelligent fashion, style and originality must sit at the top of the agenda, but staying abreast of technological developments is key too.  Fashion designer Danit Peleg incorporates both elements into her designs, and her first 3D printed fashion collection went viral. We caught up with the fashion designer to find out just how she masters that delicate balance:

WGSN: Hi Danit, tell us a bit about your journey with fashion, when did it start?

When I was 10-years-old, I attended an after-school fashion course run by a fashion student at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design. I was really inspired by the teacher; then my mother bought me a sewing machine and I started playing with it. I had so much fun being able to create. Later on, I was accepted to Shenkar, which is the best fashion school in Israel.

How do you see the relationship between fashion and technology now?

I think there’s an intersection between what’s technologically possible and the public yearning for innovation in fashion. I think there’s also a curiosity from the public regarding what’s possible and what the future will look like. I think my collections get a lot of attention because it enables people to dream of the future and what it holds.

What were the reactions to your first collection?

My first collection went viral on the Internet. It got more than 50 mentions in the worldwide press, including most of the leading press outlets. People were very excited by this collection. I think it was because it was a first and it inspired a lot of people. One of the things that captured the imagination was the idea that anyone could buy a file and print a dress at home. It sounds like science fiction but I think this collection showcased that we’re not very far from that day.

Do you feel that there is a growing demand for fashion and tech combined?

People are excited by innovative textiles, but they are also very excited about what the future will look like in five or 10 years. If what I did is possible today, the future will be even more sophisticated and the fashion industry may experience a revolution. I think the DIY aspect of the project is definitely captivating. The Makers culture is growing quickly; everyone likes creating and making with their own hands, and 3D printing may definitely make fashion more accessible to designers who don’t have any fashion experience.

What does the future hold for fashion and technology?

I think we will see more and more 3D printed fashion, but it will look different to how it is today. What I did is show proof of a concept; it took 2000 hours to print the collection so it’s not something that can be done easily. So for this to become commonplace two main things need to improve: the speed of the printers, and better materials (filaments). The filaments I produced are flexible and fun, but they are not like cotton yet. I know people are working on innovative filaments and printers (for example electroloom) so I believe it’s only a matter of time until we see better printers and more wearable materials. If technology does improve significantly, then this could be the future of the fashion industry. The consequences are huge – fewer shipping costs, greater personalisation, and most importantly the democratisation of design – anyone could design clothes. Just like a viral video, you could see a “viral t-shirt” that someone designed and that all of a sudden, everyone is wearing.

Photo credit: Danit Peleg

MORE: Love discovering new talent? Meet Shenkar College future designers Amir Shavit and Shahar Avnet.

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