The Electroloom is still a twinkle in the eyes of its creators, but when it’s completed – supposedly by the end of this year – it is going to be awesome! Electroloom is a 3D clothing printer. And it’s meant to 3D print clothing that offers comfort unseen from previous 3D printed ensembles.
The Electroloom prototype, designed by Aaron Rowley and his team, is so far capable of printing polymer fabric as sheets and tubes. At the moment, the fabric seems to resemble wisps of silk… Rowley, however, hopes that they can produce more complicated shapes from fibres that resemble cotton.
Because such organic materials can’t handle the printing process, the Electroloom will more likely use synthetics or composites of synthetic and organic material. And Rowley hopes to achieve this goal by the end of the year, with the help of a small grant from Alternative Apparel.
Over the next year, Rowley will produce a fully-functional prototype. After successfully demonstrating a proof-of-concept, they hope to change the future of clothing. Rowley anticipates that people will be able to download and print clothing or order it via a service like Shapeways. For those who aren’t CAD savvy, though, Rowley also describes how it may also be practical to provide basic templates —T-shirts, beanies, and the like — which can be customised to personal sizes and tastes.