All eyes were on US snowboarder and dancer Amy Purdy at the Rio de Janeiro Paralympic Games opening ceremony last night – and not just for her amazing dancing skills on her prosthetic legs.
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Purdy, who won second place on the 18th season of ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars”, danced a solo at the opening ceremony – with an industrial robot named KUKA.
However, that wasn’t the only high-tech element of her performance. Purdy wore a 3-D-printed dress created by Israeli fashion designer Danit Peleg. In a choreographed routine representing the complex relationship between humans and technology, the fact that her dress was printed using desktop printers added depth to her performance.
Inspired by Venus
Purdy battled with meningitis at the age of 19, as a result of which she lost both of her legs. Peleg saw Purdy’s story as a rebirth. With Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” as her prime inspiration, Peleg also added diamond shapes from the painting’s composition, while the nude color is that of Venus. Part of Peleg’s latest collection, for the custom dress she decided to use FilaFlex, a soft material printed in a lacelike textile which moved and bounced as Purdy danced. According to Peleg, it took approximately 120 hours to print the dress.
For her 2015 graduate collection, Peleg was the first to design and 3-D print an entire ready-to-wear collection. Peleg believes that 3-D printing is “liberating because the designer’s imagination is the only constraint. As the technology evolves and materials and printers improve, designers will find a lot of freedom in this technique.”
Print your own clothes
“As technologies evolve, we all soon will be printing our own clothes at home,” Peleg told NoCamels a year ago in an interview . “Just imagine the potential…If you’re cold, print your own jacket. Traveling with no luggage? Just print your clothes in the hotel room.”
As for last night, Peleg was understandably ecstatic in describing Purdy’s performance on her Istagram account. “What an incredible night!! Amy Purdy rocked my 3D printed dress! Words cannot describe how I feel right now!”
Photos: Danit Peleg