Jewelry has always been associated with class – from the Crown Jewels in the Tower of London to the jewelry-clad ‘flapper’ dresses of the 1920s. Diamonds are a a girl’s best friend, and precious metals are the perfect vessels to encase them. And now 3D printed jewelry takes this elegance to another level, offering new and intricate geometries that could not be created before via previous methods, elevating the jewelry game to new heights.
Though plastic printing is widely affordable now through desktop FDM 3D printers, less is known about its metal applications. In actuality, 3D printing and jewelry go hand-in-hand, with specialized 3D software for jewelry and specialized 3D printers already on the market. Since this is such an emerging industry, we created our ranking of the 10 best 3D printed jewelry pieces from innovative companies all over the world.
- We also have an article dedicated to 3D printed clothing.
3D Printed Jewelry Manufacturing Process: Lost Wax Casting & DMLS
The most common process for creating jewelry using 3D printing is lost wax casting.
This process involves firstly 3D printing your desired jewelry model in wax (similar to resins used in stereolithography). These wax molds are then encased in plaster (known as the investment), and heated to a very high temperature to create an impression. After this, the impression is then filled with a liquid precious metal (such as gold or silver) to create the finished piece of 3D printed jewelry.
This method allows for a variety of precious metals to be used. The most commonly used metals include brass, stainless steel, bronze, silver, gold, and platinum. However, plastics such as Nylon are occasionally used for pieces such as rings.
10 of the most stunning pieces of 3D Printed Jewelry
1 – Nervous System 3D printed Hyphae Ring
Nervous System is a 3D printed jewelry company founded in 2007 by Jessica Rosenkrantz and Jesse Louis-Rosenberg, and a pioneer in the 3D printed jewelry space. Based in Somerville, Massachusetts, Nervous System combine stunning design with 3D printing technologies to create their pieces. They combine complex and unconventional geometries and take inspiration from a variety of sources, including coral, colorful agate slices, and more.
One of Nervous Systems’ main philosophies is about creating online design applications that allow customers to collaborate and co-create products. This aligns with Nervous Systems’ goal to make design more accessible to the masses. Nervous System don’t just make 3D printed jewelry such as rings and bracelets however, they also create lamps and even innovative agate puzzles, though these beautiful puzzles are laser-cut rather than 3D printed.
The company brings a creative, yet academic, approach to 3D printed jewelry making: Creative Director Jessica has degrees from MIT and the Harvard School of Design, and taught design at MIT. Their stunning Hyphae 3D printed ring is also available in silver, and retails at $250.
Check out Nervous System’s jewelry designs here.
2 – RADIAN Solitaire 3D printed ring
RADIAN is a 3D printed jewelry company based in Berlin who are influenced by architecture and graphic design, uniting sustainable manufacturing and contemporary crafting to create beautiful and elegant pieces. Founded in 2012 by Nicole Nitz and Sandro Schieck, RADIAN have released several collections, including their Solitaire collection that includes the Solitaire ring shown below, and also make necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and even 3D printed soap dishes made from recycled PETG filament.
RADIAN produce marvelous 3D printed jewelry pieces focused on geometric and abstract shapes. RADIAN create these stunning pieces out of stainless steel, gold, silver, and Nylon. The success the company has since received has resulted in RADIAN 3D printed jewelry being stocked all around Germany and Europe, and even as far as the Middle East, Russia, and the United States.
Check out RADIAN’s site here.
3 – Diana Law Sapphire Ear Accesssories
Diana Law is an experienced fashion and jewelry design with an extensive and varied career across Europe before she started her 3D printed jewelry company in 2014. With a rich history of design study in Paris, France, Diana incorporates her inspirations into her 3D printed jewelry, and now sells 3D printed earrings, necklaces, pendants, bracelets, headpieces, and more. The brand combines 3D printing and engineering with high fashion, offering both sustainable production “with no fear while celebrating individualism”, according to her website.
- We also have a feature story dedicated to 3D printed fashion.
3D printing jewelry allows Diana Law to create stunning jewelry from materials such as plastics and stainless steel. She creates her jewelry with selective laser sintering, printing fine Nylon layers. In 2018, Diana Law released her IDENTITÉ collection, featuring 3D printed accessories combined with real precious gemstones such as sapphires — an extremely ambitious project. The collection included sapphire ear maps, as shown below, as well as bracelets, and even gemstone-infused clutch bags.
You can check out Diana Law’s website here.
4 – GUY & MAX — high fashion 3D printed jewelry
GUY & MAX is a brand founded by two brothers — the sons of a diamond merchant — who hone in on exactly what makes jewelry and precious metals so beautiful and enticing, and how you combine them in design for the best results. Based in Central London, you do not simply order your ring or necklace online pre-made, but go through a detailed process including consultations to create the ideal piece of 3D printed jewelry for you. It is truly a collaborative process.
In line with GUY & MAX’s philosophy, they try to use recycled metals where possible to avoid mining. Completely custom pieces are worked on based on the customer’s exact desires and dreams, and with 3D CAD design and 3D printing, these intricate geometries can be brought to life, and combined with any gemstone. In addition, customers are invited to bring back their 3D printed jewelry pieces for a free yearly cleaning service for their jewels every year after purchase.
Check out their website here.
5 – American Pearl Completely Custom 3D Printed Jewelry
American Pearl are a very well-known jeweler who have been in business since 1950 in New York. The American company sells a huge variety of jewelry designs, many of which incorporate oyster pearls within them.
In 2014 American Pearl announced they were moving into the 3D printed jewelry sector, allowing customers to customize their own unique pieces using 3D printing. This could be done at home via the web, using 3D printing to create precise geometries in rings, earrings, necklaces, and more. Using 3D printing in their Jewelry Replicator service, American Pearl revealed they had manage to double their sales, showing how popular custom jewelry and 3D printing has become.
6 – Spinning Globe Pendant by Aethyr
Not a 3D printed jewelry brand per se, but this 3D printed pendant designed by Aethyr is an absolutely stunning piece. Available to purchase on Shapeways in a variety of metals including brass, silver, and bronze, the globe spins freely within the frame.
The design was inspired by Cornelius Norbertus Gijsbrechts’ Celestial Globe painting, which was deemed so realistic that many spectators could not discern between the 2D painting and the real 3D object. Part of the ‘trompe l’oeil’ genre of art (meaning deception of the eye), 3D designer Aethyr used this to create this beautiful piece of 3D printed jewelry.
You can check the design out on Shapeways here.
7 – Anna Reikher — Nature-Inspired 3D Printed Rings
Anna creates stunning and very detailed 3D printed jewelry inspired by her passions — including nature, yoga and origami. The results are some of the most intricate and delicate 3D printed rings we have ever seen, as shown in the frog-themed ring shown below.
Anna turned to creating her own 3D printed jewelry after becoming a mother, having previously worked in the 3D printing industry in the jewelry sector. All her jewelry pieces are the result of hand drawings which are then sculpted into detailed 3D printer models, before being printed using lost wax casting.
- We also interviewed Anna Reikher about her inspirations and use of 3D printing in our Anna Reikher interview.
8 – 3D printed deer skull pendant with antlers
Created by user 3D Printed Skull, real name Scott Camazine, on Etsy, this deer skull pendant is based on accurate 3D scans using a CT scan of real animal skulls. You can have your deer skull pendant 3D printed in stainless steel, or in sterling silver, bronze or brass.
Not only is this a beautiful piece of 3D printed jewelry, but it is also anatomically correct, having been directly scanned from an at-one-point-living deer. Fans of the animal will appreciate this, and even those just looking for a fashion accuracy will enjoy it. The designer has created a variety of other skull-based jewelry, including various other animal skulls, for other interested in accurate animal jewelry.
You can view and buy the skull on Etsy here.
9 – Intricate Framework Bracelet by Studio Noesis
This beautiful 3D printed bracelet by Studio Noesis can be 3D printed for you in a variety of materials, including brass, silver and bronze. The framework structure gives it strength, despite how lightweight and minimalist it is.
The design is by Australian designer Luke Flanagan, who also sells a variety of other 3D printed jewelry designs, including rings, necklaces, and earrings with the same minimalist, clean and sleek approach. The lowest cost brass bracelet starts at below $100, with the silver version costing more.
You can view and buy the bracelet on Shapeways here.
10 – 3D printed droplet pendant by LIFIC
This beautiful minimalist droplet pendant, designed by LIFIC (real name Matthew Choto), can be 3D printed in materials ranging from a $30 steel pendant, to a 14K yellow gold pendant for over $1,000!
The faceted droplet design looks elegant, with the open lattice look developed so that other necklaces can easily be attached if you do ever want to switch them out. Overall, it’s another example of 3D CAD design‘s application in the jewelry sector, and how individual designers are democratizing fashion with independent designs that can reach millions of fans online.
You can view and buy the pendant on Shapeways here.