How 3D Printing Is Changing the Toy Game For Good – Starting With Barbie
Categories: Tech

How 3D Printing Is Changing the Toy Game For Good – Starting With Barbie

We’ve seen what 3D printing can do for toys: MakerBot offers blueprint downloads for entire collections of trucks and pets, you can print out what the characters in the pages of Leo the Maker Prince create or even turn your tyke’s scribble into a 3D sculpture. Now, artist Nickolay Lamm is using this technology to start a playtime revolution that he thinks will last a lifetime. He’s aiming to change the toy market and how it impacts our beauty standards by printing realistic dolls. You know, toys that actually “R” us.

Last year he created a 3D doll colored in Photoshop, who represented what our favorite blonde might look like with an actual, average woman’s measurements. Um, and “normal,” “average” Barbie looked darn good — see the comparison above. We can relate to the silhouette on the right much, MUCH better. Anyone else? The Barbie-fied before-and-after went viral and Nickolay fielded enough requests for the real (real) deal that he knew he had to make his 3D project an actual, shoppable toy.

Meet Lammily.

She’s made using standard human body proportions and is supposed to be “fit and strong” to help promote healthy living. Lammily wears makeup but goes for a more natural look that we’re loving. And no sky high heels for her! She’s rocking sneakers and what looks like a pretty sweet ombre chambray shirt. Can we borrow, Lamm?

Nickolay certainly isn’t the first person to notice that Barbie needed a new kind of makeover. But this is the first time someone is recreating the toy to make a change, and not just workshopping an art project. As he puts it, it’s in our hands to change the toys we buy for our kids. And 3D printing can definitely be the way to do that. Lammily is currently being crowdfunded on his site where there are already thousands of dolls claimed. $25 will get you an exclusive first edition, $50 gets you two and $500 = an army. Maybe there will be a future Lammily in Thingiverse that you can download and print at home. For now, she is expected to ship by November 2014. Just in time for the holidays.

What do you think of Lammily? How about creating your own toys at home, like realistic Barbies? What would you make? Sound off below!

(Photos: h/t Nickolay Lamm)