MADE IN PRINTER: A New Exhibition & Custom Font Exploring Sustainable Fashion With 3D Printing

Tasked with designing an identity and custom font for an exhibition exploring sustainable fashion, Natalia Radnaeva has recently created an innovative custom font inspired by 3D printing, which will soon be available for purchase online. The young graphic designer is based in Moscow, and is currently studying for her Master’s degree at HSE Art & Design School. As part of the program’s efforts to encourage students to focus on different types of work, Natalia was encouraged to develop a custom font to anchor the exhibition identity. 

MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design
MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design
MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design

The MADE IN PRINTER exhibition explored technology relating to sustainable development, looking to 3D printing and its potential to repurpose recycled plastics for clothing production. With the fashion industry—particularly fast fashion—being fraught with issues of exploitation, sustainable and ethical fashion is yet to become widely accessible and mainstream (aside from buying second-hand). 

‘The main task was to create the custom font for the exhibition, and I started to think about different textiles and various technology. It was okay, but not that impressive. The true idea appeared while I was thinking about the 3D printing technology—the manufacturing, the way it is printed, the material and its physical features. That is why the type now has such flexibility and can bend and twist,’ Natalia explains. The custom font has two character styles: thin and bold, which Natalia used to create a contrast between the name of the exhibition and the rest of the given information; choosing to use the bold only for the ‘Made In Printer’ titles. ‘All the typography was inspired by technical aesthetic, such as that found on labels with information and washing rules,’ she adds. ‘I think the font turned out quite futuristic, it reminds me of something made from fabrics.’

MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design, promotional materials
MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design, booklet

With the shapes the custom font is built on drawing from 3D printing, Natalia notes, ‘It combines the industrial side (digital), and plastic (textile), while the identity reminds viewers of icons on clothing labels with recommendations for usage. Also, the name of the exhibition is a play on the famous phrase Made In China.’ 

‘If a designer can create something both outstanding and useful, it will improve our society as people start to look at such design and purchase it. Eventually, all designers will support and create more sustainable products, which is better for our environment,’ she adds. Using a custom font in this way seems a powerful tool in allowing viewers to soak up messages about fashion and sustainability in a concise, digestible way. While the phrase ‘Made In Printer’ calls attention to our recollection of the prevalence of fast fashion items in our wardrobes, the masterful 3D printing inspired design reflects the progressive, competent and exciting nature of this possible alternative. 

MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design, water bottle merch
MADE IN PRINTER custom font & exhibition design, t shirt merch

‘To be honest, I think it’s all about experimenting,’ says Natalia. ‘Thinking in different ways and mixing ideas, in the end, will give the best result.’ Thank you so much to Natalia for sharing more about this project! Be sure to keep up an eye out for more stunning work from Natalia, as well as this stunning font when it lands for purchase online.