What to Make with a 3D Printer: Creative Ideas to Get You Started

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3D printing has come a long way since its inception in the 1980s. Today, it is a widely accessible technology that is used in a variety of industries, from manufacturing to healthcare. With the rise of affordable 3D printers, it is now possible for individuals to create their own 3D printed objects at home. But what should you make with your 3D printer?

The possibilities are endless when it comes to 3D printing. You can create anything from small toys to replacement parts for household appliances. One of the most popular uses for 3D printing is in the creation of customized phone cases, jewelry, and other accessories. With the ability to design and print your own unique items, you can truly make something that is one-of-a-kind.

Another area where 3D printing is making a big impact is in the field of prosthetics. The ability to create custom-fitted prosthetic limbs using 3D printing technology has revolutionized the industry, making prosthetics more affordable and accessible to those who need them. Additionally, 3D printing has been used to create models for surgical planning, allowing doctors to practice complex procedures before operating on patients.

Practical Items to Make

If you’re looking for practical items to make with your 3D printer, there are plenty of options to choose from. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Phone Case

A 3D printed phone case is a great way to protect your phone while also showing off your creativity. You can design your own case or find one online that you like. Some popular designs include cases with intricate patterns, geometric shapes, or even your favorite movie or TV show characters.


A 3D printed keychain is a fun and easy project that you can make in just a few hours. You can design your keychain in any shape or size you like, and add your own custom text or images. Some popular designs include keychains with your favorite sports team logo, your initials, or even a miniature version of your pet.

Replacement Parts

One of the most practical uses for a 3D printer is to create replacement parts for items that have broken or worn out. This can include anything from a broken hinge on a pair of glasses to a missing knob on a kitchen appliance. With a 3D printer, you can quickly and easily create a replacement part that fits perfectly and saves you money.

In conclusion, 3D printing offers a wide range of practical items that you can make at home. Whether you’re looking to protect your phone, create a custom keychain, or replace a broken part, a 3D printer is a versatile tool that can help you bring your ideas to life.

Decorative Items to Make

If you want to showcase your creativity and make something unique, 3D printing can be a great way to do so. Here are some decorative items you can make using a 3D printer.


3D printing allows you to create intricate and detailed figurines that can be used as decorative items. You can find a wide range of designs online or create your own using 3D modeling software. Some popular figurines to make include animals, superheroes, and cartoon characters.

Home Decor

You can also use a 3D printer to create personalized home decor items. For example, you can make a vase, a lampshade, or a picture frame. You can customize the design to match your home decor or create something completely unique.


3D printing technology has revolutionized the jewelry industry. You can now create your own unique pieces of jewelry using a 3D printer. You can make earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and rings. You can also customize the design to match your personal style.

In conclusion, 3D printing can be a great way to make decorative items that are unique and personalized. With a little creativity and some basic knowledge of 3D modeling, you can create something that is truly one-of-a-kind.

Educational Items to Make

If you’re looking to use your 3D printer for educational purposes, there are plenty of items you can make that will help students learn and engage with the material. Here are a few ideas:


3D printed puzzles are a great way to teach problem-solving skills. You can create puzzles that require students to use critical thinking and spatial awareness to solve. There are plenty of free puzzle designs available online, or you can create your own using a 3D modeling program.


A 3D printed globe is a great way to teach geography. You can print a globe with different colors for each continent, or you can create a globe that shows topographical features. This is a great way to help students visualize the world in a new way.

Math Manipulatives

There are plenty of math manipulatives you can create with a 3D printer. For example, you can print blocks with numbers and symbols on them for students to use in math games. You can also print geometric shapes for students to use in geometry lessons.

Overall, 3D printing is a great tool for educators. With a little creativity, you can create educational items that will engage students and help them learn in new and exciting ways.

Creative Items to Make

If you’re looking for some inspiration for your next 3D printing project, consider making some creative items that are both fun and functional. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Musical Instruments

With a 3D printer, you can create your own musical instruments that are both unique and functional. Some popular options include:

  • Ocarina: A small wind instrument that is easy to 3D print and can produce a range of notes.
  • Guitar Picks: Create custom guitar picks in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit your playing style.
  • Drumsticks: Make your own drumsticks that are perfectly balanced and comfortable to hold.

Costume Accessories

If you enjoy cosplay or dressing up for events, 3D printing can help you create custom accessories that can take your costume to the next level. Some ideas include:

  • Masks: Design and print your own masks that are perfectly tailored to your face.
  • Armor: Create custom armor pieces that are lightweight and easy to wear.
  • Props: Make your own props, such as swords or wands, that look just like the real thing.

Artistic Sculptures

3D printing can also be used to create beautiful and intricate sculptures that can be displayed in your home or office. Some ideas include:

  • Vases: Print a vase in a unique shape or design that you can use to display flowers or other decorative items.
  • Figurines: Create custom figurines that are perfect for collectors or as gifts for friends and family.
  • Wall Art: Make your own wall art by printing intricate designs or patterns that can be hung on your walls.

Overall, the possibilities for 3D printing are endless when it comes to creative items. With a little imagination and some design skills, you can create unique and functional items that are sure to impress.