A growing number of artists, hobbyists and entrepreneurs may require printer supplies for 3D machines, as the technology is said to be growing in popularity.

USA Today reports declining costs for the hardware have led to a boom for the sector, with total sales growing by 24 per cent in 2010, according to research firm Wohlers Associates.

It also forecast ""strong double-digit growth" for the next few years, driven by a fast-growing market of DIYers and hobbyists.

Spokesman for the firm Terry Wohlers said much of the appeal lies in the range of items that can be made, noting: "You have freedom of creation. You can do almost anything".

The publication noted there are online resources available that can help individuals print out products such toy robots and Lego Duplo bocks.

Entrepreneurs are also taking advantage to the technology to sell designs such as 3D-printed jewellery, fashion accessories and home decor items.

Recently, the BBC also reported how one artist in Israel – Eyal Gever – is using the technology to create unique pieces in a fraction of the time traditional sculpting would take.