Open Project


Open Project- Walking Glow


The concept is inspired by going to the night market in my city, which is something I had been looking forward to but unfortunately cancelled due to Covid. I, additionally, want to incorporate materials that I wouldn’t use after the semester ends or something that isn’t conventionally used in designs – which would be alligator clips. Since alligator clips are only used for testing results, I thought I would somehow incorporate it into the design while attaching LEDs. 


I was also inspired by a shirt that were made out of safety pins, a skirt made out of paint swatches, and skirts that glowed. I’m usually a person who enjoys simplistic and practical clothes, but recently, I was driven by the idea of recycling and to be honest, I doubt that I would ever use my alligator clips again so I wanted to use it as part of my design. The inspirations will be attached in the resources cited below.

The objective for this dress is to be seen or found in the night market when it is dark, contributing to the energetic atmosphere. In the night market here in Richmond, BC, we would always have performances ongoing in the background and I created a sound reactive animation for the CPX. It reacts more strongly to louder spikes in noises, which I think works perfectly for an atmosphere that would be constantly loud but has peaks in the volumes due to the concert.

Process (Including ideation drawings, images of the work in progress, and videos of the different steps)

My initial concept had lights in a series and encircled the entire dress, while being diffused by cling wrap but I had some issues.


  1. The light in series isn’t as bright as I want it to be and there wasn’t enough alligator clips.
  2. The cling wrap, although the effect is nice, it’s wrinkled texture makes it look cheap. Additionally, it becomes very stiff and restricts movement by  clinging onto your skin – Movement should be a priority in the design considering you would be walking around a lot during a night marketimg_2504
  3. The belt is on the side and it is a wrap dress, so sewing it all around isn’t reasonable.

So I made some changes. I would make the clips hang and take up half of the dress, similar to goth punk skirts that are asymmetrical.  Additionally, I sewed the conductive thread to extend until where the dress’s built in belt disconnects from the dress. Here is my circuit diagram and how I planned out the circuit:untitled466_20210402170729img_6747

Final Project Images 


Unclipped – when it is still bright out there’s no need to keep the lights on


Overall dress Circuit

Video Demo of the dress in the dark


Closeup of the two paths that allows you to connect multiple parallel circuits

Parts List

  • Conductive thread
  • Alligator Clips
  • Hookup Wires (I used one wire as a substitute for an alligator clip because I had an odd number of them)
  • LED
  • CPX

Reflections & Next Steps

I think my favourite part of this circuit was the two long conductive threads across the belt of the dress. This is because the colour is so discreet that it hides within the dress design really well. Additionally, it allows the alligator clips to clip onto them snugly because it is sewn tightly that it doesn’t escape. Also, since I am a beginner at sewing, I felt a huge sense of relief and accomplishment that the circuit worked well after it was done. I did have to re sew the line that connected to A2, because it was really unstable – the LEDs sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t so something went wrong in the sewing process. But when I redid it, it was fine. It also made the rest of the process a lot simpler too. Since I designed for the rest of the circuit to be adjustable and detachable, it was really convenient to move and adjust things whenever I wanted to as long as the threads that connected to the pins worked.

What I want to work on for future projects, and personal projects, would be to find a way to incorporate the wire for the CPX discreetly and allow it to be a more conveniently portable design. Additionally, I would want to try a bio feedback design, which can monitor heartbeats and health. I think that would especially be helpful in a night market, when you can monitor if you’re tired or if your blood pressure goes up, etc.

Resources & Related Works (cited in APA)

Anonymous. (2006, April 25). VFG’er In the News. Retrieved from
Halleux, P. D. (n.d.). Sensors in MakeCode. Retrieved from
On Loud Sound. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Stephen. (2018, May 05). Sound Reactive Lights using MakeCode: Adafruit Circuit Playground Express – Tutorial. Retrieved from
Tullis, T. (2012, September 14). Paper Clip Dress by Erika Williams. Retrieved from

Group 8 Skillshare


Group Members + Responsibilities: 

Hedy Fu: Blog+ Video Edit

Zoe Roiati-Antonucci: Code

Vermont Urbanovich: Filming

Vaneeza Usman: Written Tutorials



Our goal is to create a simple tool that will allow people to switch diffusion materials easily. It is highly inspired by how cameras are designed with removable and switchable lens.

Materials (and where to get them) 

For Constructing the circuit:

  • Circuit Playground Express (CPX) (Creatron)
  • 1 – 220-ohm resistor (Creatron)
  • 1 – LED (Creatron)
  • 1 – Photosensor (Creatron)
  • 1 – 10K resistor(Creatron)
  • 6 Alligator Clips (if you don’t want to sew your circuit) (Creatron)
  • Conductive Thread (Creatron)
  • Sewing Needle  (at home or a local crafts store like Michaels)
  • Thread  (at home or a local crafts store like Michaels)
  • Scissors   (at home or a local crafts store like Michaels)
  • Felt (at home or a local crafts store like Michaels)
  • Paper and Pen (Sketching)  (at home or a local crafts store like Michaels)

Diffusion Materials:

  • Cotton balls (at home or grocery store)
  • Cling Film/Saran wrap (at home or grocery store)


Circuit Diagrams 


Step by Step 


  1. Draw the circuit, on a piece of paper. Attach the photosensor to pin 3.3V, with the 10K resistor on the line, a connection line in between that goes to pin A5,  and the LED to pin A1 with the 220-ohm resistor.  
  2. Once you are happy with the circuit design draw the circuit on the felt.
  3. ss1
  4. Sew the CPX to the felt using thread, loop through each pin.
  5. Sew through pin 3.3V with conductive thread, loop around 3 times then sew to where the Photosensor will be placed.  
  6. Take the photosensor and curl the legs to form a circle that can be looped through. Loop through the first curled leg of the Photosensor and tie off the conductive thread.
  7. Loop through the second curled leg with a new string of conductive thread sewing till the location of the 10K resistor.
  8. Curl the legs of the resistor and sew the first leg down then tie off the conductive thread.
  9. Start again at the second leg of the Photoresistor and loop through it a few times. Next sew to the A5 pin, loop around it and tie off the thread. 
  10. Taking a new piece of conductive thread sew the last leg down and sew to a GND (ground)  pin on the CPX.
  11. Repeat the same process (steps 5-9 but not step 8)  for the LED and the 220 ohm resistor on pin A1. But make sure to sew the long leg first, The shorter leg will be connected with the same piece of conductive thread as the 220ohm resistor.  
  12. ss2
  13. Connect your CPX to your computer and follow the steps to create the code. Then take different materials and cover the LED to understand what are the different ways that an LED can be diffused. Also, try and see how the light bounces off some of the materials provided.

Alligator Clips:

  1. Attach one alligator clip pin 3.3V, the first clip on the pin and the second on one leg of the photoresistor.
  2. Connect the other leg of the photosensor to another alligator clip, and then attach it to pin A5.
  3. Connect another alligator clip to the same leg of the photoresistor attach the other side to the 10K resistor.
  4. Connect an alligator clip to the 10K resistor and then to GND (ground).
  5. Connect an alligator clip to A1, the first clip on the pin and the second clip will connect to the long leg of the LED, the anode.
  6. Take another alligator clip and connect it to the short leg of the LED, connect the other side to the 220-ohm resistor.
  7. Connect the last alligator clip to the 220-ohm resistor and to any remaining ground pins available on the CPX.

ss3Connect your CPX to your computer and create the code. Then take different materials and cover the LED to understand what are the different ways that an LED can be diffused. Also, try and see how the light bounces off some of the materials provided.

Make Code, Fade the LED:

  1. Open a new Make Code document and add an “on start” block
  2. Create two variables, one for max brightness and one for minimum brightness.
  3. Open the “set {variable} to __” from the variables folder, create two. Set the Max brightness to 180 and minimum brightness variable to 40. Put the two blocks inside “on start”.
  4. Create a variable called “control”.
  5. Set control as “analog read pin A5” and place it within the “forever” block.
  6. Create another to set a value to “control”.
  7.  Take three math blocks one for multiplication, subtraction and division.
  8. Add the max brightness bubble to the first location of the multiplication function.
  9. Take the subtraction bubble and place it in the second location of the multiplication bubble.
  10. Set the first value of the subtraction bubble to one, drag the division function to the second location of the subtraction bubble.
  11. Add the control bubble to the first location of the division bubble, make the second value 1023.
  12. Take the multiplication bubble that holds the subtraction and the division bubbles and place it as the value of control. Place this variable block below “set control to analog pin A5”
  13. Create a logic statement using the conditional if statement with a comparison block of less than “<“.
  14. Set the comparison to “control” is less than “min brightness” and place this comparison in the conditional statement.
  15. If the conditional statement becomes true “set control to min brightness”.
  16. After the if statement “set analog write pin A1 to control.”
  17. Plug in your CPX and try the code.


Link to the Tutorial Video


Blaine, Erin St. “Steven Universe Wearable, Fusable Gem.” Adafruit Learning System, 6 Mar. 2019,

Brothers, Ruiz. “Touch Tone for Circuit Playground Express.” Adafruit Learning System, 27 June 2018,

“Tester Tools: Bracelets.” HOW TO GET WHAT YOU

Wong, Sophy. “Con Badge with Circuit Playground Express.” Adafruit Learning System, 19 Mar. 2018,



Assignment 2 – Expressive Wearables

Parts List

  • Circuit Playground Express
  • Conductive thread
  • 2 LED
  • Cotton
  • 2 resistors
  • Non conductive fabric
  • 4 small pieces of conductive fabric

Concept + Objective

The idea or concept for this wearable, is to have it glow when activated manually and is meant for dark spaces. The mood that the wearer will have is either feeling spontaneous (like at a party) or fear/cautiousness at night. The idea was inspired by safety vests that helps drivers see bikers or walkers at night. Safety vests, however, aren’t an ideal choice in fashion, and recently I’ve noticed that head bandanas/scarfs have increased in popularity so I decided to play on that idea. The main purpose of this wearable is to reassure the anxiousness in both drivers and people who need to go out on walks at night. People who go out walking are especially vulnerable and so when they are worried when crossing the road that a car might hit them, they just need to switch the lights on to let others know where they are.



So I began with experimenting how many lightbulbs I could do in series and at first, I couldn’t light up any of my light bulbs at all when I used two LEDs. I realized that it was because my circuit didn’t have enough Volts to have both of them, even without a resistor (the circuit had 3.3V while the blue LED needed 3-3.2V) and I used the orange ones (which I had planned on using for the final product) instead. In the following video, I recorded a video of the lightbulbs and you can see one flashing more obviously than the second one.


And then I compared it to if I just attach one light bulb instead, which is much brighter and more visible. I had to consider that I would be diffusing it and that this was supposed to be seen from far away, so I decided to attach only one LED. In the video below, the light on the left is the singular LED compared to the one on the right(isn’t very visible), which is from the image above. The green light is just a part of the circuit playground express.9b8b7f72-b5c8-4383-bd92-aa8895836d0d

I then planned out my circuit and used crocodile clips to map out the physical one.




I sewed the switch so that one end was secured onto the fabric and the other is loose. That way the switch is only activated when I fold the scarf and the cloths touch one another. Another thing I did was using the built in buttons (A and B) to activate the Neopixels on the circuit for extra light. Below I attached some photos, I couldn’t upload videos for some reason so I just took some screenshots of the video and uploaded them as photos.

When I press Button A once, it lights up until I press Button B


Image of when the switch isn’t activated, Button A isn’t pressed


Switch activated (see next photo to see just the LED)


Final Product

img_2278 img_2279 img_2280


This is actually my first time sewing something. I’ve learnt how to sew six years ago but truth to be told, I don’t remember anything whish is also why my circuit was so messed up and why it didn’t work several times. I think that using LED was a lot harder than it was to use Neopixels and it took me three days to realize that button A and B only worked on the Neopixels and not on external LEDs. I also learned how valuable sketching on the fabric beforehand is and how much I underestimated the distance I needed for each parts. Going forward I would like to incoporate more LEDs and experiment with parallel circuits.


“Night Light.”Adafruit,

Rembor, Kattini. “Buttons.”,

Assignment 1 – Speculative Wearable: Hedy Fu

My wearable is supposed to be a unisex necklace that monitors your heart rate and flashes colours accordingly, to show bartenders, friends, and wearers themselves that the wearer can no longer drink. This is so that people avoid overdrinking and endangering themselves, as well as making symptoms more evident.

The material of the chain of the necklace will be metal(such as 18k gold/ silver/stainless steel to prevent allergies) and will have a silicone padding at where the node for the pulse detector is. The beads and what reflects the light installed within the necklace chains will be made from glass or plastic.

The necklace isn’t necessarily for all day use since it is meant to prevent overdrinking (although it can be  if the wearer wants to constantly measure their heartbeat). Therefore, like any jewellery, it can get tiring or uncomfortable after being worn for a long time .

It’s inactive state will be the same as when the person is in their usual heartbeat range and will be activated automatically, scaling off of the wearer’s heartbeats. The necklace at its most minimal form, is a singular chain but there are attachable chains of beads to make it into a statement piece. These beads are relatively small for a minimalistic and versatile look, and can be layered for those who wish to wear something more flamboyant. 

Two technologies that are similar and what I drew inspiration from are: 1) Blood pressure monitor (WebMD, 2019).

2) Signal Sending Chip(Reuters, 2018).

Ideation ExercisePaper Prototype



Home Blood Pressure Monitors: How To Choose The Best One For You. (2019, June 21). Retrieved January 16, 2021, from

Reuters. (2018, June 07). Signal sending chip wins prize for new technology to protect women. Retrieved January 16, 2021, from