The beauty of silence is an ordinary coat which reveals itself upon the change in the noise level in the environment that it is in. Focusing on the idea of comfort and privacy, the idea of a coat fits very well as a garment we use when need to feel warm and safe.
Biomimicry is the best way of inspiration, and this garment has been inspired by the simple mimosa plant. It delicate being represents the quiet people and how upon touching it recedes back not wanting to be revealed is where the idea came from.
In the society that we are today, we are a culture that worships loud people but often forget that quiet people too have a strong voice. Silence is not the absence of sound, but rather the presence of focus. Fashion has always been a form of language for one to express oneself as someone who is loud wear bright vivid colors whereas those that wear plain colours which is why the coat is designed in such a way whereby when the environment is loud, it remains as a plain looking coat however, when it senses the sound around dampening, it starts to reveal the inner fabric which is iridescent, representing the beauty of silence.
Designing the coat as something more Avant Garde and dramatic, makes the concept more ironic as fashion can be used to attract attention because of the. “loudness” it speaks yet bringing awareness to this “quiet” issue.
The technology that accompanies the garment is powered by Arduino, a sound sensor and servo motors. Upon detecting a certain value range of the sound around which is hidden among the button in the front of the belt, it will trigger the two servo motors at the side and slowly pull the coat a part to reveal. In this manner, the person wearing the coat will get the attention subconsciously without having to be conscious of using the coat. The revealing is subtle, so it draws just enough attention to appreciate it, but not too drastic that the user feels intimidated.
In conclusion, this coat is designed for quiet people to wear and feel like they can stand out without making a sound but also for the society that is noise driven to understand and appreciate these people as the coat revels itself when the surroundings get quiet. This misunderstood issue is approached in a different and unique angle through wearable technology in hopes of opening the eyes of the public.
The first process to do was getting the pattern of the coat decided. There was a default oat pattern already available and just minor adjustments had to be made to make for example the sleeves shorter and deciding what type of collar I wanted. Originally I wanted to got more for a plain looking coat that ended off at the ankle but then later decided to make it longer and drag it to have a more dramatic aesthetic.
The fabric chosen for the outer one was wool in a dark shade and I proceeded to cut the pattern out and start sewing them together. Firstly starting with the back then the sides then the sleeves and finally the collar. I learnt that sewing a sleeve like this is a little different as you have to pull the thread first to give it a bit of shape and also something called a lapelle which is a double layer of the fabric in front that is used in coats.
The next step was to cut the same pattern for the inner fabricthat was an iridescent organza and attach it to the inner coat. I pinned the coat to the back to try and see how it would look like after embedding the servo motors at the side.
Finally with some help with Naga, I was able to have a code and program it successfully to trigger the servo motors attached to the side of the belt that I fashioned out of cotton. I learnt many important terms in coding such as the delay and how it affects the Arduino.
In conclusion, for future use I can make the technology aspect pf the belt more seamless and less bulky with a Lilypad and conductive thread. Also bigger servo motors and thicker thread so that it would pull the coat better as my coat is heavy.
Overall it was indeed a laborious yet fruitful process in this wearable technology class and is definitely something I am proud of to have it in my portfolio!
I have fine tuned my concept with my garment and have found more examples that could be interesting to incorporate into.
Since I am focusing on the idea of comfort and privacy, the idea of having a wearable technology that plays along the idea of the beauty of silence came to me. For me fashion has always been a language perceived by others about how they are as a person. If someone wore something bright and colourful, they are deemed as a loud and vibrant person however if someone who wears plain colours are deemed boring and simple.
I have found several articles that speak about this culture that worships sound but find silence uncomfortable. And here are some quotes that I found interesting.
“Silence is not the absence of words, but the presence of focus”
“Quiet people need more safe time”
There is this general assumption that and labels being put on quiet people there something is definitely wrong when they are quiet. So my concept I think would be interesting if its ironic how avant garde fashion can attract attention because of its “noise” yet bring awareness to this “quiet” issue. This also helps people to learn and appreciate silence in a more physical sense. Almost like how nature flourishes when it is undisturbed.
Who: For quiet people to wear, feel like they can stand out without making a sound/ For the society that is noise driven to understand and appreciate the beauty of silence
What: A garment that will bloom/move/vibrate/grow/spread when the surrounding is quieter but recedes back when it starts to be noisy.
Where: Public/Open Space/City area
Why: A misunderstood issue approached in another way.
How: Sensors that respond to sound/ Servo motors that move / Sensors that can sense stares
These are currently my three concept sketches. The most left is a garment that will only start crunching up to reveal a beautiful pattern when there is silence. The centre is an outerwear that will have “flowers” blooming only when there is silence. The final is a round skirt that will slowly “grow” vines or flowers when there is silence.
For the mood board of the kind of aesthetic and style I was going for my garmet I feel I very drawn towards the juxtaposition between something very fitting and sleek and something a bit more structural. I like how these structures seem to inform a more insightful purpose with the garmet. How something oversized can be used for cover or protection depending on the material being used. Yet the sleek and fitting portion of the garment makes it look very doable to wear everyday. I’m also drawn towards a more muted tone such as white, grey and black and I feel the simple colour helps to bring out the structure already and any bright colours would be too distracting.
Dictionary result for biomimicry
the design and production of materials, structures, and systems that are modelled on biological entities and processes
Biomimicry has long been an inspiration for many designs and looking at nature it is often forgotten that we can learn a lot from them as they have been on this planet for so long. One particular type of ability nature has that we humans do not necessarily have is crypsis, or in more simpler terms camouflage.
Human beings have some methods to try and camouflage themselves whenever they feel uncomfortable. We run away, hide ourselves, hug ourselves and use other means to make ourselves feel better. Therefore, my ideation will be using the use of mimicry of crypsis from nature to help one cope with the stress of needing to feel comfort and have a sense of safeness and privacy in an open place.
Believing that each person should have the right to experience music, the orchestra came up with the idea for the Sound Shirt. After six months of research and development, the shirt, and the orchestra’s stage are equipped to allow even the deaf to experience their performances.
First, microphones are arranged all over the stage to pick up the individual instruments. The recordings are sent to Sound Shirt’s software, which converts the sound into data. The data is then transmitted directly to the shirt.
As the orchestra plays, the motors are activated, and vibrate with the intensity of the music, allowing the wearer to feel the encompassing sound of the full orchestra.
I am very interested at how wearable technology is enabling a better life but also helping those who are less capable in experiencing such emotions and situations finally not being left out. The technology I aim to use I hope will enable to help the user feel better in some sense in whatever issues they might have in their daily life.