Material Cookbook || Chapter 5: Thermoplastics

Thermoplastic Material List:

  • Thermoplastic Fabric (100% polyester)
  • Rubber bands
  • Aluminium Foil
  • Pot for boiling
  • Objects with interesting shapes (note that this must be able to withstand high temperatures if not they will warp when boiling)

Instruction for Boiling thermoplastics:

Step 1: Cut the cloth to the desired length

Step 2: Wrap your objects in the cloth and tie them down with rubber bands

Step 3: Fold them in Aluminium foil when done

Step 4: Drop them in the pot of boiling water and boil for 30mins

    

Step 5: Remove from wrappings.

Reflection:

Acrylic cannot stand the high temperatures of boiling the thermoplastic, so be prepared for some warping.

Folding the material in Aluminium foil works, but only for simpler patterns. As you can see above the foil just becomes very crumpled and does not hold the folds shape. If we want to attempt the ‘origami’ kind of folds, prepare paper.

In Class Examples:

Material Cookbook || Chapter 4: Smocking Technique

Smocking Material List:

  • Fabric
  • Thread (elastic or not)
  • Sewing Machine

Instruction for hand sewn smocking:

Flower Patterned Smocking:

Step 1: Draw a grid on the cloth.

Step 2: Sew a small section of the points 1, 2, 3 and 4 to form the outline of a square

Step 3: Pull thread to gather the fabric in a cross pattern

Step 4: Sew across the fabric to keep them taut

Step 5: String a bead (Optional)

Images for instructions are taken from: https://mellysews.com/smocking-tutorial/

Reflection:

For this pattern, it is important to leave space along the border, if not the fabric will bunch and not form the petal for the flower.

We need to leave a space between the flowers, if not the petals will overlap and sink each other.

The opposite side works as a cute box pattern as well.

 

Leaf Patterned Smocking (Canadian Smocking):

This is Leaf design in Canadian smocking.I have used 2cm square graph.I feel if I had used 1.5cm graph the design … | Canadian smocking, Smocking pattern, Smocking

Leaf Smocking pattern found online

Step 1: Draw a square grid on the cloth.

Step 2:  Mark the cloth as such

Step 3: Sew the ends of every diagonal line together.

Reflection:

I like this pattern, it is simple.

Instructions for Sewing Machine Smocking:

Step one: Sew your fabric, bottom thread is elastic, and the top is normal thread. Your stitch line should be straight with large intervals (setting three on the machine in school.)

Step 2: Sew as many rows as you like, and have fun with it.

Reflection:

The tightness of the elastic wound in the bobbin with affect how tightly gathered the cloth is.

Remember to pull a bit more elastic to tie it off, so it would not fly into the fabric.

If the elastic used is thick (meaning if the fabric is thick and needs thicker elastic to hold) use the zig-zag pattern and stretch it while you sew it down. the thread should hold the elastic to the cloth like so.

Material Cookbook || Chapter 3: Felting and Applique Technique

Felting Material List:

  • Felting Wool
  • Felting Needles
  • Hot Water
  • Soap
  • Foam block (backing)

Instructions for Dry Felting

Step 1: Roll the felt wool into a any shape you wish

Step 2: Lay it on the foam block and stab it with the needle until firm.

Step 3: To connect pieces or thicken parts lay more layers of wool and stab the part until the wool has fused.

Reflections:

Be careful of your fingers when you are stabbing, it is very easy to get impatient and start stabbing without thought. While it will not cause massive damage if you are stabbing gently it still hurts.

If the material made is too big you can always cut them off.

Felting is like sculpting with a needle, but you should work with a slightly bigger surface them slowly self it down, because it becomes more tightly compact hence shrinks.

Instructions for Wet Felting

Step 1: Lay the layers of felt wool over each other in different directions

 

Step 2: Lay it over some plastic and pour hot water over it.

Step 3: Add soap on it and start rubbing the fibres

Step 4: Add a different coloured wool over the wool to create interesting patterns. Can keep building layers till a certain thickness has been created.

Step 5: When the hot water and soap stops helping the material to fuse, switch over to needle.

 

Reflections:

Be careful it is hot.

Layer the material in various directions or the material will not fuse properly. Mine sprouted various holes, because of the way I snaked the wool

In Class Pictures:

Applique Material List:

  • Beads
  • Threads
  • Fabrics with different patterns
  • Anything you want to add on top
  • Sewing Machine

 

 

Instructions for Wet Felting

Step 1: Arrange Fabrics to the way you want

Step 2: Sew them down using different sewing patterns.

Step 3: Hand Sew the beads on

 

Reflection:

Having fun using different patterns for sewing down the fabric and using different threads for the top and bottom thread to give tiny accents when they peak through. The problem is my threads do not have a lot of contrasts so it is not very obvious.

I would like to try adding beads.

Material Cookbook || Chapter 2: Plastic Fusion and Thread Fabric

Material List for Plastic Fusion:

  • Plastic bags or plastics of any kind
  • An Iron
  • Wax Paper

Instructions for Plastic Fusion:

Step 1: Cut and arrange the plastic bags in the pattern that you want.

Step 2: Sandwich the plastics between wax paper and iron them to fuse. (The starting setting was the one with the highest heat)

Reflection:

Thin plastics burns very easily, the kind from the markets or trash bag material. Layer them sufficiently or turn down the heat from the iron.

The designs on the plastics transferred to the wax paper. It could be because the heat was too high, but certain designs melted faster then the plastics and fused to the wax paper instead. On a side note, some of the plastics fused to the wax paper instead of with the other plastics. (It could be the type of wax paper used, but that is a hunch? )

Transparent plastics are sticky. The take more heat to melt (or at least my transparent package did) but it refuses to fuse. Instead it feels slightly resistant to touch hence I describe it as sticky. It does create very beautiful ‘frosted glass’ texture though.

Sometimes the heat is not enough and it results in the plastics not fusing, hence a cute little hole for your finger to stick through, a very intentional design flaw XD.

Material List for Thread Fabric:

  • Threads
  • A sewing Machine
  • Water Soluble Stabiliser
  • Fabric and trimmings to add into the ‘fabric’.
  • UV resistant acrylic spray

Instructions for Plastic Fusion:

Step 1: cut two identical pieces of water soluble stabiliser

Step 2: Sandwich threads, fabric trimmings or anything you want in between the two pieces of water soluble stabiliser.

Step 3: Pin them in place and start sewing.

Step 4: Wash the water soluble material away.

Step 5: Place the wet material over a surface shape that you want them to hold and leave to dry. (Optional)

Step 6: Spray a coat of UV resistant acrylic spray over it to stiffen the material and allow it to keep its shape. (Optional)

 

Reflection:

Upper and lower threads can be of different colours to create more interesting visual contrasts.

Make sure that the threads overlap, because that is the only thing holding the ‘fabric’ together when the water soluble stabiliser is washed away.

Sewing can be done with any patterns, lets have fun and explore together.

Be careful when washing the threads only fabric, as they feel a bit fragile, especially if you threads are a bit sparse like our trial. Do not squeeze them into a ball (I thought they were going to stick all together oAo).

Material Cookbook || Chapter 1: Direct and Indirect Pattern Transfer

Materials Needed:

  • Transfer Ink for Fabric
  • polyester material, the silky kind
  • Paper
  • Fabric crayons
  • wax paper
  • Iron/Heat press
  • Flat items (Feathers, string, lace, etc)

Instructions: Dry transfer – Direct

 

Step 1: Draw a pattern or image on paper using the fabric crayons.

Step 2: Line the paper on top of your chosen material, image side down.

Step 3: Place a sheet of wax paper to protect your cloth from direct heat from the iron. This will prevent the cloth from burning or warping.

Step 4: Iron the stack. Note that the Colour will start to seep into the cloth when it is ironed properly. It also takes awhile for the image to transfer so be patient and check it constantly without moving your image.

 Reflection:

Heating with an iron is uneven and I removed the heat too early on from some parts of the fabric which results in fainter imprints.

Polyester burns and shrinks under high heat. Also the silkier the fabric, the more vibrant the colours.

Yellow on paper is very bright whilst purple on paper is almost black, yet transferring over to the cloth lightens the colours.

 

Instructions: Wet transfer – Indirect

Step 1: Paint your paper with Transfer Ink and leave it to dry

Step 2: Arrange your flat objects on top of your chosen cloth.

Step 3: Line the dried paper with transfer ink on top of your chosen material, coloured side down.

Step 4: Place a sheet of wax paper to protect your cloth from direct heat from the iron. This will prevent the cloth from burning or warping.

Step 5: Iron the stack. Note that the Colour will start to seep into the cloth when it is ironed properly. It also takes awhile for the image to transfer so be patient and check it constantly without moving your image.

Reflection:

The flat objects like string move around a lot when checking, be careful when lifting the sheets.

the transfer ink also takes longer then the crayons for heat transfer, be patient.

Instructions: Wet transfer – Direct

Step 1: Paint your flat objects with transfer ink.

Step 2: Arrange your flat objects on top of your chosen cloth, painted side down.

Step 3: Place a sheet of wax paper to protect your cloth from direct heat from the iron. This will prevent the cloth from burning or warping.

Step 4: Iron the stack. Note that the Colour will start to seep into the cloth when it is ironed properly. It also takes awhile for the image to transfer so be patient and check it constantly without moving your image.

Reflection:

In class example done by Galina. 
The positive imprint is an example of direct wet printing.

I did not have the opportunity to play with this as my string was too flimsy to make a second imprint. The ink picked up from the first wet transfer print is enough to transfer a detailed enough pattern to the cloth as witnessed in the class example.

 

 

 

 

Wearable Tech Final Project

Butterflies

My fashion concept revolves around the visualisation of the feelings of anxiety. Anxiety is sometimes described as the butterflies in your stomach and I wanted to work with butterflies on my outfit. For the dress the interactivity was meant to show the phases of being anxious. The first being where the butterflies come alive under the use of servo motors, loud like the blood rushing in your ears. The second being the calm of overcoming that anxiety, where the butterflies calm, and there is light.

The idea of the dress was supposed to be dark, representing the things lurking in the shadows and you cannot really see them, hence I chose of black fabric. Eventually though to liven up the dress, I had chosen some red accents so as everything is not just one dark mess.

Technology:

For the circuit I separated the interactivity into two circuits.

The first is the servo motor where its like a pulley system to pull the butterfly wings up, and gravity brings it down.

The second state is the lights which pulse like a heart beat. I felt that it would be nicer as a pulsing light as it is softer and calmer.

I had thought for if this project exist on its own it will either respond to heartbeat with a heartbeat sensor. For the fashion show I wanted to do a collaboration with Pei Wen, where when her dress comes close then it would trigger the second part of the dress where it lights up, kind of representing the comfort a close friend gives, which results in the calm.

Improvements:

I need a bit more support for the butterflies. As it relies of gravity to let the wings fall, it has to perch horizontally rather then on the side of the wall.  So I would like to either remake the butterfly system or make a kind of support.

I would also like to conceal my wires and the butterfly stand better, by maybe making cloth flowers to conceal it.

I would also like to expand the butterfly circuit to the hat portion, so hopefully I can cut or find another way to make more butterflies.

 

For the Fashion Show:

My role was originally to help out with the photo shoot, I didn’t really think about it too much because the role sounds straightforward enough. Um, I could help out with the other areas too if help is needed.

Interactive Device Project2: Skitzie the Cat

Skitzie the Cat is just your average black cat that likes to hang out on your shoulder. They are curious and like to people watch while you do your stuff. But Skitzie is very shy, hence pretends to be a scarf when anyone comes too close.

(insert hooman wearable sketch)

About Skitzie the Cat

Skitzie is a guardian for those who are not to aware of their surroundings. In a sense Skitzie’s ‘hasty retreat’ to become a scarf is a warning that there are on coming people approaching.

For this project, I had imagined Skitzie to be able to move their head and their ears to see the world. Skitzie is also envisioned to be able to ‘blink’ through LEDs and hum through a speaker. I wanted there to be sound or light as an indicator to the person who is wearing Skitzie to know very clearly when Skitzie is a cat and when they are pretending to be a scarf. The Warning has to be distinct enough to catch people’s notice.

Skitzie’s hardware

Skitzis is a combination of servo motors and a sharp

  1. Testing the Servo Motor:

Website Reference: https://www.instructables.com/id/Arduino-Servo-Motors/

2. Testing the Proximity sensor

Sharp ir arduino 0

Website Reference: https://create.arduino.cc/projecthub/jenniferchen/distance-measuring-sensor-900520

I combine the circuits and then made a head.

Testing out the Eyes circuit, it works. Turns off and on depending on the closeness.

For Some odd reason though when i add the ears, the eyes disappeared.

Then it got fixed (connections are problematic, check everythingggg).

This is the body, that I made around the head servo motor.

All Assembled.

Reflections:

Honestly the aesthetic of Skitzie didnt come out right, which I am a little bit disappointed by. Subsequently the head keeps falling off if left for too long, so I need to fix that in future. Hopefully we will see the return f a better Skitzie in future.

 

 

Refernces:

  • https://www.google.com/search?q=code+servo+motor+with+sensor&oq=code+servo+motor+with+sensor&aqs=chrome..69i57j0.11575j1j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#kpvalbx=_VbKEXdWDPNjc9QPCsoCIBA25

Final Project: Trio

One musician makes a Solo.

Two musicians make a Duet.

Three musicians make a Trio.

So lets make a Trio.

Three is a weird number, we only have two hands after all, so to have three sensors you would need at least another person to make sure all sensors are occupied to control the sound that is made (of course the preferable number is three, but I do so wish to see two people flailing around).

Why did I create trio? I guess it was more along the lines of finding a project that seems fun to interact with, but at the same time you struggle to make it work for you. At the end of the day the device is really just a commentary of how sometimes in life while you are trying your best to make something work, the end result does not bear fruit, or even better, bears fruit but there is not really a take away to this situation now is there?

In summary, let me waste your time.

The Circuit:

Life update:

Initially in the previous post I had made my code entirely out of Piezzo Buzzers and ultrasonic sensors, made to beep in a set tempo. Which, to be honest, is not really what I wanted. I want the tempo to be set by removing the object in front of the sensors face. But after editing the code I realise a major issue: the ultrasonic sensor is kind of being influenced by the buzzer it self.

(insert confused noises) It was steady before? But that was when the ultrasonic sensor only needed to play one tone with an interval in between, hence meaning it was not reading the environment every second hence it does not get influenced before.

So at this point it was time to consider changing my components.

Sharp ir arduino 0

Image taken from: https://create.arduino.cc/projecthub/jenniferchen/distance-measuring-sensor-900520

So I tried out the Sharp infrared/proximity? sensor. It goes by distance sensor at Continental.

Putting the entire circuit together, a single Piezzo buzzer and an Arduino together, the circuit works.

However, duplicating the code becomes a bit more troublesome. As it turns out, you cannot fit 3 piezzo buzzers to a single Arduino and expect them to ‘sound’ at the same time (Trouble shooting this the night before and realising you have to duplicate the circuit and not the code is really bad for your health by the way).

I did not account for this tripling of the space needed to store my three Arduinos, three distance sensors, three piezzo buzzers and three power packs. It is a super tight fit, mind you. By right I can squeeze everything into the box,. But by left squeezing very thing in the night before the showcase and then snapping something is not an ideal situation.

Piecing them together:

From the last post I showed that I laser cut, filed and spray painted my pieces, accordingly:

Since that time, I had to redo the black pieces, to fit the Sharp Infrared Sensor instead of the Ultrasonic sensor. Hence cut a rectangular piece instead.

I have also cut some wedges to support the structure.

And I stacked all my pieces up and glued them together with a glue gun.

Finally I stuck my components inside the surface.

Reflections:

In this case I have achieved what I wanted to in this project, the three sensors play according to the distance of them and the object. However maybe in future I would like to be a bit more ambitious/annoying and make the circuit for more (time to make a symphony for one then).

Of course there are a bit more things I should have accounted for, like the size of the circuit, or the potential increase of the circuit.

Final Project: I tried to be a Musician

Looking at my final project, I was rather sceptical about what it is i wanted to do, as I was out of ideas.

I spent quite a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do, and realised looking for ideas just got me more and more distracted from actually finding an idea. Hence I decided to build on that feeling of wasting time and made a product that ‘wastes other people’s time’.

The entire project ‘I tried to be a musician’ is kind of looking at the idea of people doing things for fun, finding ‘useless’ talents that seem entertaining but at the end of the day, there is not much value added to the experience.

I kind of remembered some people making music videos with Calculators and the squeaky chickens (help, I never realised they are made by the same person). The kind of music videos where you look at them and realise ‘wow, you are so talented’ and immediately after ‘where the heck do you get the time to do this sort of things’.

So I decided lets make a musical instrument too, something easy to understand and grasp and make a jumble of sound, but hard to actually make something decent, to prompt others to try harder to make the product work for them, or give up instantly after understanding that it is going to be a waste of time.

I guess this project is really just to emulate that idea of having fun trying to solve a problem, but at the end of the day, you are just wasting time having fun. (Is that considered wasting time? who knows?)

The Making:

So the components of the project are relatively simple. It is a combination of two simple circuits, one for an ultrasonic sensor, and another for a buzzer:

Source: https://howtomechatronics.com/tutorials/arduino/ultrasonic-sensor-hc-sr04/

learn_arduino_fritzing.jpg

Source: https://learn.adafruit.com/adafruit-arduino-lesson-10-making-sounds/playing-a-scale

I found that by using a buzzer I technically can code for the entire keyboard is i find the list of numbers associated with the tone. By allocating a set distance the ultrasonic sensor and my hand, I essentially have a no-touch piano keyboard. Yay.

Taking it a step further, because why not? I duplicated the code by three, splitting them according by octaves. We only have two hands so I wish you luck trying to learn how to play this annoying child >:D

Pictures:

The setup for a single set of buzzer and ultrasonic sensor pair.

The there is the external pieces.

I first laser cut my pattern out:

 

Then after that i Spray painted the pieces:

Videos:

So Far there is two:

The range of the sound seems to similar i need to increase the range to make it more interesting.

Red Box, Blue Box: a Mini Project

Red Box, Blue Box is just the start of a bunch of interactive acrylic boxes that light at the touch of each other.

The idea of Red Box Blue Box was meant to be of boxes of different shapes and sizes with the ability to connect and influence each other at any side. However due to the time restriction of this project Red Box and Blue Box are the only two to make an appearance.

The humble origins of the boxes

The two boxes begin their humble beginnings as a pair of LED strips attempting to light.

At the beginning I never thought of programming an Arduino per Box due to my lack of knowledge. However eventually, I did manage for two.

The starting stages I have used Aluminium foil switches, as I wanted the circuit to touch and be closed, bringing out the idea of contact instead of a button. However there were some ideas of using a pair of magnets instead of aluminium foil, hence I changed the switch to be made of magnets. Hence I prepped the shell of the box to have two holes for where the magnets will be slotted, not wanting to breech the surface for aesthetic reasons.

I drew out a circuit halfway, only to realize later on that is not how a circuit worked. Subsequently, not only the circuit, I realized I was not using the magnet switches properly. It turns out that magnets despite being able to attract its counter part across two 4mm acrylic pieces, does not actually transmit code through (Sad non-physics student Elizabeth learns the hard way, thank you Dan Ning for the physics lesson).

But alas, the first method of testing Aluminium foil actually prove to be the most efficient method of transmitting code. Hence resulting in the final product.

I Started looking for other circuits to reference, one being connecting two arduinos as such:

Picture of How to Connect Them

But I realised the accompanying code was more reliant on one arduino then the other, which is not what I am looking for.

In the end, I was referencing this circuit.

And creating a simple button circuit

I repeated the circuit for six sides of the hexagon.

Red Box Blue Box in action