After a bit of a break from delivering wearable tech workshops, I got back into the groove and created more WTF Wearable Tech Fashion projects! This time, I made a colour sensor flower accessory!
The brooch involves a colour sensor and two LEDs. After applying code to the flora microcontroller, I chose my favourite colour (red) and placed it on top of the sensor to pick up the colour. After three seconds, the exact colour transferred to the LEDs!
Having worked with Adafruit’s kit before, I knew to make sure the arrows all pointed the right way, away from the Flora microcontroller and all the connections were correctly sewn. Using the skills I picked up from my previous wearable tech fashion projects, I had to make sure all the conductive thread connections must not overlap and short circuit. This knowledge also helped me lay out the circuitry before starting to make it as compact as possible because the colour sensor is very small. And, a good little space saving trick was tucking the battery behind the Flora and ensuring the battery could be removed to be recharged.
We wanted to make the flower accessory as versatile as possible because as fashionable women, we love to accessorise! What can be a brooch could be attached to a belt, a bag, your hair or even your wrist! The sky is the limit when you want to be creative and personalise your wardrobe to make it as stylish as possible.
The best thing about the colour sensor is that you can change the colour of the LEDs to match your outfit!
I found that the primary colours tend to be the brightest, ensuring we get the right lighting and shade when scanning the colour. This is due to the RGB nature of an LED, as it uses red, green and blue lights to create it’s colours. However, this makes experimenting with the colours more fun! You can enhance the brightness by using more kit however that would mean buying more electronics. So, we diffused the light with fabric instead. After testing different fabrics, we found that the more polyester content the better because the shiny properties of a polyester fabric would reflect the light a lot more, making it look brighter!
I’ve styled it up for a wedding attire, but you can also dress it up or down, and decorate it however you like! We are exploring ideas for our next project of an interactive light up skirt to complete our wearable tech fashion outfit!
This blog was written by Rachael Yeung, Wearable Tech Assistant at Women of Wearables and MadeWithGlove. She graduated from Manchester Metropolitan university with a degree in textiles design. She combined her love of fashion and technology by creating wearable tech projects and delivering wearable tech workshops in Manchester.