Young designers will apply knowledge of electronics to create a wearable, light-up LED bracelet.
What’s the goal?
By the end of this activity, young designers will understand how to create a working parallel circuit and incorporate electronics into fashion design.
- Extra helpers are essential for this activity if you have more than 5 young designers
- Straight lines are easiest to sew
- Remember polarity! Having the young designers keep the positive line always on top and the negative always towards the bottom as they sew can help keep this straight.
- Don’t squeeze the LED metal tails too hard or bend them back and forth too many times or they will break.
- Loose components (LEDs) may be secured with regular thread
Circuit: A path for an electrical current to flow.
LED: light-emitting diode
Polarity: Batteries have a positive and negative terminal. Electricity flows from the positive to the negative end.
• Mock-up the circuit using Dough. The ends of the bracelet will act as a switch for the LED’s. Leave a break in the Dough (Figure A), then close it to show how fastening the bracelet will complete the circuit (Figure B).
- Cut out a bracelet shape of felt or foam that fits the young designer’s wrist
Let’s get started!
4. Arrange the 3 LEDs onto the bracelet.
5. Sew along the positive trail over the curled LED legs.
6. Sew along the negative trail leaving a break in the circuit.
For the students
- Conductive thread
- 3mm LEDs, white or colored, up to 3 per designer
- 1 Hand sewing needle
- 1 3V Coin-cell battery (CR2032) per designer
- Coin-cell battery holder
- Marking chalk/disappearing ink pens
- Felt or foam
- Felt or foam shapes for decoration
- Snaps for fastening
- 4 X AA battery pack with wire leads (6 volt)
- Space Dough or commercial Play-Doh
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