jingwen.zhu@nyu.edu

Jingwen’s Office Hours

Soft Lab Office Hours

 

 

The garment as a reactive interface opens up new possibilities for self-expression, sensory experiences and more, thanks to emerging research and development in soft circuit technologies and its integration into textile and clothing design. This 7-week class introduces students to this realm using exercises connecting modern technology and traditional crafting. The class is for students with basic physical computing and computational media knowledge to explore the possibility of fashion, and arouse discussion about the potential to re-imagine our relationship with textiles and garment design as an interactive media.

What will students do?
The class will introduce the process of wearable design and prototyping. We will look at the history of textiles and fashion, and discuss how they influence technology and vice versa. The topics we will discuss in class will include senses, expressions, communications, identities and social justice. We will explore a variety of wearables and e-textile technologies, including conductive textile crafting, on-body sensors, actuators, modular circuitry, wireless communications, and manufacturing. Students will get hands-on experience of designing and prototyping wearable projects individually or in groups.

How will the course be structured?
Each class will be a hybrid of lectures, in-class discussions, and hands-on workshops. For each class, the instructor will bring up different topics, share existing projects and research, or invite guest speakers from fashion technology industry, to discuss the different aspects of current fashion technology, e-textiles, and wearables field. During the workshops, students will undertake design exercises to practice user experience design methodology for wearables, and also learn different techniques of textile crafting, soft circuitry, and physical computing.

Week 1:  Intro

March 22

  • Introduction
  • Presentation: The history of fashion, textiles and technology
  • Intro to smart textiles and soft circuitry
  • Assignment:
    • Create an LED embroidery soft circuit. Schematic is shown below. You could add more LEDs or more switches. The embroidery could be a piece of textile or on a clothing. Be “creative” with the switch.
    • Watch: The Next Black

Week 2: Senses, Expressions and identities

March 29

  • Project show & tell.
  • Discussion: Is technology blocking our senses or enhancing our senses? What can garments sense? What do want garments to sense?
  • Presentation: How do garments express?
  • Experiment with different inputs and outputs, including accelerometers, muscle sensors,  LEDs, reactive pigments, and kinetic constructions
  • Assignment: (3 weeks)
    • Option 1: Create a new sense through wearables, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Option 2: Create a garment to express a message/information/data, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Requirement: has to be WEARABLE: sew on a garment or make a detachable trimming
    • Document the wearing experience on your blog.
    • Check-in in week 3: sketch.

Week 3: Techniques

April 5

  • Presentation: Wearable sensors
  • Soldering
  • Soft enclosures
  • Fiber and fabrics
  • Basic sewing with sewing machines
  • Draping basics
  • Assignment: (3 weeks)
    • Option 1: Create a new sense through wearables, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Option 2: Create a garment to express a message/information/data, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Requirement: has to be WEARABLE: sew on a garment or make a detachable trimming
    • Document the wearing experience on your blog.
    • Check-in in week 4: prototypes. Please post updates on your blog.

Week 4: Connectivity

April 12

  • Presentation: Connected fashion
  • IoT of wearables: security, privacy and connectivity
  • Wireless communication: Wifi, Bluetooth and NFC experiments
  • How to pick a microcontroller
  • Assignment: (3 weeks)
    • Option 1: Create a new sense through wearables, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Option 2: Create a garment to express a message/information/data, and wear it to get feedback.
    • Requirement: has to be WEARABLE: sew on a garment or make a detachable trimming
    • Document the wearing experience on your blog.

Week 5: Manufacturing and crafting

April 19

  • Sense/Expression project show and tell.
  • Presentation: Manufacture of hardware and textiles, and the conjunctions
  • Crafting methods: embroidery, knitting, crochet, weaving
  • Intro to PCB design
  • Assignment: Final project ideation. Please post sketches and prototypes onto your blog.

Week 6: Environment

April 26

  • Presentation: slow fashion
  • Discussion: What do fashion and fashion technology bring to the environment
  • APIs and environment sensors
  • Final project work session

Week 7: Final presentation

May 3

  • Final presentation

Evaluation:

  • On-time Participation 20%
  • Documentation 20%
  • Assignments 35%
  • Final Project 25%

Documentation

Document your class assignments and your progress on your own blog, and link them to the class links page.