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EL Wire Clothing May 20, 2010

Posted by Tom Frobish in Cool Stuff, Design, Physical Computing.
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Alright, so I’ve been designing this new idea for awhile and that was to create some kind of safety clothing that would be both stylish and very visible at night or in heavy fog or anything that the user would want to be seen in.  I recently come across Electroluminescent Wire (EL Wire) which produces and constant and seamless light along a wire.  It comes in many sizes and is pretty  cheap.

Anyways after much searching, I started going through many different concepts and ideas of how I’m going to stylize the clothing.  I’ve seen a lot of clothing for halloween costumes that light up but they all look very cheesy.  Running around like Tron may look cool in the movie but in real life…yeah.

I’ve been focusing on the simplicity that Under Armor has for their clothing and decided to make the lights follow a two tone pattern the runs along the body.  I’ve posted different concepts and some of the thinking pages (if you actually want to spend the time to read those too :P)

I’ve also posted at diary of this project on youtube so that I can link it over to this blog:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ki9AUvcoTTw

The clothing and final design basically came out to be a simple two tone running jacket that runs along the arms in a spiral pattern and around the shoulders.  When the light is off, noone would be able to tell the jacket has been modified, but when it turns on, it really draws a lot of attention.  Another thing I really liked about the wire was the fact that it was very bright  at night but when you entered a lighted area, it was like it wasn’t even on.

Also the other reason for the blue color was in bioluminesence, blue actually travels the farthest of all of the colors with the least amount of energy.  Also the light blue color stands out the most to peripheral vision.

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