Assignment 5: Getting Acquainted with the Arduino

Assignment 5 – Arduino on Textiles – Groups of Two – Due Thursday, 3/30.


  • Arduino Uno or DFRobot Beetle
  • Wire
  • Breadboard
  • 220 Ohm Resistor (LED)
  • 10K Resistor (pushbutton)
  • LED
  • Conductive Thread
  • Portable Battery


  • Multimeter
  • Arduino IDE

Your challenge in this lab is to make your first Arduino project and try to implement it on a piece of textile. The requirements are:

  • It has to have a soft-circuit social input, such as a fabric pushbutton or fabric force-sensitive-resistor, that can be activated by another person.
  • It has to provide some sort of output such as an LED or a 5V buzzer
  • It has to be powered by battery.
  • You have to write the code yourself. You can base it off of the example provided in from last class.

Many of you will not finish this project during class time. You will have to finish it on your own time. Schedule office hours with the instructor or with the fellows for extra help. Document your entire process. You each have to submit individual documentation.

Examples from previous semesters:

Assignment 3: Weaving Fundamentals

Assignment 3 – Weaving


  • 2 X 24” of different colored yarns.
  • Cardboard


  • 1 Loom with shuttle and heddle (Design your own).
  • Adobe Illustrator

Your challenge in this lab is to take your knowledge of weaving and design your own loom to cut on the laser cutter. The requirements or your loom are:

  • It has to have a shuttle and a way to create a shed (IE, a heddle).
  • It has to be made from cardboard
  • The design has to have a vector cut and a raster etch. Inscribing your names to the loom counts as a raster etch, but doing something more creative would be a better use of both our times.


  1. Draw a design and cut it out using scissors and/or a boxcutter to make a cardboard prototype for your loom.
  2. Once you finish your design, we will measure it in detail and create an illustrator file out of your object so you can manufacture it with the laser cutter.
  3. You will not have time to cut your project during class. Schedule a time with a fellow to cut the loom together using this link.

For more information on the IMA Laser Cutter, go to this link.

Once you have made your loom, try to create some of the following weaves:

  1. A basic weave fabric. If you have time, weave with some conductive thread into your fabric.
  2. A twill woven fabric.
  3. A weave of your own design.

Here are some examples of looms that students have done in the past:

Assignment 2: Beginners’ Sewing and Embroidery for Circuits

Assignment 2 – Individual


  • 3 V Coin Cell Batteries
  • 1 Coin Cell Holder
  • 1 Pushbutton Switch
  • 1 LED
  • 1 * 220 ohm resistor
  • 12” of Conductive Thread
  • 1 Spool of regular thread
  • Wires


  • 1 Multimeter
  • Sewing Needle
  • Embroidery Hoop

Your challenge in this assignment is to make a version of the circuit you made on the breadboard on a piece of fabric. Practice sewing on fabric first before jumping onto your fabric circuit.

  1. Outline where all the materials need to be placed and check the circuits to make sure they work in the arrangement you decide on.

  2. Sew the materials in place with regular thread using the couching method.

  3. Sew the connections together with conductive thread.

  4. If you have time, try thinking of different ways of replacing the pushbutton switch with means of closing a circuit.

Here are some great examples from students of previous semesters:

Maya’s light-up choker

Jiayi’s Circuit

Ariel’s Circuit

Konrad’s Circuit

Assignment 1 – Felting + Simple Circuits

Assignment 1 – Felting + Simple Circuits


  • 1 Handful of wool roving.
  • 1 Coin cell battery
  • 1 LED
  • Vinyl Tape


  • Felting needles.
  • Styrofoam block
  • Scissors

Your challenge this assignment is to create a piece of fabric that you felted yourself and incorporate circuitry onto it. One example is to create a soft switch for a 3 volt coin-cell battery to power up an LED.

Felt two pieces of fabric together, forming a pocket for the battery.

Make a hole in one of the sides of the pockets for an LED lead to be able to touch.

Tape down the long lead of the LED to the battery’s positive side, and leave the short lead outside of the pocket. Make sure you are not short circuiting the battery.

When you press down on the felt pocket, it should light up your LED.

Take photos and notes throughout the experience for documentation. We will go over posting your experience on the documentation blog next week. This is an individual assignment. Each person must create their own fabric and document their own work.

Examples from previous semesters: