Instructables
Picture of LED T-shirt
00.jpg
T-shirts may be a staple for just about everybody, but they are kind of boring. Time to make a custom T-shirt using commonly found electronics and fabric! You can easily use the methods shown here to make your own custom shirt in with just about any lighting scheme you can think of. Best of all, you'll be able to supply your own light when it's dark, perfect for parties or when the power goes out!

This shirt uses a cheap rechargeable key chain flashlight for the LED's and power supply, and fabric scraps for the embellishments. This project is simple enough for anyone to try, but does require some patience. Trust me, when you see your results come to life it's all worth it. Ready to make your own?

Enough talk, let's light up a T-shirt!


 
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Step 1: Tools + materials

Picture of tools + materials
tools:
  • soldering iron
  • glue gun
  • scissors
  • sharp utility knife
  • scrap wood
  • sewing machine

.
materials
  • scrap fabric (pink + another colour that contrasts with your t-shirt)
  • zipper
  • hook + loop fasteners (velcro)
  • fabric adhesive
  • LED's
  • small solar-powered flashlight
  • conductive thread / flexible electrical wire
  • paperclip
Well, this would be awkward for girls
photo-2014-05-11 5:43 PM.jpgphoto-2014-05-11 5:43 PM.jpg
weargle5 months ago

does the x mark your pecks because everyone will se tht

Haha! This is so great!! :)
ChrysN2 years ago
I love it, especially that it is solar powered it would be great to wear when you're camping.
mikeasaurus (author)  ChrysN2 years ago
I have a hair-brained scheme for some kind of ninja jumpsuit using this idea that may be useful when camping. Any suggestions for version 2.0?
rfelix ruiz2 years ago
I've just inspired to do a explorer kit o t-shirt.... thanks a lot... I fact I had though to do something similar but I didn't know how to supply energy to the circuit... it's really interesting your solution.
mikeasaurus (author)  rfelix ruiz2 years ago
So great to hear you're inspired by this project, I would love to see your results when you're done!
ilpug2 years ago
Now THAT is what I call a party shirt. Can it be washed?
mikeasaurus (author)  ilpug2 years ago
Yes! The entire electronic assembly can easily be removed for washing, that's the idea!
Oops. yet another classic example of why i should read the text entirely before i comment, instead of just looking at the pretty pictures. Nice shirt!
depotdevoid2 years ago
This is ridiculous, but in a good way! It's like if your gimp mask had a baby with the LED pasties!  

I didn't know about that sewing glue stuff, I should probably look into it. I'm very unskilled with the sewing machine, I imagine having everything glued in place before sewing would be very useful!
Hahaha, that is one weird baby.
It's adorable in an offbeat sort of way.

Wearing it, I imagine you'll get to point to your eyes and exasperatedly exclaim, "I'm up here!"
Well, Mike certainly has a nice pair of headlights.
mikeasaurus (author)  depotdevoid2 years ago
Umm..thank you?
Flag as inappropriate?
Blatant sexual harassment. ;-)
mikeasaurus (author)  wilgubeast2 years ago
No, no; it's just that my headlights aren't used to so much attention!
andycyca2 years ago
Insert "flashing" joke.

Nice work sir, gives me a lot of ideas!
susanrm2 years ago
I think that would be weird for a girl to wear, unless you moved the LED's. Cool project, though. :-)
Lol! I can just imagine the amount of times guys would reply "Nice headlights!" or something along those lines in that situation. It would be amusing.
sunshiine2 years ago
Love the shirt! I also appreciated the tool display! Good going! You have given me some ideas. Loved the zipper! Sunshiine