What you'll need:
Conductive thread (4-ply minimum, 2-ply breaks too easily)
5 LED boards from Aniomagic
5 Sequins from Aniomagic
Tilt sensor (I purchased mine from Aniomagic, but I don't believe he's selling them any more)
Old sock with the toes cut off and a hole cut for your thumb to poke through
Sound sensor from Aniomagic
Battery holder for 2032 (mine came from Aniomagic)
About 7 inches of inner tube from a bicycle tire
Something to mark where you want your components to go- I used straight pins, but fabric chalk is a good option too.
Wire glue to help with the conductivity between the thread and components- I didn't use any, but you may find it helpful.
Fabric Paint to help the conductive thread last longer and to conceal it
Due to the varying resistance levels in the conductive thread if it's not pulled taut, I ended up sewing the components to the tube strip instead of to the sleeve directly. This is due to the slack in the sleeve preventing the necessary resistance level of the conductive thread, resulting in a very sad non-blinky experience. Also, the weight of the components- though slight- contributed to the sleeve bunching up to resemble a sweatband. The bunching contributed to the slack in the conductive thread, and was a hassle for the guitarist, who had to keep pulling it back up his arm while wearing it during his performance.
Aniomagic products can be hand washed, just remember to remove the battery!
Step 1: Plot Your Points and Sew!
In some manner, you'll want to mark out where you want the components to go. I used straight pins, as you can see in the attached picture. However, fabric chalk or marker would have been easier since you can sew over it instead of needing to remove the pin and try to remember exactly where it was when the cat jumps on your lap and distracts you.
Keep in mind that you'll need to make several passes through various components without the conductive thread crossing itself and thereby shorting out. This is actually the hardest part of the project IMHO.
Before cutting the excess thread, put a dot of Fray Check on the knot and give it a minute to dry. This will prevent it from coming undone, and lends a bit more durability to your product.
For aesthetic reasons and limited space for component placement on the top (visible part) of the tube, the tilt sensor and the battery holder were moved to the underside of the tube prior to the tube's attachment to the sleeve in the final product.
*Remember: Do not to cross the threads! and Use Fray Check before cutting off excess thread.*
- The LED boards are connected in order. They each have dots indicating their number. However, they can be placed on either side of the Schemer so long as they remain in numerical order. This ensures that they respond appropriately to the programming, which you'll do later.
- The holes on the LED boards above the dots and the top side hole on the Schemer are connected with one piece of conductive thread
- The holes on the LED boards where there are no dots are connected to the lower hole on the side of the Schemer with a different piece of conductive thread
- The top hole of the sound sensor, closest to the S in "sound" written down the right side, is connected with a 3rd piece of conductive thread to the top side hole of the Schemer that wasn't connected to the LED boards
- The bottom hole on the sound sensor connects to the previously unconnected to anything bottom side hole of the Schemer
- The hole on the Schemer above the + connects to the positive side of the battery holder and to the silver bead of the tilt sensor with another piece of thread
- With yet another piece of thread, sew the hole below the - on the Schemer connects to the negative side of the battery holder to the bottom holes of the sequins.
- Use another piece of thread to sew the gold bead of the tilt sensor to the top holes of the sequins.
- Examine your stitches to determine if there are any possible shorts caused by inappropriately touching stitches
Step 2: Program It!
Aniomagic programs the Schemer through an optic sensor on their website.
To program the Schemer:
Change the default settings on the site to how you want your lights to respond and save the settings on the site. This will allow you to recall the settings if you navigate away from the page.
Put the Schemer into programming mode by touching the negative pad and the round pad above it for 1 second with a straight pin or slightly damp finger tip (the dampness helps ensure a good connection). After the light on the Schemer blinks 3 times and stops, remove the pin/ your finger tip.
Hold the Schemer to your screen and click "Send."
When the site finishes sending the code to the Schemer, your lights should be responding according to your settings.
If you run into difficulty, here is Aniomagic's help page.
You will need to play around with sensor settings to find the appropriate range for your purposes. Luckily, the optic sensor makes this extremely easy and quick.
Since this sleeve is designed for a local musician to wear during on-stage performances, I set the normal setting for the LEDs (the sequins are only controlled by the tilt sensor and are not programmed via the Schemer) to normally be turned off, pulse midway between slow and fast, never turn off, and to repeat only once.
When the sound sensor is triggered by a sound that is about 95.5% of the louder level of what the sensor is capable of detecting, the LED boards will repeat the pulsing in a series so long as the sensor is being triggered (indefinitely, or until the battery runs out). The attached images show the settings used for the final product.
Step 3: Have a Friend Wear It on Stage!
Finally, have a musician friend wear the sleeve on stage and watch your wearable, washable light show!
-A special thanks to Shannon Henry, who helped me figure out what I was doing wrong (repeatedly) when trying to get the Schemer into program mode! (I was holding the connection together for too long and putting it in sleep mode 0.o)