Wearable Terrarium... Minus the Terrarium

Introduction: Wearable Terrarium... Minus the Terrarium

I have created a wearable terrarium necklace with an automatic light. This light turns on at the time the owner sets (day is preferable), stays on for seven hours, then turns off at night for 17 hours. This process is carried out by the micro controller attached on the back of the shirt. In my case a fake Arduino Uno.

Step 1:

Place the micro controller of your choice on the back of the shirt, in the centre, towards the neck. Then, with a needle and Thread, sew the micro controller to the t-shirt through the stand off holes. Tie a knot in the thread to secure the board.

Step 2:

Now it is time to build the terrarium. The terrarium should be done in a small glass bottle to avoid the necklace from becoming too heavy. To build the terrarium, pour a shallow layer of soil into the bottle. Then, plant it with the plants of your choice. With a terrarium this small it is a good idea to use moss as it is a very small plant. You could also add some rocks or sticks (hardscaping material), but this may be difficult with such a small terrarium.

Step 3:

Now Secure the LED to the terrarium. If the terrarium has a cork you may want to pierce the LED's legs through the other side of the LED. The result will be an LED on the down facing side of the cork, and the LED's legs protruding from the top of the cork. If you don't have a cork, another option is to glue the LED to the top of the bottle, replacing a lid or cork. A good option for glue in this case is silicon or hot glue. Note that this option prevents you from watering the plants as it is completely sealed. However, as the seal should be watertight, no moisture should escape. This is called a biosphere, as no materials are entering or exiting the terrarium. The plants and micro-organisms are completely self sustaining, producing all of the oxygen and carbon dioxide they need.

Step 4:

Insert a jumper cable into a ground pin in the micro controller (GND), but don't completely insert it. Then do the same for an analog pin on the micro controller (represented by a "~" and a number). Connecting the LED to an analog pin will allow you to adjust the brightness of the LED.

Step 5:

Wrap the end of a strand of conductive thread, approximately 40cm long, around the exposed metal of the analog pin. Then push the jumper cable the rest of the way into the analog pin. Just above the plastic on the jumper cabe (on the pin side), cut the wire with wire cutters. Repeat this process on the GND pin with another strand of conductive thread.

Step 6:

Connect another jumper cable to another ground pin. This time completely insert it. Then insert a jumper cable into a pin labeled "5V".

Step 7:

Wrap the free end of the conductive thread (connected to the GND pin) around the short leg of the LED.

Step 8:

Wrap one leg of a resistor (with an appropriate rating for your LED and and micro controller's analog pin's output voltage) around the longer leg of the LED.

Step 9:

Wrap the free end of the conductive thread connected to the analog pin around the free end of the resistor.

Step 9:

Apply solder to the connections with a soldering iron.

Step 10:

Attach the battery pack. This can be done by sitting it in a pocket, sewing it on, or gluing it.

Step 11:

Cut the connector off of the battery pack with wire cutters. Then, solder the negative black wire of the battery pack (black) to the jumper cable in the other ground pin.

Step 12:

Solder the positive wire from the battery pack to the jumper cable connected to the 5 volt pin. This will supply electricity to the micro controller and LED.

Step 13:

Upload the code and enjoy.

This is a creative way to bring nature indoors. In fact, an entire ecosystem!


You will need:

  • Old T-Shirt
  • A White LED
  • Arduino Uno, Circuit Playground Express, or other Micro Controller
  • Small Glass Bottle
  • Micro HDMI or other cables to upload code
  • Wire or Conductive Thread
  • Batteries and a Battery Pack
  • Thread
  • Plants of your Choice
  • Sewing Needle
  • Wire Cutters

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    5 days ago

    minus terrarium..... OTL moment

    Hanzo 15
    Hanzo 15

    5 days ago

    Your project is nice and easy I like how there are many steps that are easy to understand.

    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    5 days ago

    Thanks for sharing :)

    You sould consider breaking this into steps with photos for each step when you are able to make it easier to follow along with what you are doing :)