Thanksgiving. It’s rad. But it doesn’t get the fanfare other holidays get; you don’t decorate your lawn with turkeys or dress up as a scantily clad pilgrim. You do, however, get to hang out with close family/friends, eat a lot of delicious food and get an automatic 4-day weekend. Those are all really great things.
So I decided to give Thanksgiving the attention it deserves. As a kid, I loved making decorations for the Thanksgiving table. I thought whoever came up with the idea that your hand could be traced and transformed into a turkey was a genius. I made hand turkeys like they were going out of style – I even colored my fingers look like feathers so it would be more realistic.
Since I loved this so much as a kid, why wouldn’t I love the same activity as a so-called adult? Which is how the idea struck me, and I embarked on my second e-textile project: a LED hand turkey sweater.
My first idea was to have the turkey centered on a sweater. But while sweater shopping I discovered that apparently solid color crew necks are ‘sooooo last season’. I then went with plan B and moved the design to the lower-right corner of an orange v-neck sweater I picked up on the cheap.
Then it was turkey time! I traced my hand on a piece of brown felt and cut it out. Then, I sewed alternating rows of yellow and red LEDs onto my felt fingers with conductive thread. I then hand-stitched the felt to the sweater, added my batteries and stitched a beak, legs and an eye and….voilà!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.