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October 12, 2016 AT 2:00 am

Aeon Worm Scarf with Gemma and NeoPixels #WearableWednesday

Awesome scarf project from Jeremy Zschau on YouTube.

The scarf is covered with french knot embroidery with some E940 bullion knots. The bullion knots can be seen glowing in a dark room but would be best viewed under ultraviolet light. After the embroidery the scarf was shibori bubbled with marbles slightly smaller than average ones which I bought from Joyful Honda. Inside the scarf is a gemma controller with eight neo pixels. The lights remind me of the bioluminescent forms from James Cameron’s movies Abyss and Avatar. The lights were originally bubbles made from stones but after I saw Mariko Kusumoto’s amazing art I understood there is a vast range of ways to shape polyester chiffon. The symmetrical bubbles were first 3D printed then silicone molds were made to cast in cheap cement which could survive the steaming process. The chiffon was stretched over the cement forms and thread was wrapped in between the grooves prior to steaming. For the sponge I discovered it is best not to tape the chiffon flat against the glass work surface but instead to hold the fabric while melting the holes with a soldering iron. After holes are created in the fabric it was carefully pulled over an organic shape of a sponge made from aluminum foil and secured with a rubber band before steaming.

Inside one of the two large flat radial bubbles is a shape created by rubber banding small ball bearings in the chiffon then securing the fabric over one larger marble. The other flat radial bubble has small chiffon bubbles made by cutting a design with my Silhouette Cameo on thick card stock paper. The card stock stencil is used with a soldering iron to cut out the form. The small 2D bubble is stuffed with cotton and steamed in a vegetable steamer for 20 minutes. After the bubbles are cooled in cold water the cotton is removed. Holes are part of the design of the 2D bubbles because I discovered soldering seam holes after steaming flattens the pillows again. Some examples of shapes I choose are the Adafruit logo, Miyazaki Hayao kodama and diatoms.

Before there was a huge mess of frayed chiffon inside the scarf from the bubbles and polyester the circuit was sewn on but after using a soldering iron to cut the edges the whole mess was remedied with clean edges. The bubbles are sewn directly onto the interior fabric the neo pixel circuit is on which means stress holes will not form on the exterior of the scarf from repeated sewing. The lights can simply be popped in and out of the scarf for washing or replacing a bubble.

Lighter exterior bubble colors and darker colors for interior bubbles works best for the LED lights. Soft chiffon can be used but I think stiff chiffon is best for most shapes.

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