Being an introvert can be quite frustrating, especially in group situations. It’s hard to feel comfortable and trying to make conversation can be challenging. That’s precisely why fashion design student Michal Stern created the Extrovert Dress; the dress is able to communicate even if the wearer can not.
I chose to create an extrovert dress that will help the introvert wearer to socialize with others. By being an introvert person myself, I found that the lack of direct eye contact within the conversation makes it harder for people to relate and understand me.
Typical body language of someone who is uncomfortable is to have hands in pockets. Michal used an Arduino to sense this gesture and trigger LEDs in the garment to signal distress. In order to solve the problem of eye contact, small eyeballs were placed around the neckline attached to servos. Using a microphone as a sensor, the dress can respond to sound with the eyes moving directionally. Although this may seem like a stretch for fashion, it makes sense as an educational device for people with Autism or Social Anxiety Disorder. Fashion is an interesting way to explore problems and I hope Michal does more work in this area. If you would like to create fashion that tackles an issue, you should definitely read up on our FLORA Microcontroller. With its selection of modular sensors and the ability to be sewn with conductive thread, there are many directions to explore. What will you have your clothing do?
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