This project is great for Cosplayers who want to add leds to leather parts. Check out the full tutorial to learn some leather work and electronics! Via Make:
In this Skill Builder we’ll explore techniques for including leather in your wearables by examining my forearm bracer project, which uses a built-in Adafruit Gemma and RGB NeoPixels that change color patterns with a simple capacitive touch of the medallion on its side. Read along and learn some key tips to working with leather and electronics, both on their own, and combined into one project.
Leather is a favorite material of crafters, cosplayers, and makers for good reasons. It is moldable, cuttable, colorable, and durable. It can be riveted, stitched, glued, and laced. As a substrate for a wearable project it has some very desirable qualities and a few gotchas. The particulars will vary with different efforts, but the general themes are relevant across most projects.
With any wearables project, but especially one based in leather, how to access the electronics is a key planning decision. When it’s time to recharge the battery or reprogram the microcontroller, will you want to remove the items or deal with them in place? A design that keeps things internal typically allows for less wear and tear on the wiring because you can firmly secure and protect the components. Easily accessed or removable components generally make reuse, reprogramming, and recharging a much simpler option.
For me, recharging occurs much more often than reprogramming. So my bracer project provides in-place charging without removing the battery or unplugging it from the microcontroller. Reprogramming does require removing the circuit from the leather to get access to the USB port, but is still possible with the approach I’m taking.
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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.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.