With the holiday season in full swing, two things are sure to happen: 1) you’ll want to do more holiday DIY projects, and 2) you won’t have time to do holiday DIY projects. Thankfully, the NeoPixel Christmas ornament is a fantastic DIY project that won’t take long to put together. This is a simple project that requires minimal materials.
We’ll be using an Adafruit QTPy for its small size and will be powering the ornament via the USB port, but you can use almost any microcontroller and can power it with a battery if you’d prefer. It’s a great way to dip your feet into the CircuitPython ecosystem if you haven’t tried it out yet.
We 3D printed a case using these files posted on Thingiverse. You could also use a laser cutter to build a box or make one from thick paper. Hot glue was used to hold everything in place, and the back pressed on without the need for glue. A bit of printer paper over the front can help diffuse the light and hide the circuit board, but we chose to leave ours exposed.
This quick project is a great way to add some extra light to your Christmas tree. With CircuitPython, it’s easy to create dynamic lighting, and assembly is about as simple as it gets. The most time-consuming part is printing the enclosure, which took about 2.5 hours on an Ender 3 v2.
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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.