Author Archives: mcdoj494


Midterm for Computation Craft 

Beacon is a accessory that emits a loud alarm when the wearer triggers (closes the circuit) the sensor with a metallic ring.

I wanted to create a wearable that could possibly interrupt an attack.

Instructables Link (in progress)

Materials List

Alarm: Piezo Butter, Copper Pipe, Copper Tape, 9Volt Battery, Conductive Thread, Resistive Tape, Wool Yarn, Solder

Light: Fair Wire, 3V battery, 3V battery holder

This is an image from the prototyping phase of closing the circuit between a piezo a necklace piece (copper piping), and a 9V battery with needle and conductive thread.

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Final Beacon alarm necklace


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Midterm Proposal – Fashionable E-Armor

Fashion E-Armor: Cape with Embedded LEDs and Hard Origami Folded Edges 

1) Paper Prototype – Will upload images soon.

2) Concept and design goal (What does your design seek to accomplish? Who are you designing for?

With this project, I seek to design a wearable cape with embedded technology and hard folded pleating that would intimidate a potential aggressor. The interior of the piece would be lined with velvet to provide a comforting material touching the wearer. Hard on the outside and soft and reassuring on the inside.

3) Materials list (What do you need to build your design)

  • A thrifted dress/cape that I’ll repurpose
  • LED light strips
  • Power source – 9 volt batteries
  • copper tape or copper thread
  • simple switch
  • scored paper & paper folding techniques

4) Prior art and precedents that inspired your design and direction.

The following images are art and fashion precedents that reflect the aesthetic and structural qualities I will be trying to achieve.

0c5583e425ddef8b4adc761ecd821b03 3eef601a6bd19761d089dabd137770b4 6cd9b11a8539a35f1118ddb4dc5aee57 © photo Peter Stigter IRIS VAN HERPEN HAUTE COUTURE Paris fall 2012 c2e96ace7c4633d626b2f799ce441c5d

Nature Precedents:

The following animals/crustaceans defend themselves in fantastic ways.

The porcupine is of course an easy analogy to the Fashionable E-Armor:


And also the Dresser Crab


by Joselyn McDonald

Sensor Tests

Here is a sensor test that I conducted. I sewed paths of conductive thread down muslin. The conductive thread is only on one side of the muslin. I used a multimeter to test how conductive the thread is. Perfect conductivity, like that of a steel wire, is at 0.0 resistance.

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Below: Here is a test of conductive thread of wide-stitched thread. The result is 3.3 ohms resistance.

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Below: Here is a test of conductive thread of tight-stitched thread. The result is 3.3 ohms resistance.

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Below: Here is a test of conductive thread of medium-stitched thread. The resistance is 2.8 ohms.

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Below: Here is a test of conductive thread that was run backwards and forwards multiple times. The resistance is 0.4 ohms.

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Below: Here is a test of conductive thread that was run backwards and forwards multiple times at the ends to allow for alligator clamping. The resistance is 2.8 ohms.

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by Joselyn McDonald

Paper Switches Assignment

3 Super – Hero Paper Switches

1. Super Hero Mask switch

‘Soft-Circuita’, the soft-circuits hero would attache this mask to their face and with a PINCH would close the copper tape circuit which would lead to the illumination (green, red and purple – colors of strength and power) across her face. You see, simple hero masks actually do not hide your identity well, but with the paper switch illumination technique she developed, the colorful glow would disguise her, and temporarily blind her foe!

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2. Paper Cuffs of Strength and Voltage

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3. Paper Lazer Ring of Doom and Joy

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by Joselyn McDonald

Felt Carrot – Parallel LEDs Soft Circuit

Hi all,

I made a felt carrot with LED’s activated by felt switch in parallel circuit pattern for my homework assignment. I was inspired by Shel Silverstein’s Poem, “Carrots”


Here is the link to my Instrcutables page where I provide step-by-step instructions for you to make your very own Felt Carrot Soft-Circuits project. 


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Enjoy! Keep away from bunnies.

- Joselyn McDonald

This felted crochet sensor project by Instructables user, push_reset, serves as an inspiration for my upcoming Computational Crafting class at Parsons The New School for Design. I appreciate many aspects of this project, from the aesthetic to the functionality. Aesthetically speaking, this project intrigues me. I find felt appealing both visually and as a malleable material that I like to incorporate into my work. Sensors often have a very singular look – metallic and cold – however, push_reset’s sensor is delightfully subversive in that it is inviting, touchable, and soft. As for the functionality, I read her documentation (which is excellent) and I appreciate that this flex sensor is seemingly rather reliable. I’ve had a slew of unfortunate experience with rubber and metal flex sensors, and found them underwhelming in their reliability. push_reset had similar experiences and then went on to make this sensor in order to have the aesthetic and reliability that she desired. Cheers!

by Joselyn McDonald