Wednesday, October 26, 2011

eTextiles: Pac Man bangle

This started with Betsy prodding at me to do a Pac-Man designed bangle, but she wants the LED lights in it too.  I needed to try out using conductive thread in solid beads so I went with this design.
Pac-Man, being a simple pixel-based game is not hard to translate onto a bead graph.  I drafted two designs.  The first (which you see here) has Pac-Man and all four ghosts, with 4 LED lights.  The second design has only 2 of the ghosts and 6 LED lights in the design.  We shall see if I get to making the second design.
I wanted this piece to look streamline so I didn't want to mess with putting Sparkle or an on-off switch in it.  During a night of insomnia, I sketched out how to stitch this bracelet to utilize snaps as an on/off switch.  I also created a battery pocket in all black to insert behind the red ghost.
Part of the issue I ran into on the first battery pocket in the original eTextiles beaded bracelet was keeping the pressure from the conductive thread, to the battery.  So on this piece I ordered Wire Glue from ThinkGeek.com and slowly built it up inside the battery pocket.  I also dabbed some onto the LEDs for a sturdier connection. I was fortunate that most of this design is black, as the wire glue is also black.  I'll have to keep this in mind with future projects. I'll talk about my experience with the wire glue in another post. 
Happily, the conductive thread seems to be working well inside of the seed beads, despite all of the thread that I already pack into the beads.  I only had one little incident of a bead breaking (this happens plenty, but it's more difficult to fix when it's with the conductive thread).
This was a fun piece to do.  I think I'll be offering Pac-Man in this design (with the 4 LEDs), and without the LED lights as a snap-on bracelet or a bangle (I made the design easy to adjust to each).  Probably by order-only. Keep an eye out for that on my website and Etsy shop!

Enjoy!



Want more?  Here's the Pac-Man Bangle's YouTube Video!

1 comment:

Helen said...

This is way too cool. Very clever and innovative.