802.11 APPAREL

Jenny Chowdhury

802.11 Apparel is a line of clothing that reflects wifi strength detected in the wearer's immediate environment. It is intended to literally "bring to light" a portion of the invisible radio waves that pervade our surroundings. In each garment, up to five stripes are illuminated in accordance with the wifi signal strength. Pieces are created using a hacked wifi detector, an Arduino microcontroller, LEDs and extended electronic components.


Markus Kison

The Charming Burka deals with Freud's idea that all clothes can be positioned between appeal and shame. The Burka was chosen because it is often positioned on the side of shame. Then a digital layer was added to it so that women can decide for themselves where they want to position themselves virtually. The Burka sends an image, chosen by the wearer, via bluetooth. Every person next to her can receive her picture via mobile phone and see the woman's self-determined identity. The laws of the Koran are not broken, so the Charming Burka allows the possibility of living a more western life, which some Muslim women desire today. The Charming Burka is realised with the bluetooth marketing solution Bluebot developed by Haase & Martin, the mobile marketing company in Dresden/Germany.


Mariana Ibanez and Simon Kim

This dress is cut into flat-pattern pieces that are assembled in a way that the observer loses a singular reading. This assembly logic produces moire patterns, or dynamic perceptions, as one moves around the wearer. The patterns are generated by a wave algorithm. As an architectural design, the dress is considered a facade. The folds and waves create volume that obscures the wearer so that issues of privacy and exposure become primary. Rather than being a static object, this textile, when unfolded (it is a developable surface), is an architectural element. Its fabrication processes make it clear that it is as much a cladding device as it is a garment. The pieces can be "patterned" on a surface to create an interior finish, again using the device of opening and closure. The exterior material is a soft matte finish while the interior is sheer and lustrous. The interaction of the interior and exterior is blurred as the garment panels interpenetrate to create multiple readings.


Vincent Leclerc

The Frisson necklace is made of a series of individual beads resembling teardrops. Each bead is adorned with a temperature-changing peltier junction that is controlled by a microcontroller embedded in the bead. Each bead is electrically and computationally autonomous and can decide to become cold, warm or hot on its own will. With such behavior, the necklace produces animated temperature patterns around the wearer's neck, creating an unsettling feeling apparent to shivers.


Karen Fleming, Aoife Ludlow, Duncan Neil, Emma McClintock, and John McLachlan

Our understanding of the body has changed radically since the Renaissance, yet the way anatomy is taught and presented has changed very little. Models of body structures tend to be standardized, evenly surfaced, hard; they describe but they do not evoke. The Incision Shirt explores haptic and emotional sensibilities as meaning is revealed not only in form but in materials and processes. It allows the wearer to experience the intrusion of surgical incision into an evocative muscle landscape. Utilizing the common and accessible language of textiles and anatomy--tissues, fabrics, seams, layers, fibres--it rekindles the sense of depth and feel of the living body.


Barbara Layne

Jacket Antics is comprised of two handwoven garments that have unique texts and designs scrolling through the LED arrays woven into the backs of the fabrics. When the wearers hold hands, the LED arrays presents a third, synchronous message scrolling from one to the other in a new pattern of communication.


Julie Legault, Josiane Mercier Auger, and Elio Bidinost

The Kyrielle collection integrates technology into design, giving bags a distinct personality while creating creature-like companions. Inherent to each is a storyline, a narrative of the collection.

The Kyrielle: Christian is two bags completing each other through proximity and connectivity. Non-functional when alone, the male bag refuses to open completely, while being the support system and power source to the female one, dragging heavy electrical components, uselessly when alone.

The Kyrielle: Edouard is an anti-theft system integrated discreetly into an aggressive bag. Once armed by a hidden switch, the system emits a high piercing sound, alerting of an unauthorized opening.


Jae Rhim Lee

Jae Rhim Lee is currently working with mycologists to develop the Infinity Mushroom, a new hybrid mushroom which facilitates the decomposition of the body, the remediation of industrial toxins and viruses in the body, and new plant growth. The Infinity Burial Suit is a fitted body suit embroidered with thread that has been inoculated with mushroom mycelium. The embroidery pattern mimics the growth and migration of mushroom mycelium. "Fins" extend from the suit into the surrounding environment and "wicks" uptake a solution of processed and sterilized urine that provides ammonia and nitrate, a necessary nutrient for the Infinity Mushroom. Accompanying the suit is a spore-mass slurry, an alternative embalming fluid, used to fill the body with mushroom spores. The Infinity Mushroom is still in development, therefore the Infinity Burial Suit only contains mycelium of the Oyster mushroom, Pleurotus ostreatus.


Ebru Kurbak and Mahir M. Yavuz

News Knitter was initiated as a quest for translating large-scale data into knitted daily wearables. A live news feed from the Internet is used for pattern generation of knitted sweaters in contrast to common methods of pattern design in the commercial textile industry today. Custom software gathers information from online daily political news, analyzes and filters the news, and generates a unique pattern for a single sweater. A fully computerized flat knitting machine receives the generated pattern and produces a sweater that is the result of a specific day or period. The individual design process becomes a worldwide collaboration.


Jay Silver and Jody Finch

To activate this musical jacket, just empathetically hold hands with the friend wearing the jacket--just as you might see two children holding hands while creating a play-plan on a Boston preschool playground--or two heterosexual men walking down the street holding hands in India. Then, using your other hand, touch the jacket with care to improvise a song. The magic "on switch" is holding hands with the person wearing the jacket.


Alice Tseng-Planas, Farida Kebaili, Nadra Kebaili, Leif Krinkle, Laura Moore, and Hatti Lim

This project showcases the latest developments in custom laser cut soft-circuit designs, utilizing processes first published by Leah Beuchley and Michael Eisenberg in the Craft Technology Group, University of Colorado, Boulder, and further extending the technical process by incorporating solar energy. Conceptually, Open Shade utilizes the iconic form of the head covering to lightheartedly question current perceptions of this accessory in context with the larger social narratives debated in recent court cases throughout Europe. The head covering, at once controversial and symbolic and yet an article of everyday clothing, highlights the complex social rituals at play in fashion. Open Shade flirts with the question: what statements on femininity and lifestyle are articulated when women everywhere (from urban fashionistas to their Bedouin sisters) choose strategic headgear for illuminating personal power?


Dana Karwas and Karla Karwas

Party Dress is a roving performance that is part living architecture: part monumental fashion. Designed by two sisters, Party Dress functions as a pavilion worn exclusively by five women that seamlessly injects architecture into fashion by using the body as space. The dress begins as a shared, bustled garment that gradually unfolds to create a temporary, inhabitable structure. Each seam, each dress, and each body are interconnected by a single, amorphous surface of flowing material. With room for spectators beneath the fabric, Party Dress flirts with traditional concepts of public and private space while adding sparkling wit to the conversation between fashion and architecture. Party dress works across multiple scales and environments, unraveling conventional notions of space, materiality, and temporality.

PEAU D'ÂNE: Sky Dress, Moon Dress, and Sun Dress

Valérie Lamontagne with Lynn Van Gastel, Patrice Coulombe and David Beaulieu


In the Charles Perrault fairy tale Peau d'Âne, a young princess, whose family riches are dependent on their gold excreting donkey, orders the impossible from her doting stepfather in order to avoid marrying him: three dresses made of immaterial materials--the sun, moon and sky. The aim of the project Peau d'Âne is to incarnate these impossible dresses in a material form. A weather antenna culls live weather data, which transforms the dresses, reflecting the changing barometric characteristics of sky, moon and sun in real-time.

The Sky dress changes structure and movement based on flux in the wind velocity and direction. The dress is made of inflatable fabric pockets, which expand and vibrate to display real-time climactic changes.

The Moon dress's color patterns change according to the 28-day cycle of the moon. Thermochromic painted flowers embroidered with resistive silver threads change colours based on the moon's phases.

The Sun dress displays lights patterns based on changes in the sun. The dress is embroidered with LEDs (light emitting diodes) and conductive fabrics and threads. The LEDs are set alight based on UV and sun intensity readings. The greater the intensity of the sun, the brighter the dress glows, emulating the sun itself. Peau d'Âne is supported by Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec, OBORO, and Groupe Molior.


Amanda Parkes and Adam Kumpf

Piezing is an outfit which generates its own power using the natural gestures of the human body in motion. Around a person's joints, the garment is specially woven with piezoelectric film fibers which convert mechanical strain into electrical voltage as a person walks. The voltage created can be stored in coin batteries disguised as buttons and later discharged into any portable.


JooYoun Paek

Polite Umbrella is a shrinkable umbrella that enables users to reduce occupied space and increase user maneuverability. Users can easily adjust their umbrellas anytime by pulling a handle so that they can protect themselves from harsh winds or bumping into others. The shrinking movement is immediate and is capable of morphing into shapes like a jellyfish. Polite Umbrella is used as protection from the weather, preservation of personal space, maneuverability, amplification of gesture, visual expression and fashion. It can also be used for visual communication, especially for sharing humor with others in a public space.


Joanna Berzowska and Di Mainstone, an XS Labs production, with Marguerite Bromley, Marcelo Coelho, David Gauthier, Francis Raymond and Valerie Boxer

SKORPIONS are kinetic electronic garments that move and change on the body in slow, organic motions. They can be imagined as parasites that inhabit the skin of the host. They breathe and pulse, controlled by their own internal programming. They are not "interactive" artifacts insofar as their programming does not respond to simplistic sensor data. Exploiting characteristics such as control, anticipation, and unpredictability, they have their own personalities, their own fears and desires. Skorpions integrate electronic fabrics, the shape-memory alloy Nitinol, mechanical actuators such as magnets, soft electronic circuits, and traditional textile construction techniques such as sculptural folds and drapes of fabric across the body. The cut of the pattern, the seams, and other construction details become an important component of engineering design.

Eneleon is constructed of heavy hand-made felt, creamy leather, and reflective lamé lining. Shaped like a large bilateral symmetric pod and enclosing the body from front and back, its movement is activated by beaded shape memory alloy (SMA) coils, controlled through custom electronics. A sculpted felt mask obscures the face with reflective chain mail, further erasing the host's identity.

Skwrath is a quilted leather bodice constructed out of stony leather lined with blood red silk. It integrates a sculptural wing-like collar around the head that can be used to conceal the face of the host and can be torn open to reveal the scarlet lining. The abdomen is made up of three interlocking leather segments or plates, embroidered with threads of shape memory alloy (SMA), which are activated through a custom electronic board to contract and curl back to reveal deep slashes of red silk.


Elena Corchero

Elena Corchero's goal is to explore clothing and textiles to design technologies that make us more human and less machine. She believes that when a technology is added to an ancient medium like textiles, there is a need to respect and explore its history and traditions. Solar Vintage is a collection of accessories for the eco-fashion-minded in which technology meets tradition. It explores delicate ways of incorporating organic solar cells and other electronic components into textiles. Embroideries and prints recall endangered birds. The pieces are charged while used outdoors during the day. In the evening they transform into decorative ambient light displays for the home.


Kit Waal and Rehmi Post

Sp4rkl3 is a dress that lights up due to its own motion. As Sp4rkl3's skirt swishes and sways, it provides a dynamic lightshow, encouraging its wearer to be active and giving others a visible gauge of her level of motion. There are no batteries in the dress itself and a novel power distribution mechanism is used so that a dazzling effect is created with virtually no indication that electronics are involved.


Barbara Layne

The fabric of the Tornado Dress features a mimaki print of a funnel cloud and tornado photographed by Nebraska storm-chaser Mike Hollingshead. Three small photocells detect ambient light and trigger a variety of flashing patterns in an LED display embroidered onto the lining of the linen dress.


Magdelena Kohler and Hanna Wiesener

How does it feel when your sweater becomes a medium of your own voice? The focus of TRIKOTON is the human voice with its different recording and reproduction techniques and the connection between communication and fashion. Transferring signals of the voice into clothes creates a new aesthetic of speech-recording. The scheme of pattern cards of old, mechanical knitting machines was used for an audiodataprogram with which the frequency bands of a spoken message are converted into a binary code for knitting patterns. Together with a German Knitting Company, we realized a parametrical knitting program to produce fashion pieces--unique like the human voice. Trikoton, Magdalena and Hanna's first project together, was presented at Ars Electronica 2007 in Linz, Austria.


Markus Kison

Rings are well known status symbols. The jewel's weight in carats is comparable to the personal ranking of its owner (e.g. the world's two largest diamonds are in the British crown jewels). The Vanity Ring doesn't have a jewel. Instead, it shows the number of hits you get when you search Google for the name of the person who wears it, a more adequate ranking in our time. The ring is personalized using custom software, and after the name is typed, the ring connects to Google to search for it. The ring's display changes to show the personal "attention carats." Every night, when it is inserted into its docking station, the ring is reloaded and updated.


Grace D. Johnson

X-travagant X-pansionism, a dress inspired by the elegance of peacocks and the extravagance of Marie Antoinette, contains yards of silk fabric in the rich hues of a peacock tail feather. The finely detailed corset reveals the bold intricacy of the peacock, while the three-foot train and bustle reflect the finery of the Baroque period. The crowning feature of this dress is the spring-loaded tail of peacock feathers, which fans out behind the model. At first the dress is viewed with the tail down, feathers peaking out from behind the skirt. When the audience least suspects it, the model pulls the lever, releasing the tail to gracefully rise up behind the model.