How-To’s for Students of Textiles + TechStyles™

A Review for Students in E-Textiles and Girls in STEM Learning

E-Textiles and Girls in STEM: engineering + design thinking are focus of new course from Pretty Brainy

Aiyiana selects multicolored LEDs for her prototype,
socks that light to help increase joggers’ safety at night. Textiles + TechStyles next will be offered in June
2014 for elementary + middle school students at the Preston STEM Institutes. Register today.

“These materials have really rich possibilities that change how we can think about learning in [electrical engineering].” — Dr. Leah Buechley, developer of the LilyPad Arduino Toolkit

For the young design engineers of Textiles + TechStyles™, our course in Design Thinking
and E-textiles (or electronic textiles), the video below reviews how to sew a circuit. The content

  • Where to begin to sew.
  • How to avoid by-passes.
  • When to tie + cut.
  • How to keep thread untangled.
  • Suggestions for forming your stitches.
  • Open vs. closed circuits.

Know E-Textile Basics to Boldly Move into Prototyping

“Sew a Basic Circuit” is a tutorial for students of Textiles + TechStyles and other girls in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) as they move forward in constructing prototypes. Be bold. Go for it. You can do it. As U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Grace Hopper said, “A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are for. Sail out to sea and do new things.”(Among the ways in which she helped change the world, Hopper developed the first compiler for a computer programming language and coined the term “computer bug.”)

Materials shown in the video are those used in class: fabric, 6-ply conductive thread, No. 12 crewel needle, LEDs, coin-cell battery and battery holder, and slide-switch. The E-textile components shown here are developed by Professor Leah Buechley of MIT and commercially available from SparkFun.

Final Note

E-Textiles and Girls in STEM: engineering + design thinking are focus of new course from Pretty Brainy

Textiles + TechStyles™ is a Pretty Brainy STEM of Fashion Design course offered at Tavelli Elementary School, Fort Collins, CO, through April 2014. The program is made possible by a grant from the OtterCares Foundation, champion of innovative education for youth.