— Overview —
Clothing and accessories are purposefully chosen. Why do we wear certain things and what emotions or thoughts are involved? I wanted to explore these ideas and incorporate them into a meaningfully interactive wearable accessory. Finding the ideation process particularly challenging in this project, in the end, I decided to create a head wrap that personified the frustration I felt during this process. I created an idea generating helper head wrap. I prototyped my final idea using Arduino and C#.
— Concept Sketches —
I focused on designing an accessory that I would wear and would have an interaction meaningful to me. Of the initial ideas, a head wrap was the most unique and meaningful accessory. I like to wear head wraps at home while relaxing or doing chores. On a more personal level, I wear them to stay connected to my culture. Head wraps can be worn in a multitude of ways, and are comfortable and beautiful. I tried to come up with ideas that integrate my Somali heritage. I played around with the idea of incorporating the act of wrapping as part of the interaction.
None of these ideas were forming into a concrete concept and I was growing increasingly frustrated. The idea of channeling that frustration into the head wrap was interesting. I came up with a head wrap as a very unhelpful idea generating helper.
— Prototype —
I added pressure sensors in strategic areas on a scarf that would be pressed in process of wrapping the scarf on my head. Each sensor was connected to an analog input on the Arduino. I used the following circuit to connect all the components.
On the software side, a CSharp program was easily connected to the Arduino program via NetworkIt, a socket.io based proxy server. Each time a sensor is pressed the head wrap responds accordingly with an unhelpful idea. It gets upset if you try to turn it off as well.
— Main Takeaways —
I found the idea generation phase the most difficult because it took me a long time to wrap my head around (pun intended) the project brief. I had focused too much on one idea. This led to having less time executing the prototype to the fullest. Taking more risks and doing an exhaustive ideation phase is key.
— Links —