Sound Reactive Garment

Sound Reactive Gown

Sound Reactive Gown

The nightgown reacts to high voice levels and was made as a result of the 56 day performance. The nightgown illustrates increased sensitivity within the relationship.

The microphone, located near the left shoulder of the gown, requires a loud noise to trigger the garment. The gown will remained ‘stressed’ if activated frequently.

Gown is triggered by high voice levels

Gown is triggered by high voice levels

The gown was made with the Lilypad Arduino, flexinol, microphone, and 2 relay switches.

Gown circuit

Gown circuit: The microphone sends information to the Lilypad. A specified volume level switches the first relay switch. This then triggers another relay switch that is connected to flexinol sewn into the gown.

Gown circuitry

Gown circuitry

Circuit Cover

Circuit Cover

5 thoughts on “Sound Reactive Garment

  1. Hi!! I’ve been thinking about doing a similar project to yours with muscle wire, and I’m having a hard time finding resources on working with muscle wire in clothing. What was it like? Where did you get it? What kind of power do the wires draw? Do the ones you use contract or bend? I would be really interested in corresponding with you about this project.


    • Yes I had similar trouble finding others who have used muscle wire in fabric. I had to experiment allot to figure out voltage and accurate way to sew in the wire. I purchased my wire from amazon here. They also have 5’L available for cheaper if you are just experimenting. I prefer the thicker wire as the thinner wire wasn’t ‘strong’ enough to move the amount of fabric I wanted. I used 30volts in the dress to get it to move quick enough (I sewed the wires in the fabric zig-zag and it tries to straighten when a voltage is sent through it). Lesser voltage works also but the reaction in the wire is much slower. Using that amount of voltage for long period of time did result in a few fried dresses 🙂 But I did learn allot!

  2. Haha, yes that’s the point isn’t it? Thanks for pointing me towards Amazon, I suppose I will purchase a few short lengths and see how they fair [I’m expecting to fry some fabric as well, I guess] About how long were the lengths of wire you used? [I’m planning on making flowers that “open” and “close” based on the contraction of the muscle wires, so I don’t think any wire will be any longer than 10 inches] Did you insulate the wires in the dress in any way? Was there noticeable heat from the wires when wearing the dress? Have you worn it?

    • I used 3 strips that were about 8 inches long. I did not insulate the wires so the fabric would move better but it did heat up QUITE a bit and it did burn a bit when I put it on 🙂 I would definitely insulate the wire if you can!

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