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by Hannah Perner-Wilson

Used to adorn the edges of traditional headscarves, Turkish needle point lace (İğne Oyası) has a history of symbolism. The various motifs carry meanings which are used for non-verbal communication. For example an unhappy bride who chooses pepper spice for her crown is declaring the marriage doomed from the start, but if she chooses red pepper, she indicates her relationship is spicy and red hot!

The name of the motif “for Richard” remains from the relationship within which it was first gifted. Richard’s girlfriend began decorating the hems of his shirt pocket with this Bitlace motif. Friends and family were fascinated by the needlework, and when pressed for her motivations, his girlfriend confessed to them her wish that Richard spend less time keeping up with the world through his devices.

The motif, when applied to one’s own attire is interpreted as a desire to regain control over the technologies one relies on in everyday life. This person might be stressed, overworked or simply overwhelmed by the amount of unread emails in their inbox. When gifted to a close friend or relative, this motif can be read by the recipient as a subtle hint to look up from their smart phone, disengage from the network, and arrive at a style of communication that is more tangible and local.

Bitlace are needle lace motifs that incorporate digital electronics to carry meanings of their own. The motif “for Richard” represents one bit of digital memory, depicting the simplicity behind modern forms of communication, zero/one, on/off.

Inspiration
During a 2 week residency in Istanbul I learned to make İğne Oyası. Reading about the history of this craft and it’s symbolism inspired the idea for a collection of contemporary motifs that use functional electronics for symbolic meaning.

In-Pattern Circuit
The circuit is made from conductive silver plated copper thread and non-conductive polyester thread. A 3V coin-cell battery powers an ATtiny microcontroller which is programmed to do capacitive sensing on pin3 and every time the capacitive lead is touched, it toggles the state of the LED connected to pin0. The three orange “rabbit ears” indicate where the capacitive lead is.

Technique: Turkish needle point lace is made using only a needle and thread, knotting the thread to create intricate two and three-dimensional forms for decorative edgings as well as free-standing works.

Materials and Parts: Cotton fabric, silver plated copper thread, polyester thread, solder, ATtiny 45 microcontroller, SMD LED, coin-cell battery, binder clip or clothspeg

Images

Close-up of interaction and LED on

Front and Back

Video

Pattern and Circuit Diagram (Schematic)

The Bitlace pattern is a circuit made from conductive silver plated copper thread and non-conductive polyester thread. A 3V coin-cell battery powers an ATtiny microcontroller which is programmed to do capacitive sensing on pin3 and every time the capacitive lead is touched, it toggles the state of the LED light connected to pin0. The three orange “rabbit ears” indicate where to touch the circuit.

Dimensions

Roughly 15cm long x 7cm high x 1-2mm thick

Materials and Parts

– Silver plated copper thread by Karl-Grimm (3981 7×1 fach verseilt)
– Loose weave cotton fabric as base material
– cotton thread for basting folded fabric in back
– Polyester thread for needle lace
– Solder
– ATtiny 45 microcontroller (SMD)
SMD LED – 0603 Green
– Coin-cell battery
– Binder clip or clothspeg for holding battery in place and making good electrical connections

Tools

– Embroidery needles
– Scissors and snips
– Lighter
– Soldering iron
– Iron

Techniques

– İğne Oyası (Turkish needle lace)
– Soldering surface mount components
– Melting loose ends of synthetic threads with lighter
– Programming and uploading code to microcontroller
– Sewing running stitch

Code

>> https://github.com/plusea/CODE

// MEMORY MOUNDS //
// capacitive sensing code running on ATtiny
// taken from Dave Mellis’ “Touch” example code
// >> www. etextile-summercamp.org/swatch-exchange/memory-mounds/

#include
SendOnlySoftwareSerial mySerial (1); // TX pin only

int calibration3 = 3;
int previous3;
int ledPin = 0;
int togglestate3 = LOW;

void setup() {
// set the data rate for the SoftwareSerial port
mySerial.begin(57600);
mySerial.println(“starting…”);
pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);
// CAPACITIVE CALLIBRATION:
delay(100);
for (int i = 0; i < 8; i++) { calibration3 += chargeTime(PB3); delay(20); } calibration3 = (calibration3 + 4) / 8; } void loop() { int n3 = chargeTime(PB3); if (previous3 <= calibration3 && n3 > calibration3) {
if (togglestate3 == LOW) togglestate3 = HIGH;
else togglestate3 = LOW;
digitalWrite(ledPin, togglestate3);
}
previous3 = n3;
delayMicroseconds(500);
}

byte chargeTime(byte pin) {
byte mask = (1 << pin); byte i; DDRB &= ~mask; // input PORTB |= mask; // pull-up on for (i = 0; i < 16; i++) { if (PINB & mask) break; } PORTB &= ~mask; // pull-up off DDRB |= mask; // discharge return i; }

Inspiration

During a 2 week residency in Instanbul I learned to make İğne Oyası. Reading about the history of this craft and it’s symbolism inspired the idea for a contemporary motif that uses functional electronics for symbolic meaning.

Following is a link to another needle lace project we started during the residency, and have yet to complete:
>> http://www.kobakant.at/?p=735

Examples of edging and three-dimensional needle lace made by our teacher:

Swatch Making Process

Images

Sketches and prototyping

Video of Making


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