yihyun lim creates felted terrain, an interactive wool landscape yihyun lim creates felted terrain, an interactive wool landscape
mar 24, 2015

yihyun lim creates felted terrain, an interactive wool landscape

yihyun lim creates felted terrain, an interactive wool landscape
all images courtesy of yihyun lim

 

 

 

influenced by the rolling, mossy landscapes of iceland, ‘felted terrain’ translates the natural environment into a three-dimensional, interactive textile. at a scale as large as an interior, the fabric extends beyond its familiarity as clothing material, and allows users to experience it in unexpected ways. the project was designed and fabricated by yihyun lim, a recent M.Arch graduate of MIT. with ‘felted terrain’ she subverts the idea of knitted fibers as a primitive ‘handicraft’ by integrating soft electronics, computational design, and alternative methods of creation.


the project was influenced by the rolling, mossy landscape of iceland

 

 

 

a circle packing script–an arrangement of circles on a given surface such that none are overlapping and all touch one another–was used to generate a knitting pattern in rhino3D. once created, conductive thread is knitted together with wool yarn at the center of each circle to create capacitive sensor tips. each point is then stitched back to a lilypad arduino–micro-controller board designed for wearables and e-textiles–forming a soft circuit. 

 


video courtesy of yihyun lim

 

 

 

 

the lilypad is loaded with a modified capsense arduino code. the serial data it receives is transferred to a processing script–adapted from MIT media lab/high-low tech group’s piano code. each time a bump is touched, the circuit connects and translates into a sound and sine wave graph. every circle corresponds to a specific pitch of musical note allowing for a touch to be felt, heard, and visualized


different types of yarn were tested for wet-felting capacity 

 

 

 

‘felted terrain’ was knitted using a vintage hand-operated machine in one square meter patches. completed sections were sewn together and felted–multiple washings in warm water and soap–to create a tightly-packed textile 30-40% its original size. in its smaller dimensionsbumps created during the sewing process are accentuated, becoming reminiscent of the icelandic landscape from which the concept originated. the project was exhibited at the MIT keller gallery, as part of the perverse landscapes exhibition. the exhibit was supported by the MIT department of architecture, and the director’s grant from the council for the arts at MIT


knitting 3D structure with vintage machine

feltedterraindesignboom03
pattern generated with grasshopper–circle packing–script and wiring pattern for soft circuitry

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conductive fibers are embedded in each tip of the 3D forms

feltedterraindesignboom05
in progress – 1m x 1m patches were knitted and stitched together using a singer 155 machine 

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the completed fabric was wet felted to form a tightly-packed textile

 feltedterraindesignboom02
felting diagram, courtesy of daniela covarrubias


lilypad arduino with xbee was used to wirelessly connect the computer to the textile

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timelapse of the knitting process

 

 

designboom has received this project through its ‘DIY submissions’ feature, which welcomes readers to submit their own work for publication. see more designboom readers submissions here.

  • Felting is when raw wool fibers are used. When wool fibers have been made into a fabric, as here, the proper terms is fulling.

    Chris Motley says:

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