How-To: Space Invaders Tote Bag

Craft & Design
Space Invaders Tote Bag from Fashioning Technology

Space Invaders Tote Bag from Fashioning Technology

Skill Builder Series: Advanced MaterialsIn honor of our Advanced Materials theme, we’re sharing an excerpt from my favorite book on smart materials, Syuzi Pakhchyan’s Fashioning Technology: A DIY Intro to Smart Crafting. If you’re interested in checking out the potential in soft circuits, sewing your circuits in using conductive thread, the Space Invaders Tote project is a fun place to start. This simple how-to guides you through making a playful tote bag where the Space Invader’s eyes are sensitive to the electromagnetic waves of mobile phones and light up with incoming calls. Turn off your ringer, throw your phone in the bag, and get a little twinkle when you receive a call. We’ve shared the full build with you on Make: Projects, so head there to get started. And for lots more info on working with smart materials, pick up a copy of Fashioning Technology.

From the pages of Fashioning Technology:

With “smart” materials, unorthodox assembly techniques, and the right tools, you can create accessories, housewares, and toys that light up, make sounds, or do even more. Fashioning Technology offers jargon-free primers and lots of how-to projects that will have you making functional works of art. This book demonstrates how to blend sewing and assembly techniques with traditional electronics to assemble simple circuits using conductive thread, solder joints for snaps, and switches for buttons. With the sewing machine as a viable substitute for the soldering iron, you can craft a new generation of objects that are interactive, quirky, and fashion-conscious.

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I'm a word nerd who loves to geek out on how emerging technology affects the lexicon. I was an editor on the first 40 volumes of MAKE, and I love shining light on the incredible makers in our community. In particular, covering art is my passion — after all, art is the first thing most of us ever made. When not fawning over perfect word choices, I can be found on the nearest mountain, looking for untouched powder fields and ideal alpine lakes.

Contact me at or via @snowgoli.

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