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DIY for the Weekend: Light Up Your Halloween Costume!

Okay, so Halloween is tomorrow and you still don’t have any really good ideas for a costume…

Want a costume that lights up? LED eyelashes? Or maybe a mask that will control your music wirelessly? We have the resources to help you turn your bright idea into the perfect costume.

You are a Super Hero and need to contact your Super Hero partner. Make: Wearable Electronics will help you learn the skills necessary to create your own super hero communicator cuffs. Each pair of cuffs has an electronic switch and when the wrists are crossed, a wireless signal is sent to your partner’s cuffs. The transmitted signal causes the cuffs to light up, letting your partner know you need them. Or maybe you want to let them know you found the best Halloween candy at the party….

"Dream Squawk" mask created by Amy Khoshbi.
“Dream Squawk” mask created by Amy Khoshbi.


Make: Wearable Electronics will help you learn Lilypad Arduino and Xbee – which are used to make the cuffs – and so much more.  Maybe you want to make a  “Dream Squawk” mask which allows you to control music and sound wirelessly. That could really amp up your party…..


"Tron: Quorra Costume" by Syuzi Pakchyan
“Tron: Quorra Costume” by Syuzi Pakchyan


How about Quorra from Tron: Legacy? This costume also uses LilyPad and Cool Neon‘s LED ribbon.  LilyPad was designed specifically for e-textiles and clothing and Make: Wearable Electronics provides experiments so you are able to try those new LilyPad skills.

Starboards are flexible circuits that can be sewn directly into garments. Creator Meredith Scheff also offers low resistance (2.5 ohms per yard) solderable conductive thread. It is a conductive thread that is also solderable and it strong enough to be used like regular sewing thread.


Space Face LED Galaxy Makeup
Space Face LED Galaxy Makeup

Wear Space Face Galaxy Light Up Makeup, inspired by the constellation Cassiopeia, and you could be the star of the evening. This spacey headpiece uses 5 FLORA NeoPixels. Make:Wearable Electronics has an example to help you get started using this versatile module. It is wearable, sewable, easily wired, individually addressable, ultra-bright, multicolored LEDs – what’s not to love?

Butterfly Dress designed by Alexander Reeder
Butterfly Dress designed by Alexander Reeder



Perhaps you are going dressed as a “social butterfly.” What could be better than a dress with butterflies that actually flap their wings? If you are interested in wearable tech that utilizes motors, both Make: Wearable Electronics and Making Things Move: DIY Mechanisms for Inventors, Hobbyists, and Artists can help you learn to do just that!



LED Eyelashes
LED Eyelashes by Soomi Park

How about LED eyelashes to go with your butterfly dress? Again, LillyPad is used to build those LED eyelashes that will brighten your eyes! Make: Wearable Electronics also also explains how to work with Aniomagic – an e-textile toolkit that is similar to LilyPad and FLORA. Use Aniomagic to create a light-up bracelet, belts and almost anything else you can dream up to go with those bright eyes and butterfly wings!
Want to have the brightest brain in the room? Create your own “Thinking Cap.” It is biometric-data-driven, and responds to fluctuations in EEG signals.



Whatever bright idea you have about a wearable tech costume – we’ve got the resources – information on everything from circuits and batteries to conductive materials and how to make your ideas wearable!

Happy Halloween!!!



Hartman, Kate. 2014. Make: wearable electronics. Sebastopol, CA : Maker Media. Engineering Library QA76.592 .H37 2014.

DIY: Superhero Communicator Cuffs. 2012. OCAD University.

Light Up Your Life With LEDs, Sewable Circuitry. May 29, 2011. Wired.

Roberts, Dustyn. 2011. Making things move: DIY mechanisms for inventors, hobbyists, and artists. New York : McGraw-Hill. Engineering Library TJ147 .R56 2011

XBee Buying Guide. Sparkfun Electronics. Accessed: Oct. 27, 2015

About LilyPad. LilyPad. Accessed: Oct. 27, 2015

Cool Neon Lighting. 2011. Cool Neon EL Wire.

SparkFun Inventor’s Kit. SparkFun Electronics. Accessed Oct. 27, 2015

How-To: Space Face LED Galaxy Makeup. Oct. 10, 2013.  Maker Media.

LED Galaxy Makeup – SPACE FACE. youtube. Oct. 9, 2013.


Other resources:

LED Eyelash_Soomi Park. youtube. July 20, 2009

Mom’s Homemade ‘Star Wars’ Costumes Will Blow You Away. Oct. 27, 2015. Yahoo! News. abc Good Morning America.

El Nino Costume with Lightning and Real Rain. Oct. 26, 2015.