Light for life: Glowing cycling jacket

illuminated-jacketWe have elaborated many times before the benefits illuminated clothing has to increase the visibility for cyclists and runners during low light conditions.

Besides some commercially available  products of illuminated apparel, this topic is also one of the favorites in the e-textile DIY community.

Instructables member Kempton just posted her beautiful variant of a illuminated jacket, the ‘Light for life: Glowing button cycling jacket‘.

I love her tag-line ‘Light for Life‘ which expresses precisely what it does: light-up cyclists to avoid an accident or even save their life.

The light elements are made from translucent buttons modified to hold an LED each. These buttons are then arranged in a pattern around the jacket and connected to a LilyPad Arduino which is programmed to generate different light effects.


A LiliPad push button is integrated into each sleeve to switch on the lights when it’s getting dark but they can also be used to switch on the different clusters of light-up buttons giving it a turn signal function similar to the ‘Turn Signal Jacket‘ from Leah Buechley.

A nice style twist is that fact that these light-up buttons, being transparent, are almost invisible during day light and only shine when switched on.

Check out this highly inspriational Instructable from Kempton and see how to make a jacket with integrated light-up buttons which are not only functional as a safety feature but can also add sparkling light elements to a party outfit.


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