Sensible clothing stretches the imagination

textile-stretch-sensorSensible, sensing clothing are a fascinating topic which has got the intention of a highly creative team which integrates Merlin Stretch Sensor into beautifully designed garment to sense the wearers movement. The movement data can then be used for various purposes like interaction with a garments appearance, interaction with other smart sensing garments or interaction with the environment.

The project is called ‘Aeoliawith the purpose to explore concepts of our bodily engagement with the land and ideas of space and place.

Each of the back forms incorporate the Merlin stretch sensor into an aesthetic exploration of textile technique mapped to the body – weave (grey), knit (white) and embroidery (black).

The knit samples use a Bekaert yarn with standard shirring elastic to create an experimental stretch sensor based on the changing length of the conductive path.

A Merlin Stretch Sensor measures stretch, displacement, compression and force. It is a flexible cylindrical cord with electrical fixings at each end. The sensor behaves like a variable resistor, the more you stretch it the higher the resistance. You can find here some Merlin Stretch Sensors if you like to experiment with this technology.


Check out the Aeolia project page which contains video clips showing how a stretch sensing textile patch manipulates music. This concept could make interesting stage wear for artist who can influence their musical performance with their movement on stage.

Aeolia is a collaboration between many people from different disciplines, most of them working at Nottingham Trent University:

Philip Breedon in Product Design and Amanda Briggs-Goode in Textiles head the project with Sarah Kettley. Martha Glazzard developed the knit stretch sensors, Tina Downes made the embroidered sample, Karen Harrigan works across the project on garment fit and Nigel Marshall is working on woven structures.

A fantastic team that stretches the future of fashion design imagination.

[via: electricfoxy]


  1. Dear Eric,

    I’m highly interested in this sensor-dress technology.
    Please contact me by email.

    Ferenc Rozsnyai

  2. hi Ferenc, your email address doesn’t work, bounces back :(
    get in touch with me via the ‘Contact us’ tap above the search box or via the email system on our Connection site.

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