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Unleash Your Stories: Mikayla Stokes

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17 February 2020

Mikayla Stokes is an Engineering student with a passion for creativity and tinkering. She has developed a programmable light up dress at Unleash Space, making the most of the University of Auckland maker space’s tools and staff knowledge.

Mikayla says “I love making wacky inventions and gadgets. I’ve made things from automated vertical gardens to enable people to grow veggies from their phone, to a pair of light up shoes (because I couldn’t buy any in a store). I love projects using programmable LEDs, and after struggling at finding things to wear at STEM events, I thought that a Hunger-Games-esque light up dress would be a perfect solution”.

Mikayla has a working dress that cycles through different patterns of colours. She has intrigued people with her prototype and has had an offer to wear it in an international wearable tech fashion show.

In the next iteration of the dress, Mikayla has plans to make it more durable and easier to put on. She plans to integrate a phone app with the dress over bluetooth to easily change patterns, and get it to respond to motion with an accelerometer, or sound with a microphone.

Mikayla used multiple tools and had support from the Creative Technologists (student staff) for advice and support using equipment including the soldering station and the sewing station.

“The equipment and help from the CTs was so incredibly helpful for this project – especially because I have no idea how to sew! After this improved prototype I would love to start creating these programmable dresses for others to use.”

Explore your own options for creating at Unleash Space

James Hutchinson
James Hutchinson

social media

17 February 2020

Mikayla Stokes is an Engineering student with a passion for creativity and tinkering. She has developed a programmable light up dress at Unleash Space, making the most of the University of Auckland maker space’s tools and staff knowledge.

Mikayla says “I love making wacky inventions and gadgets. I’ve made things from automated vertical gardens to enable people to grow veggies from their phone, to a pair of light up shoes (because I couldn’t buy any in a store). I love projects using programmable LEDs, and after struggling at finding things to wear at STEM events, I thought that a Hunger-Games-esque light up dress would be a perfect solution”.

Mikayla has a working dress that cycles through different patterns of colours. She has intrigued people with her prototype and has had an offer to wear it in an international wearable tech fashion show.

In the next iteration of the dress, Mikayla has plans to make it more durable and easier to put on. She plans to integrate a phone app with the dress over bluetooth to easily change patterns, and get it to respond to motion with an accelerometer, or sound with a microphone.

Mikayla used multiple tools and had support from the Creative Technologists (student staff) for advice and support using equipment including the soldering station and the sewing station.

“The equipment and help from the CTs was so incredibly helpful for this project – especially because I have no idea how to sew! After this improved prototype I would love to start creating these programmable dresses for others to use.”

Explore your own options for creating at Unleash Space


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