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1  Topics / E-Textiles and Craft / Noob questions! Costumes with chasing lights on: April 13, 2012, 10:57:16 pm
Hi!  It's Noob-With-Stupid-Questions time!  =)

I'm working on a group costume project that involves chasing lights in a 3-on 1-off marquis, and I just recently learned about e-textiles, soft circuitry, and the Arduino LilyPad -- pretty awesome, exciting stuff!  Except that I have only basic electronics experience, and the more I try to think about this, the more my head just wants to explode smiley-cry  I could use advice on... just about everything. 

To start with, for a simple one-color marquis, I figured the LilyPad Simple Board would work? http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10274
Better yet, I suppose the old one would work just as well? http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9725

Then, to connect it to my computer so that I can program it, I use this cable? http://www.sparkfun.com/products/9718  Or do I need a breakout board?  This part is the most confusing to me, I am unclear whether one REPLACES the other or if they are used together.

Then obviously there's the lights themselves.  Since the circuit is simple, I was thinking of just sewing a circuit with conductive thread ( http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10118 or http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10120 ? ) and individually sewing on LEDs.  The problem is, the lights will be reaching all the way to our hands and feet -- I'm estimating 200 LEDs for my own costume. (?!?!) I have someone who can help me with working transistors into my design, but I dread the size of the battery pack that may be required.  I might mention that we will be DANCING in these costumes (only 3 min)!  There are also places where it would be nice to be able to "plug" a piece of the costume into the rest of the circuit -- for example, I have a belt that goes on top of my outfit.  I thought about using snaps, but that seems rather clumsy... is there a better way? 
Are there further complications I have not yet realized?... or an easier way to do this?? (some kind of string lights that don't cost an arm and a leg...?)

People keep asking me, "Why don't you use chasing Christmas lights?"  Is there a way to even do that??  I have never bought any let alone tried taking them apart, so I have no idea how they're wired or if that would work somehow... anyone know offhand? =x

Thank you for your attention!  .... I really don't know what I'm doing  smiley-confuse
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