MATERIALS AND SUPPLIES
- A pair of gloves (preferably one you already own)
- Conductive thread (available in smaller quantities on the author’s site)
- A needle
Cut 16 inches or so of your conductive thread and thread it through the needle.
Before we start with Step 2, we should explain that there are two ways to do this. You can either sew with the gloves on your hands or off. Personally, we prefer off (since it’s pretty hard to sew one-handed), but it’s really up to you so see what you feel comfortable with as you go.
One other thing to think about before you actually begin sewing is how you use your phone. Type a few words and play with a few apps to get a feel for which parts of your fingers you actually use when you do. Make a mental note of those locations on your thumbs and index fingers because that’s where you’ll want to sew.
Once you have that settled, start sewing! Leaving a long, 30-inch tail inside your glove, poke your needle out from the tip of the index finger of your glove.
The basic idea here is to get as much of the conductive thread embedded into the tip of your glove as you can so that it will carry a current to your phone.
That said, you can pretty much embroider any design you like, whether it’s straight lines, an “X,” a big dot, or a smiley face like we did.
Once you’ve sewn at least 15 or so stitches, test your fingertip out on your phone. Is your touchscreen responsive? If so, you’re ready to stop sewing, but if not, sew a few more stitches until your phone responds. Remember, the thread should be concentrated in the area of your finger that touches your screen directly.
When you’re sure your finger is properly conducting, sew one more stitch back into the tip of your glove and—this is important‚do not cut off the rest of your thread like you might normally do. Just slip the needle off of the thread instead. The long tails (the one you created when you first began sewing and the one you left after you stopped sewing) will help with conducting the current that makes your touchscreen responsive to your fingers.
Once you’re done with your first finger, repeat on your other index finger and your thumbs. For your thumbs, remember to pay attention to which part you actually use to text.
And there you have it! Your very own texting gloves for so much less than what you’d pay in a store. They make a great gift, too.
Photos © Yuka Yoneda