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Lunchtime Talk at “Watershed”, Bristol (UK)

Molly Price, UK based associate partner at Diffus Design will be guest speaker at  “Watershed“. She will introduce our approach and Design philosophy through our latest EU collaborative research project: CREATIF, Digital creative tools for digital printing of smart fabrics. The CREATIF research consortium are developing collaborative software tools and a smart fabric printer that will be used to design and print electronic inks onto textiles. Designers will be able to print fabrics with interactive capabilities such as reactive electroluminescence, colour change, sensing and acoustic surfaces.
As part of the talk, Molly would like to pose the question ‘what areas do you think smart fabrics could be used in?’ so do come along and share your thoughts and ideas. This Lunchtime Talk is part of  the Open Studio Fridays, which will take place at the Studio
About Watershed:
Watershed is a cross-artform venue and producer, sharing, developing and showcasing exemplary cultural ideas and talent.
Time and location:
Friday, 2 May 2014 13:00 to 14:00 at Watershed studio

Workshop @Material Connexion Milano

Our EU-project Light.Touch.Matters continues to develop in new and exiting ways. Last week we participated in another successful workshop held at Material Connexion in Milano. Material Connexion was a perfect frame around Workshop 04, which achieved its main objectives, to present and discuss 20 product design concepts made by the design SME’s. These proposals and discussions are feeding the materials research stream in a way that a true collaboration and exploitation of the diverse competences in the consortium are put into play. Also we had the opportunity to have a first contact with external partners in order to speed up industrial uptake of project results. Last but not least we had the opportunity to play around with some OLEDs and build our own piezo sensor and actuator.
See more at: http://www.light-touch-matters-project.eu/fourth-workshop-results/#sthash.BAk2hOB9.dpuf

Diffus at Wearable Futures in London

Molly Price, Diffus Design’s UK based associate parter, participates as a speaker at Wearable Futures, a two day conference exploring wearables, from smart materials to new technologies. On the10 th and 11 th of December 50 thinkers and creative people from around the world will debate and share their vision for the future of wearables, from smart materials to new technologies.
The two days will include a broad programme of talks, interactive and immersive installations, and the chance to experiment with new technologies and digital making for wearables. Wearable Futures is hosted by Ravensbourne, located in East London next to the O2 concert arena and funded by The European Regional Development Fund.
The Wearable Futures conference will explore current and future technologies, forming links between business, technology, design and fashion. All forms of wearable technology will be discussed, with talks and seminars. Wearable Futures 2013 aim to bring together the worlds of design, technology and social science to discuss the future of wearables.

CREATIF Press release

CREATIF collaboration aims to revolutionise ‘smart’ fabric production
Imagine that you could print touch sensors and active light directly on fabric – if your fabric could be turned into an interactive surface with different inputs and outputs printed in one go, on one surface.
October 1st 2013 the EU-project, CREATIF, was kicked off. CREATIF is a unique project that strives to make this imagination possible. Three creative partners; Base Structures (UK), Diffus Design (DK) and Zaha Hadid Architects (UK) will collaborate with four technical and research based partners Ardeje (FR), Grafixoft (BG), Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE) and University of Southampton (UK) in making a smart fabric printer.
The CREATIF project is based in the area of smart fabrics and aims to create collaborative tools in the form of intuitive digital software design tools coupled with digital dispenser printers in order to facilitate interactive print on fabric. This tool will allow the user to design, create, layout, visualise and simulate smart fabrics by printing active electronic materials in the form of inks/pastes.
CREATIF is funded by EU´s Seventh Framework Programme and is a design driven development project. It will provide design solutions and tools for the culture and creative industry(CCI).
Recently developed fabric compatible functional inks and printing techniques allow physical realisation of the designs emerging from CREATIF’s collaborative tools. The CREATIF tools will enable any CCI using
fabrics to replicate the creative experience of designing smart fabrics, and remove the remaining barriers to entry to this field by significantly reducing the complexity of the process and the technological learning curve required.
The task for the creative partners will be to demonstrate the use of such creative tools in a real environment by producing three advanced smart fabric prototypes for interactive light emission, interactive colour change and sound sur faces. Those prototypes will take the form of interactive
modular blinds and interactive exhibition spaces.
Background
In Oct 2012 the EU issued a call within the Information and Communications Technology Programme covering ‘Technologies and scientific foundations in the field of creativity’. This call addressed creative tools and aimed to equip different industries with more effective creative tools that make use of all our senses and allow for richer, more collaborative and interactive experiences. This challenge called upon research and industry to unite their forces to produce more powerful and interactive tools for creative industries, enhance the creativity of workers pursuing different professions, and anticipate future trends in research and innovation by encouraging interaction in and between different segments of the creative industries.
Goals
We will demonstrate the creative experience tools use in a real environment by producing, within CREATIF, three advanced smart fabric prototypes which contain printed planar electronics alongside standard graphical designs. These prototypes will directly target the CCI of design, advertising and architecture although the collaborative tool impacts any CCI using fabrics.
The culture and creative industries are a powerful motor for jobs, growth, exports and earnings,
cultural diversity and social inclusion, representing 4.5% of total European GDP and 3.8% of the workforce. European industries, in particular small and medium enterprises, are increasingly faced with the need to be more productive, innovative and dynamic in responding to the changing market needs.
One goal is to create a vibrant creative technology ecosystem and increase the innovation capacity of European industries and enterprises by providing them with better tools, capabilities and foresight. A further goal is to enhance, develop and encourage creativity as an essential 21st
century skill in professional contexts.
CREATIF embraces these goals by facilitating the creative production and use of smart fabrics without prior knowledge.
Consortium
The consortium consists of University of Southampton (UK)
www.southampton.ac.uk, as project leader and with world leading expertise in creating smart
fabrics by printing electronic functional materials, Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE)
www.ita.rwth-aachen.de, specialised in fabric machine design, Grafixoft (BG) www.grafixoft.com, a digital design software developer, Ardeje (FR) www.ardeje.fr, an SME specialised in advanced inkjet printers and “inally, three creative partners active in both architecture, design and tensile fabrics: Diffus Design (DK) www.diffus.dk, Base Structures (UK) www.basestructures.com and Zaha Hadid Architects (UK) www.zaha-hadid.com
Further information
If you would like to be kept informed via future newsletters and press releases please contact us
at creative.network@gmail.com.
Key project data
Title: CREATIF – Digital Creative Tools for Digital Printing of Smart Fabrics
Start date: 1 Oct 2013
End date: 30 Sept 2016
EC Research call: Objective ICT2013.8.1
Technologies and scientific foundations in
the field of Creativity
Project type: STREP
Website: www.creatif.ecs.soton.ac.ukPartners: Base Structures (UK), Diffus
Design (DK), Zaha Hadid Architects (UK),
Ardeje (FR), Grafixoft (BG), Institut für
Textiltechnik Aachen (DE) and University of Southampton (UK)

Diffus did it again! New project funded

October 1st our second exciting EU-project – CREATIF – is kicked off where Diffus will be one of three creative partners together with Base Structures (UK) and Zaha Hadid Architects (UK). Technical and research based partners are Grafixoft (BG), Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE), University of Southampton (UK) and Ardeje (FR).
The CREATIF project is based in the area of smart textiles and aims to create collaborative tools in the form of intuitive digital software design tools coupled with digital dispenser printers in order to facilitate interactive print on textile. This tool will allow the user to design, create, layout, visualise and simulate smart fabrics by printing active electronic materials in the form of inks/pastes.
CREATIF is funded by EU´s Seventh Framework Programme and is a design driven development project. It will provide design solutions and tools for the culture and creative industry (CCI).
Recently developed fabric compatible functional inks and printing techniques allow physical realisation of the designs emerging from CREATIF’s collaborative tools. The CREATIF tools will enable any CCI using fabrics to replicate the creative experience of designing smart fabrics, and remove the remaining barriers to entry to this field by significantly reducing the complexity of the process and the technological learning curve required.
The consortium consists of University of Southampton (UK) www.southampton.ac.uk, as project leader and with world leading expertise in creating smart fabrics by printing electronic functional materials,  Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE) www.ita.rwth-aachen.de, specialised in fabric machine design, Grafixoft (BG) www.grafixoft.com, a digital design software developer,  Ardeje (FR) www.ardeje.fr, an SME specialised in advanced inkjet printers and finally, three creative partners active in both architecture, design and tensile fabrics: Diffus Design (DK) www.diffus.dk, Base Structures (UK) www.basestructures.com and Zaha Hadid Architects (UK) www.zaha-hadid.com
The task for the creative partners will be to demonstrate the use of such creative tools in a real environment by producing three advanced smart fabric prototypes for interactive light emission, interactive colour change and sound surfaces. Those prototypes will take the form of interactive modular blinds and interactive exhibition spaces.
We are looking forward to three years of fantastic and fruitful collaboration!

Wonderful Light.Touch.Matters video

In june 2013 the members of the Light.Touch.Matters consortium got together in lovely London for a second workshop.
The workshop represented the beginning of the so-called first iteration that will bring to the definition of meaningful scenarios connected to new materials properties and experiences. It saw the start of designer-researcher dialogue, exchange of projects progress, handing out material samples, first sketches of scenarios of meaning and good team-building and decision-making.
During the workshop the material properties were set and the application were investigated. We closed with an excellent hands-on material-making workshop by The Institute of Making. Besides, Light.Touch.Matters now has a full visual identity thanks to the work of various designers in the consortium that proposed different designs. Sadly only one can selected, we trust you like it!
On a more serious not, the LightTouchMatters Liaison Committee is already reaching out to organisations interested in following the project, or being more actively involved in some way. Should your company or entity be interested just drop us a line. – See more at: http://www.light-touch-matters-project.eu/workshop-results-june/#sthash.0czLLvym.dpuf
This film was made at the Institute of Making part of UCL in London at an event where participants got to play with materials and discuss ideas in an informal way.

New book by Leah Buechley, creator of “LILYPAD”, showcases The Climate Dress

The Climate Dress is featured in the newly published book “Textile Messages: Dispatches From the World of E-Textiles and Education”, Published by Peter Lang Publishing.
The Climate Dress is mentioned as ”a statement that, though an aesthetic representation of enviromental data, contributes to the ongoing debate about enviromental issues. (…) The dress does not rely on wiring, soldering, or crimping which is often impair the textile aspect of ”smart textile” products. All functional elements are blended into the emboidery and proudly exposed to the eye. Ornamental design and functionality are no longer antagonists.”
The book is edited by Leah Buechley, who is Associate Professor at the MIT Media Lab where she directs the High-Low Tech research group, exploring the integration of high and low technology from cultural, material, and practical perspectives. She is one of the driving force behind the succes of electronic textiles (e-textiles) within the creative field, and her work in this area includes developing the LilyPad Arduino toolkit.
Textile Messages introduces a collection of tools that enable novices – including educators, hobbyists, and youth designers – to create and learn with e-textiles. It also examines how these tools are reshaping technology education – and DIY practices presenting examples of the ways educators, researchers, designers, and young people are employing them to build new technology, new curricula, and new creative communities.
The book is among others available via Amazon.

RaumPROBE is blogging about the Climate Dress

The Climate Dress is included in a material blog run by one of the largest material databanks in Europe: RaumPROBE – a true paradise for architects, interior decorators, planners, and interior designers: It is a competent contact partner in all matters regarding material. This is not only available online and searchable using common search criteria, but also on-site. raumPROBE makes the fascination of material accessible and wants to promote creative use of various materials.
The blog is a huge collection of material project descriptions highlightening the newest development within material research.
Comment about the Climate Dress:
“Haute Couture verschmilzt mit Haute Technologie. Die dänischen Designer von Diffus, schafften das erste Kleid, dessen Stickerei nicht ausschließlich der Schönheit gebührt, sondern auch noch eine technische Funktion hat: Mehrere hundert kleine LED’s beginnen, in unterschiedlichen Mustern, zu strahlen, je nach Höhe des CO2-Ausstoßes in der Umgebungsluft. Der elektrisch leitende Garn mit angebrachten Sensoren, steuert das Kleid. So wird das CLIMATE DRESS zum “Statement, das über die ästhetische Präsentation von Umweltdaten einen Beitrag zur aktuellen Klimadebatte leistet.”
See here:
http://materialblog.de/2013/08/klima-kleid/

Diffus exhibits at Buda Art Center

Moving Materials is now located at the Buda Art Center (previously a textil Factory) in Kortrijk (Belgium) until the 30th of June 2013.

Moving Materials is a travelling and growing exhibition. The design caravan will visit Essen, Eindhoven, Lancaster, Kortrijk, Paris and Helsinki. New materials will be taken on board at each location
Moving Materials is evolving and developing in the framework of PROUD (People Researchers Organisations Using Design for co-creating and innovation) and initiated by Material Sense, the materials network and design studio. PROUD is funded by the EU Interreg. The exhibition will actively involve the public. The idea is to interact, discuss and co-create new concepts.
Diffus Design is represented in the exhibition with Wall-E(motion) and Eclipse (our solar handbag)
Please visit the site of “Material Sense” which organizes this Design Caravan trough 6 European cities at

An interview for Société Perrier

Courtney Lochner from Société Perrier comments and asks the following question:
‘The world is getting exponentially smarter. Your phone alone can tell you how to walk from your house to anywhere on the planet, what the weather will be like for the journey, and even what to wear. Cars, computers, robots, they’re all getting smarter. But what about fashion — can it get smarter?’
An answer to that question is given through the work of our design in the article: Diffus: Fashion with intelligent Design.
Read the whole article:

Interview Questions for Diffus

Can you tell as a little bit about how Diffus was created and how it has evolved?

Diffus was created around 2002 as an academic collaboration between art historian Hanne-Louise Johannesen, teaching  “Visual culture and digital aesthetic” at the university of Copenhagen and architect Michel guglielmi, teaching projects at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Schools of Architecture and Design.
In the beginning, Diffus hosted common workshops and allowed creative thinking and theoretical publications on topics related to tangible media.
Diffus has from the beginning and continuosly been committed to combine theory and practice. The success of combining research and experimentation soon implied that we had to extend our activities and get involved into the making of design as well.
Still today, our conceptual and theoretical approach to design and to pragmatic solutions is our main asset. We are recognized by our projects, which often involve technologies rarely used in the realm of design.

What are some of your most memorable projects (1-2 examples)?

Diffus is a multidisciplinary design office.
Here are 2 projects related to fashion:

The Climate Dress:

The Climate Dress is made of conductive embroidery, over hundred of tiny LED lights inserted into the embroidery, a CO2 sensor and an Arduino Lilypad microprocessor. The LEDs visualize the level of CO2 in the nearby surroundings and are powered trough the embroidery!
For The Climate Dress we used soft conductive thread that has a similar consistence to the kind of thread used for traditional and industrial embroidery production. This way it is possible to make embroidery that become more than an esthetical element in clothing and interior textiles.
The embroidery becomes functional conveying electricity and computer information and thereby gives “power to the dress”.
The dress senses the CO2 concentration in the air, then accordingly creates diverse light patterns varying from slow, regular light pulsations to short and hectic. The technology, which integrates ”soft circuits” into the production of embroidery, is an innovative process. It is the result of a fruitful collaboration with Swiss embroidery company Forster-Rohner, the Danish research-based limited company Alexandra Institute and finally the Danish School of Design. The industrialization of the production process of soft circuits has been a milestone offering new possibilities to work with intelligent textiles. It has helped Diffus to achieve an importent goal: To support the interaction between human and computer technology in a non-screen-based environment – an environment with physical and sensual qualities appealing to our human intuition and adapted to our daily life.

Eclipse (Solar bag):

Eclipse is a solar cell bag that harvests solar energy to supply power for your mobile devices as well as a light inside your bag.
With the boom of environmental consciousness, bags with integrated solar cells that charge your mobile phone or laptop will become commonplace. An existing solution is to fix slim, flexible solar modules onto a messenger style bag, but the result is non-integrated in appearance. We have developed a high-end fashion handbag through a cross-disciplinary development of textile surfaces with solar sequins.
Aesthetic and functionality goes hand in hand:
During daytime hours, one hundred mini-solar power stations distributed across the surface of The Solar Handbag generate enough electricity to charge a mobile device, as well as a powerful lithium ion battery hidden within a small compartment. When opening the bag at night or in dark surroundings, optical fibres that are attached to the inside of the bag are activated. A diffuse glow is created to assist in the search for keys, purses or other objects. bag that harvests solar energy to supply power for your mobile devices as well as a light inside your bag.

Tell us about your inspiration for interactive light fashion.

Concerning light, we are attracted by the idea of light as a material in its own right. Light in this sense has a physical, sensual and almost haptic presence. Think about the light, that penetrates into cathedrals trough stained glass windows.
We are inspired by the relationship between digitality and materiality. The “mix” of digital and physical materials results in unique hybrid materials on its own right, which epitomizes today’s Zeitgeist. We are for example fascinated by  the possibility to merge soft circuitry with  IT technology and craft to create poetical and sensual experiences never seen before.
We find inspiration in both the emerging digital culture, which unfolds around us, but also in the history of art and in the roots of the 20th centry’s avant gardes.
Concerning the interactive part of our projects, we are inspired by the possibility to imagine responsive garments that adapt to context, moods or environmental changes.
Garments have now the potential to truly reflect changing emotions, and become an interface between your body and the world around you. The garment becomes a mean for story telling.

How did you go about creating the Climate Dress and do you have plans for more like this?

The Climate Dress was an opportunity to start a longtime collaboration with Forster Rohner, a sophisticated Swiss embroidery factory, pourveyor of exclusive fashion houses like Chanel and Prada. The manufacturer had a vision to extend their know how in the field of technologic textiles and was eager to find out how such technology could evolve into future applications, among other in the fashion industry. The climate dress showed the way to how design driven innovation could be applied in their R&D department.
It also demonstrated that it was possible to apply those new technologies to the realisation of concrete products to be launched in a near future.
The result was beyond our wildest expectations. It  became a media hit and also helped to generate new knowledge and innovation ready to be applied in upcoming production processes.
Our collaboration with Forster Rohner is ongoing and we now built further opun the knowledge that we have gathered. Our long term collaboration has now resulted in an evolvement from prototyping unique objects to the realisation of commercial items, which take advantage of the new production metodologies.

What’s next for Diffus?

We are now creating a series of items in the field of fashion, product and interior design thet seen and experienced together are telling a story of a new and broard aesthetic environment imagined by Diffus: An aesthetic environment, which allies craft and technology, sensuality and digitality.An environment where the digital experience gets freed from cold plasma screen and other high tech materials distancing us emotionally and poetically from the product.
One project responding to that philosophy is Wall-E(emotion) that is a modular system of textile disks that have been embroidered with conductive yarn to generate sensory outputs including light, sound and smell across a custom made surface.
Wall-E is a modular system that can be used as a window curtain, a room divider, a sound installation and a light source. Sensory disks can be added, removed or re-configured to change the layout of a Wall-E array. The modular system provides opportunity for patterns and sensory functions to be added as new applications emerge and technologies such as OLED and printed responsive surfaces are developed.
Modern appliances are increasingly collected as design objects within the home, accepted and celebrated as a necessary evil for modern life. Wall-E creates an easily transformable and configurable system of appliances able to contain different functionalities within a networked array of soft, repetitive disks acting as smart power and information hubs. Individual appliances are transformed into an organic network with interrelated functionalities that is highly appealing to our senses.


  • +45 61 26 70 62
  • info@diffus.dk
  • Diffus Design APS
  • Gasværksvej 10A, 1st.th.
  • 1656 Copenhagen, Denmark