E-textile Sewing tips

Need to troubleshoot your sewn circuits? Find some solutions to common issues here. Many of the guides you’ll find online refer the Lilypad E-textiles kit, but the concepts are the same for any sewable microcontroller, like the Circuit Playground Express.

Reversed Polarity

Two LEDs sewn in parallel with the positive side sewn to the negative side of the other
Oops! one of these LEDs is flipped in the parallel circuit! The polarity issue will need to be fixed in order for this to work.
Re-sewing the circuit
In this photo, the maker took out the stitches to the second LED and is re-sewing it with the correct orientation.
The finished circuit
Fixed! Here you can see the re-sewn circuit with the negative pad of one LED connecting to negative pad of the second LED, and positive sewn to positive.

See Sparkfun’s guide to troubleshooting e-textiles

Short Circuits

Short circuit diagram
Watch out for short circuits! Check out Sparkfun’s e-sewing page for great tips
Gif of tying a knot and cutting the end
Be sure to tie your knots tight and clip the ends close so they don’t cross over other threads.

Sew Electric has many helpful e-textile tips on their website and in their book

Conductive Materials for sewing

Learn about all the different types of conductive textiles available at Adafruit! Becky Stern provides a guided tour.