May 19th marked the ending of our 3 year EU-research project CREATIF. The project managed to build a printer that is able to print smart inks on fabric. The printer and a special designed design tools developed through CREATIF have enabled us to design with interactive surfaces in a completely new way. With the CREATIF tools we have support in the whole process from early ideas to the final print and from interaction sketching to actual coding for the interaction to happen. This helps in our existing projects as well as brings great opportunities for projects to be developed in the future.
The ending of this successful project was marked by an exhibition in Zaha Hadid Architects showroom in London.
Read more about CREATIF
ELAC (Embroidered Light for Acoustic Ceilings) has received a Special Mention in the Architizer A+Awards within the “Products” category.
Architizer A+Awards are the largest awards programme focused on promoting and celebrating the year’s best architecture and products. Its mission is to nurture the appreciation of meaningful architecture in the world and champion its potential for a positive impact on everyday life.
“The Special Mention distinction is awarded to work that exhibits remarkable achievement”. This recognition follows DesignBoom+LG first prize that we received three months ago for ELAC, a competition which received 2700 projects from the international Design community.
Find out more about ELAC here.
Organized by Designboom and co-hosted by LG Display, the light design competition with the theme ‘You dream, we light’ saw 2.700 applications from 60 countries submitting their ideas. After extensive discussion among the distinguished members of the judging panel, 5 finalists were selected based on their potential contribution to design innovation and their ability to enrich society.
And the first price winner is…Diffus Design!
Diffus Design, together with Ecophon/Saint-Gobain created ELAC (Embroidered Light for Acoustic Ceilings), a game-changing concept for embedding light into acoustic ceiling panels.
The jury was composed of:
– Korean Association of Industrial Designers – President of association Do Sung Chung.
- Dean of IDAS, Hongik University – Prof. Dr. Ken NAH.
- Korean Association of Lighting Designers – President of association Mee Jeong.
- Vice President / OLED Light Business Division SungSoo Park.
- Vice President / OLED Light Sales/Marketing Division JoonHyuck Park.
- OLED Light Product Planning Task Sungsoo Hong.
- OLED Light Product Planning Task Chiyoung Lee.
- OLED Light Product Planning Task SeonWook Jung.
- OLED Light Product Planning Task HyeCho Shin.
- OLED Light Marketing Team Ryan Lee.
- LG Electronics Design Center, H&A Design Center Leader Yong Duk Cha.
- LG Electronics Design Center, Principal Designer Yoo Seok Cho.
In 2015 , the Chinese government introduced the idea of mass entrepreneurship as a new engine of economic growth.
The new maker culture already flourishing on the asian east cost became a de facto strategic area of investment for this new political vision.
Molly Price, associate partner at Diffus Design, will be part of an UK team of 9 researchers and designers staying in Shenzen, Shanghai and Xiamen in order to gather an “inside knowledge” of those swift developments.
During the month of october 2015, Molly will explore the emerging scene of Chinese makers, document the large variety of makerspaces already available and understand the true creativity, communality and entrepreneurialism of Shenzen, Shanghai and Xiamen´s maker culture.
She will visit incubators, factories, supply chain management consultancies, industrial design houses, co-working spaces and public workshops.
On behalf of Diffus, Molly will establish strategic contacts with the emerging entrepreneurial makers interested in collaborations.
Flexible solutions for upscaling small productions, methods for rapid iterative processes in prototyping will be tested onsite during her stay.
The Living Research project is sponsored by the British Council
Shenzhen open innovation Lab:
The British Council:
MoOD means “Meet Only Original Designs”.
Thats where you will meet Diffus.
“MoOD 2015 Expo” runs from the 8th to the 10 th of September in Bruxelles.
We are pleased to be among the 9 design studios around the world selected to be part of the “Launchpad”.
“Launch Pad is a fresh initiative by MoOD, curated by Jennifer Castoldi, Trendease International, showcasing some of the brightest talent entering the home fashion arena scouted from around the world. The companies and designers chosen to exhibit here have demonstrated that they are on the forefront of innovation and creative thinking in regards to the future of textiles.
The textile industry is both very traditional and rapidly advancing. This new section of the show located around the Innovation Platform in Hall 5 will introduce talent utilizing the latest technologies and experimenting with cutting-edge materials, bringing visitors to MoOD Brussels something novel and not-to-be missed!
Visitors can expect to discover such eye openers as conductive embroidery, edible lace, and special fish leathers”.
Diffus had the pleasure to co-mentor Niels Stamhuis from the Faculty of Industrial Design Engineering at Delft University on his Master Thesis.
The Thesis (Master of Science Integrated Product Design) was defended publicly the 20th of August at the University of Delft.
Niels used “spacEmotion” (A space-divider system designed by Diffus) as a case for suggesting further development to it’s existing functionalities.
The flexibility of our modular system is demonstrated as it allows to welcome a wide range of new adds-on and refinements.
Title: “Designing with Smart Materials: A case presenting a tactile interface for intuitive control of light and sound in domestic environments”.
By Niels Stamhuis.
From Diffus Design: Hanne Louise Johannsen and Michel Guglielmi.
From Delft University: Elvin Karana and Kaspar Jansen.
A growing interest in Smart materials has been reported throughout literature over the last decades. Also regarding current day developments with products classed as ‘smart products and applications’, have led to the start of this thesis. Initially the assignment was aimed to explore the qualities and advantages of smart materials. Through analysis of the current developments in the world of smart materials, this thesis points out that smart material systems, or computational materials, provide the best opportunities to design an example application with. This is mainly due to their flexibility in embodiment material and electronics integration.
The final design presents a wireless remote control disc made out of leather and textile, that controls the light and sound output of Spacemotion. Diffus design studio created Spacemotion as an interactive modular system of textile discs, embroidered with conductive yarn. The design focuses on intuitive user interactions and uses smart sensing functions to detect the different performances of the user. Through tactile material exploration, it lets the user take control over the light and sound output of Spacemotion.
The method of Material Driven Design was used as approach of the design exploration and provided insights in smart material qualities. It guided the construction of the performances that are elicited by the materials used in the final design. Unique to this thesis is that the design essentially is a tactile interface platform that leaves open many opportunities for further exploration and future research. In a broader sense, it lets the user redefine man-machine interactions through tactile, intuitive and gradual control of any desired systems output.
Presented at ISEA 2015 in Vancouver by prof. Susan Elizabeth Ryan from Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, Louisiana:
A lecture mentioning our work.
“Some designers of ironic technological clothes focus on the external relationships between wearers and their environment (…). Diffus Design’s Climate Dress (…), uses conductive thread embroidery, LilyPad Arduino, sensor, and LEDs. It illuminates in accordance with CO2 concentrations in the ambient air, so the dress is a platform for environmental awareness, pitting beauty against health or against the environment: the more carbon emissions, the more the radiant the dress becomes. What better reminder that beauty resides alongside immanent danger in hyperobjects?”
Read the paper in full length here: “Hyperdressing: Wearable Technology in the Time of Global Warming”
Presenting “Smart flexibility – Advanced materials and technologies”.
The State of the Art in smart and flexible structures, featuring among others “spacEmotion” by Diffus.
This great book will now be crowdfunded by Materfad.
Interested? Please sign here to the campaign!
You can also read the book online:
We look forward to present you our current projects and discuss with you future collaborations.
You will find us at Hall 6.1, stand B17
at Techtextil, Frankfurt , 4-7 may.
Services that we provide internationally:
– Workshops: Inspiration, jump-start of new projects. knowledge transfer, creative methods…
– Consultancy for existing R&D divisions
– Consultancy as external R&D divisions
– Design missions
CREATIF allows smart fabric printing directly from a designer´s drawing
The CREATIF project will allow creative designers to convert their design drawings directly into smart fabrics using printing technology without the need for specialist electronics or smart fabric expertise.
Three creative partners; Base Structures (UK), Diffus Design (DK) and Zaha Hadid Architects (UK) collaborate in the project with four technical and research based partners Ardeje (FR), Grafixoft (BG), Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE) and the University of Southampton (UK). Year 1 focused on the development of the printing technology, the printer and the software tools to enable the design of smart fabrics.
The new software tools will allow the user to design, create, layout, visualise and simulate smart fabrics before printing them using the bespoke smart fabric printer. CREATIF (http:// www.creatif.ecs.soton.ac.uk/) is funded by the EU ́s Seventh Framework Programme to provide design solutions and tools for the culture and creative industry (CCI). The first two software tools were produced in year 1 of the project, which has just been completed.
The ‘Collaborative Drawing and Design in the Cloud Tool’ is an add-on to Adobe Illustrator CC. Designers can create colour based images as usual using Adobe Illustrator. The CREATIF add-on allows designers to add smart functionality to their colour designs in the form of pre- determined smart functional elements for light emission, colour change and sound emission. Additionally these smart functions may be coupled to a sensing capability allowing proximity or touch to control the smart functions. All aspects of the designs can be uploaded to the cloud to allow interactive design between designers. Users of other drawing packages can also upload colour drawings to the cloud for the addition of smart functions within a bespoke design in the cloud interface.
The ‘Translation Tool’ converts the user generated designs into the required printed layers necessary to achieve the smart fabric consisting of a colour image based on conventional inkjet inks and the smart functions based on advanced electronic inks. Further software, which will be produced in year 2 of the project, will allow the user to view and customise the printed layers and simulate functionality. An electronic circuit containing bespoke embedded software, compatible with the ubiquitous Arduino microcontrollers, will enable control of the eventual smart fabric’s functionality with the ability to wirelessly update its operation.
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.
If you would like to be kept informed via future newsletters and press releases please contact us at:
The consortium consists of Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton (UK) www.southampton.ac.uk, as project coordinator and with world leading expertise in creating smart fabrics by printing electronic functional materials, Institut für Textiltechnik der RWTH Aachen University (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.com, 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
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 ICT-2013.8.1 Technologies and scientific foundations in the field of Creativity !
Website: www.creatif.ecs.soton.ac.uk W!
Partners: Base Structures (UK), Diffus Design (DK), Zaha Hadid Architects (UK), Ardeje (FR), Grafixoft (BG),
Institut für Textiltechnik Aachen (DE) and University of Southampton (UK)
Press Release End Year 1 – December 2014
The Department of Electronics and Computer Science is the coordinator of CREATIF:
The Department has been researching printed electronics and sensors for 30 years with particular emphasis on printed smart fabrics for the past 6 years”.
The Institut für Textiltechnik belongs to the Faculty for Mechanical Engineering of RWTH Aachen University:
The focus of their research is therefore on the development of new textile machines and new textile processes. They carry out research within publicly funded projects (e.g.EU) and also in direct R&D projects for industry”.
Grafixoft is an innovative software engineering company with more than 15 years of experience in the development of complex business solutions. It has a wide background in implementation of reliable and custom tailored software applications. Always eager to face challenges and deliver competitive advantage to its partners, the company has gained an impeccable and trustworthy reputation across Europe.
Diffus Design has a main missions to combine traditional know-how and codified production processes with uncharted ‘soft’ technologies and complex materials. The idea is to emphasise familiarity, luxury and comfort and try to combine different materials and innovative technology in often unpredictable ways and unconventional twists but always with strong concepts and clear narratives.
Base Structures designs, manufactures and installs world class tensile fabric structures across the globe. From iconic architectural fabric structures that define a building to smaller scale tension structures that make a statement, Base’ reputation for quality and experience is unrivalled. Notable client projects include Up at The O2, Heathrow Terminal 5, London 2012 sporting venues and the Mound Stand at Lords Cricket Ground.
Zaha Hadid Architects:
Zaha Hadid Architects work at all scales and in all sectors. They create transformative cultural, corporate, residential and other spaces that work in synchronicity with their surroundings. Zaha Hadid Architects continues to be a global leader in pioneering research and design investigation.
Ardeje is acting in significant Research works at the European level, and have been cultivating Science and Technology in terms of fluid jetting for more than fifteen years. Motivated by a sense of results, Ardeje combine technical know-how and total commitment. From design to implementation in specific environment, they develop industrial solutions that meet needs in terms of fluid jetting.