Made with Code helps design Zac Posen’s FLORA-powered LED dress

Zac Posen teamed with Google’s Made with Code to create a black dress that displays a pattern created by LED lights.

More and more, we’re seeing the fashion and technology worlds come together in ways never before imagined. There’s your less ‘out of the ordinary’ wearable devices like fitness trackers and watches, but then there’s smart garments that can do everything from react to your body’s temperature and mood to ambient sound. With the advent of conductive thread, mini microcontrollers and a burgeoning Maker community, the possibilities of what can be sewn and coded together are truly endless.

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Demonstrating just that, Google’s Made with Code and Zac Posen teamed up to show how computer science can push the boundaries of what’s possible in fashion using technology developed by Maddey Maxey and electronics from Adafruit. Students had the ability to log onto Made With Code and select a mysterious LED-based project.

At the time, the girls had no idea as to what they were contributing to but were excited nonetheless. The result? An interactive dress converging Posen’s “Los Angeles at night” inspiration and the students’ coding skills that debuted at the finale of the Zac Posen Spring 2016 Fashion Show, which kicked off New York Fashion Week.


All eyes were on the LED-embedded dress worn by Coco Rocha as it dazzled the runway inside a packed auditorium at Manhattan’s Industria Superstudio. The black piece featured short sleeves and a mesh skirt, along with 500 tiny lights that were programmed to emit different animated patterns — all controlled by an Adafruit FLORA (ATmega32U4).

“There is nothing greater than the fulfillment of creating something and seeing it come to life — to light up,” Posen explains.


Not only did they get to have a hand in designing the LED sequences, but 50 girls had the chance to attend the show and witness their collaborative effort light up the catwalk. For those of us who couldn’t experience the magical moment firsthand, Adafruit was lucky enough to capture it for us all to see! Watch below!

[Images: Google, Adafruit]

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