This was my first time pitching for funding that I found after we were approached by Debbie to host a wearables workshop for her students! I hope you pick up some great tips of confidence for speaking to a crowd and pitching.
CEO, Debbie Edwards of FDisrupters, a start-up in Liverpool approached Women of Wearables to deliver our wearable tech workshop. The goal was to inspire 11 young girls aged 14-18 in her 14 week pilot program of workshops on confidence, self belief and tech skills.
As with most challenges start-ups face, Debbie was waiting for funding to enable us to deliver our workshops.
Our Wearable Tech Assistant, Rachael Yeung from Liverpool used her initiative and discovered a funding avenue through Awesome Liverpool.
Awesome Liverpool is a chapter of the Awesome Foundation. It is an ever-growing worldwide community devoted to forwarding the interest of awesome globally. Established in 2009 in Boston, the Foundation distributes $1000 grants to projects and creators.
In the UK, it is £500 and the money comes from 10 local Trustees who each put in £50 in a kitty for allocation each month.
There are 87 chapters in 20 countries world wide and disappointingly, there is only 1 chapter in the UK. But that’s why I think it’s fittingly called Awesome Liverpool.
After we secretly submitted an online form answering a series of questions about the brief on delivering a wearable tech workshop for FDisrupters and ensured that it fit the criteria of:
1. Solves a problem
2. Has a budget
3. Keeping it local and most importantly,
4. Bringing joy
we were shortlisted in the top 3 after 70 applicants had submitted!
Read the whole blog post on the Women of Wearables website here!
I’ve been a busy wearable tech assistant at work with MadeWithGlove and WoW UK Women of wearables! Check out what we’ve been up to.
WoW UK co-founder Marija Butkovic and Wearable Tech assistant Rachael Yeung exhibited at the WOW Talks TV’s first women in tech event on 20th September 2016 in London. Here is Rachael’s account of it all.
Setting up the exhibit space in the morning with our brand new display banner as we braced ourselves for the crowd of inspiration hungry school pupils to arrive. We were informed that there would be 400 school girls arriving to be inspired!
Check out what happened on the official Women of Wearables website written by Rachael Yeung and edited by Michelle Hua on www.womenofwearables.com
The launch of the Human Sensor kicked off on the 23rd of July and it was a day packed full of speakers and a live performance at the end. Here’s what happened on the night for all of you that missed it!
Making the Invisible Visible
Finding 70 Oxford Road was an easy task as it used to be the old location for the Cornerhouse, which I found that people still mistake it for! Upon entering the venue, the place was still buzzing from the morning talks about Manchester Public Health and Air Pollution, it was still incredibly warm for the tail end of the heatwave but everyone was excited for the performance in the evening.
As we prepared the wearables and leaflets for the night, there was still a flurry of things to do. I accompanied Laura Parker the deputy director, to display the Human Sensor posters at Salder’s Yard for the location of the final show, and hurried back to get ready for the guests arrivals. We didn’t realise the location was quite a bit of a walk away but thankfully we managed to get back in time to add the finishing touches!
The night kicks off!
The clock ticked 7:30pm and the first guest arrived! As everyone started to filter in and settle, the presentations soon started. Alice Sharp the director of Invisible Dust began the evening explaining the concept of the not-for-profit company that aims to raise awareness for air pollution by partnering art with science, and then introduced the Human Sensor artist Kasia Molga. We then had a talk from the Kings College of London, Dr Ian Muwa about air pollution. Did you know air pollution is costing us billion of pounds, and it contributes to 40,000 deaths in the UK?! After the congratulating and thanking everyone that had been involved in the project: Kasia, the organisers and people behind the scenes, the fellows, the choreographer and the dancers, there was a short break before we were all ushered outside for the start of the performance!
Everyone stood outside in anticipation to see the wearables in action, and the buzz of talking stopped once the dancers started filing out one after the other. The dancers adorned in the LED lit wearable capes sparkled as they began their dance to the Sadler’s Yard, rotating and elegantly emphasising the breathing with their arm movements whilst they waited at every crossing. We followed them twisting and turning around a route through the city centre, bystanders were curious and also mind-blown at the bizzare looking wearables on dancers! Having worn the wearable cape before I know that it was quite restrictive, but the dancers were expertly moving around in them not putting a confident foot out of place!
When we reached Salder’s Yard the sun was fully set and the spotlights illuminated the venue with an almost romantic atmosphere. The final dance was a beautiful crescendo to the end of the night with a projected presentation in the background that had bite sized information and facts fading in and out. The whole performance gave me Goosebumps with the soundtrack being someone breathing that gradually sped up and became more laboured; it was almost like the breathing of something out of a horror movie! Teamed with the shocking air pollution facts on how it’s affecting the human body, it felt rather chilling but very powerful.
The launch night was a brilliant experience and although I did work for part of the night to help set up, it did not feel like work at all seeing the project blossom into something we are all proud of! I originally wanted to partake in this project to get experience working with more wearables, but I not only managed to wear it for the promotional video, I also learnt a lot more about air pollution and how it is a very real threat even here in Manchester. Knowing that I will part from this project with more skills and knowledge that I originally expected is a great feeling, but having met a brilliant group of fellows on the programme is priceless!
The Human Sensor is a project by Kasia Mulga and Invisible Dust to raise awareness of air pollution as part of the European City Of Science festival. Find out all of the information and photos of the events at the Human Sensor website www.humansensor.eu
Invisible Dust is continuing to work on raising awareness of air pollution with more artists and scientists in new projects coming soon. Keep up to date on their website here. The Human Sensor is coming to London! Keep your eyes peeled!
Find out more about the Human Sensor programme on the blog I wrote here.
I have been busy yet again creating more wearable tech! This time it is a UV sensor hat that reminds you to reapply your sunscreen. With summer being quite hot this year, we definitely need to ensure we are sun safe!
I explain how I made the wearable tech UV hat with Adafruit’s instructions in my latest guest blog for WTF | Wearable Tech Fashion over on the MadeWithGlove website. Read it here or copy and paste the link in the quotes below:
I have been a busy bee working on an exciting climate change project with Invisible Dust called the Human Sensor. The Human Sensor was designed by London artist Kasia Molga who brought to her project up North to Manchester as part of the European City of Science Festival.
The Human Sensor live performance costumes are wearable capes which consists of a mask and sensors to dis play the air pollution that the wearer breathes in. The concept of the project is to make the invisible harmful particulates in the air visible, raising awareness of the recent findings by leading London scientists.
Check out what happened on this exciting week in Manchester here.
I became a wearable tech assistant by networking and being proactive. Nothing good is ever worth having if you haven’t worked for it!
What is wearable tech?
Wearable tech is the fusion of technology and textiles. You might remember from when you was a kid watching Inspector Gadget and then trying to invent coats that could make your breakfast and get you dressed. That’s in basic terms what I do. I look at ways of stitching/knitting/fusing circuits into a garment!
I began my career path after graduating from university with a Textiles degree, not knowing what I wanted to do next. Being self employed as a textiles designer was something I enjoyed but didn’t work the best in. I didn’t have the drive and self motivation to make it work!
Mashing two worlds together to create my own
So I began exploring ways of combining my two favourite things, trends and technology! My love of ‘future technology’ spanned from my final year studies and that’s when I found Michelle Hua. She offered me an internship to lend a hand running her fashionable wearable technology company in return for some well needed mentoring and insight into the wearable technology industry. It then developed into a successful working relationship and she kept me on with some funding!
New Vlog! Super late due to more technical mishaps, and yes, we’re still having beautiful weather. I start with a sneak peek at the LED light up shoes project I was working on and I update you on whitening sensitive teeth! I take you along to a laser patch test and SUSHI! Also… drive until you get lost… we find a beautiful hidden gem in the country side of Manchester.
I talk my experience with laser hair removal and why I chose to do it, I also elaborate on the pros and cons of both laser and Intense Pulse Light treatments. Don’t forget to like and subscribe!