As a part of our TextileUX research area, we explored the design space for communicating surface gestures to users of textile interfaces by experimenting with the interfaces’ physical design and affordances
First, we created a collection of functional and non-functional textile samples. Their development was based on three aspects: design, fabrication, and sensing. The design aspect covered different visual (shape, color) and haptic (details, textures) designs, fabrication explored three textile-specific fabrication methods, and electronic sensing offered options for adding touch-sensing capabilities.
Second, we reflected on created samples and their characteristics contrasting different designs and speculating on why some work better than others. Our main findings and insights are presented in five clusters: ergonomics, visual affordances, perception of textures, the direction of movement, and the economic usage of design elements. These insights provide a starting point for each novice designer to take inspiration from when creating their own textile user interfaces.