Kent State Prof Puts the Big Screen on Tiny Jewelry
Your favorite movie or video might soon help accessorize your wardrobe thanks to Margarita Benitez, assistant professor in Kent State University’s School of Fashion Design and Merchandising.
Benitez, along with Markus Vogl, assistant professor from The University of Akron, helped turn what looks like a stack of little electronic pieces into works of art that they call Tiny Screen Jewelry.
“It’s just too cool for school,” Benitez giggles. “It’s so adorable.”
The jewelry contains a stack of little electronic components developed by TinyCircuits in Akron.
“Technology is at the forefront for artists and researchers within the universities,” Vogl says. “Being able to work with something that’s locally produced and locally sourced is a wonderful opportunity for us.”
The necklace is about one-inch square.
Since it is in early development, the casing is made of plastic that is produced by a 3-D printer.
Inside there is an SD card that you use to upload a movie or your own videos. A USB cord is used to charge the jewelry.
“This is a way to augment your style, by adding a different color video or mood or emotion or what’s trending that season or that day,” Benitez says. “You can adapt your accessories that way.”
“You can showcase your latest video or interesting videos of your family or your pets,” Vogl says. “It’s a wonderful, wonderful discovery.”
The hope is to experiment with the casing using new materials such as gold leaf, and then one day, sell the Tiny Screen Jewelry in specialty shops.
Whether a Hollywood blockbuster or a video you create is being used, Benitez and Vogl are excited about the endless possibilities that can be played on the screen and worn as jewelry.
“My vision really, truly is to make it an independent accessory that you can either wear around the neck or maybe use as a broche,” Vogl says.
“It would be fun to see what people do with it and what they play on it,” Benitez says.
To learn more about Kent State’s Fashion School, visit www.kent.edu/fashion.