CREATIF - EU FP7 Project


The CREATIF project has finished, here are some key results from the project in addition to the links provided on the dissemination page.

The world's largest printed smart fabric?

World's largest printed smart fabric!

This 5m x 1m fabric, was printed at the Institute of Textiles Aachen based on a design from the University of Southampton. It contains, in addition to the inkjet design, 5 proximity sensors spaced at 1 m intervals along the 5 m dimension. We don't know if it is the world's largest printed smart fabric but we think it might be!


Fabric Piano

This simple demonstrator shows a printed smart fabric made at the University of Southampton which has been configured to produce a simple keyboard.


Fabric Drums

This simple demonstrator shows a printed smart fabric made at the University of Southampton which has been configured to produce simple drums and a cymbal.


Interactive cube coupled to a 3 m x 1m fabric banner configured as an Exhibition stand

An exhibition stand has been realised consisting of a cube with 0.5 m x 0.5 m smart fabrics on five faces of the cube with the sixth face being mounted on a plinth; the cube is electrically coupled with a 3 x 1 m smart fabric banner. The CREATIF software was used to design the functional elements on the discs and then the discs were printed from the CREATIF software using the University of Southampton printer (0.5 m x 0.5 m smart fabrics) and the Institute of Textiles Aachen printer (3 m x 1 m smart fabric). The fabric designs were created by Zaha Hadid Architects with BASE Structures advising on the mechanical design.


Passive colour inkjet patterns were first printed on all the smart fabrics with the 3 m x 1 m fabric being printed using inkjet technology supplied by Ardeje and which has been integrated within the Institute of Textiles Aachen printer. The cube panels consist of 2 light emission panels, 1 sound emission panel, 1 colour change panel and 1 proximity sensor panel. The 3 m x 1 m banner has three proximity sensors printed on it. Within the cube the CREATIF electronics is housed and activates the light and sound emission functions, and the colour change function each of which can be controlled by the proximity sensor function on the cube in a similar way to the blinds. Further the cube is coupled electrically to the 3 m x 1 m banner allowing the proximity sensors on the banner to control the three functions on the cube.


Interactive Blinds

Three modular blinds have been realised consisting of sixteen, 25 cm diameter, discs arranged in a square array. The CREATIF software, written by Grafixoft, was used to design the functional elements on the discs and then the discs were printed from the CREATIF software, using the University of Southampton printer. The disc designs were created by Diffus Design. The functions achieved are light emission, sound emission, colour change and proximity sensing.


The discs are linked together electrically and coupled with the CREATIF modular electronics, designed by the University of Southampton. This, when programmed from the CREATIF software, allows the functionality to be adjusted (e.g. loudness of sound) and interactivity of each of three functions (light, sound, colour change) with the proximity sensor. For example the proximity sensor can be used to turn off the light emission or turn it on.


CREATIF Software Design Process Step by Step

The CREATIF software has initially been created to be used as an app for Adobe Illustrator. However, any software that can generate scalable vector graphics (.svg) output files can be used to generate the artwork and the online CREATIF tools can be used to generate the smart elements

The CREATIF software and forum are available to use at www.creatif.cc. Here is a video showing the step by step design process when using Adobe Illustrator:


CREATIF Printer at Institute Textiles Aachen

The large CREATIF printer can produce smart prints over a 1 x 1 m area of fabric, and in a roll to roll process that can produce any length of fabric. Here is video of it printing a 1m x 1m section of a 1m x 3m design from Zaha Hadid.


CREATIF Printer at the University of Southampton

This is the original dispenser printer designed and built at the University of Southampton which provided the basis for the ITA printer to be built.

This printer can print on a fabric 0.5m x 0.5m and because it can move the Z height up to 10 cm it can print on non-flat surfaces, such as the Diffus discs. Here is a video of it printing two Electroluminescent lamps and a proximity sensor on an inkjet printed fabric:



CREATIF CASE STUDY: Modular Blind Collaborative Design And Printing Using The CREATIF Software Suite And Future Perspectives

The document below is a case study of a collaboration between Diffus Design and the University of Southampton describing how the design lessons learned has been applied to their work with another commercial partner. Click on the pdf image below to download the case study

Click here to download case study PDF


CREATIF results disseminated at Avantex exhibition - Paris 6-9th Feb 2017

The CREATIF project was invited to exhibit by the organisers of the 2017 Avantex exhibition in Paris. Avantex is the largest fabric expo in Europe with over 13,500 visitors . The stand contained the latest demonstrators from the project and had a lot of interest from some big brand names in the fashion and textiles industries

Diffus Blind modular designs with EL lamps, speakers, proximity sensors and thermochromic colour change discs

Visitors to the CREATIF stand


CREATIF results disseminated at the Wearable Technology Show - London 7-8th Mar 2017

The CREATIF project had a stand at the 2017 Wearable Technology Show in London. The Wearable Technology Show is the largest wearables exhibition in Europe and had over 5000 visitors over the 2 days of the event, with 109 exhibitors. Again, the CREATIF results attracted a lot of attention and a number of potential future collaborators and investors were shown our latest demonstrators

CREATIF stand at Wearable Technology Show London 2017

CREATIF stand at Wearable Technology Show London 2017


CREATIF results disseminated at LOPEC Exhibition - Munich 28-30th Mar 2017

The CREATIF project had a stand at the LOPEC conference in Munich. LOPEC is an exhibition and conference focused on the printed electronics industry. This years event was the largest ever with over 2500 attendees from 47 countries. There was a lot of interest in the printer technology and the printed inks developed during the project.

CREATIF stand at LOPEC Munich 2017

CREATIF stand at LOPEC Munich 2017



Framework Program 7 European Union Flag

This project has received funding from the European Unionís Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no CP-FP-INFSO-FP7-610414