LED Stick Person Costume Lights Up The Night

Sometimes a simple idea can yield fantastic results. A few runs of LED strips fastened to a black hoody and sweatpants and just like that…a LED stick person costume for Halloween. The creator of the “Glowy Zoey” [Royce] originally put together some glow in the dark stick person suits to stand out when hitting the slopes at night. Now he’s taken that simple idea for a costume and made a small business out of it.

“I had a lot of extra parts laying around. I gathered everything up and got to work soldering.”  – Royce Hutain

The suits themselves consist of button snaps and ribbon loops sewn into a pattern that routes the LED strips around the jacket’s hood and down each arm. To make the lighting effect pop, an all black plastic mask is used to cover the wearer’s face. It wouldn’t be that much a stretch to substitute EL wire in place of the LED strips if one were so inclined. We’d wager a number of you could pull this off straight out of the junkbox.

The Glowy Zoey stick figure suits even received some mainstream television press a few years ago when they were featured on Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night show. Note that visiting the Glowy Zoey website may take you back a bit since it features one of those autoplay jingles that were so prevalent in the Web 1.0 days. In fact the same jingle is used in the video below from their YouTube channel:

In case you missed it, check out this smokin’ hot Ghost Rider costume featured on Hackaday.

16 thoughts on “LED Stick Person Costume Lights Up The Night

  1. ” It wouldn’t be that much a stretch to substitute EL wire in place of the LED strips if one were so inclined.”
    Having a look at some of the photos on their website where they compare the cheaper versions – it looks like the cheaper ones use EL wire and, as a result, on no where near as bright. In a different one, again showing a cheap knock-off, it seems to suggest that the LED strip they use has them placed quite close together which will help keep brightness and make it easier to diffuse it to a continuous stripe.

    1. And taking a guess from their battery life details (I’ve not found any direct details as to how much power the suits consume beyond info on their battery pack, e.g. 2000mAh@12V lasting 2hrs), it seems to suggest at full power they’re using around 12W.
      Which, would suggest maybe 70mW per LED? (between 150 and 190 LEDs depending upon the suit size)

      From what I can find, EL wire is around 1W per metre but this stick figure outfit is probably 2+W/m so that explains a lot of why they claim their kit is a lot brighter.

      1. I had mad a light stick using a 18v dewalt drill battery and 1 5m (16′ about). The last thing i needed was dc-dc converter down to 11.5 volts It was great.
        It lasted for 4 hrs. It was like having a 40w fluorescent light in your hand.
        I loved it. I used it for work because the contractor would not supply lighting in the rooms we were working in.
        The batteries were free so why not. I ended up making about 6 lights for my co workers.
        The building I was working at was the ” New Oakville Hospital in Ontario.
        Not a nice job at all.
        But I did love my work. I was a electrician at the time.

  2. Lol Christmas a few years ago my sister brought a few hundred glow sticks and wa making bikinis and board shorts out of them. (Christmas is hot here)

    Things realy got going when then taped them to air rockets and we’re shooting them down the street – looked like something out of star wars

  3. I made one of these this year, using 5V WS2812 LEDs (about 400 of them), powered by 6 AA batteries (2 series of 3 batteries then connected in in parallell; i.e. 2x 4,5V batteies in parallell). Lasted me pretty much the entire evening although I brought plenty of spare batteries just in case. I did have a separate 5V power supply (powerbank) for the Arduino UNO, as it is picky about lower voltages and will hang, reboot or turn off if you get too low. Was able to make quite a few fun animations with it, including powering the suit up/down “lightsaber-style”, cylon effect, strobe light, “police lights” etc.

  4. okay… this is funny… makes no sense, doesn’t look cool… it looks silly… but the effect in the dark is so strong that you can’t help laughing (from being positively entertained).
    Cool project!

  5. I made one of these for my daughter last year out of RGB LED strips. It looked really cool until the solder joints at the ends of the segments started failing. The copper would break off right behind the solder joint. I tried zip ties and copious amounts of hot glue to reinforce it, but nothing worked. I had one very upset 11 year old.

    What is the right way to connect the damn segments together without the slightest nudge crapping out the connection?

    1. I’d imagine by going all out. You’d have soft silicone wire between runs, and then either those 3 pin connectors or a solder that is reinforced with glue and then heatshrink and finally some plumbers tape.

      The rest of the length would likely have some kind of reinforcement like a rubber backing to stop 90 degree bends.

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