Design and Product Development

A Modular Framework for Smart Garment Design

  • Albert Lin orcid logo (Cornell University)
  • Huiju Park (Cornell University)


The challenges associated with designing smart garments can result in a burden that negatively impacts designers’ creativity. To address technical difficulties and encourage a holistic approach to design, this study proposed a modular framework for smart garment design. This reduced barriers to entry and allowed creators to prioritize aesthetic and function, rather than technology. Interviews led to the identification of key technical challenges surrounding electrical hardware integration, electrical connection creation, and component selection. The modular framework proposed addressed these technical challenges by outlining a central module-peripheral module structure, establishing a substrate-based hardware attachment system, and organizing an adaptable wire connection protocol. A prototype toolkit implementing the framework was created and given to seven teams of design and engineering students for evaluation. Key metrics such as electrical connections and secure placement showed statistically significant improvements with the prototype toolkit. Further study could address limitations with customization, durability, and deeper participant involvement.

Keywords: smart garment, modular design

How to Cite:

Lin, A. & Park, H., (2024) “A Modular Framework for Smart Garment Design”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 80(1). doi:



Published on
22 Jan 2024
Peer Reviewed