No more fumbling for your lipstick or compact while at the club, lightyour way with this easy to make light panel for your purse or bag. The panel uses a two part magnetic switch, so when the purse is closed the light is off and when its open the light is on. Simple!
I did a demo of this project at Maker Faire. Thank you to the ladies at ArtFuture!
You can see it here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=CX0rU4WSPnc
1. Decide where you want the panel, the battery, and the switch in your purse. Place it inside and mark your locations with stick pins or erasable fabric pin. We suggest putting the battery on one side of the panel and the wired switch on the other.
2. Following the diagram, place your LEDs inside the corrugated plastic. Make sure you have the + and - sides correct. Also, for added brightness, we staggered the lights and skipped a row on each side.
3. Solder your panel together following the diagram and test it by holding the wired switch with the non-wired switch and then taking it away. The lights should turn on when the switch sides are together.
4. Secure and cover all the soldered joints with electrical tape. Cover the exposed LED legs too.
5. Tuck all the parts (battery snap, panel, and switch) behind the linging. If you have a white lining, use a seam ripper to put the panel behind it. If you don't you can cut out a rectangle in the lining and place the panel. If you do the latter, make sure to tuck the fabric
edges back and top stitch or slipstitch them down so it is neat and clean. You can glue the edges of the fabric around the panel itself if you like.
6. Make a pocket to fit your battery. Read BurdaStyle for more on the Patch Pocket
7. Cut a small hole where you want your battery wires to go and then sew the pocket on top of it. Pull the 9-Volt battery snap through the hole into the pocket.
8. Using hot glue, secure your panel to the purse.
9. Place the wired switch on one side of your purse and the the unwired switch on the opposite side. Plug in your 9-Volt battery to the snap. Make sure that the light turns on and off as you open and close the purse and then secure the switches into place with hot glue.
10. Finish by stitching the lining closed where you ripped it open.
You don't have to use this in a purse, get smart and think of where you want to shine light in your life; like a drawer, kitchen cabinet, or jewelry box.
You can purchase the parts kit from SWITCH for $24.99 or just make your own from parts around the house, craft store and get the parts online (see below).
Switch Light Panel Kit $24.00 includes:
(6) 5mm 15 degree LEDs, approx. 3.5V [voltage number updated] Superbrightleds.com (part #RL5-W18015)
(1) Magnetic Switch with Magnet, Minute Man Electronics (part# FM103-W)
(1) 9V Molded "T" Battery Snap, Minute Man Electronics (part# BH129)
(1) Clear plastic corrugated board, from your local art store (cut to size you need)
Other Materials You'll Need:
A purse or bag of your choosing.
Needle and Thread (or new-sew hemming tape)
Needle nose pliers
Hot glue gun and hot glue
If you don't own electronic tools, MinuteMan Electronics has a good kit for starters:
Soldering Iron Kit (part# S540) - $19.49
UL Approved 30 watt soldering iron.
One package of .062" electronic grade solder
One 4-1/2" diagonal cutter
One 4-1/2" needle nose pliers.
Soldering aid tool