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Interview by Giacomo Barbieri. Science and Design are two fields not usually associated with each other. But when combined and given a chance to shine together, beautiful, innovative, exciting products can result. This presentation reviews the "solar powered" dress designed in 2010 by a Cornell University fashion design student and a world renowned scientist. The dress garnered press for its unique way to turn cotton fibers into conductive materials. The Cornell Textiles Nanotechnology Laboratory teamed up with two Italian universities to create cotton threads that can conduct electrical currents, yet remain comfortable and soft. What resulted was a fascinating meeting of the minds to create a product that advanced the conversation about design and technology in the 21st century.
**Abbey Liebman** is Product Development/Design, International Private Label at Steve Madden. As part of her academic collection, she created a solar powered dress with ultra-thin flexible solar cells connected via conductive cotton yarn to a USB charger, which allows the wearer to power a smartphone.***