Leutton Postle A/W 12 is a Picasso

A second slightly surreal Autumn / Winter 12 collection from Leutton Postle this Central St Martins duo.  The beautiful friendship between Sam Leutton and Jenny Postle is portrayed in each knitwear piece throughout the collection.  Quite literally so, with almost Cubist portraits adorning some luxurious sweaters and dresses, and in the form of masks on some models faces.  Whilst the mixed media decorations such as bobble fringing, 3-D woolly hair, patchwork and appliqué textures painted a unique picture unrestricted by trends.

The simplicity of the silhouettes made them easily wearable, unique and invitingly comfortable, exactly what you need these winter days.  Sweaters, v-necks and pullover vests were knitted the perfect length ready to be worn at any time without worrying about the rest of the outfit, as a single piece could easily form your outfit.

The collection is a crafted work of art, the only face anyone can pull when they see it is a very smiley one.

 

{All images by Alexandra Textiles}

Pringle A/W 12: Knitwear Highlights

 

Alistair Carr has certainly taken Pringle by the hand this Autumn/Winter 12 collection.  Each piece from this collection can easily be integrated into any wardrobe.  With fluro-intarsia cardigans and v-necks, dresses gorgeously contoured with ridges and ruffles and my personal favourite the polo necks.  Just because I am slightly addicted to wearing them when it’s cold, and as I am currently living of Day & Night Nurse I can’t praise them enough.  These delightfully warm crew neck extensions which make all the difference (I am talking about polo necks) featured greatly in the show in various sweater styles, as a base for layered outfits and on the dresses.   These Alaïa-esque polo neck dresses finished the show, with a perfectly warm and sexy touch.

{All images by Alexandra Textiles}

London Fashion Week: Boys & Girls

{All images by Alexandra Textiles}

Snow Lilly

Loden is the name given to a wool binding process which has a deep heritage dating back to somewhat 500 years ago from the Austrian mountains.  This tradition has been past on through generations and has been applied by Lilly Marthe Ebener to create these delicate yet totally snug pieces which are easily positioned into any wardrobe.  The clean shapes of in the cardigans and jumpers are perfect for the current milder winter days; the wholesome luxury which they ooze would make any outfit look like effortless decadence.

[Images via Lilly Marthe Ebener]

A Good Russet Apple

I’m no stranger to an apple or two, if it keeps the doctor away than it can’t be all that bad.   Over the years I have had the pleasure of tasting every apple available on the supermarket shelf and picking my own in various locations around France and Britain, not on special trips to some sort of apple picking farms but mostly at the side of country roads and woodland where wild apples grow.  So over some time I have become a bit of an apple connoisseur you could say, with some wild varieties being my favourite, but lately as I am spending a lot more time around building than trees, I have grown to love some of the supermarket varieties.  Firstly I always buy British, to support our farmers and because they are generally fresher and tastier.  Recently on my quest to eating healthier I have grown keener and keener on the Egremont Russet apple, so much so that I refuse to eat any other apple whilst these wonderful, rusticoated apples are in season.

Enough about apples, lets crunch on to Ipek Arnas who herself is not a stranger to fruit and cosy country scenes. Although she prefers to put them on her knitwear, rather than drone on about it in a blog.  Her delightfully quirky collections are playful with an à la retro touch.  She mainly uses hand knitting techniques for these limited pieces, which in part I am guessing is why her collection is called 2TERS1DUZ, translating “Knit 1Perl 2” the basic hand knitting stitch. She lives in Turkey which is where her things are produced, and where she does freelance work for other designers and yarn companies.  This tasty treat is not going out of season.

[Images via 2TERS1DUZ]

The boy from Ipanema

Lucas Nascimento is a knitwear designer from Brazil hence the title, although not sure how accurate the Ipanema origin is.  He lives and works mostly in London and had already gained himself a reputation in knitwear whilst working for other clients, before launching his own label.  I was actually in the same knitwear group as him in University where he was already in the process of creating his label and always came out with some spectacular things at the end of each assignment.  This February he will be doing his first show at London Fashion Week as part of the NEWGEN scheme.

Each collection has acquired a distinctive silhouette and is a melange of simple knitwear techniques which have been mastered and as a process evolved into something new.  The carefully selected colours have been placed to give an almost graphic quality to each piece.  As you may find out throughout the course of this blog I love sheer knitwear, which he positions to highlight the body that is underneath.

Great stuff, you will be seeing more of this one soon.

[All images are from Lucas Nascimento]

What Snow? It’s 34 degrees in Brazil!

Yes there is snow outside, but I cannot help and dream of long summer days to come.  Later on I will be trying to recreate the feeling of summer at Bikram yoga, wearing simply a top and shorts for the practice in a 40 degree heated room, phew.

Speaking of hot places the designer  Helen Rodel comes from the tropical climate of Brazil.  I came upon her work with a wondrous surprise; to me it signifies the natural beauty that comes from creating knitwear by hand.  The precision, patience and time which you need for this practice is truly commendable.  Hand knitting techniques are definitely not for the faint hearted and if you are doing a knitwear course and have decided to use hand knitting in your collection I would strongly advise that you find someone else to do it for you.

The value of handmade knitwear is becoming increasingly more precious, as a lot of designers prefer to use machine knitting in their collections, which is really fair enough because it can be tough to try and make a profit out of creativity.  Although a lot use manual machines, myself included which is faster than hand knitting but still requires gallons of patience, precision and time.

The word I would use to describe Helen Rodels designs is ‘Haute Knitouture’ (knit + haute couture), these kind of pieces are more like art works in themselves.  She has a small team of artisans who help her knit and crochet the collections.  Her vision is like that of giving life and meaning to something new, whilst clothing and ornamenting the body.  The techniques used in the collection are a mix of crochet and knit and the colours are bright and sweet like popsicles, makes me smile just looking at them.

I have also added a wonderful video about her craft.  An inspiration for the hot summer days.

[Both film and images are from Helen Rodel website.]

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