Sunday, 18 July 2010

Design Details: TREND TRACK Oversized Knits

Part of my study into craft practice in my graduate year at Goldsmiths was based around the concept of collaboration. I made giant knitting needles out of curtain rails and encouraged users (it needed more than one person to knit) to collaborate in their practice and work together. The size of the knitting produced provided spaces for security-a crafty hideout. It was a joy to do, with the weight of the knit and the physical action of knitting using your whole body was a great experience.

So understandably I was thrilled to discover oversized knits are a huge current trend in interiors.
Christien Meindertsma’s urchin pouf has been a popular talking point within the world of design with notable mentions from Elle Decoration and WGSN to name but a few. Recent exposure at Design for a Living World at Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum has not only propelled the brand into the limelight, but has identified a huge oversized knit trend throughout interiors.
Dana Barnes’ work at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair 2010, uses a selection of bright colours blended into a tactile, plaited look with a retro feel, particularly seen in her felt ‘Granny Squares’.
It is this tactility that I find so attractive in knitting. For me, knits have a power of persuasion, making it impossible not to engage with the texture. This engaging power of knitting has been brought into a contemporary sphere through pursuits such as guerilla knitting also known as graffiti knitting or knit bombing. Guerilla knitting groups such as Knitta have been operating for a few years now, bringing knit projects into the public domain, and decorating our urban landscapes. Last year’s I Heart Kings Crossgraffiti knitting project in Sydney did just that, wrapping trees in an open area of Kings Cross with colourful knitted shrouds.
Knitting isn’t restricted to yarns and wools, shown here in ‘Phat Knits’ foam seating by Bauke Knottnerus.
And the fun doesn’t end in knitting, there’s mega crochet too! Jean Lee of Ladies and Gentlemen’sMega Doily uses rope to construct an amazing rug. Heins Home’s huge doilies also made from cotton rope, and photographed here against a harsh, industrial surface beautifully contrast with their surroundings.
And as for a bit of wearable giant knits Tanya Aguiniga’s rope knot bracelet with a dip dye effect that’s right on trend is amazing.
Author: Ester Kneen
Images courtesy of/ depicting (from top to bottom): Ester Kneen, Christien Meindertsma, NY Times, Dana Barnes, I Heart Kings Cross, Bauke Knottnerus, Ladies and Gentlemen, Heins Home and Tanya Aguiniga.

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