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Wool and the Gang: Manifesto for a Diffirent Kind of Fashion - Article Example

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There is a new gang on the block, and although they call themselves “gangstas”, they are not hoodlums, nor are they teenagers spoiling for a fight and lurking in dark doorways late at night. …
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Wool and the Gang: Manifesto for a Diffirent Kind of Fashion
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Download file to see previous pages Wool and Gang is an inspirational new fashion design and production team with a mission: “to blow the cobwebs off knitting, take it out of the attic and make it a superstar”.1 One of the most traditional of crafts has just been brought bang up to date with a philosophical twist. It is catching on thanks to a sophisticated blend of ancient craft and hyper modern, social networking know-how. Most of us already know that wool is one of the world’s most wondrous natural products, strong and soft, warm even when wet, and deeply resonant of the past. The best quality woollen garments have proved their value as a classic component of any wardrobe. Knitting now is a global business, gradually shifting its center of gravity towards the East as hand knitting becomes ever more expensive in the West. Machines now produce by far the majority of knitted goods, and this commercial trend is what brought Wool and the Gang into action. Wool was in danger of going out of fashion because it was trapped in the machine age, commodified beyond recognition, and mass produced to the point that no self-respecting young person could find any connection with it. It all started with Swiss born former model Lisa Sabrier and New Zealand geography graduate and photographer Carolyn Main. Both women possess a strong orientation to home and family along with an adventurous, globe-trotting spirit. This makes for interesting encounters and when they met with each other, they embarked on a journey of (re) discovery leading to the realisation that they could and should change the world, at least as far as knitted fashion is concerned. Hand knitted garments embody the love and care of the knitter in a unique and special way. In an age of outsourcing and teleworking, there is plenty of scope for reinvention of the traditional methods and materials of professional knitters. Much like anthropologists studying the cultural connotations of knitting, with its many and various attachments to particular genders and location, Lisa and Carolyn began to track down the best materials and the most stylish designs for a reinvention of the joy of knitting. So what if it meant that they had to trek to Peru and meet some mountain dwelling knitting fiends who knew all about the best production processes and sources of high quality. The best comes at a price, in effort as well as hard cash, and the two friends were prepared to do whatever it takes to get their product off to a high quality start. The concept of Wool and the Gang is complex. It is not just a return to the past for old time’s sake. Nostalgia is only a small part of the company’s design brief. It is really all about authenticity and honesty. They are going back to what is most important in human life. Family, friends and the gift of love channelled through a warm and stylish garment which is specially made for each recipient. Modern society has forgotten the pride and pleasure of creation in its breakneck dash to cram in as much consumption as possible. Wool and the Gang advocate slowing down, taking a long look at the world, and building on the fundamentals that keep everyone healthy and happy. A key principle that the company promotes is participation in the creative project. Products are sold in the form of wool, ready-made garments, or as as kits, with full instructions so that customers can improve their knitting skills and join a whole international army of “gangsta” knitters. The first kits were sold in Paris in 2008, and they continue to sell well in their brown paper packages, with bold “Wool and the Gang” lettering in black and white on the front. This is the paradox of Wool and the Gang – it is both ultra-modern and ancient at the same time. Knitters tweet their trials and tribulations or show off their wares on ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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