I mentioned today’s topic – “3KCBWDAY3 -Your Knitting or Crochet Hero” to my boyfriend yesterday and he said it conjured up an image in his head of a knitting superhero, armed with sticks and a knitted cloak. Brilliant!
I decided to do a slight twist on this subject and conduct a small interview with my friend Erika Knight, who has been a great inspiration to me the last few years. As an aspiring designer myself, I am drawn to the stories of those that are succeeding in the industry, which is so hard to break into.
Erika Knight is an inspiration to me as she has been a big name in the knitting world for so long, and has found herself where she is through hard work, new ideas and a passion for her craft. More recently, Erika has released her own yarn collection, all sourced personally in Britain to support the livelihood of farmers and to help our industry survive.
Who taught you to knit?
I think it was my granny when i was about six, but she was pretty scary and a real perfectionist, so I think the next time I took it up and taught myself was during the punk days and it didn’t matter too much if you dropped a stitch or two.
How/when did you first get into the knitting industry?
My passion and hobby for knitting turned into a business and soon I had a cottage industry, through this I learnt importantly how not to do it as well as how to do it, because I had to control everything and create a handmade product meet the high demands of top retailers.
I had the opportunity at this time to work in Italy where I learned from couturier knit technicians, so I was working in two very differing aspects of the industry at the same time.
When did you start designing your own patterns?
From the outset, most especially when at college if a friend was into Frank Stella or Bridget Riley I would devise a sweater for their birthday and I often did the knitwear collections for friends on the fashion courses.
What do you enjoy most about your work?
The design, creating fabric, the process .
What inspired your new yarn collection?
Wool! A natural, sustainable, renewable resource, comfortable and beautiful, and absolutely fit for its purpose.
I want to go back to grass roots, to look at the process of making lovely wool yarns in a traditional way in Britain, and to support the British hill farmers to keep sheep – not only for the meat but for their fleece.
Stockists for Erika’s new yarns can be found on her website.
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