Thursday, October 16, 2008

Learn To Make and Create Knit Design for Top Fashion Companies

Maybe you are a self taught handknitter, maybe your mother showed you how to crochet and you loved it or you’ve had design training but feel you’re not developing and can’t go any further?

Knit-1 has been selling one-off copyrighted designs and garments to all levels of the international fashion industry for over 15 years and we are offering the opportunity to jumpstart your vocation using our expertise.

If we show you how a traditional Fair Isle
knit is created, could you design the next
variation on the classic Ralph Lauren look?

If you can tie a knot you can knit a cable.
Cable fabrics have endless possibilities and are a wardrobe staple, in Part 1 we explore all.

Pointelle (lace knit) patterns have been used for centuries. We’ll start with the historicpatterns, understand them and use them to stunning effect a la this season McQueen.

For the first 8 weeks of the 12 weeks of this intensive course (you’ll put in more hours and get more tuition time than any degree course so it’s more economic with regards to fees and time!) you`ll learn a different technique, inspired by traditional knit fabrics such as Aran, pointelle, intarsia, jacquards, Fairisle and crochets, reinventing them making them more extreme, impactive and contemporary, crucially always with reference to how they are used right now in international fashion collections

Would you like to turn your skills into something wearable? We can show you how to use your style, enhance skills you have with everything you’ll learn on the Design Workshop you’ll be creating original textile designs.

The emphasis is not on copying what’s on the catwalk or on the High St, its on empowering your design process by giving you the technical skills then developing and experimenting until you have a truly unique portfolio.

Part 3 of the course is devoted to a project linked directly to Industry (previously U.K. retail giants Topshop) the feedback you gain from showing and selling your designs is infallible.

Where you take your new found skills is up to you, all our previous students have left with professional portfolios in their own style full of work comparable to any design in the shop windows of Paris, New York and London.
You don’t have to be a design student to come on the course, just have a passion for textiles and a willingness to learn.

See you in January!

Course Start Dates
Part 1 5tth -30th January 09
Part 2 2nd-27th February 09
Part 3 2nd-27th March 09

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Knit Trends from Key Fashion Shops in New York by Sue Enticknap

I was in New York last week visiting all manner of fashion companies with our knit Collection. Lots of interesting fashion shops revealing current trends... In Tribeca (White st.) there is a new shop by J.Crew called The Liquor Store. It's a great mix of contemporary and vintage pieces, Including 50's Fairisles, Leather Jackets and accessories. The new collection has beautiful tailoring and classic mens shirting. The overall feel is of a retro Classic English Look.

Knit Trends/New York Shops

Another giant in retailing presenting a very small, individual boutique is Donna Karan with her Urban Zen in Greenwich st. The Collection is definitely Karan with her mix of original Ethnic/Tribal 'Art' and carefully unstructured clothes. There is evidence of 'hybrid' fabrics that fall between knit and weave and always feel soft and fluid. Signature pieces included superfine cashmere knitted into a double layer wrapped cardi featuring long cut floats. The non-colour look was all shades of black and brown. Fabulous neck pieces/collars in aged dark leather gave the whole look an individual edge.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Shop Trends/New York

The Double R (Ralph Lauren) boutique, Greenwich. Another retail giant showing a tiny, individual looking boutique offering a variation on the Ralph look.

Shop Trends/New York

Marc Jacobs colourful menswear store, Bleeker st.

Shop Trends/New York

Cynthia Rowley showing super femme tailoring with embroidery.

Shop Trends/New York

Alberta Ferretti showing exquisite 20's inspired beading on chiffon.

Knit Trends/Shops New York

Sportmax showing mix of knit with print.

Knit Trends /New York shops

Urban Outfitters merchandising is really something to behold. The shop is jam packed with incredible props including furniture cut in half to reveal all the springs and stuffing, an array of old wrought iron gates at the entrance and HUGE piles of old books! The clothes are'nt bad either! One of the main stories (and there were lots and lots) was 20's flappers meets grunge/punk. Jersey mini skirts with flapper style beading in grey or black. Extravagant Faux flapper necklaces printed onto oversize t-shirts.

Knit Trends/New York shops

Rick Owens Hudson St, has just opened this Summer and shows the full Collection of Knitwear, jersey and outerwear. The knitwear included tight/loose tension superfine mohair in a Kahki loose fashioned sweater. Maxi long line cardis in feather weight cashmere, wrapped and tied across the bodice. The classic biker jacket restyled in skinny knit sleeves and soft leather body. All shades of Kahki and black.

Knit Trends/ New York shops

A quirky window display in a chemist's shop in 6th Avenue. (all made of recycled wood)

Knit Trends/New York shops

Missoni were showing tuck stitching to 'waggle' the great coloured stripes! Using lurex and drapey viscose.

Paris Shop Trends

For a one stop fashion hit, L’Eclaireur in Le Marais never fails to disappoint, and is a good way to see well selected pieces from a wide range of high-end designers.
Lanvin had interesting all black pieces with layering and twisting of fabric and the placement of zips in unusual places.
Comme des Garcons (Tao line) featured many complicated tailored pieces in sombre colours, which were fairly fitted and combined with a big detail such as black felted jackets with ruffles and frills around the neck.
Rick Owens had many pieces of fine gauge knit and jersey in neutral colours. Along side these was a large cardigan knitted all in one. It was knitted in fine mohair on a 3g with large pointelle detail, combined with the same mohair knitted in a much tighter tension for ribs and dense knitted stripes up the back. Like many of his pieces it was long at the front and short at the back, and could be used as a wrap-around.
A continual theme throughout many of the collections were very low neck-lines and interesting details such as belt buckles used on the backs of jacket (buckles also were a key fastening feature at Premiere Vision).
Givenchy had a similar all black look, with again interesting shapes and draping of layers of fabric, with their key piece being a sophisticated bubble dress.

Dries Van Noten, provided the majority of colour for the shop, with floral embroidery consisting of spotted sequins that gradiate in colour, all of which bright, and layered over each other, with fabric embroidery for the stems (you could make yourself similar sequins with a punch-card and a coloured piece of plastic).

The other key pieces for the collection were mixed yarn cardigans with pointelle detail which were knitted loosely on a 3g to increase stitch size and were very ethnic, loose and bright.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Premiere Vision Paris Autumn Winter 09-10

Premiere Vision Autumn Winter 09-10

Colour trends for Autumn Winter 09-10

Ambiguous neutrality: - buff, mole, beige
High tension: - bright coral, teal, kaki, brown, aqua, green
Hyper Expression: - aubergine, purple, brown, aluminous green, pink, turquoise

Key trend predictions for Autumn Winter 09-10

Retro Modernity: - Styles of the 1920’s, with elements of old fashioned child-like softness.
● Dusky colours and a very vintage look.
●Lots of draping, layers and use of chiffon, not only for garments but also on accessories such as feather and chiffon corsages.
●Thick panels of lace as either decorative inserts, or thick high waistbands.
●Textured knits with subtle lurex sparkle or sequins, also chunky knits combined with fine viscose to add shine, and crochet with edges trimmed in lurex.
●Bags with belt buckles and garments fastened with both single and double buckles. Also sparkly buckles that have fabric threaded through to give the impression of a bow.
●Graphic beading in very pale feminine colours.

Alchimia: - Baroque alchemy of sophisticated materials.
●Very burlesque in style.
●A theme of gun-metal grey, with tiny black beading and either teal or dark purple as highlight colours.
●Patient leather, textured leather, snake skin, fur, velvet, mohair and studs- all very textured fabrics.
●Gold embroidery on vanishing fabric and pleated ribbon.
●Dark fur with teal in it, peacock feathers and spotted feathers giving a very sophisticated and luxurious look.
●Lots of different fastenings such as beaded clasps, zips, elaborate broaches, hook and eyes and Serpent fastenings very Art Nouveau in style.
Utopia: - Futuristic expressionism, techno couture.
●Red, black, white, grey and silver.
●Slightly 80’s look.
●Industrial materials, such as metal buckles, rivets, chains and plastic beads or buckles.
●Origami fabric, folded and pleated.
●Tweed with sequins sewn on, and tweeds cut-out in places and sewn onto knits.
●Furs either in red, black or dark grey, all very strong colours.
●Layered decoration of felt circles with sequins and beads, very 3D.

Fabric predictions for Autumn Winter 09-10

●Dark tartans with bright colours running trough them. Some in mohair, which had been brushed to tease out the treads and give a blurred effect to the structured fabric.
●Lace with embroidery in the same colour, in only specific areas. E.g. /. On a floral lace only the flower heads would be embroidered to created texture, volume and denseness to the transparent lace.
●Ribbons laced through knitted trims.
●Elastic embroidery on chiffon, mesh and knit to created a puckered fabric.
●Plain knit with lines embroidered over it in different colours o give the impression of tartan.
●chevrons in a combination of very chunk yarn and a very fine yarn in the same colour to create a rippled effect.
●Vanishing fabric embroidery.
●Cut-out felt sewn over a knitted base, with embroidery over the top (3 layers), in grey, red and purple.
●Pin-striped fabric, where the stripes are either fur or mohair (grey and white).
●Foil print over fur, with pieces of the fur sticking up and therefore distorting the print.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

As the summer knitting courses progress...

Every week, we start off with an inspiration board put together by Catherine. The boards show samples of a range of styles that the techniques can achieve, and lots of inspiring photos relating to the techniques.

The techniques are explained and shown in detail. After Catherine`s demonstration there is plenty of time to explore and develop knit designs that you want to create.

By the end of the week, the group have completed many samples and garment styled designs relating to the techniques shown that week. You also get the advantage of learning from each other`s work.

Here`s Meredith talking about her experience at knit-1:

I have really been enjoying the class and am learning so much every day. Catherine is such a great and patient teacher!! Aside from learning knitting in general, I think my favorite part of this course is the relevance it has to the industry as it is at the moment. I really enjoyed the presentation you did on Pitti Filati & the shopping in Italy. It is really important for me to feel like I know what is going on in knitwear and the fashion world, especially since I am not working at the moment, and I was worried about falling out of touch with the industry by taking 3 months off. If you two do any more traveling over the summer or go to other shows it would be great to hear more info about selling, stores etc as you did with Pitti. Also the trips to the Vintage stores, boutiques, and the Royal Pavilion have been really inspiring and a nice change of pace from straight knitting. I am looking forward to our trip to London next week as well. --Meredith

And here`s Julia talking about the course:

My major feedback is WOW! I have never realized that these courses could be so much fun. And it’s the well-thought out, and yet still entirely free sturcturethat makes this course so valuable for me. As you’ve mentioned during one of Friday reviews, we all come from different backgrounds, and your course takes that into consideration, and allows each one of us to follow what she’s inclined for using the basic technique.

Another part of the teaching, which I personally appreciate, is the way Catherine opens up my horizons with the way of actual garment design. This see-and-try freestyle approach is something I’ve never experienced before! The truth is, I’m a self-taught “designer”, it’s more of an accidentm really. Through Catherine’s coaching, I've tried things I’ve never tried myself. As I would not have realized the hidden potential of these techniques, motifs, stitches etc.

I absolutely loved the post-Pitti Filati session as it gave me an opportunity to hear the trend review by the industry professionals, which broadens my own perception.

Friday reviews are really important, as they give you a different perspective of what you’ve been exploring the whole week. It’s interesting to observe how all the students think and work differently, how one technique becomes 4 different styles. I can say that I've learned a lot just by observing what else could have been achieved with the same technique. --Julia

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Knit-1 Design Workshop Courses

Course Dates

23rd June - 12th September 08 Parts 1, 2, 3

18th August - 12th September 08 Part 1 only

5th January - 27th March 09 Parts 1, 2 and 3


Part 1 (4 Weeks) £ 950 Pounds Sterling includes V.A.T.

Parts 1 and 2 (8 Weeks) £ 1,850 Pounds Sterling includes V.A.T.

Parts 1, 2 and 3 (12 Weeks) £ 2,700 Pounds Sterling includes V.A.T.

Accommodation not included.

All yarns provided.

For more info and details see our knit design course dedicted website at

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Florence Shops- Trends

Max Mara

1950’s styling continues to be strong as shown at Maxmara and BP Studio. Both were showing the drop-shoulder silhouette with funnel necklines and clean shapes.


Prada showed shoulder interest pieces in shirts, dresses and knitwear. The styling was creative and ‘organic’ with some references to the 1940’s (square shoulders). 40’s styling was also shown at Fendi in knitwear with oversized shoulders.

Roberto Cavalli


There were abstract animal prints at Roberto Cavalli and Prada both using minimal colour palettes and a ‘paint by numbers’ effect.


See more of the shop photos here.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Pitti Filati Winter 2009 Trends

Knit-1 has been showing at Pitti Filati for many years. This time, we've come back with loads of photos from the show and from the shops around Florence. We've uploaded the images that Sue has taken onto Flickr. Here are some of the highlights from it.

By the way, if you missed the show, there is a nice little video showing highlights from the show on the Pitti FIlati site. You can also read about the trend direction, titled, Eco-Luxe.

Eco Friendly

This carries on the theme from Eco-Luxe presented at the last show. The trend area shows yarn from most of the main spinners that are organic and feature either undyed or non-chemical dyes and finishes. The main fibres are wool, cotton and silk. The prices are high and therefore marketed to higher end fashion.

Spazio Ricerca

The general trend area showed metallic as the main theme. Also angora and fancy yarns were important.The fabrics featured volume through stitches or yarn. Print was used extensively especially foil print and ‘rubber’ prints. They tended to be used for texture rather than graphic patterns. The ‘rubber’ prints were used to create 3d effects by printing on the reverse of the fabric.


Be sure to check out the rest of the Pitti Filati photos here.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Summer Design Workshop.

Countdown to the summer design workshop has started and its all getting very exciting ! Starting June 23rd students from as far a field as Ukraine and as close as Horsham will be coming to Knit-1, getting to grips with knit machines and producing original and technically challenging fabrics.
The students are coming from a variety of backgrounds including; a knit designer from Urban Outfitters New York, a Central St Martins BA student and a Swiss Ukrainian marketing consultant/knit designer and will return to their courses / careers with a wealth of new knowledge and skills.
Simultaneously we will be exploring all that Brighton has to offer in The Royal Pavilion, museums, vintage/antique shops ( there are many) and boutiques, whilst also making the short journey to London to The V&A and the Southbank Centre - where there is a Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef !!

All this and visiting tutors..... I told you its exciting !


Monday, June 9, 2008

Knit-1 Design Workshop

Knit-1 is pleased to present “Design Workshop”, a knitwear design course set in Brighton, UK, covering the principal techniques and their application in contemporary knit design for fashion.

The Knit-1 Design Workshop provides intensive high quality machine knitting and design training, along with visits from guest speakers, inspiration and fashion study trips. Students have the opportunity to view the diverse sample collections and experience the creative environment at Knit-1. Students will also participate in weekly reviews of their work with feedback given by the directors of the company. The course duration is 30 hours per week over 12, 8, or 4 week sessions.

The last four weeks of the course is taught in collaboration with a noted fashion retailer. Students design within a project brief provided by the retailer, and will have the opportunity to present and sell the work that they produce within the course. The January 2008 session was sponsored and successfully received by UK retailer, Top Shop.

Go to for more details

About Knit-1

Formed in 1992 by Richard Dykes and Sue Enticknap, Knit-1 is well established as one of the top fashion textile design companies selling to the industry at all levels of the market and offering design workshops.

The directors of Knit-1 and its highly skilled team of designers and technicians are dedicated to supplying customers with ever changing, beautiful and original fashion textiles incorporating the best quality of design, make and finish.