This week on CRAFT-ish, Vickie talks with iconic British Knitwear Designer, Erika Knight about the influence of the 70’s punk & dance scenes, the simple style that defines her work, and the importance of spreading the desire to hand make things.
Erika started out as a fine art student in Brighton but couldn’t keep from raiding the stores in the fashion department in search of textiles. She went with the flow and, armed with “massive ignorance and enthusiasm”, co-launched what became a hugely successful hand-knit label ‘Molto!’. Design and fashion forecasting work for a range of top brands (Marks & Spencer, Nicole Farhi, H&M, Whistles, Rowan Yarns, Coats PLC) followed, but alongside, there were always projects that celebrated the things she really cared about – the craft element of design and the very human scale and pace of knitting or crocheting unique, personal, treasures, as well as the need to respect the natural world and sustain its resources.
Erika has published more than 20 books on knitting and crocheting and with her ‘simple’ ethos, Erika has a unique interpretation of craft: her mission is to simplify and communicate her insight and passion for knitting and crochet with accessible and enticing projects in order to inspire everyone to experiment and above all enjoy creating.
Erika has lectured at the V&A and taught at the RCA, and for the last 11 years has been on the judging panel of the UK Hand Knitting Association Knitted Textile Awards. Erika has been invited to be a guest judge for the WI’s National Knitting Competition, adhering to their strict criteria of assessment.
Having launched her own eponymous hand knit yarn label in 2012, determined to support British manufacturing and share her unwaveringly-held belief in the importance of treading lightly on the earth and celebrating traditional British skills, Erika is doing what she always wanted to do having honed her style into a covetable brand.
Produced by: Vickie Howell
Edited & Mixed by: Dave Campbell
Music Provided by: Explosions in the Sky
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