Fashion Magazine

The Golden Age of Knitting

By Dieworkwear @dieworkwear

Except for Gianluca Migliarotti’s work on Italian tailoring, my favorite menswear films have all been BBC documentaries.  Unfortunately, they’re difficult to view unless you’re in the UK, but you can find clips here and there on Vimeo and YouTube. Someone in the Netherlands also once uploaded the full-video files on a server many years ago, and remarkably enough, they’re still there. He has Savile Row (parts 1, 2, and 3), British Style Genius (parts 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5), Trouble Looms (parts 1, 2, and 3), Charles at 60, and Ozwald Boateng: Why Style Matters. The first three are especially good, with British Style Genius and Trouble Looms being very difficult to find in full-length form anywhere else. 

The latest BBC project is The Fabric of Britain, a three-part series on British knitwear, wallpaper, and embroidery. I’ve embedded part one, The Golden Age of Knitting, above. Partly because it’s the beginning of fall, so knitwear is naturally on my mind, and partly because next to tailored clothing and shoes, I’m fanatical about sweaters. What’s not to like? You put them on, look great, and feel like someone is giving you a warm hug all day.

The documentary goes through the wonderful history of British knitwear, gives a tour of John Smedley’s factory, and covers some curious things, such as sweaters made by POWs during World War II (some of which looks ripe for designer reproduction). It also shows Gyles Brandreth’s remarkable collection. He apparently once owned something around 1,000 sweaters – some handmade, some machine made, and some made by someone who only knitted for Elton John, Princess Diana, and him. The designs are pretty ugly, to be honest, but they’re a total joy to see.

Enjoy, my sweater-clad friends.

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog