Our Tools, Ourselves: Jade and Aurelie (Wool and the Gang)

In Our Tools, Ourselves, we get to know fiber artisans of all walks, ages, styles and skill levels, by way of their tools. For more on the series, read the introduction.

Behind the scenes with Jade Harwood and Aurelie Popper of Wool and the Gang

The first time I remember seeing the name Wool and the Gang was when some of their beautifully bagged knitting kits were being sold at Madewell, before I knew how to knit. I still remember the little pang when I saw them. Obviously I’ve paid closer attention since learning to knit, but I confess I really started zeroing in when they recently began selling their patterns individually. Co-founders Jade Harwood and Aurelie Popper get worlds of credit for helping to bring the art of knitting to a new audience over the past several years, and their creativity extends beyond their knitwear designs to inspired collaborations and charitable campaigns. So I’m really pleased they agreed to give us a look into their worklives as knitters!

They’ve also offered up an amazing giveaway for you guys — check the end of this post for details! And make sure to follow @woolandthegang on Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, etc.

. . .

Do you knit, crochet, weave, spin, dye, sew … ?

We knit a lot and sew sometimes. We’ve knitted since we were 7 years old, both learning to knit from our grandmothers. We met at Central Saint Martins where we studied Textiles Design covering Weave, Print and Knit. We specialized in Knit, learning skills in both hand knit, domestic and Dubied machine knitting.

Tell us about your tool preferences and peccadilloes.

We love to knit using wooden needles — working with wood creates a lovely tension. Circular is our preference because who enjoys to weave in ends. :)

Wool and the Gang

How do you store or organize your tools? Or do you?

We love to use clear jars to store our needles. It keeps them organised but creates a nice decorative feature in the office or home.

How do you store or organize your works-in-progress?

We pin our swatch samples to big mood boards and keep our works in-progress around the office. We like to wear them a lot mid-development to get a feel of the shape, fit and style.

Are there any particularly prized possessions amongst your tools?

Lots of llamas — from stickers to little llama dolls.

Wool and the Gang

Do you lend your tools?

Yes we lend them and they spread everywhere — from our studio to our bags, to our kitchen draw. It’s kind to share needles. :)

What is your favorite place to knit?

In front of a good series like Homeland or Breaking Bad.

What effect do the seasons have on you?

We pretty much knit all year around, however we do always get sooooo excited when wool season comes around where you can cosy up in all your knitted layers. In the summer we like work with our Jersey Be Good T-shirt yarn to make fun summer accessories.

Do you have a dark secret, guilty pleasure or odd quirk, where your fiber pursuits are concerned?

We use the leftover yarn for birds to collect to make their nests.

What are you working on right now?

Right now at work we are developing our summer collection — watch this space. However on the personal side of knitting, we are monogramming a lot of hats to gift, using this technique.

Jade Harwood of Wool and the Gang

NOW ABOUT THAT GIVEAWAY: Wool and the Gang wants to give one of you the knit kit of your choice — up to $150 in value! All you need to do to enter is fill out this entry form. The contest is open to Fringe Association readers worldwide (except Russia, sorry) and the winner will be contacted by Wool and the Gang once their name has been randomly chosen.

Good luck!


PREVIOUSLY in Our Tools, Ourselves: Kathy Cadigan

Photos © Wool and the Gang

19 thoughts on “Our Tools, Ourselves: Jade and Aurelie (Wool and the Gang)

  1. I really love the big chunky designs! I was so happy when they strated selling their patterns individually! I recently bought a couple and can’t wait to try them!

  2. very nice and inspiring interview. I love the fact that they totally contributed to get rid of that granny image knitters had in the past! now off to enter the giveaway…thank you!

  3. What an interesting strand, first time trading your blog and it’s so beautiful and informative. Love the chunky yarns and interesting and contemporary fibres WATG use. I also love knitting with wooden needles, there’s something about the warmth and the way they feel in my hands. I think I’ll pick up my sticks right now!

  4. Karen – thank you for this interview! I love WAG and have knit a kit or two or three. I visited their NYC store when it was open.

  5. Love this series and interview! I knit their tala tank (kit) a couple of years ago and love having an airy knit tank for summer! Also, their needles are some of my favorite to work with, they feel so nice in my hands!

  6. What a cool gang! Love how much fun they infuse into their stuff. I want to work there, please. ;-)

  7. Very cool, and I love the needles! I learned on wooden straight needles, segued to circulars when I had some carpal tunnel issues, and never looked back. These needles are fantastic, like oversized golf tees. Looks like a very fun company.

  8. yes! me too, since i was a child, my norwegian grandmother taught us to do that for the birds (with her woolly scraps)! and WOW, love wool and the gang!

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