New Favorites: the WATG x Raeburn beanies

New Favorites: the WATG x Raeburn beanies

I love a pleasant surprise. As previously noted when the collection first walked the runway, I really like the pieces Wool and the Gang designed for Christopher Raeburn’s Fall 2015 show. My favorite was the giant beanie, especially for the way the mixed yarns mimicked that incredible bouclé tweed fabric used for the coat it was worn with. Well, the knit kits have just hit the WATG website, and what I missed when looking at those photos before (or have long since forgotten about) was the solid black version. Seeing it yesterday in white, up top, gave me a whole new appreciation for this hat. But even more than that, I LOVE the way it looks folded up (like, you know), as opposed to the way it was worn on the runway. So now I’m coveting it in white, black and the runway-multi version. It’s not sold as an individual pattern (at least at this time) but the solid kit is called Abyss and the multi-hued version is Atlantis.


PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: from Rowan 58

First of the best of Fall 2015: Wool and Gang walks again

First of the best of Fall 2015: Wool and the Gang walks again

Following last year’s Eek hat for the Giles Fall ’14 collection, my friends over at Wool and the Gang had more knits walking the runway at London Fashion Week yesterday. This time they collaborated with Christopher Raeburn on his shark-themed Fall ’15 collection. As seen in the photos here (from @woolandthegang and @jade_harwood) the pieces include a pair of shark-shaped mittens plus a killer multi-color slouch beanie and big fringed scarf. The mittens, dubbed the Bruce Knitmitts, are available on their site straight away, both as finished goods and a knit kit, and they’ve promised to let me know when the hat and scarf patterns are available later this year. My compliments to the Gang on what must have been another thrilling ride. And to Raeburn, who looks pretty pleased with those mittens.

p.s. They were kind enough to send me an Eek hat kit when I was crying for a fast break from my four months with Amanda, but I haven’t knitted it up just yet. Love. That. Hat.

p.p.s. If I had the sewing chops, I would totally be making my own version of that olive-drab duffel coat with Grainline’s pattern. That is my dream coat right there.


New Favorites: WATG cotton toppers

New Favorites: Wool and the Gang cotton toppers

Good stuff coming out of Wool and the Gang for summer, especially the Riviera Sweater up top, which is a really terrific combination of stripes and texture-blocking. Knitted in aran-weight cotton, this would be a great most-of-the-year sweater, most places. I’m also into the big-mesh Ariel Top, made from their Mixtape yarn, which seems to be a jersey ribbon tube sort of thing. Has anyone knitted with this stuff? It intrigues me.


PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: the Wool People wraps

(See also: Best spring/summer tees of 2014)

Next of the best of Fall 2014: Wool and the Gang’s runway beanie

Wool and the Gang's runway beanie

There have been all sorts of moves toward immediacy in the past few years, where the big fashion shows are concerned — to the point where some shows now allow for people to order the garments as they’re walking down the runways (and then wait months for them to arrive). But I’m pretty sure Wool and the Gang broke new ground this week with the first beanie to grace the catwalk and be available as a knitting pattern on the very same day. Apparently Giles Deacon approached WATG for a collaboration and this Eek Hat was born. WATG created the ones that were worn in Monday’s Giles show, along with 200 more to be scattered all around London Fashion Week in various ways. The Eek is a new spin on the basic Zion Lion hat they do so much with, in this case with big ol’ googly eyes added via duplicate stitch. So dang cute — I want one.

See their blog for the backstory and lots of behind-the-scenes photos.

Wool and the Gang's runway beanie

New Favorites: Mega tunic

New Favorites: WATG tunic

When I was talking to Wool and the Gang about the giveaway (have you entered?), I took multiple strolls through their pages of knit kits, thinking which one I would pick if I were the winner. The one I kept coming back to is this Little Giants T-shirt and now it’s seriously lodged in my brain, like some beloved ’80s tune I hear at the grocery store and sing for weeks. I’m in the mood for a big, fast win of a knitting project, and this could be the one.

I wonder where the name comes from …


PREVIOUSLY in New Favorites: Carrie’s Uniform

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

New favorites: Wool and the Gang’s Tropical Tunic

wool and the gang tropical tunic

We’ve come to that time of year where I’m longing to be truly warm for more than the few glorious hours between when the fog burns off and when it rolls back in again. I’d give anything for a tropical vacation right about now, somewhere I could loll around in nothing but a swimsuit and this great open-knit cotton tunic from Wool and the Gang. That ain’t gonna happen, but I might have to buy the kit anyway. I’m always looking for sweaters that will make my standard uniform of jeans and ankle boots look more “summery.”