The history of fashion interests me hugely and the history of crochet has its own story to tell as well. Crochet comes from the french word croche (which means hook) and it seems the actual origins of crocheting is unclear (although historians presume it dates back to the 16th century despite the lack of evidence). Crochet has been around a long time and this traditional craft has no sign of dying out, much like knitting it can be seen as a form of relaxation or therapy almost but the satisfaction of creating a piece of clothing that you can wear without the need of a sewing machine is incredibly appealing to a lot of people (including myself).
However, it was really only in the 60s and 70s that crochet was considered ‘cool’ and I myself based my GCSE textiles project on the 70s, incorporating crochet into my denim jacket – it was used as a means of expression and donned by big names such as Janis Joplin, Twiggy and even Clint Eastwood.
Nowadays, crochet can be seen in a variety of mediums. Seen on catwalks at shows such as Tommy Hilfiger in which Gigi Hadid sported a variety of different crocheted outfits and off the catwalk at Coachella. It has become a symbol of ‘festival chic’, crocheted outfits are the summer staple you need in the wardrobe without feeling like you’ve bought the piece before.
There is no doubt in my mind that crocheting is easier than knitting so if you were ever in need of some ‘craft therapy’ there are so many kits available to buy and I have recently discovered thanks to Ron McQuade a brand called Wool and The Gang that sell crochet kits and yarns. The Billie Jean yarn that I made the top out of that I’m wearing in this post is from upcycled pre-consumer denim waste and developed in collaboration with The New Denim Project, a project within a 3rd generation family textile factory promoting conscious consumption and investment in sustainable materials. It’s both sustainable and ethical because I know exactly who made it and where the materials come from. It’s the perfect top for the summer but I don’t think it’s going to be the only kit that I buy from the brand as I adore most of the ones they sell; my goal for the end of the summer is to knit (yes you heard right… knit) a jumper… dangerous territory for someone that hasn’t knitted anything since they were eleven.
|vintage Moschino, wool and the gang kit, Comme Des Garcons trainers, Levis jeans
You may be stumped for ways to wear crochet for weather that may be not so warm, I think pairing a little crochet top over a t shirt with jeans is the perfect way to increase the wear of summer pieces, in particular ones that may not be best suited on their own for the British weather. Above, I paired possibly a top that may be my next project (I still can’t decide whether to do it in black or red yarn – I could even do both) and a vintage Moschino jacket that I have fallen in love with. It’s so incredible but oh so expensive and that is the only thing resisting me from buying it. The more I look at it the more I fall in love and ah if only my bank account could permit me to buy it; I don’t think I would take it off.
I adore crochet and I think it isn’t particularly a trend but a technique that can be utilised both on its own or together with other fabrics to make a garment, it’s definitely a lot of things but it certainly isn’t outdated. What are your thoughts on crochet? Let me know in the comments!
lots of love, eleanor xx