Kristina Vetter, a design student in Germany, was glancing through Facebook one day and saw an ad for Darn Good Yarn. Little did she know this would be the beginning of a beautiful friendship. She says, "It was all by coincidence on some ad on Facebook. I wasn't even looking for it. Isn't that how all good love stories start?"
Kristina knew she wanted to put together a collection around the theme of "Catastrophism". She was wrestling with the topic somewhat.
"I only had some silhouettes and a vague idea of the topic of the collection. It´s called 'Catastrophism' and I thought it had to be all dark and spooky. As I wanted to incorporate redesigned pieces from the very beginning, starting to work with the fabrics and old clothes and dye them, I realized that it´s not only the generic idea of a dark colour that could carry the message of a world after catastrophe."
She had discovered Darn Good Yarn a few months earlier, and had become truly inspired by the unique art that imbues every skein. She found some new directions she could take in her own work.
"The idea blossomed that it was the story that those recycled and redesigned pieces carry that show the brutality, but also the comfort, of the topic. It's all about making the best out of a new start with the little you have out of a lost world. And there is nostalgia and happiness in this. DGY carries exactly that. It has the same story. The fringes. The unperfect. The getting thinner here, thicker there. The many knots and ties and seams. The changing colours, starting here, stopping there. I love the organic ever changing texture and colour. It feels like it lives. Carrying the history of a past life as a sari or whatever else, assembled to something new. DGY very much inspired the topic and the designs."
Some of the pieces were specifically inspired by certain yarns. Olga's yarn, shown to gorgeous effect in this sweater, was one of them. (We no longer carry this rope-like yarn, sorry! But at least you can marvel at it's loveliness here. :) )
"Darn Good Yarn inspired certain pieces, such as the sweater out of Olga's Yarn. I saw that yarn. And I had that sweater in my head and I knew it couldn't be out of anything else. Unfortunately, I can't knit. My aunt did all the knitting for me. It was mainly the accessories that are made out of DGY. But I feel they complete the outfits and make the colours within the clothes in the outfits work together."
Kristina has since been tentatively learning to knit herself. All the pieces in the collection were made by her very talented aunt, who has been knitting for 25 years and knit some commercially when she was younger. Like so many of us, Kristina is a bit of a craft-addict. Her most recent favorite craft is the Japanese art of fabric dyeing called Shibori. (You can learn all about it here.)
"I love about any craft I am fortunate enough to lay my eyes on. It's amazing what people can do. But my favorite craft that I practice myself is Shibori. It is also incorporated in the collection. I love the changing of colours when you dye something yourself. It's like it's out of one's control, but still you try to control it through the binding and folding, and every piece is unique."
You can see the fun results she achieved with Shibori dyeing especially well in this piece, along with more lovely Darn Good Yarn accessories.
When asked if she had any tips for other designers or creators, she was very humble. "I don't think I'm really someone to give tips about designing as I'm only in the beginning of a long process." And aren't we all? She did pass on some important things to remember though.
"What is important to me is that I don't want the things I can't do interfere with the things I want to do. ...Whenever I have the feeling I HAVE to work with a certain material, or that I really would like to realize a certain product, I will find a way to incorporate it in my work... on the skill level I have. That includes so much trial and error. But that process is so much fun and you can discover so many new looks or ways to use something you weren't even looking for. Just let nothing ever stop you. If you have that inner drive, try it, learn from what you try and enjoy it."
Great tips for creating in general, especially with wild and quirky materials like Darn Good Yarn! I love the mix of starkness and drama, against the comfort and color of the DGY pieces in Kristina's work. Truly lovely and inspiring! For more gorgeous photography, make sure to check out Christian Bacher's photography here. What will Darn Good Yarn inspire you to create? We love when you share! Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy crafting and creating!