I came across Olivia Bennett on WGSN and loved her designs! I was lucky enough to ask her some questions about her collection and her future plans. Check it out below:
1. where did you get your inspiration from?
I use photography as the backbone to all my work. It is a massive enjoyment of mine and I use it as a visual research material. Mainly inspired by the beauty of the outside world; nature, landscapes, texture and colour. I have looked at tactility for all my previous collections and my work has evolved into unusual textures and tactile surfaces, with the possibility of some pieces being introduced into multi-sensory environments.
2. what is your design process? How do you get from start to finish?
I create my knitted accessories by using a knitting loom, by using these looms of all sizes, I am able to create round pieces which I can change in size and weight, and use a wide range of materials. I also use a ‘French Knitting Machine’ when using less unusual materials such as cotton, to create a chunky knitted yarn which I re-knit to create an even chunkier form.
3. What other materials do you like to work with?
For previous collections I have used such materials as washing line, electrical wire and different thicknesses of rope. However, for this collection I used my most unusual material so far, a plastic wire which is used to lay down laminate flooring. I have sourced all my materials from ‘The Children’s Scrapstore’ in Bristol and they never fail to stock something wonderful.
4. Where do you want your brand to go next?
I have always created jewellery pieces, up until my most recent collection, ‘Untraditional Knitted Accessories’. I have begun to create a collection of interior accessories using the same techniques as my jewellery collection. I have also looked at using knots to create products. Interior accessories continue my theme of tactility and will work well in multi-sensory environments. I want to continue to work with unusual materials to create unique jewellery pieces and interior accessories.
5. Who do you look to for inspiration?
I look at designers such as Xioa Li for her techniques, Neva Balnikova for the use of materials and other jewellery designers such as Eleanor Bolton and Grace Hamilton for inspiration of display, arrangement and something to aspire to.
6. Where will we see your collection?
I was lucky enough to have been chosen to display in Darkroom London’s window display, as part of their annual competition for all UK jewellery students which finished on the 12th June 2014. Now, my official collection can be seen on my website: www.oliviabennett.squarespace.com and shop on easy (untraditionalknit).