Click HERE for my interview with Marion Foale of Foale&Tuffin fame and later knitwear legend.
Illustration by: Nina Hunter
You may have noticed that Britain’s fashion scene has been ‘yarnbombed’ of late. Knitwear is everywhere. The term itself refers to covering street furniture, including stop signs and phone boxes with knitted garments, such as long scarves and soft tea cosies. People generally festoon the knitwear to make a point and highlight an issue, such as a charity’s appeal.
The wool adorning act follows from the last two years of the enormous and triumphant return of knitwear to fashion. Its rise coincides with the soaring popularity of vintage and collectable clothing.
That’s why style pioneer of the sixties and knitwear legend Marion Foale’s informal talk at Image Boutique in Bath’s Milsom Place on Monday was quite the fashion event. For over thirty years Marion Foale has hand-knitted the finest wool and cotton jackets available in the world. Her designs are inspired by the glamour of the forties. They are exquisite in their fit and form, always with emphasis on femininity. Each jacket takes over 300 hours to make using only the finest cotton and wool yarns.
Min Stevenson, owner of Image, said: “We sell Marion Foale jackets every season, people love them. We were very excited to give our Foale fans a chance to meet the maker of such a superb collection.”
*Marion Foale with Min Stevenson, owner of IMAGE boutique where Marion talked to her fans.
Wearing one of her own red, swing cardigans, Foale chatted in a relaxed manner to her avid fans. She spoke of her background in the fashion business during the swinging sixties, and her successful knitwear collection from the seventies onwards.
I felt a little out of place, standing there with the PR lady and photographer, discussing the miniature quiches on offer. Most of the women there could afford the £400 prices of a Foale piece, and looking at their fabrics and immaculate complexions, most were certainly members of Bath’s elite.
However, when I fought through the ladies, and eventually cornered Marion for an interview, I found she was incredibly friendly and talked of her sixties past with delight and relish. She was equally lighthearted when discussing starting a business in knitwear with no idea how to actually knit. Gutsy.
Click HERE for the interview.
Illustration by: Abby Wright