Functional to fashionable : knitwear's evolution throughout the last century and into the millennium

Power, EJ ORCID: 2007, 'Functional to fashionable : knitwear's evolution throughout the last century and into the millennium' , Journal of Textile and Apparel, Technology and Management, 5 (4) , pp. 1-16.

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Since the days of the humble hose, knitwear has expanded into a revolutionary industry that is classified within the high fashion category. This paper presents an investigation into knitwear's evolution, which can only be described as remarkable from functional items of clothing to fashionable cutting edge styling utilizing the most advanced technology. The first obvious sign of knitwear changing its role from functional to fashionable, occurred during the latter part of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century, and since then knitwear has never looked back. The 1920s brought about the birth of the classic twin -set promoted strongly by the English gentry and reinforced by a huge advertising campaign that pushed knitwear irrevocably to the forefront of fashion. The 30s remained quiet in terms of knitted fashion whilst the knitwear industry struggled to survive against the cheaper foreign imports. By the mid 30s the industry had recovered and had become ever more directional. However, it was not until after the second world war that a strong push was made in terms of design education to promote knitwear as a fashion item in its own right (rather than a mere accessory). Post the Second World War, fabric was in abundance and the classic knitted twin-set once again became high fashion with American film stars promoting the sophisticated image of knit. What a pity by the time we arrived at the forward thinking 50s we had not yet developed the electronics to support the innovation. Pioneers in the field of 3-D development were hindered by the lack of technology during this period and to some extent the technology did not materialize until the birth of the new millennium.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Schools > No Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Journal of Textile and Apparel, Technology and Management
Publisher: NC State University
ISSN: 1533-0915
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Prof Jess Power
Date Deposited: 21 Mar 2022 16:22
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2022 09:01

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