Designer of the Month: Carla Herrig and the joys of knitting

Sophie Soukias
SLT OKT23 MAKER carla herrig2

| Carla Herrig.

Right now at MAD Brussels, you can see work by the winners of the Graduation Show 2023. One of the talented young artists is Carla Herrig (29), who travelled from Cologne to Brussels to master the art of knitting.

Having been to Brussels during an Erasmus exchange, the German artist Carla Herrig returned in 2022 to begin a master's in knitting at the Académie des Beaux-Arts. Now graduated, she dreams of working in the Belgian capital. “What I really want is to develop knitting designs, keep sitting at my knitting machine, and use my hands.”

If you had to convince apprentice designers to do a master's degree in knitting, what would you tell them?
Knitting offers a surprising range of possibilities. For example, for my Flux collection, I experimented with reimagining pullovers and cardigans by applying 3D industrial techniques to domestic knitting machines. If you think about it, it's mad that a single thread can create an entire outfit. Also, there is a sustainable dimension to knitting that is easily overlooked. You can take a knitted piece and undo it completely to create something totally different, without anyone being able to tell what it was before.

"If you think about it, it's mad that a single thread can create an entire outfit"

Carla Herrig

Is the sustainable dimension important to you?
Yes, and it clearly played a part in the path I chose. Before, I worked a lot with unsold items but what I love about knitting and unravelling is that everything happens in the background. The ethical aspect of the clothes is implicated in the design, but it is not the defining feature of the design itself.

Out of all your collections, what is your favourite piece?
My first knitted piece. A pair of orange pants in an exaggerated circular shape that I made for my O collection. That collection, designed for my bachelor's degree in Fashion Design in Halle in Germany, evoked the roundness of our mother Earth. I love the radical dimension to this piece. The real power of knitting lies in transforming geometric forms into organic forms. There is nothing more beautiful than a 2D knitted piece that assumes volume when it is placed on a body.

Instagram: @carla.herrig

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