Mark Fast discusses the wonderful world of wool
The Campaign for Wool, established in 2010, is a global movement that aims to show as many people as possible the benefits and versatility of wool in fashion. As a now neglected fibre in the industry, the campaign is trying to bring back wool, and is doing a pretty good job in raising awareness. Their patron being none other than HRH The Prince of Wales.
With a global community of sheep farmers, retailers, designers and manufacturers, the campaign, which is funded by the Woolmark Company, American Wool Council and many other companies, also supports many small businesses and local farmers whose livelihoods depend on the wool industry.
At Somerset House, a talk on The Campaign for Wool featured many guest speakers, including textile experts and designer Mark Fast. The talk started with a variety of spokes-people for the campaign discussing the importance of wool in fashion, and all its wondrous properties: “…It’s so versatile – it can keep you warm in the winter, and cool in the summer!”
As Mark Fast rose to answer some questions on his own work, he claimed he discovered knitwear during his foundation year. He told us that wool has “many great qualities, but it can be a bit techy”. He also spoke about his feelings on the importance of machinery in the industry, as without it, we wouldn’t be as advanced in fashion as we are today.
In five years, Fast said he hopes to be evolving the technology to develop his more edgy and young Fast line. As he answered the audience’s questions, Fast gave hints that he was planning on maybe looking into starting a new menswear line but for the moment, he is “focused on womenswear”. He also told us he is interested in developing technologies for the advancement of wool, an example being Merino Stretch (stretchy wool).
So it is evident that The Campaign for Wool is doing big things and going to big places, and there is no doubt we might be seeing a lot more of the fibre during coming fashion weeks. With big supporters and fans, wool is set to dominate the fashion world once again. Remember that big wool installment on the London Harvey Nichols store?
Photos: Marium Ul-Haq
Check out the Campaign for Wool website here.