Designer's journey fostered by The Woolmark Company

17 May 2013

The Woolmark Company has helped Dutch designer Nanna van Blaaderen present her first international collection in Paris. Her international debut garnered support from visitors, new private clients and the media including French Vogue.

Nanna van Blaaderen’s collection presentation at Institut Néerlandais, Paris
Nanna van Blaaderen’s collection presentation at Institut Néerlandais, Paris.

Since the launch of the high-end fashion and home wear eponymous label in 2011, there has been an increasing international demand for the label’s designs. The collection presentation at Institut Néerlandais showed three different collections, all of which were inspired by nature and animal life

Van Blaaderen’s fashion collection Living Species was inspired by African wildlife. In tactile knitted textiles made from Merino wool in natural shades of beige, grey and off-white, this collection reflects the beauty of different species. Living Species consists of garments with sophisticated silhouettes, elegant lines and forms. It presents a new, natural textile concept for fashion design and an alternative to fur.

A home wear collection was also launched titled Species Living, with inspiration also drawn from African wildlife. The collection consists of plaids, carpets, cushions and wall hangings in soft textiles and designs. Patterns of zebra, leopards, snakes and other African wildlife dominate this woollen collection in subtle, tactile structures, textures and natural colours – which act as recurring elements of this collection.
The third Nanna van Blaaderen collection presented was titled Dense, consisting of hand-knitted garments and inspired by the relationship between the human body and fabrics. Experimenting with techniques, thick soft Merino wool and dense shapes and forms, this collection of oversized garments plays with elements of softness, warmth and elegance.

The Woolmark Company country manager for Benelux, Ingrid Oomen, said Nanna van Blaaderen nearly works exclusively with Merino wool.

“Nanna is a firm believer in Merino wool and uses almost no other materials,” Ms Oomen said. “She has been in contact with The Woolmark Company for the past three years and I have seen her grow to the level she is at now. Nanna started developing her own knits and now has both fashion and interiors collections.”

The Woolmark Company works with designers such as Nanna van Blaaderen to help educate a new generation about the benefits of Merino wool and inspire designers to work with the fibre.