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Iconic Australian designer makes a new start with wool

Sheep Central, May 15, 2015
Jenny Kee has released a limited edition Merino wool collection. Photos: Georges Antoni.

Jenny Kee has released a limited edition Merino wool collection. Photos: Georges Antoni.

Iconic Australian designer Jenny Kee has made a new beginning in wool, with a limited edition Australian Merino capsule collection inspired by nature.

Working with the Woolmark Company and one of Australia’s single largest buyers of fine and superfine Merino wool, Zegna Baruffa, the new collection is reminiscent of her recognisable Australiana knitwear from the 1980s.

Australian Wool Innovation said Kee’s new collection, titled A New Beginning, is made from 100 percent Australian Merino wool and references seminal works from her vintage knitwear, including Blinky Knit – a modern adaption of the original Koala knit famously worn by Princess Diana on her visit to Australia in 1982 while pregnant with Prince William.

“As someone who made her name designing quality knitwear it has been a joy to bring my beloved knits back to life,” Ms Kee said.

Working with The Woolmark Company has been a very special experience because I was able to work with the finest Italian natural yarn and utilise modern knitting technology in a completely new way.

“This is a very limited edition capsule collection; only 50 pieces in each style,” she said.

“Representing my most favourite iconic designs, always inspired by Australian’s unique nature!”

Italian knitter complements Kee’s style

AWI said the Zegna Baruffa premium superfine Merino wool yarn complements Kee’s signature style, allowing for an extravaganza of colours and highlighting Merino wool’s superb colour fastness.

Previously, Kee would employ up to 40 knitters at a time, which could each have up to 30 balls of yarn to knit one jumper. A New Beginning differs from these original jumpers as digital knitting allows Kee to include an abundance of colour through a streamlined manufacturing process, AWI said.

Jenny Kee's Blinky Knit. PHOTOS: Georges Antoni.

Jenny Kee’s Blinky Knit. PHOTOS: Georges Antoni.

The Woolmark Company’s general manager for marketing and communications, Melissa Grace, said a key element of the partnership was to introduce Jenny to the new technologies available to produce a modern remake of her classic knitwear.

“It was a challenging but hugely satisfying experience for Jenny being in Hong Kong and meeting with TWC partner factories who were able to bring this collection to life.

“We are so pleased to see this collection in store and know that we helped Jenny make a piece of Australian fashion history.”

Jenny Kee’s A New Beginning Australian Merino wool collection is available in selected speciality stores locally and internationally as well as online at www.jennykee.com

Source: Australian Wool Innovation.

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