Back to the Future at Ruddington Framework Knitters Museum
In recent years, it appears that knitting has had something of a renaissance with knitting clubs being set up and new people taking up the pastime.
Well it’s all beginning to play quite nicely for local attraction Ruddington Framework Knitters Museum who have been the inspiration behind a current project at Nottingham Trent University to expand on the appeal.
Lucy McLoughlin, an undergraduate at the University has been awarded a £2,500 bursary to help explore the idea of promoting industrial knitting to primary school children. Should the concept be successful, there are broader plans to expand into secondary schools and colleges.
The textile industry has been a central part of Nottinghamshire’s heritage – from its dominance of the Lace Industry in the nineteenth century, to fashion designer Sir Paul Smith.
For those of us that think textiles are all dealt with by China these days though think again. Students from Nottingham Trent University’s fashion knitwear design course have been awarded bursaries from The Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters, every year for the past four years.
Graduate Leona Gardner-Chan – who was awarded the bursary in 2008 for research into whether spider silk could be a potentially viable “super-fibre” for use in textiles – is currently working for Hugo Boss in knitwear collection development for the Boss Black Woman line in Switzerland.
Lucy, who completed a three month placement at Ruddington Framework Knitters Museum last year, commented: “During my placement I helped demonstrate the Griswold circular knitting machines to young pupils who would work together to make scarves. It was a great to see their enthusiasm and that they enjoyed knitting. This was the inspiration for my proposal.”
George Turner, chair of the awards committee at the Worshipful Company of Framework Knitters, commented: “Nottinghamshire is the cradle of the knitting industry so we are always pleased to see students from Nottingham Trent University adding to the rich textile and fashion heritage of the county.
Lucy is now concentrating on her studies and hopes to continue in the knitwear field after she graduates.