When I first met the owners of the knitwear factory a year ago, I felt really comfortable and at ease with our interaction and I was very happy with the level of quality they were able to produce. This was further proven by the number of international clients they have from America, Europe and Japan.
It was really important that I have good chemistry with the people I work with and to hear their story. When they were able to understand what I wanted to achieve and was in line with my vision, I knew I had to come back to work with them.
Fast forward to today, almost a week into my production trip, I have learnt so much. They are so open to my ideas and so generous in educating me on the whole production process. Going to the workshop with them has built understanding and confidence in manufacturing support and it gives me a peace of mind as I design. Everyday I’m just so thankful to be able to experience this and be surrounded with people who appreciate a well made piece of knitwear.
So here’s what I’ve been doing till this point.
Firstly, I had to go through the many sample booklets of yarns that they have from the different spinners. Similar with choosing fabrics, just that now you’re focussing on the content and fineness of the yarns that is going to be knitted.
While waiting for the yarns to arrive, I went through all the different knitting patterns and existing samples and started to add in the finer details into my designs. Learning about the variety of textures that can be achieved with the different knitting gauges was very important to my design process.
When the yarns arrived, I discussed meticulously with one of the masters that I wanted to create a two tone knit with irregular patterns. Then we started creating the sample swatch by hand with a 12gg machine which was the lowest it can go for a two tone knit. The finest being 16gg which is going to be for my solid color pieces. I am so happy with how it turned out! With the swatch confirmed, we have started with the actual sampling of the garment.
This is the machine that completes a fully fashioned garment. Every seam is joined with a knitted yarn and the final step is always finished by hand, stitch by stitch, closing up the ends. Every step is precise and masterfully done. It is beautiful to watch and learn their craft.
Being on this production trip has not all been smooth. I arrived on Thursday and fell really sick on Saturday. I caught a major cold and was coughing very badly. I got some medication from a pharmacy and decided to get as much rest as I could over the weekend. I was worried that it was going to delay my progress and I was not going to get as much out of the trip as I could. Thankfully the medications worked and I was able to head back to the factory on Tuesday and move forward.
I cannot wait to show you all my samples soon! Till the next time we meet, take care.
Location: Changping, Dongguan