Fiber and Knit SS 2011 Trends

Courtesy of SPINEXPO New York

S/S 2011 reflects the desire for a change of direction and finding a new energy to move forward. There is a move away from cautious basics and a need to seek out more surface interest or something unusual.

Color 2011

The trend for a clean, fresh start or blank canvas is highlighted by the concept of white as the underlying message for the four trend families. The concept of white is also explored by creating a range of colours that reflect the trend of saturation and vibrancy versus washing down and whitening of colour into soft muted tones, so one trend can be translated to create very different unique effects.



Colours: A soft, muted palette of whitened neutrals and subtle tints, with a delicate touch of metallics.

Concept: Yoga and dance are an important influence, while looking at drape and volume working with function.

Fabrics: Sophisticated and delicate with fine textures and tonal plays of colour. The delicate and feminine are contrasted with abstracted, harder edged embellishments making the look modern and strong, but not too pretty. Comfort and ease balance with dressy to give a relaxed polished feel.

Yarns: Crisp, Dry, Delicate, Soft, Fluid, Extra fine, Peached and washed, Refined, Luxurious, Sheen vs. Matt, Glossy, Stretch, Subtlety textured.

Constructions: Micro textures and tucks, abstract pointelle, blown out crochet, subtle ombré stripes, drop stitches, architectural cables, folding and pleats, gathered effects, two-tone tucks, sheers and layering, crinkled looks, textures through yarn mixtures, open and gauzy.



Colours: A refreshing palette of blues - dark to light, accented with purple and enriched by deep red and yellow.

Concept: The story it tells is romantic but tough, pretty and crafted, with a slightly washed and worn feeling. The fabrics have a free open road spirit, with pretty embroideries, stripes and ginghams alongside tie-dyes, printed and denim-like finishes. A multi-layered feeling combining interesting textures, surfaces and print techniques all together in one look.

Yarns: Tie dye and space dye, Washed denim looks, Muted heather effects, Mercerized or glazed, Papery hand feels, Peached and washed handles, Crisp cottons, Open ended slubs and roving looks, Linens blended with soft yarns for a worn look, Textured, crinkly or surface interest.

Constructions: Chunky tuck ribs, tonal plaiting, double layered fabrics, finishing techniques such as printing and washing, hand crochet both fine and chunky, hand embroidery, mini checks, exposed seams, raw edges, patchwork, Aran cables, fisherman ribs.



Colours: Crisp white, navy & sharp greys combine with refreshing active brights and touches of neon that play in tonal combinations.

Concept: Activity and sport dominate this look. Stripes, colour blocking and athletic-style layering are modernized by creating ripples, waves and liquid looks. Draping and folding yarns and fabrics in new ways create origami effects. Technical functions are an important aspect to enhance expected performance. This story brings sporty looks into the mainstream for everyday wear.

Yarns: Matt and compact, Glossy and fluid, Crisp and dry, Technical properties, Stretch, Clean mercerized cottons, Fine viscose matt and shine, New technical finishes, Shimmery touches or metallic finishes, Polished and draped, Compact and super soft.

Constructions: Mini retro sport textures such as waffles, piques and thermal structures, pleats, engineered ribs, colour blocking and bold stripes, new argyles and graphic intarsia, spots and checks, ½ Milano and double knits for compact fabrics, piping and ripple stitches.



Colours: Deep saturated brights, rich and warm are grounded by honey-toned neutrals and a hint of gold.

Concept: A fusion of cultures, embracing a new sense of spirit, inspire plays on patterns and stripes, with bold graphic shapes, in both tonal and clashing colour combinations. Multi-textural surface effects and fabrics can be both relaxed and casual, through to a more glamorous touch that is achieved with yarn, shape and a shimmer of gold. A handcrafted element is essential, from embellishments to knitting techniques and yarn combinations.

Yarns: Sandy and dry, Chunky and pre-twisted, Textural, Marled and melanged, Shine contrasts with dry matt yarns, Natural elements, Slub or subtle texture, Vegetable dyes, Eco yarns such as organic, Novelty spinning such as chainettes, tape or thick and thin.

Constructions: Reverse textures, floats and woven looks, bold intarsia, naive embroidery, multi stripes, tuck stitches, textural stripes, hand made looks, hand knit and heavy crochet, beading and embellishment, blanket looks, exposed seams and finishes, purl and simple textures, relaxed open fabrics, Dyed and washed effects.

Activewear: A Dynamic Lifestyle

SPINEXPO recognized the growing market and importance of circular knits as an integrated part of fashion, and no longer restricted to active sports. Garments were created to allow freedom of movement, activity and comfort. Innovation in fabric composition and structure moved the idea of knits away from basics into fashionable standalone pieces.

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Dance: Lightness, grace, power, discipline, study, music, rhythm, steps, energy, harmony, flight. Yoga: Mind, body, soul, control, force, movement, balance, awareness, meditation, silence. Leisure: Air, freedom, running, comfort, freshness, technical, sun, breathing, fun, nature, quality. Sport: Activity, fit, colours, game, practice, line, score, club, health, British.

Looking To The Future

An area dedicated to student development and creativity and collaborated with Nottingham Trent University (United Kingdom) and Hong Kong Poly-U (Hong Kong), blended new technology, creative thinking and youthful global perspectives.

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The designs have been worked in a palette of whites, making the focus on yarn, fabric and detail innovations clearer with a focus on the creativity involved in developing new stitches, trims and surface interest.

Healthy Beginings

This forum focused on environmentally conscious textiles and designs for childrenswear. Natural fibres are preferable as they have sustainable benefits, are regenerative without the need of chemicals and once consumed will naturally biodegrade over time.

Organic farming and production has more impact on children than any other consumer group. Organic yarns create a healthier consumer product. Since skin can “breathe” and absorb what is placed on it into the body, the natural purity of organic wool and cotton greatly reduces the impact of harmful chemicals exposed to the skin’s surface.

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Cotton: soft, durable, cool to the touch and absorbs moisture, and when farmed organically is completely natural and pure.

Linen: The fibre flax plant grows more quickly than cotton and needs less chemical weed controls. It produces a strong, dirt resistant fabric that is exceptionally cool in summer.

Hemp: 100% natural with a dry handle, subtle sheen and natural drape. Cool in summer and repels 90% of UVA rays, yet warm in winter. Hemp is the most renewable fibre; it grows in any soil and climate and is repellent to insects, requiring few chemicals to grow.

Bamboo: the softest fabric imaginable, is highly breathable, keeps you cool in summer and warm in winter due to its unique structure. Bamboo grows fast, has a massive yield and doesn’t require any pesticides or fertilizers.

Soya and Milk Protein: a fibre that has a soft handle and lustre similar to that of silk. A particularly good fibre for blending with other natural fibres giving them added natural lustre and drape and softness.

Wool, Cashmere and fine animal fibres are naturally breathable and absorb water away from the body. When using fine microns they form the basis of the softest and most luxurious fibres. Their production uses fewer chemicals than other fibres, reducing water pollution throughout the product supply chain.


OE standard (Organic Exchange): certifies that the organic cotton produced meets with their standards

GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard): awarded by Control Union who are the certification body to help govern the sourcing and processing of fibres from organic agriculture and the production of sustainable textile products.

Oeko-tex Standard 100.: assures the yarns are free of concentrations of harmful substances that are detrimental to health and the environment.

This report is from the 15th edition of SPINEXPO Shanghai, held March 9th-11th, 2010, showcased the Spring/Summer 2011 collections of over 140 top-level textile and fibre promoters from 16 countries.

The Trend Forum was conceptualized by SPINEXPO in conjunction with Sophie Steller Studio, who coordinated a team of designers, manufacturers and universities to create an energetic research area with a range of garments and fabrics for Sping/Summer 2011 that blends inspirational design with commercial reality for a 21st century lifestyle.

**Sophie Steller (UK) **specializes in all aspects of knitwear design, yarn, colour and trend research and has a passion for sustainability issues and the impact of textiles on the environment.

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