Shibui SS15: Interview with Shellie Anderson

I look forward to it every year—the launch of new patterns and yarns from Shibui! While fall and winter are eternally a knitter’s favorite seasons, I love seeing what interesting garments the team at Shibui Knits comes up with for the warmer weather ahead. Especially since the weather is finally showing signs of spring outside, too.

This season marks a new era from Shibui, featuring patterns designed in-house rather than by independent designers. While we’re sure that many designers will continue to collaborate with Shibui on patterns, it’s exciting to see a collection so originally Shibui without any outside influences. I interviewed Shellie Anderson, the Product Development Manager at Shibui Knits, about the work that the design team put in to make this season’s knits special.

This is the first collection that the design team has done entirely in-house! How was the process different this time around?

It is a collaborative effort of our design team to generate design ideas and give input in the final design concept. I then take those ideas and create the piece and write the pattern. It’s a very creative and exciting process.

Technically this season marks the end of the Mix titled collections. What changes and what can we expect from this season’s patterns?

The Mix concept will never go away—it’s the foundation of our brand. While we’re no longer labeling our collections as Mix, we’ll continue mixing the yarns to create beautiful fabrics. We are also offering more multiple fabric/yarn choices within a single pattern, enabling the knitter to customize the garment to her tastes.

Tell us more about what we will see in the SS15 collection. What yarns have been featured, what influenced this collection?

Inspiration comes from everywhere, but a lot of this collection is based on shapes that we wanted to wear and design. Spring and summer can be a bit more challenging to design for. However, I’m really fortunate to have such great yarns to work with that support these seasons. Our Linen, Kavo, and now Twig, are very well suited for lighter weight garments. Of course, we featured all three in this collection. We also mixed these yarns with Cima and Pebble—a great new combination is Pebble + Kavo. We featured that fabric in our Axis design in this collection.

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Tell us about Twig! It’s the newest yarn in the Shibui lineup.

Our team put a lot of time and effort into getting all aspects of Twig just right. I think we were able to come up with the perfect blend: 46% linen, 42% recycled silk, 12% wool. I believe our fulfillment team nicknamed it Twig before the decision was made, but the description says it all:

“It bends and bows with grace, like new branches in the Spring. It knits up into a beautiful fabric—soft and cool, with the kind of drape that is simply effortless. This yarn is impeccable as a standalone and entirely mixable.”

I love the texture of this yarn! It’s just enough to give the fabric interest without being overpowering. It’s awesome by itself, although my current favorite combination is Twig + Cima.

What else can we expect from Shibui this year?

Of course, I can’t give away any big secrets, but I can say that we’re very focused on showing the versatility of patterns and fabrics this year. We’ll be showcasing different combinations inside of single patterns. Apex, a new SS15 pattern I mentioned earlier, features three fabric options: Linen, Kavo, or the Cima + Twig combination.

With a new yarn to play with and a full collection of beautiful patterns, we’ve no doubt that Shellie and the rest of the design team will continue to surprise us with the clean, modern, and creative products and patterns that Shibui does so well!

March 03, 2015 by Hannah Thiessen
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