Pitti Filati 83

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All Things Bright and Beautiful for 2019/20 

Winter 2019/20 at Pitti Filati #83 saw wool in fine qualities and thicker yarns, used with other animal hair and techno synthetics for different effects. Janet Prescott reports from Florence

Pitti Immagine Filati #83 in Florence is the most internationally important fair for luxury and top-quality yarns, trends in colour, texture and ideas in the wind. Major trends indicate the potential of new developments in fibre blends, yarn spinning and technology and the fashion influences which will affect fashion. Winter 2019/20 wool was the most important fibre, in fine qualities and thicker yarns, used with other animal hair and techno synthetics for different effects.

Most of the exhibitors at Pitti Filati emphasised a substantial sustainability angle embedded in their businesses, like green philosophers Botto Giuseppe, Loro Piana, Filpucci, or Sesia Manifatture which have long-term, long-established systems in place, stretching from the land and raw materials to processing water use in production and monitoring dyestuffs, all carefully certificated.

Pitti’s Feel the Yarn, Elementa Moda, competition is growing in importance each year, bringing together student designer from top universities in Asia and Europe, teamed up with top Italian spinners and able to show their imaginative designs on the theme of ‘Hybridization’ to an international audience. This year’s winner studying at the Royal College of Art was Margot Vaaderpass using Industria Italiana Filati yarns, who received the generous monetary award provided by Südwolle Group.

Trends for Autumn/Winter

Fluffier and thicker yarns, in bright cheery colours often with a strong hippy, 1960s element, sought out to give a light and airy feel.  Thicker and more substantial wool yarns to enable the knitting of rounder and airier knits.  The athleisure trend has also seen stronger, thicker and elastic yarns coming into play, says Botto Giuseppe.

Superfine and extrafine Merino wool yarns predominant,  sometimes blended with smaller amounts of other exotic animal hair like alpaca, yak, possum or mohair for feel and softness.

Natural-colour undyed wools; light and shade in undyed wool is   exploited in complicated patterning, facilitated by the rise of seamless knitting.   In response, there was much interest in British wool, and breed yarns, at first timers Shepley Yarns, Yorkshire, also returning Knoll Yarns and JC Rennie with characteristic Shetland qualities.

Soft blurry looks wool and soft fibre qualities, with airy constructions and softness, including pixelated surfaces obtained by brushing. The luxury aspect of yarns is visible and tangible, wool blended with cashmere or silk.

Shine. Lots of glitter with tiny paillettes, silk mixes and dark, shiny looks, black and gold, embedded in the yarn or twisted with Lurex, nylon, silk or shiny copper looks. In razzmatazz collections like Millefili as well as refined, delicate looks in Merino wool yarns from Zegna Baruffa,

 Thicker, soft yarns are brushed and knitted in lacy designs, some with hanging ribbons or threads, Südwolle’s Biella Yarn combining natural fibres with performance man-made - 40%recycled polyester with Extrafine Merino.

The Spazio Ricerca – research area - sees designers studying concepts from the mills expanded by designer Angelo Figus and knitwear expert Nicola Miller, staged by Alessandro Moradei. This time embellished with video and images targeting the I-generation who live through technology and the screen. 

Bright colours, also subtle mixes of cooler tones, interpreted in fancy yarns and with fascinating examples of intricate stitches from micro to large mesh.   Pinks, orange, peach, yellow, turquoise, bright red. Shine from silver and gold foil, airy looks, with elements of stretch and contrasting textures.

A two-dimensional display of poster- like portraits had at their core a phone screen-shaped hole where people could reach through and touch the fabrics – a sort of arcane I-joke to appeal to the younger generation. 



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