Olann
Claire-Anne O'Brien Friday 12 Oct 2012

Olann [meaning wool in Irish] is a new collection of handknitted wool furniture. Olann's takes inspiration from traditional Ireland, where fishing and knitting were at the heart of village life. Patterns are based on familiar elements such as Aran jumpers, fishing knots and willow baskets, re-imagined as a contemporary language of craft. Applied to simple furniture forms such as a bench, an ottoman and a chair, fabrics explore scale and construction using the unique properties of knit.

Each piece is knitted by a team of skilled homeworkers which keeps production local and the cottage industry tradition alive. Olann is made from a bespoke British wool, especially made by Laxtons Mill in Leeds, one of the oldest surviving spinners in the country. Natural materials such as coconut fibres, unspun wool and duck feathers have been used in place of more common upholstery materials such as polyester fillings and foam. Each piece is made by hand, unique, and infused with time and skill.

Originally from Co.Cork, Ireland, Claire-Anne O'Brien is a textile designer based in East London.

After graduating from Central Saint Martin's in 2006 with a BA in Textiles, Claire-Anne went on to gain an MA in Knitted Textiles at the Royal College of Art in 2010. In 2011 she recieved the Future Makers Award from the Crafts Council of Ireland.

With a sculptural approach to textiles, Claire-Anne explores form, construction and scale through the unique properties of knitted fabrics.