Caroline has worked in fashion design for over a decade and what she doesn't know about knitwear, isn't worth knowing. We borrowed some of her time to ask her some important questions about knitwear.
I don't like Wool pullovers, which styles do you suggest?
So many people are sensitive to wool, you are not alone! It's pretty common not to like wool and why a significant portion of our knitwear range is a cotton blend. My favourite composition is 60% Cotton, 30% Nylon 10% Wool. The yarn is hardwearing, has a low rate of pilling and is great for everyday wear. Our best sellers are often made from this yarn, as well as our mini me range.
If you want more of a winter yarn (with a warmer hand feel) then I would go with the 60% Cotton, 30% Nylon, 10% Merino Wool, in the chunkier knits like Soft Touch Cable Pullover or Bracken Roll Neck. They're super-soft and cotton based.
Will you have another knitwear pop up shop in Torquay?
Maybe. I'm designing next year's collection at the moment and there are a lot of samples floating round the office that will need new homes. It'll be dependent on time available.
Will you be getting anymore Breton Stripe Pullovers?
Sorry, no! I place one production order a year and when it's sold out it's gone! This is for a multitude of reasons
- We don't want to over-produce
- we are a small business so there is significant risk involved
- while I think I know what we will sell, I'm never 100% correct!
You can still shop the Breton Stripe in the Chloe cardigan, which is now on sale.
I washed my Merino jumper in the washing machine, what do I do?
Is there a detergent that you think is best (the most gentle) for washing knitwear?
When I hand wash my items I just use washing up liquid. It's gentle and effective.
If I have a stain on my knitwear, what's the most effective, but gentle way to clean it?
I would just try a spot clean with some washing up liquid. If that doesn't work you could try something a bit stronger like stain remover, but I would be really gentle. The harder you rub the fibers, the more you will speed up the rate of pilling.
Help, my knit is flat on the drying rack but has really stretched!!! It is so full of water.
Before you lay the knit flat on the rack, roll it in a towel to absorbe all the excess water. The towel should get really wet in the process. Or, you can put it on a spin cycle in your machine. The first method is kinder to the knit.
How often should I wash my knitwear? Is it ok to wash it after every wear?
Definitely not! Normally, we have some sort of layer between us and the knit so the knit stays quite clean. I would only wash your knits when you really feel like they need to be washed. This will keep them in the best condition.
I often have to wash mine after every wear as Monty (baby 2) is a spewy baby. So, I choose the more hardwearing yarns, like the 60% Cotton blend.
Which knitwear shapes are the most timeless?
I want to invest in a piece of knitwear, which piece will I get the most value from?
It's hard to tell from online pictures, but which is Maxted's softest fabric?
Which wool knitwear is the most itchy and best to avoid?
Our Lambs' Wool blend is the most traditional style of yarn we work with and can be a little itchy on sensitive skin. Once you are used to it, you don't notice it!
Why did you choose to design knitwear in Australia, a country renowned for its warm weather and beaches?
Warm?! I don't think so! It's bloody cold here, in Victoria.
In Victoria, we're lucky enough to experience all of the seasons, including the colder ones. Our winters are typically between 6.5 - 14.2°C. NSW and Adelaide are similar and even lightweight knits are useful in places like QLD. There are countless brands selling swimwear and summer wear to us Aussies, but I wanted to design something different. A collection inspired by my British heritage that could benefit Australians.
Who are some Australian brands that you think compliment Maxted's knitwear?