“My work is very personal to me. I improvise and allow myself to loose control and see what happens if I do not think to much about practical things. The human body is always the starting point. I am really fascinated by all the ways you can highlight, distort and transform the natural silhouette with clothes and accessories. I build my garments from a couple of basic bricks which I multiply and attach in differnt ways to discover the shape that I want. It was of course a big step for me to go from working alone in my studio, inventing pieces while doing them myself by hand, to suddenly be working with a team of experts within a field of knitwear that I never before have had the chance to get to know. I was overwhelmed by all the possibilities I saw and even though I will never give up doing my hand knitted pieces, I now see how to develop my collections in ways that I never thought was possible.”
Originally from Umea in the North of Sweden, designer Sandra Backlund now lives in Stockholm after attending Beckmans College of Design in Stockholm. She learned how to knit from her grandmother when she was a child. She has since turned that skill into an art form all her own. She starts every design with the human body, and from there she thinks of ways in which she can highlight, distort and transform the body’s natural silhouette with clothing. Her approach to her garments has a more sculptural root in that everything stems from a few basic bricks that are then multiplied and attached to one another in order to achieve the desired shape.
She prides herself in the handicraft process and the handmade feeling of her pieces. After having experimented with a variety of materials and techniques, she found her ideal form of self-expression in the heavy wool collage knitting that has captivated the fashion industry. Now 33, the designer stared her own label in 2004 and has won the 2008 Swedish Elle Award, the 2005 FutureDesignDays award for up-and-coming talent, and worked with Louis Vuitton on several knitwear pieces of the label’s fall/winter 2007-08 collection.
Whether you covet one of Backlund’s amazing creations for your own personal wardrobe or simply admire the sheer genius of them, Sandra Backlund is a designer’s designer whose passion lies in the creation and not the commercialism.
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