Marks & Spencer, together with Oxfam, will be celebrating Wool Week with a live knitting installation in their Marble Arch store featuring New York artist Andrew Salomone.The campaign, part of the retailer’s Shwopping initiative, will feature Salomone, who is famed for mixing computer technology and traditional knitting craft, using his ‘hacked’ digitally programmed knitting machine to produce customised pieces of knitwear.
Salomone will be knitting live in store from October 15-16 on jumpers donated to Oxfam through the retailer’s sustainable fashion partnership Shwopping, producing designs that the public has tweeted into @shwopping using the hashtag #woolweek.
Mark Sumner, M&S Plan A Sustainable Raw Material Expert, said: “Wool Week is a celebration of the global wool industry and M&S is proud to be a part of it.
“Wool is one of the most environmentally friendly and sustainable of fibres and we hope our work with Andrew Salomone will give customers a chance to see how, through Shwopping, they can give their unwanted woollen items a future.”
Commenting on taking part in the installation, Salomone added: “I am delighted to be part of Marks & Spencer’s Shwopping initiative; it is a truly ambitious approach to a sustainable fashion retailing future. I can’t wait to see the concepts the British public have up their sleeves – the possibilities, like with Shwopping, really are endless.”
Earlier this week, M&S announced the first item of clothing to hit stores as a direct result from Shwopping - The Shwop Coat, which has been made from wool that has been recycled from unwanted items brought to stores.
Image: The Shwop Coat
Update 15 October 2012: Sadly New York based artist Andrew Salomone will no longer be able to participate in the M&S live knitting installation for Wool Week. Andrew, who has been working closely with M&S on the project over the past couple of months, is unfortunately not well enough to travel.