Croft Knitwear designed by Commission3 February,2015
Opinion by Richard Baird.
Croft is a contemporary men’s knitwear brand that specialises in high quality cashmere and soft wool garments. These are available exclusively through online retailer Superdemin. Each garment is hand knitted on Scotland’s Shetland Islands by crofters, a name given to those using traditional small-scale production processes within small communities unique to the Highlands. Alongside a new logo, design studio Commission worked with photographer Luke Evans to create a range of campaign imagery that would avoid heritage pastiche, and instead, favours a contemporary simplicity.
Although the logo’s mix of wool iconography and stencil cut serif characters is a well-balanced mix of utility, quality, tradition and a reminder of origin and process – achieving a lot with very little – and the black block foil and uncoated board of the tags an effective leveraging of the established perceptions of quality and regionality, it is the imagery that really sets the tone.
The photography, sculpted from knitwear, is a neat, and as far as I am aware, original idea. These are set and captured incredibly well with plenty of variation and a clear appreciation for proportion, light, shade and texture, as well as the landscapes that these reference, capturing the large open spaces, rolling hills and climbing mountains of Scotland but also the very fine detail of the material.
The choice of colour is unusual. Where you might have expected earthy greens, grey is favoured, layering the images with a cool, raw and overcast quality. This is then reinforced by the addition of a haze, giving the images a sense of low lying cloud but also, and more importantly, the perception of scale. It is easy to imagine these embracing seasonality through colour.
Much like the logo, Luke Evans’ photography makes a connection between modern luxury and the traditional origins, utility and warmth wool has afforded those living in cold and harsh climates for hundreds of years, and effectively ties together garment and its provenance with a single, emotive and creative image.
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