Today I am going to tell you a story…one of those I know really well!

I am talking about my family history and about the thread (in the end the thread is always our keyword) connecting the Hosio brand to a small knitting laboratory founded in 1962.

My parents, Erminio and Maria Rosa, started it all. They began with a laboratory next to their place and gradually, with great passion, determination and patience they became successful with the first important clients.

Needless to say, problems and concerns were plentiful, the work was demanding but their effort was great. Piece after piece they managed to change both their fate – becoming small businessmen – and mine, teaching me the ropes.

Clearly everyone is master of its own destiny, but if since childhood you breathe the air of a knitting laboratory, if at 2 or 3 years you nap in the same laboratory next to your mommy working at the knitting machine, or if as a teenager you spend most of your weekends shoulder to shoulder with your father to learn all the technical tricks, well, then we can truly call mine a spontaneous choice.

When in 2014 the Hosio brand was born, my first purpose was to protect and give continuity to all that my parents had built over time, to keep talking about quality, values, great knowledge but also about that kind of awareness you never stop learning.
When creating a new collection, I often recall my father’s words: ‘First of all you must like the knit you make; if you are ready to wear it, then it means also others will’.

Even though the current Hosio headquarters are no longer those of my parents laboratory, the ‘artistic laboratory’ is somehow always the same, we also kept some old sewing machines as our ‘security blanket’. Over time our teachings have been transmitted to our current staff and I consider this know-how the most important asset of my company.
My mother still watches over the laboratory and every morning she gives in to her ancient love. She keeps us company, doing some chores and tweaking our ears if we do not follow her instructions. If you do not believe it, here she is.

Oh no, I have shrunk my sweater!

We bet that this happened to you at least once in your life.

But who is really to blame?

Here we would like to clarify one point: It is never wool’s fault if a sweater shrinks. The human contribution to the end of your favorite garment is total.

So, after a ‘Mea Culpa’, read the reasons causing shrinking and felting:

  • Water temperature. That is to say a strong and sudden temperature change (remember that it should always be lukewarm!)
  • Spin-dryers
  • Dryers without programs suitable for wool

So let us recap:

With the effect of heat (i.e. hot air and water) and mechanical action, which promotes fiber shift (i.e. washing machine movements), fibers burst and bond to each other. That is why the garment becomes felted. The more valuable the wool is, the more the knitwear risks shrinking and felting. So when you say ‘the sweater has shrunk because of wool’s low quality’ the truth is exactly the opposite.

Even in the hopeless cases – for those who cannot refrain to put sweaters in the washing machine – there is hope! The market offers machine-washable yarns with an anti-felt finishing, which are less sensitive this kind of damages.

Another interesting point to consider is that felting, that is usually considered a problem, in the world of knitting is a feature obtained with the fulling process. (See the ‘The knitter’s tools’ article)

Fulling is simply an operation made on wool fabrics in order to give them special qualities of consistency, firmness, smoothness and softness. The result is technically obtained with simple water washings inside machines similar to washing machines, followed by a hot air drying process inside a special tumble, with variable temperatures up to 100°C.

Fulling also determines the knit’s hairiness. Even in this case water temperature and drying give the knit different features and levels of felting.

There’s a hole in my sweater!

We start this new post of the Hosio Blog with a good question: Do you think that garments made by knitting machines are free from defects?
Well, in general they are, but sometimes a fault may occur: For example it may happen to find a hole in the knit. In this case, the only option is whether you can repair it or not.

hosio_blog_italian_styleThe irreversible fault occurs in knitting when the thread breaks, in all other cases the defect is repairable through human intervention.
In our ‘artistic laboratory’ the person responsible of remedies for machine faults is known as ‘fairy hand’. She is the one who manually replicates with the greatest skill the perfect sequence of knit’s chains stitches and that with a painstaking work performs repairs where the machine has failed.

The real skill is therefore not in manufacturing garments without defects, but in knowing how to fix them.

And now comes the real curiosity. As in all things there are rules and exceptions.

The general rule is, of course, to produce garments without holes, but the exception wants holes to become a stylistic component. That is why in our latest collections we have specifically chosen to make knitwear with holes. Therefore holes, in addition of being defects, are also trendy elements especially when placed in knitting. In this case, we can also indulge in creating asymmetric or irregular holes for innovative and unexpected models.

Here below an example of one of our punctured items!

SS 18 – ‘Milano Unica’ Exhibition: Kitsch & Chic

As you know, the Hosio creativity machine never stops, so just few days after the presentation of the Fall/Winter 17-18 collection, we start over with the Spring/Summer 2018.

Besides Pitti Filati, the most appropriate event to catch ideas and trends relevant to the new collection is ‘Milano Unica’.

This year the most inspiring macro trends, both from the knitting, designs and colors points of view, were for me the following three:
1. The lightness, thinness and purity of the yarns matched and contaminated by an unusual richness of sophisticated processing obtained through embroidery and applications.
2. The Activewear while remaining a strong trend is to be considered just a co-star, maintaining a role in the aesthetic details but not in the functional ones. The need for a clothing linked to the urban functionality stands as an increasingly successful and effective trend.
3. The contamination of hyperrealistic jacquard, color plays of embroidery and applications will lead the Spring/Summer 18 Future Trend to a Kitsch & Chic style.

And now comes the most difficult task, giving voice to all these challenges and ideas according to the Hosio DNA, mixing the established features of #Hosiostyle with the current fashion trends. Can we make it?

Posterity will judge and we will raise again the matter in June 2017!