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EDE Knitwear: An interview with Ellie Jauncey

EDE knitwear is lovingly designed by Ellie Jauncey and handmade by a team of Herefordshire based knitters.

Written by Amelia Gregory

EDE men's moss jumper by Claire Corstorphine
EDE men’s moss jumper by Claire Corstorphine.

EDE was founded in 2009 by Ellie Jauncey. Having studied Textiles at Manchester Metropolitan University and specialising in Knitwear she moved to London and spent a good few years working in soul-less fashion roles. Two redundancies in a year later and the penny finally dropped, why work for other people when you can work for yourself? Paying homage to her mother’s maiden name she started EDE, which is a knitwear label specialising in simple, modern clothing, inspired by traditional shapes and designs – and all made in England. She quickly formed a team of knitters, all living in and around Herefordshire (where she grew up) and using their incredible skills, produced the first collection.

EDE Knitwear bramble cornflower
EDE by Jamie Wignall
EDE by Jamie Wignall.

EDE is now in it’s third year and the A/W 2012 collection is made up of two styles of men’s jumpers, two women’s and the signature item, the BIG scarf. As well as running EDE, Ellie is also the co-founder of The Flower Appreciation Society, which you can read about here. She’s a busy, multi-talented lady, but I caught up with her to find out a bit more behind her second inspiring enterprise.

Ede Clothing Knitwear by Dom&Ink
Ede Clothing Knitwear by Dom&Ink.

How did you find your knitters?
I advertised in the local paper and put notices up in post offices and corner shops. 

EDE Knitwear Valentine and fisherman rib
They are all over 60 – do you think that despite the current renaissance in knitting most knitting is still an “old” pastime? Are we losing skills?
I think knitters who are over 60 approach it in a different way, it’s much more a part of their lives than for my generation who see it more as an occasional hobby. All my knitters need to knit, they’ve done it all their lives, it a bit of an addiction. They also grew up in a time when you knitted to clothe your family, it was the norm. Unlike today where the majority of people pop down to Primark instead. Saying that lots of my friends knit and even more want to learn to knit. Re-learning skills is definitely on the up! 

EDE Knitwear by Wiji Lacsamana
EDE Knitwear by Wiji Lacsamana.

Where do you sell your jumpers?
I sell through my website and this Christmas I am selling exclusively through the YCN shop.

Ede Clothing Knitwear Man by Dom&Ink
Ede Clothing Knitwear Man by Dom&Ink.

You’ve had some high profile press – for instance Little Mix looked super stylish in your jumpers for an editorial – did your previous jobs in fashion help to develop good contacts? How do you ensure good press? 
Not really, I’ve worked really hard at getting press. If you have a product which you believe in and you’re proud of then it’s easy to approach the press with it and sell yourself. It also helps a lot having wonderful friends like Fred Butler who constantly put you forward for things! 

EDE Knitwear Moss jumper
What is special about your big scarf?
Well probably that it’s so big and soft oh and also the colour choices. I always wanted a plain, block colour scarf which was a bit like a blanket and couldn’t find one anywhere so thought i should make one.  

EDE Knitwear bramble jumper
How do you manage both businesses at the same time? What are your top tips for an easy life?
Managing both businesses is a bit of a juggling act at times, you have to be pretty organised, which i’m working on!! I couldn’t do it with out the support of my wonderful flower partner, Anna. My top tips for an easy life are to make sure you are happy in your working environment – moving studios has changed my life and made working so much more productive and enjoyable. My other top tip is to swim in a lido as often as you can, it makes you feel wonderful.

EDE Knitwear moss
What inspires you when you are designing?
Colour and old things.  

EDE Knitwear By Lucy Freegard
EDE Knitwear by Lucy Freegard.

What next? Any other business plans? 
My next plan is to develop printing on to knit and i’m going to start doing ‘little EDE’, my kids range, again.

Sod Little Mix, I can’t wait to see what Little EDE will bring!

EDE Knitwear by Shy Illustrations
EDE Knitwear by Shy Illustrations.


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