The invisible details of knitwear label Ply-Knits
To say that knitwear is in designer Carolyn Yim’s blood would only account for some of the passion she brings to her womenswear label, Ply-Knits. Yim’s family are veterans in the knitwear manufacturing business. In addition to helping clients like Givenchy, Max Mara, Christian Dior and Ralph Lauren manufacture knitwear from their bases in Hong Kong and China today, Yim’s grandmother (and founder of the family business) most notably made an embroidered bias-cut pointelle gown for John Galliano and Dior Couture in the late ’90s.
Ply-Knits S/S 2018
For Ply-Knits, Yim combines both these facets of her family background to create quiet yet impactful pieces. Her poetic collections fuse technical expertise with a classic artistry, not only on the stylish surface, but on the textile level as well. Primarily made from deadstock yarn because of its superior quality, each Ply-Knits piece is designed for comfort, durability and wearability – characteristics that are all supported by the type of knit used.
For example, the label’s signature knit pant is made from a finely tuned merino wool and cashmere mix that possesses just the right tension to offer support and a sleek fit, while simultaneously being water repellent (thanks to the natural properties of wool) and armed with a sensual feel that wearers will be able to enjoy day after day.
‘We really work with the materials and make our own textiles each and every time,’ explains Yim of her detail-oriented manufacturing process, which often begins with an assessment of the vintage yarns and experimenting with different knitting and spinning techniques to create the right fabric. ‘We believe in the integrity of the textiles to hold the structure of every garment.’
Although Yim’s in-depth knowledge of knitwear sits at the heart of the label, Ply-Knits’ understated but detail-oriented aesthetic is just as alluring. With standout pieces including a herringbone-ribbed, mandarin scholar’s mock-neck top in techno cotton and a correspondent’s jacket in a merino wool and viscose mix that retains its polish despite long hours of travelling, Ply-Knits’ offerings easily fit into any well-appointed wardrobe.
Filled with invisible details, such as elastic thread or reinforced waistbands to support regular wear, along with unexpected knit patterns that bestow minimalist styles with a seductive impact, Ply-Knits redefines everyday luxury with its holistic design approach.
‘I think each garment should function as architecture and it should make the human body look good,’ Yim reflects. ‘I design intuitively, but am also influenced by industrial design principles. Dieter Rams’ “Ten Principles of Good Design” is something I always come back to.’