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Title: The knitter's tale : a practice-led approach to framework knitting through a contemporary exploration of traditional practices, patterns, skills and stories
Author: Wood, R. E.
Awarding Body: Nottingham Trent University
Current Institution: Nottingham Trent University
Date of Award: 2013
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This thesis presents the findings of the practice-led investigation which documented the processes of learning the skills of framework knitting, using traditional techniques to establish creative dialogues between Academic, Industrial and Heritage institutions. The investigation was conducted using active researcher participation to determine the contribution that personal experience can make to ‘experiential knowing’. This research was supported by a Collaborative Doctoral Award from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) which set the parameters of the inquiry to include creative interaction with locations where framework knitting still takes place. The study supported the preservation of technical skill by establishing a new way to value expert craft knowledge which was used to inspire contemporary creative practice. Through a process of creative learning and reflection, this study used naturalistic observations to identify evidence of creative decision-making and technical skill, which was further supported by the analysis of knitted artefacts and previously unseen workman’s notebooks which were used to identify pattern inspirations, stitch counts and construction methods. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with existing hand frame practitioners, to record their personal experiences of framework knitting. The shortage of knowledgeable experts was a significant limitation to this investigation and therefore the interview testimonies were a vital contribution of primary evidence of practitioner knowledge which enabled creative narratives to develop. The narratives explored themes of Inspiration, Exploration, Communication and Implementation, as well as Creative application. As the first study of its kind to investigate framework knitting beyond a historical or industrial context, this thesis contributes to a new field of creative knowledge which uses practitioner interaction and personal reflection to inform creative practice on the hand frame. This thesis highlights a contemporary direction for future practice-led inquiry using traditional craft skills and practices as a method of inspiring creative investigation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available