Meet the Loaners

Meet Lydia Morrow artist, knitwear designer and model

Interview by Anna Dewhirst
November 1, 2022

We caught up with knitwear designer, artist and model Lydia Morrow at SLOW THREADS is Glasgow to learn more about her creative process and what inspires her work.

Tell us a bit out your work and what inspires you.

The work that I make is mostly knitwear, its all handmade. I'm inspired by a lot on different things like one of my really big things is poetry and using words and phrases on clothing as a way to identify your sense of self and the idea of clothes as a way to communicate what you want to say when you're not feeling able to say it.

Alok wearing Lydia Morrow's handknitted dress, can you see yourself
@alokvmenon wearing Lydia Morrow hand knitted dress, available to rent on LOANHOOD

I like the idea of sharing the creative process with people which is why I think knitwear design is quite fun because you don't have to take complete ownership and people are able to collaborate with you which is really cool.



These two pieces (points to her outfit) are inspired by two different charity shop baby jumpers I found. I also design knitting patterns, a lot of my stuff I've been designing lately is just like stuff that I can imagine people having a really good time exploring their own creative vision through. This jumper (Lydia lifts up the project she has been knitting while we chat) is going to have three different colour work options so that people can choose. I like the idea of sharing the creative process with people which is why I think knitwear design is quite fun because you don't have to take complete ownership and people are able to collaborate with you which is really cool.

@alokvmenon wearing Lydia Morrow sweater

How did the knitwear come about?

I was in art school studying painting and printmaking and I was working a lot with printmaking on textiles but I felt like the print was too easy to wash off. I wanted to make something where the actual design was intrinsic to the garment so I start crocheting. I had been knitting since I was a kid but I hadn't really done it as an adult and I was like ok now's the time so it evolved into that.

As a kid, did you do that with a family member?

I asked my mum to teach me how to knit but she only know how to crochet, so she sent me down the road to my neighbour who was just like a lovely older lady named Isabelle, I don't think she's alive any more but she was so nice and she would just teach me and tell me about her school days. It was really nice because my family emigrated here when I was six so I didn't have any grandparents around or anything.

So I think fashion rental is possibly one direction toward small designers being able to get paid for their work while being able to actually make the stuff they are creatively excited by rather than just looking for things at are going to cute costs and make a product sellable.

So what are your thoughts on fashion rental, and why have you decided to team up with LOANHOOD?

As a small designer and also a fabricator, there's a lot of garments that I make that I'm really passionate about seeing people wear, seeing out in the world but they're prohibitively expensive if I want to get paid for my labour and I think all designers should be paid for their labour. So I think fashion rental is possibly one direction toward small designers being able to get paid for their work while being able to actually make the stuff they are creatively excited by rather than just looking for things at are going to cute costs and make a product sellable.

Alok wearing Lydia Morrow's handknitted sweater
@alokvmenon wearing Lydia Morrow sweater

Knitting is a fun one because it's inherently zero waste for the most part because even if you don't like the garment, in the end you can just unravel it.

We're at SLOW THREADS, a sustainability fair, what are your thoughts? Do you have any sustainability practices within your work? Is it important to you?

Sustainability is really important to me, but I feel like I'm always learning and trying to figure things out. As a neurodivergent designer for example I'm limited to materials that feel comfortable on my body. Things like merino that's made superwashed is more accessible to me and sustainability wise I'll wear that garment for a million years but the process of making a wool superwashed is not ideal so it's this kind of balancing act. I try to look at sustainability with an open mind, it's something that I'm super passionate about. For example both of these garment (I'm wearing) are designed using up my scrap and I alway have ideas in the back of my mind to make my projects zero waste and repurpose my scraps but knitting is a fun one because it's inherently zero waste for the most part because even if you don't like the garment, in the end you can just unravel it.

You can rent a selection of Lydia's handmade knitted pieces via the LOANHOOD app.

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