about Woolly Wormhead
My name is Woolly Wormhead and I am a Hat architect.
Hats are fascinating. They are relatively quick to knit, but they are also endlessly versatile. I think of my Hat designs as sculptures and 3D objects. I build them in my head, then construct them with my hands.
My educational background is in textiles and engineering. I hold a BA in Textiles and a postgrad PGCE in Art & design from Goldsmiths, London. I have always been curious about how textiles were made – this sense of curiosity continues to fuel both my work and my life. As a child I would experiment with hand-dyeing, dress-making, and designing my own clothes. Later I explored silversmithing and pattern-cutting. While my background informs my work as a Hat architect, I do not let it define me. Instead I use my skill set to push against the boundaries of my craft. I want to keep inventing new methods of knitting Hats.
I have made some personal lifestyle choices that affect my work in more ways than one. I travel a lot, and I belong to several artistic and fluid communities. Because I lead an unconventional life, I am very aware of how my personal actions affect my surroundings. I care deeply about the impact my work has on the environment – from the carbon footprint of my books to ethical consumerism.
All my books are published by myself. I write all my patterns using Open Source software which supports community values and puts users above profits. My books are mostly published as PDFs or as POD (print-on-demand) as I am concerned about paper wastage and also want as many people as possible to be able to use my patterns without having to invest in specialist equipment or cutting-edge technology. Usability has always been one of my primary concerns, and great care has been taken to make sure every piece of information is clear and concise.
I am a big believer in photographing people from all walks of life and all my models are chosen carefully. It's important to reflect the diversity of the world we all live in. We don't all look the same, so why not show that? Why not show the Hats on different people with different hair, different skin tones, and different lives? We are all extraordinary people capable of amazing things. I hope to inspire you through my work to consider who made your clothes, how you can shop from your own wardrobe, and how to wear what makes you feel like yourself. As a result of my ethical stance, my models are all local to me. They either wear their own clothes or borrow from my personal wardrobe (which is continually upcycled or repurposed secondhand clothes). And what they get paid goes back into the local economy.
My work truly reflects my core values. I am committed to remain independent of any corporate interest. I do not compromise on any of my ideas. I am the author and designer of my books, and I have personally overseen every project. This means every time you knit any of my many Hat patterns, you are working directly from my vision. And that is a promise.