Sweaters

Tabula Rasa Interviews Style

Tabula Rasa’s Worldly Wool Sweaters for Your Winter Travels

Emily Diamandis founded Tabula Rasa in 2013 on the philosophy of comfort and self-expression. Like adding color to a “blank slate” (the translation from Latin of “tabula rasa”), her pieces encourage women to make their mark with clothing as their palette for expression. Diamandis’s eclectic take on knitwear speaks to this modern Tabula Rasa woman, who is “fun, playful and feminine,” Diamandis says. “She’s always on the move and it’s important that her clothes fit into her lifestyle.” 

Tabula Rasa takes a page straight from Diamandis’s own life as a journey-woman, who makes her home around the globe. “It can’t not be influenced by my personal style,” Diamandis admits of the bohemian aesthetic of her collection. “It’s a part of me.” Inspired by her Bangladeshi heritage, Diamandis’s passion for textiles started at a very young age. She honed her skills practicing centuries-old textile traditions in Nepal, Cambodia and Japan, before making New York City her home base. Her career blossomed from her interests: notably she launched knitwear at rag & bone before going on to consult for Uniqlo and Altuzarra. 

True to its global roots, Tabula Rasa’s Resort 2018 collection is inspired by the pageantry of Flamenco and the opulent textiles of the Mughal Empire. It plays with proportions, fringing and crochet to create one-of-a-kind knitwear unlike any other sweater.

We spoke with Diamandis to learn where she draws her inspiration from and what personal style means to her.

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Loopy Mango DIY hat kit Interviews POP-IN@Nordstrom Style

Give Warmth, Generously: The Gift of Loopy Mango’s Macro-Gauge Knit Kits

Homemade sweaters as gifts tend to evoke the same disdain as a sticky brick of fruitcake. We envision handcrafted knitwear as ill-fitting and scratchy, in musty-colored yarn with multihued crocheted granny squares. But the ladies of Loopy Mango, a couture knitting company, have managed to shed this tired cliché with their trademark megachunky yarns and knitting kits. Dyed in candy pastels and Day-Glo brights, their woolly products yield creations that look like high-fashion cocoons.

Waejong Kim and Anna Pulvermakher, the effervescent duo at the helm of Loopy Mango, merged their love for fashion and art with the DIY movement. Fashion devotees with a fondness for anything one of a kind, they’ve spent time on both coasts, curating eclectic goods for boutiques that combine vintage with new, practical with precious. Their love for needlework eventually led from establishing a small yarn section to a massive yarn line, which has appeared in Vogue and been used by knitting circles around the world. The whimsically large accessories even caught the eye of the late roving fashion photographer Bill Cunningham, a day the Loopy ladies call “a life highlight.”

We spoke with Anna about Loopy Mango’s macro-gauge designs, her favorite TV shows to knit to, their celebrity fans and tips for new knitters who may pick up one of their super-popular knitting kits–the Merino No. 5 for kids is now available in our holiday Pop-In shop.

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Street Style Style

The Sweater Style Danish It Girls Love

Pernille Teisbaek and Emili Sindlev photographed by Crystal Nicodemus 

For a tiny country, Denmark has cornered the international market on coolness. Celebrity chef René Redzepi put hyperlocal cuisine and foraged foods on the menu. Nordic noir shows like The Killing and The Bridge spawned streaming binge sessions around the globe. “Hygge” had us all swaddled in wooly blankets in front of fires seeking the Dane’s national brand of coziness.

Then there are the Danish It girls, like Pernille Teisbaek and Emili Sindlev, who epitomize Scandi style. Truly, Copenhagen may just be our favorite city for the mellow yet sophisticated looks on its streets. One tip we picked up from these Northern beauties in the hip district of Nørrebro: Scandinavian-inspired sweaters are the next heritage piece primed for mass appeal. Their folksy patterns, colorful yarns and snug warmth make them so inviting.

Here are a few of our favorite cheery knits to shop now. Pair them with pants or skirts for a fresh fall look. And feel free to mix prints with your knits: it’s how the Danes do it.

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Throwback Thursday: Sweater Weather

1978

Feel that chill in the air? It’s time to wear cozy clothes. But as fall kicks in, it’s still not quite the season for the heaviest coat in your closet. An in-between measure is in order.

Check out what these guys wore in our 1978 fall catalog. Maybe you’re not about to go hiking, or perhaps teach a college English class – which is what these gentlemen look like they’re going to do.

But if their style is at all your thing, let these men inspire you. They’re dressed for the weather. They’re looking right. Now it’s your moment to shine.

SHOP: sweaters | designer sweaters | turtleneck sweaters lightweight & shirt jackets | corduroy pants | jeans | chinos | flannel shirts | scarves | boots boat shoes

LET 1978 INSPIRE YOU TO DO WHAT, EXACTLY?

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The History of Your Favorite Knits: Fair Isle and Aran

The best part of the impending holiday is the familiarity of it all. Whether it’s the carol you play on repeat or your no-fail cookie recipe, the comforts of the season offer a reassuring warmth.

The same is true for your favorite sweaters. Certain ones stay in rotation—and in fashion—simply because they are easy, relaxed, welcoming to the wearer.

Aran knits were inspired by fisherman in the British Isles

Aran and Fair Isle are two enduring knits. Both originated in the British Isles. The fishing trade inspired the warm wools that soon became a staple of the populations’ wardrobe. Cottage industries sprouted up to supply the sweaters to locals and to supplement unstable or inadequate pay in rural coastal communities.

While the traditionally intricate or ornate patterns of the knits long kept the Industrial Revolution from mass producing them, eventually machinery did catch up. But in the far-flung outer reaches of places like the Dales, Northumberland and the Hebrides, knitters kept the craft alive by making homespun jumpers. The humble beginnings of both sweater styles have only aided their rise to popularity. Today, these two heritage knits enjoy a permanent place in many closets.

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Three of a Kind: Sweater Trends

Look on the bright side: as temperatures drop, it’s time to get cozy in fabulous sweaters. Here are our favorite ways to update your cold-weather wardrobe options.

Graphic & Novelty styles give plain-Jane knits a shot of personality.

Prints and patterns—from classic to folky and floral. Yes, please.

With eyelash knits and shaggy textures, new fuzzy sweaters may be the comfiest of them all.

SHOP: Sweaters

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Getting Set for Sweater Weather

We’ve finally accepted that it’s time to bring our sweaters out of hibernation. For anyone else who’s been watching the temperatures on their weather apps drop, here are our favorite styles to rotate some warmth into your wardrobe.

1 – Nordic Patterns. Inspired by our northerly neighbors, these subtle to bold patterns add an icy-cool touch to your warm layers. [Pictured: Diane von Furstenberg ‘Bonni’ Cardigan]
2 – Dusters. Give a flowy finish to casual looks. Keep your silhouette slim and simple underneath with skinny jeans and a tee. Elongate and avoid looking overly casual by styling with a great pair of platform booties. [Pictured: Village Road Long Cardigan]
3 – Bold Colors. Rich hues and color blocking remain on trend, while providing a mood-lifting pop of color as the days get greyer. [Pictured: VPL ‘Low O’ Colorblock Sweater]
4 – Cable knit. Airy, open knits highlight the pretty details of cabling—perfect for country-girl luxe—while more cozy, chunkier styles are updated with hoods, toggles and jumbo pockets. [Pictured: Willow & Clay Cable Knit Sweater]
5 – Embellished. These beauties would never set foot in an ugly-sweater party—simple styles showcase sequins, metallic fibers and stone details for just the right amount of dazzle. [Pictured: MARC BY MARC JACOBS ‘Quad’ Sequined Sweater]

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