iele: a research project on handcrafted textiles out of Romanian sheep wool

iele was initiated in 2016 by Studio Oana Tudose as a creative platform that facilitates the research of discarded sheep wool in the countryside of the Romanian Carpathians. In the region tons of sheep wool are thrown away or burned every year, as a result of poor collective management and the lack of good regional infrastructure. iele proposes to reclaim this local and undervalued material and investigate its potential qualities through design. The goal is to search for new approaches that can promote the qualities of sheep wool and reevaluate its applications as a contemporary material. 

Chapter One of iele focused on exploring the unique characteristics of the wool fiber through a series of textile-crafted experiments. The research was realized by using solely traditional techniques, currently extinct from the Romanian repertoire, such as wool spinning, wet felting and coloring with natural plants. The textiles mainly explored the obsolete technique of hand spinning wool, investigating the potential of the yarn to create a decorative texture, structure and chromatic nuances. Throughout the tests, the yarn was introduced in various sizes, patterns, knots and braiding techniques. All materials presented were wet felted with the yarn.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The research was funded by ING Romania and The Institute, part of ReDesign Crafts.

Design and info © Studio Oana Tudose

Images © Luis Rios-Zertuche

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