Bouclé Comforts and Vintage Biba Treasures
Now cozy WFH style is all-important, it’s hardly surprising that comfortingly tactile bouclé fabric is back in vogue. Textiles are a part of the fabric of our life, and at the present time many of our lifestyle choices relate to our sense of wellbeing. The fact this material looks and feels reassuringly retro can make us feel nostalgic and help to put us at ease.
Bouclé comes from the French for “curled” or “ringed”, and consists of looped fibres, and/or the fabric made from these. The most common raw material used for the textile is wool, though cotton, linen and silk can also be used to create bouclé fabric. The bouclé process not only gives texture and volume to woven fabrics, but can also incorporate mixed shades of yarn to create a ‘heathered’ look. For even more texture, loops of different sizes are combined.
The textile was introduced by Knoll in the 1940s, when the ‘Womb Chair’ was designed by Eero Saarinen in 1948 at the request of Florence Knoll, as a chair she could “really curl up in.” It was made from Knoll’s Classic Bouclé fabric. Chanel’s famous bouclé cardigan jacket, inspired by men’s tailoring, was launched not long after in 1954.
Bouclé fabric has recently become popular for home furnishings, as well as dresses, coats, cardigans and bags. Dedar’s Karakorum bouclé is one of the more luxurious versions of the fabric. Bouclé chairs have become a must have piece of furniture, and bouclé effect textiles are sought after options for recycled rugs, throws, cushions and scarves.
If you’re seeking a curiously contemporary-looking slow fashion version of the trend, check out our selection of bouclé waistcoats. These original late 1960s Biba pieces have a distinctive chevron/pyramid design and are perfect for chilly spring evenings over the top of a prairie dress, or jeans and a long sleeved shirt or vest top.
This style comes in several colourways, and you can rest assured that no one else will be wearing the same. What’s more, you'll not only be getting a fix of retro nostalgia, but will also be investing in a collectable piece of fashion history.