Matty Bovan’s Eclectic Sculptural Layered Crochet as Wearable Art

Fashion Designer Matty Bovan

When I was doing the research for yesterday’s post on Fall 2017 Fashion Week Crochet, I came across an article about Matty Bovan whose work I had somehow failed to take notice of before now.

Matty is a graduate of the prestigious Central Saint Martins fashion design school with an MA in fashion knitwear. He has worked with Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton and Miu Miu. Matty works crochet into his designs in unique ways, sometimes as a sculptural statement piece and other times as a layered accessory. From Vogue:

matty bovan fall 2017 crochet

“Many of his Fall 2017 pieces were constructed with rectangular sections of wool, some hand crocheted and others stitched together on the designer’s old knitting machine from the ’80s.”

Matty’s handwork goes into every detail of an outfit, including shoes and accessories, with his signature being to embellish everything with lots of little trinkets and textiles. He sources all sorts of embellishments from thrift shops and other fun places to shop. He shares, in an earlier Vogue article about his work:

“I love working with traditional and experimental fabrics alongside each other,” he offers. “The friction between them can be really interesting, for example, crocheting with cashmere and then weaving through plastic or Lurex. I like to push materials for what they can do.”

layered crochet wearable art by Matty Bovan

In an interview with Om Pom Happy (who helped crochet flowers for one of Matty’s collections), he adds:

I love experimenting with a wide range of different materials – plastic cords loosely hand knitted with lurex sprouting out in huge tufts, machine knit jacquards with eyelash glitter yarn felted with lambswool, velvet, crochet nets, carved foam shapes painted and covered in gems, hand cast resin brooches and clay brooches hand painted.”

matty bovan fall fashion crochet

In an interview with Something About, he says:

“My work is an extension of me, ha!  Everything I’m into at the time, basically trying to make my dream things in the world. But on a budget. Trying to make sense of the world in a way and having fun doing it.”

Bel Jacobs, who notes that he designs for himself and is his own fit model, summarizes:

In Bovan’s work, rainbow yarn, Lycra jersey, neon velour and gold Lurex, plastics, glitter and rhinestones are exuberantly spun together to create pieces that simultaneously skim the body and fall or arch away from it in sculptural waves. The impression is one of construction/destruction, a gathering of detritus to make a proud but fragile whole.

matty bovan crochet shirt spring 2017

Check Matty out on Instagram

Note: I am using the pronoun “he” for this article based on it being used in the articles about Matty on Vogue, which seems like a credible source. However, I noticed that Matty doesn’t specify a pronoun preference on his own site. It’s important to be sensitive about these things, so I wanted to make the note of it.


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