workmans caps designed by Thorunn Arnadottir

66°North workman’s cap from Icelandic designer presented at DesignMarch festival

At the annual Icelandic design festival, Icelandic fashion designer Thorunn Arnadottir unveiled her new design of the traditional workman’s cap.

The knitted hat, which has been created in collaboration with outdoor clothing brand 66ºNorth, aims to add fashion and a bit of fun to a renowned Icelandic product.

Arnadottir explained that like all the projects she has taken on, it had been something she was delving into for the first time.

The already-established 66ºNorth Workman’s Cap is a simpler, plain-knitted and navy blue design by a company that has been supplying work wear to fishermen and search and rescue teams in Iceland since being founded in 1926.

Arnadottir noted that the products the company manufactured were very practical and generally dark, which was something she came into to challenge. Rather than clothes that are viewed purely as functional, the designer has added a little more style.

Her first Workman’s Cap displays the pattern of a codfish when its base is folded up and a knitted fish skeleton when folded down. The second, meanwhile, knitted in blue or pink, shows a panorama of Reykjavik’s historic harbour, featuring ever-presents at the site such as boats, gulls and lighthouses.

Arnadottir, who graduated from London’s Royal College of Art in 2011, further explained that the idea behind her design was to recognise what the product was originally about, which by exposing the skeleton of the fish she was able to do.

Now with her on studio in the Icelandic capital, the designer bases much of her work around her country’s history and culture. Among some of her most well received products include the Skip Ahoy collection, which saw her work with net makers to develop a series of skipping ropes and hula hoops, and her Berg side-tables, which are influenced by the country’s natural basalt columns.

Speaking on the success of the hat, the designer noted that she had seen a lot of people wearing them when walking around town which, for her, was strange as she had never previously been involved in mass-produced clothing. However, she noted that her only constraints with the design were the materials and shapes had to be the same as the original 66ºNorth hat.

Arnadottir praised the company for branching out into commercial products and making small changes to the original designs, adding that it was beneficial for both parties.

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