Amelia’s Magazine | Jolly Good

One of Amelia’s Magazine’s favourite graduates from the Central St Martins MA back in March was knitwear designer Morgan Allen- Oliver, with a selection of horse jockey- meet- Soviet minimalist graphic patterned jumpers. We caught up with him to find out how the last few months have been treating a designer with very British sensibilities.


Hi there! How are you doing? You have nice hair.

Hello, thank you. I think both my hair and I are feeling the effects of a rather busy couple of weeks!

What have you been up to?

Well I’ve had my brothers wedding in Somerset, where I was making waistcoats for the wedding party, and then I’ve been at the Avalon Camp, the charity I work with (a week in a very rainy, muddy field with 32 children, trying to give them a summer holiday!!) then straight back to London to reacclimatise to city life!

You graduated in March – what have you been up to since then?

I needed a break. It was 18 months of near hell, I loved almost every minute of it but it was emotionally, physically and financially draining – I loved it! Then after a couple of weeks lying in a darkened room, I went back to my old uni, Ravensbourne, to help some very talented young designers pull their collections together ready for Graduate Fashion Week. It was fun but strange at the same time – working so hard only to see someone else get the glory! I have not done that before but I suppose it gets you ready for the real world! Then I started doing some work for Christopher Shannon and Natascha Stolle, sort of knitwear consultancy I guess you could call it? This has actually been very beneficial and given me a lot of creative freedom.


Describe your design aesthetic in three words.

British. Elegant. Me.

Who do you see wearing your clothes?

It is odd, but I always have my friend Ed in the back of my head when I design – I think, “would he wear it?” Then I go with it. I also see my clothes as really easy-to wear, and could work on anybody who wants to wear them – as long as they are happy, I am happy. I think that as long as people are confident in their clothes, they will look good! Man that sounds cheesy!

Who do you admire within the industry? Any other heroes?

A strange choice but I am always really excited to see the new Miu Miu shows when they come out. I know it is mainly womenswear and not my forte, but there is always something fun and new that really gets me. Every now again Burberry come out with some beautiful knitwear that makes me wish I had designed it!



Why knitwear?

As stupid and as lazy as it sounds, when I was in my last year at Ravensbourne, no one was doing it so I thought it would be a good way to stand out, and it was. You need to stand out in fashion, however possible! But as I got more into it, I actually started to like it and really enjoyed the process, designing as I knitted and being so much freer than when I was working with wovens. I must have enjoyed it I guess as I went on to specialise in it at St Martins!

As a knitwear specialist, are you pleased to see a lot of recent students showing an interest in knitting?

I really am. It was amazing that only two years after I left Ravensbourne as the only only pure knitter, there were six or seven people doing it when I went back, all of whom were doing some of the best and most beautiful work I have seen. I was also really pleased to see so much on show at GFW. I sat through nearly all the shows and the knitwear was definitely the highlight in most shows.



Morgan’s BA collection from Ravensbourne

Now for the important question…you inherit 5 million dollars the same day aliens land and say they’re going to blow up the world in two days… what do you do? (Editor’s note: definitely not lifted from anywhere)

Well I don’t believe in aliens. But if I inherited 5 million pounds (we are in England!) and then the world ended that night, I would probably be too panicked to come up with a coherent plan, so would no doubt waste my time thinking about what to do!

Who or what is your greatest enemy?

Time. There is never enough and I waste it terribly.


Who would you ideally like to work for, and what’s the future for Morgan Allen-Oliver?

I want to work for one of the classic British houses. I feel that is where my style sits best. Then who knows, one day go out on my own? When I was younger, and still finding my style, I always thought New York was the place for me, and actually in the past week, two opportunities have come up over there, but we will wait and see!

To get in touch with Morgan (and maybe get yourself one of those jolly nice jumpers) pop him over an e-mail by clicking here.

Photographs: Josephine Ma and

Categories ,British, ,Graphic, ,Knitwear, ,Minimalist

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