Culture and Living | mbl | Wed 13 Feb 2019 | 19.57 GMT
Icelandic "French Kiss" sweaters become an Instagram hit
Anna Margrét Björnsson
Ýr Jóhannsdóttir has knitted under the name Ýrurari for the past six years but last autumn her French Kiss, or "Sleikur" sweaters have become a sensation. They have been purchased, by the stylist of Miley Cyrus and Erykah Badu to name a few
"I have been knitting as Ýrurari since 2012, " says Jóhannsdóttir who is currently in New York. "For the last couple of years I've been working on producing my ideas on second hand sweaters instead of knitting them from scratch. Last autumn I took part in a recycling show called "Endalaust" or endless in Iceland and did a trio of sweaters for that exhibition. One of them for some reason became a hit on Instagram."
The sweater is called "Sleikur" which means French Kiss in Icelandic, and features a mouth and a tongue. From that Instagram success lots of people started contacting Jóhannsdóttir, including the stylist of Miley Cyrus. "I sent her the original sweater and I'm just hoping that one day Miley will pick the sweater to wear from all of her clothes," she explains. "And then a short while later, Eryka Badu contacted me and she's been quite lovely. First she bought the only sweater I had left and then I got to meet her in person last week when she was in New York for a couple of days. I'm in New York now because I have an installation in the Textile Arts Center in Manhattan. It was an interesting experience to meet such a famous person and great that she was so nice, she complimented me on all my work and bought four sweaters which I was exhibiting. Now I only have one left so it's exciting to see who will be in touch next!"
The next step for Jóhannsdóttir is to publish the knitting pattern for the Sleikur sweater that Miley Cyrus owns. "Then everyone can try to make their own sweater and I can continue to do other things. Also coming up are some exciting collaborations with people who have contacted me. If people are insterested they can follow my Instagram page @yrurari.“