Yarn Bombing: On Practicing Textile Graffiti

My childhood home town is – apparently – in the throes of a graffiti invasion. Yarn bombing.

I’d never thought of knitting as a form of radicalism before. Wait, that’s not true. I took my teenage daughter to a knit-in … probably 15 years ago. I can’t even remember what we were protesting, but our picture ended up on the front page of a local paper. Below the fold, but still.

Wikipedia defines yarn bombing as, “Yarn bombing, yarnbombing, yarn storming, guerrilla knitting, kniffiti, urban knitting or graffiti knitting is a type of graffiti or street art that employs colourful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn or fibre rather than paint or chalk.”

English author and artist Lauren O’Farrell  (aka Deadly Knitshade) is credited for making yarn bombing popular. You can read more about Lauren and her Knit the City efforts to tell stitched stories with yarn here.  The site is tongue-in-cheek, its humor well worth the read.

If you’re the type to go overboard on a good idea – and I am – you can even delve into Extreme Yarn Bombing. I admit this one took my breath away. The steps of the townhall in Helsinki covered in granny squares?  Yes please.

A yarn bombing Facebook page boasts more than 21,000 Likes.  So, yeah. It’s a Thing. People are Doing It. Probably not me, though. I can’t help but look at all that gorgeous yarn, those beautiful colors and think about the projects I could make.

I guess I’m getting too old for activism. 😉




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