The world will be covered in string this Saturday (9 June) as ambitious knitters celebrate the 2nd annual International Yarn Bombing Day.
A type of street art, yarn bombing involves
covering a public structure or form (often benches, pay stations or trees) in crocheted
or knitted patterns. Since yarn does not damage property in the same way spray
paint might, yarn bombers see their art as a way of reclaiming and beautifying public
Day.was created last year by Alberta knitter
Joann Matvichuk as a way to unite the diverse groups of “guerilla knitters” in
cities across the world.
“There is a large concentration of yarn bombers on the
West Coast, in cities like Vancouver, Seattle, San Francisco and Berkeley,” said
Vancouver knitter Leanne Prain, an author who coined the term “yarn bombing” in
the book by
name. “However [the trend] really is all over. I was
amazed with how many people joined last year’s event. I heard from people in
Europe, Spain and South America.” Last year’s art included handwarmers for a statue in Germany, crochet around a stop sign pole in Michigan, knitted flowers on trees in Nice, France, and hats for street posts in England.
The knitting projects for this year’s celebration
are likely well underway, as it can take months to create a covering large
enough to surround a big tree or statue. Some taggers knit small cards into
their work with a name or website for onlookers to get more information about
the artist, but others do the work anonymously, often in the evening or early
morning to avoid detection.