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Yarn Bombing: Coming Soon to a Neighborhood Near You

by Hannah Rogal 


Tags: art, politics, knitting, activism, graffiti, yarn,

yarn graffitiYarn graffiti artists wrap, weave, and hang their knitted and crocheted creations on doorknobs, car antennas, street sign poles, or even trees.  These “yarn bombers” are part of an international guerrilla knitting movement. 

In a book to be published in September 2009, Mandy Moore and Leanne Prain write about the activism and art of knitting and crocheting.

Yarn bombing can take many forms, but most yarn bombs are handmade items that are attached to street fixtures or left in yards.  Members of the group Knitta have left “bombs” all over North America, South America, and Europe.  One left a yarn bomb on a stone in the Great Wall of China.

For many yarn graffiti artists, yarn bombing is simply a fun and creative act that allows for self-expression.  These “bombers” see yarn graffiti as a way to “take back the knit,” challenging the idea that knitting and crocheting are only useful for garment creation.  Knitting should instead be appreciated for artistic value. 

To others, the act of creating something is a protest against mass-produced goods and corporations.  “Acts such as knitting and crochet, which traditionally have been devalued by society as domestic work, are now considered by many to be political statements,” write Moore and Prain.

Interested in becoming part of the yarn bombing revolution?  For great photos, stories, and instructions, check out Moore and Prain’s book Yarn Bombing: The Art of Crochet and Knit Graffiti (to be published by Arsenal Pulp Press in September). 

To meet other yarn graffiti artists, join the online communities knitty.com or ravelry.com.  Also, check out the Utne Reader article about Pretty Knitty Titties and Broken Pencil editor (and knitter) Lindsay Gibb's recent guest blog. 

Source: Yarn Bombing: The Art of Crochet and Knit Graffiti

Image by Candescent, licensed under Creative Commons.