Opu¯nake spins a beautiful yarn
A bomb has gone off in a coastal Taranaki town, but everyone is smiling.
Organisers of the Great Opunake Yarn Bomb spent time up ladders adorning several blocks of the main street with colourful knitted and crocheted creations.
Residents took to their needles with gusto in May after the call went out from the Opunake and Lakeside Lions Club for help in turning the town into an urban art space.
A pair of huge knitted handcuffs hang in the tree outside the police station, along with a bunch of slightly cheeky curly decorations.
‘‘A lady at the rest home has knitted all these curly little pigs’ tails so we’ve put those in the police station tree as well,’’ organiser Louise Knapman said.
A seven-metre long vine has entwined the railing outside the chemist shop, with monkeys, birds, snakes and caterpillars amongst its coils.
Huge felted flowers have sprung up along a mesh fence and many metres of gaudy knitted bunting are being strung along verandahs and across the main road.
Delicately embroidered crocheted rugs have softened a stone and timber bench outside the library, and the bare bronze statue of running legend Peter Snell is getting a warm new look.
‘‘He’s getting clothes and a hat,’’ Knapman said.
There’s a knitted dog in a cosy bed, a knitting-covered supermarket trolley, a bike and a mannequin sporting a knitted ensemble straight of out of a 1950s women’s weekly, in 1980s fluoro colours. The colourful collection has arrived in bags and boxes from around the town, Taranaki and even abroad.
‘‘A couple of people who used to live here rang to say they were sending something, then we started getting mail from Australia,’’ she said.
Some of the items would be moved indoors at night to keep them safe, but the committee was hopeful the display would be respected, Monique Sinclair, maker of more than 1000 pom poms, said.
‘‘We’re hoping the community takes ownership of it and watches over it.’’
The main street and the area around the Sandford Events Centre were being decorated, with the display set for the opening of the garden festivals and the Taranaki National Art Awards at the Sandford Event Centre until November 4.
Yarn bomb organisers Monique Sinclair, Trish Anderson and Louise Knapman from Opunake Lakeside Lions Club are decorating Opunake’s main street.