Knitting a more colourful Cambridge
A group of Cambridge women are on a mission to revitalise yarning, and prove it can be exciting, edgy and political.
Cambridge Creative Fibre has decked out the town with colourful fabric in an act called ‘yarn bombing’.
Yarn bombing is nonpermanent street art that employs colourful displays of knitted or crocheted yarn or fibre.
It is believed to have originated in Texas with knitters trying to find a creative way to use their unfinished knitting projects.
Yarn bombing has since spread throughout the world.
During June trees, seats, bollards, arcades and gardens in Cambridge will be covered in yarn.
It’s the third year Cambridge Creative Fibre has yarnbombed the town and this time it has funding from Waipa¯ District Council.
For the last year members have been busy knitting, crocheting and felting hundreds of projects to bring a splash of colour to Cambridge.
There will be knitted surprises along Victoria Street and in Leamington Village.
Discover a ‘love garden’ made from crocheted hearts on Empire St and make sure not to miss a yarnbombed shopping trolley at Bunnings.
Yarnbombing Committee member Sabine Lang says the creativity of the work has been “mind-blowing”.
“Last year it ended up being the talk of the town. This year it is even bigger and better.”
“We’ve decided on a rainbow theme — it’s something that makes you happy.”
The yarnbombing has a political component this year with Pussyhats displayed on the top of poles on Empire St.
Pussyhats — pink knitted hats — were first worn to women’s rights marches in America last year.
The name Pussyhat was chosen as a protest against vulgar comments Donald Trump made about the freedom he felt to grab women’s genitals and to destigmatise the word “pussy” and transform it into one of empowerment.
The hat is a symbol of support and solidarity for women’s rights and political resistance.
“With a majority female group, women’s rights are close to our heart,” Sabine says.
“Cambridge Creative Fibre has a history of supporting women’s rights.”
“We hope the yarn displays encourage people to think a little bit deeper — but mostly we just want people to be happy and amazed.”
Sabine says New Zealand is far behind in the worldwide “knitting revival”.
“We want to show people that knitting can be exciting and edgy.
“We want to dispel the idea that knitting is boring.”
Sabine says yarnbombing is an effective way to brighten up Cambridge in the winter. The yarnbombing coincides with Fieldays and Sabine hopes it will be enjoyed by visitors to Waipa¯ . The display also promotes Cambridge Creative Fibre’s annual exhibition from June 26-30 at Raleigh St Christian Centre.
YARNBOMBING Committee member Sabine Lang and her daughter Eva, 12.
CROCHETED hearts will make up a ‘love garden’ on Empire St.