Connecting Craft & Community

“Knitting  means  different  things  to  different  people.  For  some,  it  is  simply  a  relaxing and  productive  hobby.  For  others,  it  may  be  any  or  all  of the  following:  a  way  of expressing love and gratitude to a friend, a way of  supporting  individuals  in  need,  a way  of  lessening  the  environmental  impact  of  mass produced  goods, a  way  of protesting  sweatshop  labour,  a  way  to  make  a livelihood,  or  a  way  of  supplying needed household items.”

For years my Nana, Mickey, used knitting as a way to help others help their community. She organized weekly knitting groups at senior centers and they made blankets, hats, and scarves from donated materials. She then delivered the knitted items to women’s shelter and other needy organizations in the community. 

The knitting group not only gave these women something to do, it gave them their own intimate community. It also gave them a productive task to complete and feel accomplished about. 

All the samples above are variations of the tortoiseshell folding pattern. I experimented with using different tools to clap the folded fabric as well as different ways to place the clamps, and how many were used.

I didn’t expect them to all be so different, I’m really pleased with the results.

I also found some tutorials online for 2 techniques called Komasu and Kumo. I really liked both of these techniques, they turned out very similar to the pictures online. I hope in the future I can spend more time experimenting with both of them.

The last sample is a bound shibori technique. I would love to do a deeper dive into bond techniques but with time constraints I was only able to do this small experiment.

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