Category: Yarn Bombs

Throwback yarn bomb

This a yarn bomb I did in 2017. I made two finger cozies for this good sir, and sat across the street, watching for people’s reactions. Many people stopped and pointed it out to their friends. One family even took a photo in front of it. But most people just walked right by, oblivious. This is why your yarn bombs should use bright colours! 🌈

Process Post 7 (Remix)

Remixing a sculpture

 

Today I yarn bombed Geert Maas’ On The Beach that resides across from the Trottier Observatory on SFU’s Burnaby campus. It was for my remix assignment, and I decided not to charge anyone for doing it because I’m also not the kind of person who would put ads in my wedding invitations.

On The Beach was installed at the campus in 2002 and purchased from the artist in 2000. Maas’ work is displayed in more than 30 countries worldwide, so it’s kinda neat that we have one of his originals.

 

 

I wrote a piece about this sculpture and four other works of art around SFU for The Peak recently. This little brat is my favourite; I’m glad he has such a perfect orifice for yarn bombing. Unfortunately, I’ve shown this yarn bomb to two people so far and they’ve said it looks like a) a cigar or b) a flower phallus. I reasoned that a flower is pretty much a penis with pollen for sperm, but they didn’t listen.

 

My intention was to show nature reclaiming this piece in a vibrant way that contrasts the sculpture’s dull metal. Someone has even yarn bombed them before; these sculptures have been given cute necklaces and a hat/swimcap (??) thing. I think it’s important to not only appreciate art at SFU or make and display art at SFU, but to comment on the art already at SFU.

You know that giant painting above Images Theatre? This one I mean. It’s called British Columbia Pageant by Charles Comfort and it’s about the whitest depiction of BC’s history you could find. I remember when I first saw it I was like “Where’s the bloodshed, trauma, forced schooling, aggression, unrestrained violence, and thieving? Hmm…”

Other people were and still are thinking the same thing. Many have asked for this mural to be taken down. I think what happened instead was more powerful: art has been put up across from it in protest.

I won’t describe this art for you. I think you should go see it and think about it for yourself.

What I’m trying to say is that it’s important to question and work with the art you encounter. I love On The Beach, and I remixed it to add to it in this case, to make it stand out a bit more to passing students. However, if you find a piece you want to comment on, leave something behind that doesn’t harm the piece. No one likes book burnings. This follows the same principle.

I’ve considered crocheting some yarn blood to drape off British Columbia Pageant, but I think I wouldn’t be able to attach it successfully. Alas, I am short.

 

How to yarn bomb

So you’ve spent your whole life feeling empty and you’ve finally realized what’s been missing from it: yarn graffiti.

How does one make non-harmful graffiti? I’ve always been a big fan of spray-painted graffiti but a) you can get in major trouble for it and b) some poor schmuck is gonna have to scrub at it for hours. Yarn graffiti is relatively simple, you can’t get in trouble for it (unless you’re trespassing), and it doesn’t require extra work for anyone else. I mean, if anyone’s really annoyed with what you made, they can just cut it off with scissors. Which is a stupid move, but whatever. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do this thing:

 

(1) Learn how to sew, crochet, knit, finger crochet, arm knit, or how to bind fabric or yarn together in some way

Some of these are easier to do/learn than others. I’ve known people who bind their creations with glue and tape. This isn’t the best idea because it doesn’t last very long. More preferably, you would learn how to sew, knit, or crochet. I won’t get into the finer details of each one here, but many say sewing is easiest, while crocheting is hardest. Knitting is a happy medium and most people can pick up the simplest stitch within an hour or so. I personally prefer crochet, as crochet hooks are the most portable and it’s easier to make 3D objects.

There are many video tutorials online for intros to sewing, knitting, and crochet. Even if you decide to never yarn bomb, you should at least learn how to sew. It’s helpful shit.

This how-to will be focused on a crochet yarn bomb.

 

(2) Measure your target

What do you want to make a little more colourful and exciting? If you can’t think of something right away, just Google “yarn bombs” and your mind will be blown. However, whether it’s big or small, round or straight, you need to measure what you’re yarn bombing. If you don’t, your piece might be too tight, too loose, too small or short, and you will look like a fool. Just kidding. My first yarn bomb was a disaster. Just have fun

You can use a measuring tape to get the lengths and widths of your desired target. Here, I’m yarn bombing a payphone cord. But notice that I’m not using a measuring tape, but a length of yarn. In this case, I just used a piece of yarn to determine how long I wanted my finished piece to be. I cut this length of yarn and used it as a measuring stick as I crocheted.

Both ways work, but if you’re yarn bombing a bicycle, I suggest the measuring tape.

 

(3) Gather your materials

Okay, I didn’t put scissors into the picture because I forgot them that day. Bring scissors too. Here I have a ball of spare yarn, a crochet hook for weaving my piece onto the payphone cord, and my two creations (a payphone cord cozy, pattern courtesy of Yarn Bombing by Mandy Moore and Leanne Prain and a crochet flower, pattern found in several variations online).

When attaching your piece to your target, you can either use a yarn needle, a crochet hook, or…tape or glue I guess (please don’t do this). Other options are sewing your piece on or stapling. Just find adhesive material and you’ll be fine.

For this yarn bomb, I’m going to weave the piece onto the cord with extra yarn and my crochet hook.

 

(4) Strike

Usually I’d want to do this part at night. Applying your piece to the target usually takes some time, and people asking nosy questions just prolongs the process. Here, I started putting it on the cord at around 4:30 p.m. People at SFU usually don’t talk to each other, so I believed it was a safe risk. Attaching this piece took about 5-8 minutes.

I looped the yarn around the cord and through the piece itself so it could stay on for as long as possible, and not easily fall off because I know tons of people use payphones nowadays. 🙄

 

(5) Revel in the success of your first yarn bomb

Hey congrats! You made a small part of Earth a little cooler. Maybe one day when you’re an astronaut you could yarn bomb a space rock or something. That would be cool.

Yarn bombing is a lot of fun, and there are so many different things you can do. I bet you’re wondering where that little flower is now. Well, I haven’t decided where I’m gonna put it yet so stay tuned.

Some people yarn bomb rocks on the beach, and others make sweaters for trees. Long ago, someone even yarn bombed the Avocado/Egg sculpture that everyone has sex in apparently (??) I hope you peeps can come up with something fun to create and yarn bomb. I believe in your creative abilities.

*~All these photos were taken by a guy named Maxwell Gawlick. Check out more of his photos here!~*