My Favourites: Yarn Bombing

No, I’m not going to write about the best way to pitch skeins at your spouse… although doing photographs for that particular post would be a really entertaining way to spend an afternoon… but I digress.  Yarn bombing is for crafters what flash mobs are for dancers and singers; a great way to create public havoc and make the world a more colourful and interesting place.

The concept is as appalling to some kinds of crafters as altered books.  When people hear that I tear out pages and cover up passages of text and leave books basically unreadable, they are horrified.  Some people, when told that yarn bombers spend weeks, months, sometimes even years working on textile projects that they then sew into public institutions, where they are subject to rain, animals, people who vandalize things and more, they can’t imagine the reasons.  They just need a little more whimsy in their hearts.  Sometimes, it’s all about the moment.  Everything we do, everything we make is only temporary anyway.  We’ll leave it all behind one day.  Why not do something amazing in the mean time?

You might be wondering who thought this up.  Would it surprise you to learn it was the owner of a needlework shop?  Yeah, probably not.  Magda Sayeg began by yarnbombing the door handles of her shop and moved on to larger projects in the greater Houston area.  The idea caught on fast, and has since been appearing across the globe.

Without further ado, some of my favourite yarn bombing incidents from around the world:

Light and Lacy

Some of the prettiest installations, in my opinion, involve using light, lacework crochet and knitting in places where they are not only unexpected and incongruous, but manage to create a touch of elegance in everyday life.

Lace Tree
Lace Tree – Jane Morton, Canada
Lace Tree
Lace Tree – Jane Morton, Canada
Lace Bike
Lace Bike – Albany, NY

The Enormous

Some projects are so enormous that they boggle the mind; the amount of work that went into their creation is incredible.

Cathedral Steps
Cathedral steps in Helsinki, Finland
Warhol Bridge, Pittsburgh, PA


Wall Street Bull, NY, NY


Wild and Whimsical (and DO-able!)

These bright, colourful projects are ones that any yarn enthusiasts (or group of them) could accomplish.  They bring charm to their surroundings and can’t help but make people smile!

Bike Rack, Berkeley, CA
Wooly Sheep, Belfast, Ireland
Statues ready for winter, Uppsala, Sweden

Would you – or have you – ever been party to a yarnbombing?  Let me know in the comments section below, especially if you are local and planning some guerrilla art of your own that I might participate in!

What did you think?