Not many of us would wear something our Grans Knitted for us any more. I used to enjoy wearing creations that my mother used to knit for me and my sister (I distinctly remember a blue jumper with a grey dog on) but this stopped when knitting, and wearing knitted items, seemed to become distinctly ‘un-cool’. Fast forward to the noughties however and knitting is enjoying an unexpected revival and is now not only a widely enjoyed hobby, but also the inspiration for events and exhibitions gracing museums all around the UK.
The Herbert has a well established knitting club that runs on Thursday lunchtimes. ‘Knitwits’. This is an opportunity for staff to get together, have a chat and a cuppa, knit, craft and share creative expertise. Recently, some members of the knitting group joined in with a national initiative run by Innocent Smoothies. This involved knitting tiny winter hats for the smoothie bottles and for each one sold, money was donated to Age UK (formally Help the Aged) to support older people in staying warm during those cold winter months. We have some very talented knitters in the group, knitting anything from gloves to children’s teddy bear outfits. We hope to use this blog to keep you updated on any future projects we become involved with.
Museums are also hosting knitting events. Such is the revived popularity of the craft, BBC Radio Wales appealed for people to knit sections of a huge red scarf, displayed at the National Waterfront Museum in Swansea, in order to support the Welsh Rugby Team in the 2010 Six Nations Competition. There was 1.25 miles of scarf! A huge achievement.
To celebrate ‘Worldwide Knit in Public Day’ the Herbert played host to the ‘Yarn Gatherings’ event to knit Lady Godiva a scarf. It was a successful event, and the museum provided the perfect setting for it. The Hunterian Museum in London was a host for a StitchandBitch London ‘Knit Crawl 2010’ event, also for Worldwide Knit in Public Day. Maybe museums provide the ultimate serene backdrop for an old favourite hobby!