I recently wrote a post about my Five Fave Fibre Artists, and as it turned out, the way I spelled ‘fibre’ was the only Canadian bit.
While away on my big adventure last year, I ran into a few people who knew about yarnbombing and some of them were even able to name their national yarnbomber. This got me rather excited and obviously curious about Canadian yarnbombers.
It appears as if there was a surge in popularity of Canadian yarnbombings in the early 2010’s but for whatever reason, it has since slowed. There is good news though. While we as a nation don’t have an official yarnbombing spokesperson, we have been rather influential in the movement.
Here is a short list of the Canadian movers and shakers who have paved the knitted path before us.
1. Leeann Prain & Mandy Moore, authors of Yarn Bombing.
This is a fabulous guide to yarnbombing written by two Vancouverites. I bought Yarn Bombing and Craftivism together and well, you can see what’s happened to me. Seriously though, this is the bible of yarnbombing and a really fun read. It’s a How-to guide with lots of photos, unusual patterns and interviews with yarnbombers from around the globe.
2. The Yarnbomb Yukon Collective was active between 2011 and 2015 and is credited with making Canada’s biggest yarnbomb. I mean they made really big yarnbombs, like woolly mammoth and airplane big! The scale they worked on is totally incredible and fortunately for us, documented really well. These massive projects won them international acclaim and as a result I’de like to nominate them for the title of ‘Canada’s National Yarnbombers’.
Sadly, they are no longer active as a collective but Jessica Vellenga, the coordinator is still stitching and making fibre art. She’s now based in Hamilton, Ontario and continues to merge arts, crafts and community collaboration.
3. Joann Matvichuk is the creative Albertan behind one of my favourite days of the year, International Yarnbombing Day! I’ve celebrated the past two years, installing Old Manolis & the Sea in 2015 and the Hoppiness Frog in 2016. I really look forward to June because both International Yarnbombing Day and Worldwide Knit in Public Day fall in the same weekend. Come on June 10/11 and stay tuned to hear what crafty adventures I’ve got up my knitted sleeve!
4. Chase the Chill merges charity and yarnbombing in a very heart and body warming manner. And get this, they have 12 Canadian chapters. If you are trying to decide whether yarnbombing is for you, this is a highly noble route of entry. You can check out their website to find local chapters or learn about how to start one yourself. The idea is that you knit up warm gear and leave it outdoors for cold people to take as necessary. Simple as that.
I was able to dig up a few articles about Canadian yarnbombs, but struggled to find any recent and active bombers, blogs or sites. I think part of the challenge is what title yarn artist’s identify with. So am now turning to you, my lovely ‘gangsters’ to ask whether you know of any other Canadian ‘bombers’? If you do, or think it is your destiny to become one-do get in touch.
I can be found on Twitter and Instagram and love hearing from you. Ide also be really grateful if you shared this post with your crafty, Canadian friends. June is fast approaching and there are knitted adventures to be at…which I’m hoping we can gang together for!
-Knit well, Be well.