In 2014 I moved back to Vermont—my birthplace—after living in Seattle, Washington for almost 20 years. I moved back to join a Benedictine Monastic community here in a rural part of the state. Well, that unfortunately didn’t work out, so as you might be able to tell, I’m trying some other ventures from my talent pool. Leaving the monastery and throwing myself back into capitalist-meritocratic society has been a somewhat traumatic and harrowing adjustment. But when life gets too confusing or depressing or complex, I can always turn to knitting. Knitting is like saying the rosary or like singing the Office of Psalms—it is something that is meditative, something grounding, and if you do it with intent, as with charity knitting (like a sweater for the homeless shelter, or a prayer shawl for a cancer patient,) then all those repetitive loops and all that miraculously intertwining yarn might actually do some good and justice in the world sometimes.
I have been knitting and crocheting since I was 5 years old (for over 40 years), and I enjoy creating free-style designs, which is great for yarn bombing. While yarn bombing is a form of street art and considered by some to be “graffiti,” it is actually a much gentler and less permanent form of art. In fact, after photo documenting the deed, or after a sufficient amount of time displayed, most responsible yarn bombers will remove the yarn bomb creation from its target. Sometimes they can be re-used on several targets. Also, contrary to the unjustified distress of some street art detractors, yarn bombs do not hurt any living organisms when wrapped around such targets as trees.
Lest you think that yarn bombing doesn’t have anything to do with charity or with bringing justice to the world, let me pose the thought that bringing a smile or a laugh to a stranger can be just as important as delivering a bowl of soup to the homeless.
The Pacific Northwest—where I lived for approximately 20 years before moving back east—has a vibrant yarn-bombing scene, particularly in the western corridor cities of Portland, Oregon; Seattle, Washington; Vancouver, British Columbia; and Victoria, British Columbia.
I hope to post about my knitting and yarn-bombing escapades sprinkled among my blog posts (they will be categorized). If you would like to own some of my creations, you can discover which local Vermont retail establishments and art galleries carry my hand-knit items on my links page.