Tag Archives: yarn bomb

New Kids on the Block

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distillery show

Local Torontonians are probably familiar with the cities Distillery District, a national Historic Site where
the Gooderham and Worts Distillery once operated and where you can find the largest and best preserved
collection of Victorian Industrial Architecture in North America.

This part of town drew a different kind of crowd last weekend when Street Art Showcase took over for their inaugural Urban Art Festival. The entire day was dedicated to graffiti artists, painters, stencilled and of course YARN BOMBING!

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Bissell volunteers wrapping up the street lamps with some crochet cozies.

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All set and waiting for the show to start!

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Our first group of visitors adding their mark to the street with chalk drawings.

The group had been approached a few months ago to think up some ideas for the space. The culturally preserved buildings and cobbled streets make the area such a beautiful place to stroll, not to mention the cute cafes and unique shops around every corner. The group was absolutely thrilled to be a part of the event, especially since it gave us the much needed kick in the pants to really get out there and display something outdoors. earlier in our groups career we had been a bit hesitant to really get out on the streets since the summer had already experienced some pretty big weather mood swings (and our worries were before #stormTO had happened! Eep!) Members dedicate a lot of time and love into producing pieces, and a teeny-tiny selfish part of us want the works to stay clean and colourful for as long as possible. Bleached, and soaked through yarn tends to look a little drab, the opposite of how we want people to feel when they stumble across the yarn bombs.

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Although the morning was a bit cloudy, it was incredible to hear and see the reactions from those passing by.
Once we had all the lamp posts, barrels and even the clock covered with our crochet interventions,
it was time to pop on stage for a little demo.

Throughout the festival, artists working in different mediums were invited to show off their skills and produce a
brand new piece in front of a live audience. Since the Bissell Bombers are all about community and collaboration we
decided to get the audience to help us make even more yarn bombs to decorate the district. Armed with a much yarn in
as many colour imaginable, visitors of all ages got on stage with our Bissell leader and learned how they could make
some fuzzy Pom Poms. Even the event’s MC got in on the action and found himself with a
pure crochet flower festooning his hat!

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The live stage demo was so amazing to run, and seeing families and couples wanting to learn a new craft and ask
questions about yarn bombing was really inspiring. All the Bissell members and installation volunteers could really
feel all the love that went into planning the first ever urban art feat for the district, and were so honoured to have
been able to share what we do. It was such a great day and we owe a lot of thanks to those who organized
the festival and those came out to celebrate local arts and crafts!

Behind the Seams: AGO 1st Thursday!

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 WHAHOOOO!!!!! We did it guys!

The Art Gallery of Ontario has officially been yarn bombed!

*fist pumps entire installation crew

We are so incredibly grateful to everyone who contributed to
this amazing experience. From all the wonderful people who sent
us along yarn, lent us a car to transport everything to the gallery,
and handed over their time to do some super fast last minute darning.

A special shout out also goes to some of the OCAD students who invited us to join the
evenings festivities in the first place. Simone was the perfect host, checking
in to see if we needed anything, escorting our team members around,
and offering to help unload installation equipment even though our
surprisingly light bundles of hexagons looked like they weight tonnes.
And our main contact, Jon, definitely deserves a pat on the back after
all the changes that were made throughout the prep process and for
working out a few kinks. Some of you might recall that originally we were
set to install on the Walker Court stairs, and were moved to the snake ramp at
the main  lobby doors. In the end  there was one last adjustment and the Gallery
Italia space turned out to be a terrific way to bring the street art movement into
the gallery while watching Toronto’s latest snow storm unfold.

The Bissell Bombers also wanted to give a shoutout to AGO security and assorted staff.
We know we must have looked a little odd with our multicoloured rib
wrappings, but your curiosity about the project kept us motivated and
your sense of humour made the 4-hour install fly-by.

And since the event was for one night only and the show sold out incredibly fast,
we wanted to post a few photos for those who couldn’t make it out.
So enjoy our Behind the Seams shots as we prepared for the big night 🙂

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Measure twice, darn once.

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All set to go as we wait for the ladder to come up from the ‘AGO’ sign up front.

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Teamwork, a little ingenuity and a lot of temporary zip ties.

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Putting the last finishing touches on the flower garland as the LEDs are activated!

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Forget being “Facebook Official”, you know you’ve made it when you’re given your own interpretive text panel and program 🙂

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The big reveal!
Our secret identities are exposed as two
Bissell Bombers pose with their biggest collaborative piece to date.

To hear more about the project and some of  the other installation pieces
that were on display that night, be sure to check out Christopher Jones article for TO Live with Culture.
And you can make your own dance party by visiting A Tribe Called Reds amazing play list.

Project Shoutout: Lia S.

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Lia S

These cute hexagons are just the beginning of what we will eventually
be seeing from Lia S.

She heard about our project through the grape vine/ interwebz
and the Bissell Bombers immediately ignored everything they had ever
been taught by their parental units regarding life rules about talking to strangers.
Because sharing is caring, guys!

So a big shout out go to Lia S. who reached out to us while we flailed around online
asking for donations, inspiration, and motivation to work
towards our AGO yarnbombing dreams.

Lia S., your AWESOME!

We’re so thrilled to see that a community based project is actually
being taken up by the community! 

And for anyone else who’d like to follow in Lia’s footsteps, the donation doors
will remain open until January 31st. You can contacts us here for more
delivery/pick up options.

Project Shout Outs: Angela H.

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WHOA BABY!
Saturday was a massive donation day. The AGO project got lots of goodies
coming in from Waterloo, and we’re tipping our hats off to one special lady: Angela H.

Over the Christmas break, this fantastic maternal figure really hunkered down and produced 50 hexagons!
That’s fifty with a capital HO MY GOODNESS GRACIOUS!!!
And check out all the awesome colours and patterns she  did!
They’ve even got freakin’ flowers on them!

And that’s not even all of it!
She is committed to amping up her crochet time – she’s been averaging 5 hexagons a night.
Think you can beat that? *shameless ploy to encourage more donations*

We’ll keep a pattern list going for those of you interested in learning how
you can make your very own budding flowers, so send us your recommendations
and maybe you’ll inspire some more fun additions for our upcoming yarn bomb.

We know that Angela H. has certainly inspired us rethink some of our
own work and not rest on our laurels.

Yikes! The yarn bombing work just got a little bit more competitive!
THANKS ANGELA! 🙂

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And as always, you can read more about the AGO project here, or contact us here.

Calling All Crocheters!

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BIG NEWS GUYS! All the secret little meetings I’ve been running to, and all the teasers I’ve
been putting out into the inter webz have come to an end. I finally get to do the big reveal.
And it is pretty friggin’ big.
Or should I say tall??

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For those of you who don’t recognize these hyper stylized stairs, these are what
visitors use when they’re leaving the Walker Court and heading to the Thompson collection
of the ART GALLERY OF ONTARIO!

Yeah, that AGO.
*insert squeals of joy

The back story for this crazy project goes like this.
For the past few months the AGO has been hosting a series of wildly successful adult nights called
1st Thursdays which happen as one might suspect on the first Thursday of every month.
In preparation for February’s event, the Bissell Bombers were contacted by a few OCAD
students who have been curatorially collaborating with street artist to bring their projects indoors.

*insert squeals of joy

This is a FANTASTIC honour and the offer blew the Bissell Bomber minds.
And we’re determined not to disappoint!

With that sentiment in mind, we sheepishly approach you all for a wee bit of help.

They say that the camera adds 10 pounds. Well in this case it might be more like 100 pounds.
These stairs seem to get bigger every time I look up at them, especially when I have to stand at the very opposite end of the court in order to capture it with my little instagraming phone. And while our small group of knitters are very speedy, we’re hoping that fellow knitters might feel
inspired by some festive holiday feelings and donate a few castaways for a cause.

And donations will not go unrecognised!

To show our appreciation for all the hard work random people are putting into
making our big ideas come to fruition, we’ve set up a little rewards system.

1 granny hexagon = your name/knit pseudonym on our blog
10 & above granny h’s = name on blog + tag on your piece in the show
amazing amounts of granny h’s = all of the above AND we will live tweet a photo of your piece during the night of the event surrounded by all your loving and adoring fans

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And because we all know how super talented you are, we’re not going to
do something silly like restrict that creative genius with colour combos or style guides.
Once we’ve collected all the contributions we’re going to start stitching them together
and cover those stairs (and possibly some smaller  surprise locations as well).

So let us know what you think!
If you’re interested in contributing drop us a line through our Contact Us page
and if you’ve  got any unanswered questions, take a peek at our official Bissell Call Out (which you’re

free to distribute at your Stitch n’ Bitch sessions *wink  wink).

THANKS GUYS!
So excited to see this!!!

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Stringing in the Rain

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 Did you know that an alternate name for yarn bombing is yarn storming?
Well now you do!

And to help seal it in your memory, I found the purrfect example of it.

Meet Howie Woo. A cool dude from British Columbia that embraced his provinces
tendency for temperate weather and mashed it up with that strange saying, “it’s raining cats and dogs”.

 

ADORABLE!
Makes me feel a little guilty for spending my drizzly Sunday indoors with
a book and some tea… but I’ll get over it 😉

I wonder if there is a winter/snowflake pun the Bissell girls could get a head start on…