Grandma’s knitting with a healthy street appeal.

The Knitta crew was created in August 2005 somewhere in Houston. PolyCotN and her friend AKrylik were discussing their frustration about unfinished knitting project, like half-knitted sweaters and balls of wool gathering dust. One day they decided to do somethiong with the leftovers. That night they knitted their first door handle at the PolyCotN’s boutique. They loved it, and so did the people who passed the store. A new idea was born, which was the beginning of a new trend…The name of the group and the nicknames of the members were inspired by the desire to replace graffiti with knitting items. The group mixed crafting terminology with a hip-hop style, then changed the spelling to represent traditional street art monikers.[1]

PolyCotN and AKylik (both females) came up with their own names, then invented names of other members in brainstorming session they considered one of the more hilarious meetings. AKylik is become in a quiet member of the group in 2007, instead of Mascuknitity (male) and Granny SQ (female) who have taken over her part.

Nowadays Knitta is know as a world wide group of guerrilla knitters who travel the globe from New York to London to Tokyo beautifying the urban landscape with bright collared yarns. They want to give the city a new anti-graffiti, colourful, warm and fuzzy look and put a healthy dose of street appeal in your grandma’s knitting. They are convinced that it is totally legal and far removed from vandalism. “all you have to do is unbutton it.”

The Knitta sleeves are marked with a ‘Knitta please / I love Knitta / Whaddup Knitta’ label and have been seen at many different cities around the world. The central theme of Knitta is the use of humour – for example, pink yarn for their valentine’s day pieces and sprakly yarn for new years.

The first knitting poles were located in Houston, USA. They also tagged all 25 trees in the median of Allen Parkway in Houston for the annual Art Car parade in May 2006. After Houston they decided to go to New York city. “New York is huge. It’s a lot easier to make a point in Houston than in New York,” said PolyCotN. “We tried to get the key spaces of a city.” Choosing the optimal spot for the knitting is the most important thing during their actions. So they wrapped a pole in Times Square with a fuzzy green sleeve, tied a striped muffler to a Central Park bench an enveloped a ‘welcome in Manhattan’ sign in a rainbow tube.

Two weeks later, they were in Seattle, Washington, where they did their first large scale piece. Using more than 15 metres of knitted material donated by volunteers of the crew’s mailing list, they wrapped the top half of a monorail column. Almost a year later they were invited to the Los Angeles Standard Hotel, which caters to an edgy clientele, to tag a glass box featuring trendsetting designs and concepts. The box is kept behind the check-in desk in the hotel.[2]

In May 2007 they made their first yarn in Europe. They where invited by Bergère de France for their 60th anniversary. Today, they have left their mark on national monuments such as the Great Wall of China, Notre Dame Cathedral and at places including Sweden, Montreal, El Salvador, Germany, San Francisco.

 

[1] Miles, Amber. “Guerrilla knitters tag Houston with yarn”, San Antonio Express-News, 2006-08-09. Retrieved on 2007-12-20.

[2] Duncan, Savannah (2007-06-21). Off the hook street art. VOX Magazine. Retrieved on 2007-12-22.

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