Tuesday, December 3, 2013

DSC02858.JPGAt first glance, it looks like something out of Alice in Wonderland. Vivid, multi-colored knit and crocheted yarns covering everything from trees, statues, trash containers, and bus shelters in Civic Center Park. An international art movement known as “yarn bombing” or graffiti knitting or guerilla knitting, it’s the work of a local non-profit organization, Knots of Love, and the City’s Re:Imagine Downtown campaign.

“Re:Imagine Downtown is about inspiring new and unique ideas that don’t necessarily have to stay within the lines. It’s about remaking downtown into a place of different sights, sounds, and experiences that relax, entertain, and engage people in its surroundings. The yarn display is like a thread connecting the community to a different world of art,” says Garden Grove Community Development Director Susan Emery.

Over 75 skeins of yarn, equal to more than 27,000 yards, 20 volunteers, and 300-plus hours of crocheting were needed by the Knots of Love team to create the temporary environmental masterpiece. Based in Costa Mesa, CA, Knots of Love is a non-profit that donates hand knitted and crocheted caps to individuals undergoing chemotherapy; burn victims; brain surgery and head trauma patients; and individuals with Alopecia. The non-profit has provided more than 179,000 caps since its inception in 2007.

“This is a very unique opportunity for Knots of Love to work with the City of Garden Grove and tie in to their Re:Imagine Downtown campaign. I congratulate the City for thinking outside of the box and using such an innovative and colorful way to revitalize the civic center area,” says Knots of Love founder, Christine Fabiani.

According to Fabiani, the yarn bombings help bring awareness to the organization’s cause, without taking any time or effort away from providing caps. She further indicates that all the yarn is donated, and is of lesser quality than yarn normally used for caps, so yarn taken from the Civic Center display will be re-used to create blankets for the homeless.

Since August 2013, the Re:Imagine Downtown online forum has received ideas and feedback from more than 1,350 participants, on how to make downtown a greater public place

To access the Re:Imagine Downtown web forum, go to http://www.reimaginedowntowngg.com/.

For more information on Knots of Love, visit www.knotsoflove.org.