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  • Leah Oliver

Crochet through Covid

We've all been in isolation for weeks. Our parks were closed, working from home, all activities ceased and no casual coffees. The light at the end of this long isolated tunnel, is finally starting to emerge. Not ignoring whats happening in many other countries, still it leaves me skeptical to what the remainder of the year brings.


The restrictions enforced on us all, fast became a new reality. While we physically adapted to our new lives our minds and hearts weren't as easily persuaded. I think for months we've been readapting our emotions and grieving the loss of our freedom and choice in some way.

Many news articles and blogs are promoting projects, home work outs and creative projects, add more green to your home if you cant go to a park etc all to help our mental health. The suggestions seemed endless, but what this has done is force us to change our daily pace, go for walks, try new things, find a hobby, spend more time together or read more. For us we've eaten more meals together, played in the yard more and bought sand for the kids which I swore we'd never do.

Whatever it was you chose, we all need a distraction or something tangible to help keep us in control when unpredictability and chaos surround us.


While we can't call an end to 2020 I can crochet my way through it.


Crochet, knitting, weaving, spinning, punch hole I mean any craft you can create with your hands we do for a reason. We're out of the era of necessity so its for a creative, nurturing, mindful or expressive experience. Honestly I cannot think of a single negative argument. I love it, you love it (that's why you're reading) and together we've created a tight knit community out of it. FYI pun intended!


It's a creative escape.



Our small town is beautiful, its quiet, the scenery surrounding us with its undulating hills and gorgeous gum trees. It's something really to enjoy on our walks, however the kids aren't as thrilled. If I'm to be honest when you're seeing the same walls at home and taking the same walks everything starts to loose its lustre.

So with my girl and our neighbours girls for inspiration, I crocheted through this time to sprinkle a little love along the main street of our small town.


As we walk around we have something to remind us to smile and talk about. It has lifted our spirits if only a small bit.


Yarn bombing anything stationary isn't a new concept. We've seen it in many cities around the world. Just search #yarnbomb on social media and you'll have thousands of ideas and in many different locations and people like London Kaye who've made a business out of it. While 'bombing is such negative term I hope you see it as a explosion of colour and creative ideas.


For us Canberra has the Arboretum, an annual event called 'warm up the trees' and the snowy mountains council initiated a similar project this year. In these and other pop ups are granny squares and rugs made for poles, this version is our take on it. A fun quirky way to quietly spread our smiles and magic around.



Crochet inspiration


All pieces have been made from scrap cotton in the stash. Most cotton yarns were a worsted weight and for the fingering weight yarns I doubled too match the thinker weight.


All these are free form crochet with no patterns. All you need is an idea, know the size, a few basic stitches and have a rough idea where you increases or decreases need to be.


This doesn't alway work and you may need to frog (rip back) a row or two. If you're like me and hate undoing you're hard work, scroll down you'll see the 'y' in Joy. That letter was way out of proportion, so I called it creative licence and made it work.



We popped this outside the local public school. While there were still a few kids and teachers attending, no one frowns at a rainbow.



Dreaming of pony's and unicorns, what kid doesn't get a thrill from one of these. Inspired by Thelma the unicorn by Aaron Blabey. One of our regular books, our thelma doesn't have sparkles we worked with what we had.

We can do anything if we just trust and remember who we are.




A panda, cheeky monkey and Ariel the mermaid. All for a little bit of fun.




On some level we're evolving through this.

Transforming out of our cocoons and back into life as butterflies



Enviro Impact


Yarn bombing looses its fun fast if it's not done in a consciousness way. It has to be put up with the intention to remove it. So whatever is put up, MUST come back down and go with you.


For a time the colours are vibrant, the idea and the message are enjoyed by many but depending what fibres used depends how long it will look good. Acrylic for this reason are ideal, but that in itself isn't biodegradable. I used 100% cotton for all pieces, so as I'm writing this post, with the rain we recently along with the suns UV some of the pieces have faded.

I'm taking a guess but in the next few weeks they'll have to come down.


There wasn't many options along the street to choose from and without owners permission I wasn't attaching anything to peoples fences. From the photos you'll see I chose to place most pieces up on the power poles. Affixed with a staple gun, each piece needed to be secured well enough that it won't become litter or a hazard to wildlife.

For those pieces you see on trees, they were tied up with the same cotton. Staples may not be ideal but it kept everything secure. Removing them will just take a little care.


But what do you do with everything once its done?! That's where the cotton was the better fibre of choice. It's a natural fibre, they'll be cut up, thrown in my compost and with time, will decompose. A short read I found on 'How to compost fabric' from 1 million women.




Keep your Joy, smile and know there is solidarity in this. We're creating together.


Sending love


Leah x





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