Knit the City are London’s infamously sneaky stitchers, a guerrilla graffiti group plastering the city not in spraypaint but wool. According to their leader, Deadly Knitshade, their M.O. is to knit something, install it somewhere public and run away giggling. Maybe you saw their cheeky Phonebox Cosy in London’s Parliament Square, or perhaps you met Plarchie the giant squid – a massive 8-metre tentacled beast made out of Sainsburys shopping bags – at the Natural History Museum. The Guardian, Time Out, The Evening Standard, and the BBC News certainly did, as did this particular Gosh! staffmember who is a staunch fan of the very real, very pink and pickled giant cephalopod the Museum keep locked away in a very long tank. Here’s Plarchie with his old pal Charles Darwin:
Given the covert nature of the operation the group keep their civilian names private, adopting suitable nom de plumes or rather ‘yarnstorming names’ like Lady Loop, The Fastener and Shorn-a the Dead, each with their own bitten-by-a-radioactive-ball-of-yarn origin story. If it all sounds mad, that’s because it definitely is. And brilliant, too.
Gosh! is proud to host the launch party for Knit the City: A Whodunnknit Set in London, their first ever UK photographic book, crammed full of woolly pictures of their various London yarnstorms, along with the stories behind each one. It also includes two knitting patterns for those who’d like to play along at home – a tiny squid, and a small sheep. There’ll be plenty of copies available on the night, along with wine and soft drink too, though you’re very welcome to bring your own.
Deadly Knitshade and her secret society of knitters plan to invade the shop with their wool and needles, weaving strange and unlikely pieces of art throughout the shop. Word on the street is that Plarchie may well put in an appearance too. If I was Knitshade I’d end this missive with a woolly pun to be proud of. But I’m, uh, knit.
Where: Gosh! at 1 Berwick Street, Soho W1F 0DR
When: 6:30pm – 8pm, Friday, September 16.
Who: You. And Plarchie.