In Celebration of our Creative Volunteers

April 18, 2015 -

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Here at the American Museum in Britain we are well know for our textiles and folk art collections, so it should come as no surprise that we attract people with a love of making. Since I joined the Museum two years ago the creativity of our staff and volunteer team has been a constant source of delight and inspiration to me.

Our Easter yarn bombing trail is in its third year and has gone from strength to strength. Our dedicated team of volunteer knitters begin work in January, when the Museum is closed for the winter. They gather together over coffee and cookies to share patterns and inspiration, and I have the pleasure of marvelling at new knitted creations every time I host a meeting for them.

It takes two days of hard work for staff and volunteers to install the trail, but the shouts of delight from visitors as they come across the knitted treasures hidden in the gardens and grounds make it all worth it. This year, a small elf and circle of mushrooms popped up in the Mount Vernon garden:

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Some delightfully realistic blue tits perched on a knitted bird feeder:

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A farmyard scene appeared in the vegetable patch:

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A crowd of bunnies perched on one of the box hedges:

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…and knitted hearts decorated trees, inspired by the romantic themes in Hatched, Matched, Dispatched— and Patched!

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The creative skills of our volunteers don’t stop at knitting. Last year one of the team produced beautiful flower brooches made from Kaffe Fassett fabrics, which were sold in our shop. They were such a hit that the rest of the team was keen to learn how to make their own, so Gail ran a workshop to pass on her skills:

Brooch Workshop

Here’s my attempt:

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We were delighted to receive this photo of a friend of the Museum, wearing her Kaffe Fassett brooch in sunny Eduador!

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I know the knitters are already dreaming up ideas for next year’s trail, and I can’t wait to see what they come up with. If you’re creative and enjoy learning new skills and techniques, you might enjoy one of this year’s workshops. To find out more about volunteering at the Museum, click here.