A popular form of street art is coming to Lansing on Friday, May 31, when the Michigan Historical Museum will be the site of a yarn bombing. The museum is seeking knitting enthusiasts from around the state to participate in the project, starting with a series of Stitch Labs each month at the museum, located at 702 W. Kalamazoo St. in downtown Lansing.
Yarn bombing—also known as guerilla knitting or grandma graffiti—is a form of street art that incorporates knitted or crocheted shapes to cover objects in public spaces: poles, bus seats, benches, statues or monuments. Examples of projects from around the world can be found at www.yarnbombing.com.
The Stitch Labs are designed to bring yarn enthusiasts together to create yarn pieces for the Yarn Bomb. The pieces will be installed at the museum on May 31 in time for the June 1 “Be a Tourist in Your Own Town” event in Lansing. The Stitch Labs will be held on Saturdays Feb. 23, March 23, April 27 and May 18, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the museum.
Two Children’s Stitch Labs will be held for youth who are interested in basic knitting, crocheting and weaving techniques. These kid-friendly events are scheduled for Saturdays, March 16 and April 20, from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the museum. Visitors can participate in the labs for a few minutes or a few hours.
“Yarn bombing the museum will create a fun, community-wide public art project for the Capitol region. It will also give us a chance to incorporate the yarn creation into the history of Michigan that is displayed at the museum,” said Sandra Clark, director of the Michigan Historical Center. “This project will encourage people to knit or craft their own history into the yarn bomb, which is what the museum is about—the personal stories that create the history of Michigan.”
Knitting or crocheting enthusiasts who cannot make it to Lansing to participate can send their creations in the form of 5-inch-by-5-inch squares, in any color, to the museum to be included. They can be mailed by May 29 to the Michigan Historical Museum, 702 W. Kalamazoo St., P.O. Box 30740, Lansing, MI 48909. After the bombing is over, the yarn squares will be turned into colorful blankets and donated to a Michigan charity. The museum is seeking suggestions for Michigan charities for the blankets. Please send suggestions to YarnBombtheMIMuseum@gmail.com by April 30. Museum officials will pick the top five suggestions, and then voting for the top charity will take place on the Museum’s Facebook page from May 1-18. For more information on the Michigan Historical Museum, go to www.michigan.gov/museum or call 517-373-3559.
Admission fees for the Michigan Historical Museum are $6 for adults 18-64, children through age 5 are free, youth ages 6-17 may pay an optional $2, and seniors 65 and up are $4. Annual passes are available, and there is no admission charge on Sundays.